TALKEETNA – “I don’t know if this is Larry, Curly or Moe,” said Alaska Adventure Museum Owner Jenny Krepel, as she worked at removing all of the shops artifacts from a flooding basement.
Krepel is trying to preserve what her mother created 20 years ago. “It’s the only wax museum in Alaska.”
Her father worked at caulking the basement's doors, but water poured through faster than he could work.
“We have never had water in the bottom of the museum before. These are our storage buildings, and about two hours ago we noticed the water rising from the east river; there is a culvert under the railroad tracks and we are trying to move most of our stuff out of the buildings, but it just keeps coming and we hope the buildings don't float away.”
Located just behind the museum are four wooden sheds, each with a set of steps that were covered by water – and sewage.
Just down the road is the Fairview Inn, a local bar in the heart of Talkeetna. “We’re open,” shouted bartender Marney Gunderson, and added that they have no intention of closing.
“The flood waters aren't here yet. People are still around and a lot of them have been pushed out of their homes in East Talkeetna. They are working downtown here and just need a drink."
Gunderson remembered a similar time in 1986 when the bar flooded. She remembers watching the bar, the tabs and the liquor float away. “It washed away bottle by bottle,” she laughed, and added that there were people downstream catching the floating booze.
And it all could happen again.
“There's not much more we can do. We lifted up our electric equipment, things off the floor.”
But until the floodwaters reach the bar, she said it would stay open until last call.