July 13, 2008


Well after a couple of months, we finally are back in a city again, complete with Sam's, Wal-Mart, movie theaters and shopping malls. But, you already know about those common things, so I'll just focus on the unique things we saw in Anchorage.

First off is their original log cabin Visitor's Center. According to the poster inside, this is THE most photographed log cabin in the world...
I guess a stunning difference walking around downtown is the huge array of beautiful flowers...everywhere you look. Interestingly, Alaska state colors are pretty darn close to LSU's, so we almost felt we were wadering though the streets of Louisiana.

A real highlight of the visit was the Saturday Market. If this isn't the largest in the world, it has to rank right up there with the biggest. Covering what amounts to several city blocks, there are so many rows of booths that street signs are posted to help one find their way.

Speaking of unique, we met a charming artist (Arlene) who spends half the year in Hawaii, and half here in Alaska making pottery fired Ocarinas. This strange litle instrument sounds wonderful, and captivated both Kim & I. Of course, we bought a couple! Unfortunately she doesn't have a website or any way to order them, so I guess you need to visit Anchorage to get yours.

Be sure to check out the video of Arlene playing her own instruments at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6CvZTLQuOq0

Just behind the Market, is Ship Creek, and the King Salmon were running right here in downtown. Pretty interesting to be fishing in the heart of their warehouse district, right under an elevated highway!

Among other unique things, Anchorage boasts many, many miles of bike/hike trails throughout all areas of the city. Now imagine you bike ride being interrupted for ten or fifteen minutes by moma moose and her calf in the heart of the city! With the airport fence a few yards to her left, and the high bluff over the ocean on the right, we had no choice but to wait here out...

One can't possibly miss seeing Alaska's own singer/songwriter Hobo Jim. Jim's been around for many years, writing & singing originals about the heart & spirit of this land. His big hit came when he wrote a song about the "Iditarod Trail". You can learn more about Jim and his music at http://www.hobojim.com/.

We were treated to a very personal concert when Kim & I and one other couple were the only attendees for this night's performance. Rather than sing as usual in the large theater, Jim moved us into a intimate coffee bar setting for his singing. Need I say, it was an enjoyable evening!

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