Kenai Conversation

Live, call-in public affairs interviews. Call 907-690-1687 to join the Conversation.

Jenny Neyman/Redoubt Reporter

The Kenai Peninsula Borough is offering another round of Community Emergency Response Training courses this month. We spoke with Borough Emergency Management Program Manager Dan Nelson to learn more about why the borough has been offering them for more than a decade.

'Community in Unity' program brings prisoners and residents together in Seward

Dec 13, 2017

In an effort to bring the community of Seward together with the Spring Creek Correctional Center, a state prison across Resurrection Bay from the Eastern Kenai Peninsula city, Alaska Public Media's Anne Hillman of the Solutions Desk, recorded a forum there in September. In attendance were prisoners, administrators, and townsfolk.

Central Peninsula Hospital is making big changes to its campus and offering more services than ever.

On this week's Kenai Conversation, Shaylon Cochran talks with Lou Heite from Eagle Glade Farms in Nikiski and Ken Hynes from the Flats Bistro in Kenai about what kind of ingredients are available locally this time of year and how to turn then into a great holiday meal. 

On this week's Kenai Conversation, host Jay Barrett welcome's Peninsula Clarion sports reporter Joey Klecka to the microphone to talk sports, both local — why are the Soldotna Stars so good at football and how can Allie Ostrander be so good at running — and national.KDLL's Shaylon Cochran joins us halfway through to add his thoughts.

It's a mixed-medium mash-up as KDLL hosts Shaylon Cochran and Jay Barrett welcome Peninsula Clarion reporters Elizabeth Earl and Kat Sorensen to talk about the just-passed Kenai Peninsula municipal elections. 

The top two vote-getters in last week's Kenai Peninsula Borough mayoral election, Charlie Pierce with 5,489 votes and Linda Farnsworth-Hutchings with 4,604, will be facing off in a special runoff election Oct. 24. They joined Kenai Conversation host Jay Barrett to debate the campaign issues.

We speak with Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Mike Navarre and his top aide, Larry Persily, about Tuesday's election, the upcoming run-off and their future plans.

On this week's Conversation, we sit down with candidates for Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly District 2, Hal Smalley and Duane Bannock

This week, we talk with one of the candidates running for Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly in District 5 (Sterling/Funny River), Leslie Morton. The other candidate in the race, Norm Blakely, declined our interview to be a part of the program.

KDLL's election coverage continues this week as we speak with candidates for District 1, which encompasses much of the K-Beach corridor and parts of Kenai.

Kenai Peninsula Borough

This week, we have a conversation with Charlie Pierce, candidate for borough mayor. We'll hear how he plans to close the borough budget gap and why more technology is a good thing for the future growth of the peninsula.

www.lindaforkpbmayor.com

Linda Farnsworth-Hutchings joins us on the Conversation this week to talk about her vision for the future of the Kenai and how to weather the current budget storm.

Kenai Peninsula Borough

We kick off election season coverage this week on the Kenai Conversation. 

On this week's Kenai Conversation, host Jay Barrett speaks with long-time Alaska cannery boss Rusty Roessler, who spent 14 years as the manager of Pacific Alaska Shellfish in Nikiski. Today (Aug. 16) is Roessler's last day, and he's retiring after 36 years managing seafood processing plants around Alaska. This is an extended version of the conversation that aired.

Retail cannabis has been available on the Kenai since late last year. How's business? Is everyone playing by the rules? What challenges have growers and sellers faced? What's a dab? 

On this week's Kenai Conversation, cannabis entrepreneurs Patricia Patterson (High Bush Buds), Dollynda Phelps (Peace Frog Botanicals) and Leif Abel (Greatland Ganja) talk about their burgeoning industry, how it's contributing to the local economy and its prospects for the future.

This week, Shaylon Cochran sits down with Rep. Gary Knopp (R-Soldotna) to talk about ongoing state budget issues, the economic future of the state and how things could work more smoothly in Juneau.

On this week's Conversation, host Shaylon Cochran speaks with Stephanie Queen, director of Economic Development and Planning for the city of Soldotna, and Tim Dillon, executive director of the Kenai Peninsula Economic Development District, about what kinds of jobs and industries might be making their way to central peninsula in the future to compliment established industries like fishing and resource development.

Managing the state's fisheries is a big responsibility. On this week's Conversation, we sit down with Robert Ruffner, one of the newest members of the state Board of Fisheries to talk about what challenges lay ahead in managing salmon fisheries on the Kenai Peninsula.

More and more people on the Kenai Peninsula are realizing its potential as a productive agricultural center. Now, backyard gardens are giving way to farmer's markets, food hubs and specialty growers. For this week's Conversation, we spoke with Lou Heite and Steve Dahl of Eagle Glade Farms in Nikiski and Ken Kynes, Executive Chef at The Flats Bistro in Kenai about how the local food movement is changing, growing and what needs to happen to make it sustainable.

The Kenai Peninsula Borough is looking at a future with less investment in energy and an aging population. How do we weather the current storm of low oil and gas prices (and the corresponding dips in state funding) while not losing the services already provided? Borough Mayor Mike Navarre and his Chief of Staff, Larry Persily, discuss those challenges, the prognosis of the AK LNG project and more on this week's Kenai Conversation.

Kenai Peninsula Birding Festival

The 13th annual Kenai Peninsula Birding Festival is underway this week. Event volunteers Ken Tarbox and Toby Burke join Shaylon Cochran in the studio to talk about everything that's going on at the festival, how birding is gaining in popularity and the conservation concerns that popularity can bring about.

New authors talk about writing, publishing and connecting with readers. Ninilchik's Mike Chihuly wrote about his life as a fire chief and fishing charter captain in "Alaska Fish and Fire." Kasilof's Joseph Robertia recently published "Life with Forty Dogs: Misadventures with Runts, Rejects, Retirees and Rescues," about the dog kennel he runs with his wife, and their successful mushing career with dogs other mushers didn't want.

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