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and other activities of interest to the community and its visitors

Alaska Day Festival annually commemorates the Purchase Transfer of Russian claim of Alaska to the United States of America at Sitka on
October 18, 1867, and celebrates the diversity of cultures and historical perspectives of our people.

2013 Festival theme focus is the Alaska Marine Highway System and its 50 years of impact on both economic and cultural aspects of Alaska.

Logo artwork for 2013 is by Ann Wilkinson with thanks to Alaska Marine Highway System for its cooperation.

Sheldon Jackson Museum 10:00-4:00 Tue. through Sat. (closed Oct 18)
Sitka Historical Society Museum 

10:00-4:00 Tue. through Sat. 
(closed Oct 18)   

National Park Service Visitor Center To be announced
Russian Bishops' House To be announced
Sitka Lutheran Church 9:00-3:00 Daily.  Artifacts display
Sheet’ka Kwaan Naa Kahidi Community House To be announced
Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall To be announced
St. Michael’s Cathedral To be announced

Other daytime or evening events and activities may be added to this schedule. Festival information including schedule of events will be posted at on the Events page, on FacebookFacebook at alaskadaysitka, and advertised in local newspaper and radio.

* indicates event sponsored by Alaska Day Committee

Wednesday, October 2
Noon Greater Sitka Chamber of Commerce luncheon. Special guest Alaska Governor Sean Parnell. Program update by Alaska Day Committee members and others.  At Westmark Sitka.  747-8604
Saturday, October 5
7 pm Sitka Monthly Grind. Family-oriented affordable entertainment. Alcohol-free. At Sheet’ka Kwaan Naa Kahidi, 200 Katlian Street. $5 advance tickets at Old Harbor Books. (Ticket price refunded for home-made dessert.) Contact Jeff Budd, 747-4821, or Ted Howard, 747-5482
6 pm Art Auction presented by Sitka Seafood Festival and Fishermen’s Eye Gallery.  At Westmark Banquet Room.  747-6080
Monday, October 7 thru Thursday, October 10
Alaska Travel Industry Association convention.  Contact Philip Rupell at Sitka Convention and Visitors and Bureau, 747-5940

Tuesday, October 8

* Noon Swearing in of Keystone Kops at Sitka Pioneers’ Home lawn.  With Alaska Public Safety Academy officer. Coordinated by Jen Houx, 738-1779
Wednesday, October 9
* Official greeters in 1860s costumes begin meeting visitors at airport. Coordinated by Betty Conklin, 966-2281
Noon Greater Sitka Chamber of Commerce luncheon.  Special guest Susan Bell, Alaska Commissioner of Commerce & Economic Development.  Program update by Alaska Day Committee members.  At Westmark Sitka.  747-8604

Wednesday, October 9 thru Thursday, October 17

* 3 pm - 6 pm Festival event schedules, tickets, and commemorative merchandise sold at Centennial Hall and other locations to be announced.  Coordinated by Linda Trierschield, 747-5466
Thursday, October 10
7 pm Pre-race safety clinic for Alaska Day Biathlon (running/shooting event) at 5211 Halibut Point Road. See listing on October 13. Sponsored by Sitka Sportsman’s Association. Contact Foy Nevers, 747-3469
Saturday, October 12
* 8 am Road Race (33rd annual event) begins at U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Gazebo at end of Airport Road and return.  10k course for runners or 2.5 mile fun run. Registration 7:15-7:45 a.m. on race day. Refreshments. Fee $15 to receive commemorative item. Coordinated by LT Chris Stoeckler, 966-5613, for U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Sitka.
* 11 am Kayak Races at Swan Lake.  Cash prizes for various age divisions. Safety gear and personnel, 2-person kayaks all provided by Sitka Sound Ocean Adventures. Paddling practice available 9:00 a.m. Registration 10:30 a.m. Fee $5 per person. Contact Tim Fulton, 747-3776 or 738-0740.
* 11 am - 3 pm Open House, Fly-in, and Marine Safety Fair at U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Sitka.  Displays for children and adults offered in conjunction with other local emergency service providers. Contact LT Chris Stoeckler, 966-5613
1-3 pm Friends of Sheldon Jackson Museum ReceptionOpening of “Alaska Positive” juried photo exhibition.  Free admission to Museum.  Contact Mary Boose, 747-6233
2 pm - 5 pm Hope Floats Cruise & Chocolate Extravanganza Auction (6th annual) breast cancer awareness fundraiser.  Cruise donated by Allen Marine Tours.  $40 per person.  Contact Sitka Community Hospital Radiology Department, 747-1727
* 6:30 pm Festival Community Barn dance with mixers, circles, and contra dances, or just good listening and watching for all ages. Live music by Sitka’s Fishing for Cats Band. Beginners or seasoned dancers. Non-alcohol, smoke-free. Alaska Day costuming invited. Free admission; donations benefit Alaska Day Festival. At Centennial Hall. Coordinated by Dorothy Orbison, 747-3412
Sunday, October 13
Various church activities
1 pm Alaska Day Biathlon (running/shooting event) at north end of Halibut Point Road. Sponsored by Sitka Sportsman’s Association. Mandatory pre-race safety clinic at 1:00 p.m. Race begins at 2:00 p.m. $15 fee per person includes use of equipment, safety clinic, awards, and refreshments. Age 14 or older. Beginners welcome. Contests for individuals and teams of 4. Contact Foy Nevers, 747-3469
* 3 - 6:00 pm “A Taste of Russia” special foods including pelmini (meat dumplings), cookies and tea. Instrumental music by SitNiks. Russian dance samples by New Archangel Dancers.At Centennial Hall.  $10 adults, $5 children age 10 and under.  Coordinated by Cyndy Gibson, 747-4708 or 738-0655
* 4 pm Essay Readings by elementary and middle school age winners from Prose Writing Contest theme “Alaska Marine Highway”. Sponsored by The Write Women of Sitka and Alaska Day Committee. At Kettleson Memorial Library. Contact Ann Wilkinson, 747-2707,
* 6:30-8:30 pm Sitka Historical Society and Museum Annual Meeting.  7:00 p.m. Program focus on Alaska Marine Highway.  Displays and Museum’s archival photos of early vessels and transportation.  Public television documentary film.  Public welcome.  Light refreshments.  At Centennial Hall.  Contact 747-6455 or Ernestine Massey, 747-3319
Monday, October 14
* 7 pm Variety Show of local talent in dance groups, songs and instrumentals.  Essay readings by high school and adult winners from Prose Writing Contest theme Alaska Marine Highway.  At Centennial Hall.  Admission $3. Coordinated by Sharyn and John Ferrick, 752-3111
Tuesday, October 15
  Alaska Day Festival regrets that this year some of our visiting military special guests are not able to join us at Sitka including soldiers of the United States Army Alaska and the 9th Army Band.  Military liaison MaryLou Vilandre, 747-8086
am Alaska Army National Guard soldiers of 761ST Military Police Battalion begin arriving by ferry from Juneau.  Contact Master Sergeant Lonzell Scott, (907) 328-8565 (cell)
11 am Seattle Firefighters Pipe Band members arrive on Alaska Airlines at airport. Contact Lisa Langenfeld, 738-2163
* 7 pm New Archangel Dancers end-of-season grand finale performance of traditional folk dances from Russia and the surrounding regions.  Accompaniment by the
SitNiks live musical ensemble.  At Harrigan Centennial Hall.  Admission $5 adults, $3 children under 10.  Contact Linda Speerstra, 747-8316, or NAD, 747-5516
Wednesday, October 16
Noon Greater Sitka Chamber of Commerce luncheon. Special guest speaker on Alaska Marine Highway System.  Program update by Alaska Day Committee members.  At Westmark Sitka.  747-8604
67 pm Erin McKittrick, author of “Small Feet, Big Land: Adventure, Home and Family on the Edge of Alaska”, talks about experience and photos of remote area.  Free.  At Kettleson Memorial Library.  Contact 747-8708
7 pm AMHS Trivia Contest at the Bayview Pub, 407 Lincoln St, to test knowledge about the Alaska Marine Highway System.  Enter the contest as a team or individual to win fun AMHS prizes.  Contact 747-5300
Thursday, October 17
9 am - 7 pm Food booths and other sales by non-profit service organizations at Crescent Harbor Shelter area.  Coordinated by Elaine Strelow, 747-3469
11:45 am Alaska Marine Highway special sailing ferry MV Taku arrives.   
1 - 7 pm Open House aboard MV Taku at the Ferry Terminal. Tour the bridge, dine onboard, and visit the gift shop for new 50th anniversary items. Bring the kids for fun ferry activities and a free temporary AMHS tattoo. Sailing at 8:45 p.m. 747-8737
* 7 pm Alaska Day Ball seating opens. Music by “Slack Tide” band. Period costume promenade and Native regalia display at 9:30 p.m.  Awards for various 1867 costume types.  Door prizes (must be present to win) including Golden Ticket, worth up to $500 of passenger travel on the Alaska Marine Highway.  Complimentary hors d’oeuvres by Sitka Emblem Club.  Cash bar by Channel Club.  Photography service available.  Adults over 21 only.  Period dress, regalia or semi-formal.  At Centennial Hall.  Admission $25.  Coordinated by Betty Conklin, 966-2281, and Helen Cunningham, 747-6738
Friday, October 18, ALASKA DAY
9 am - 7 pm Food booths and other sales by non-profit service organizations at Crescent Harbor Shelter area.  Coordinated by Elaine Strelow, 747-3469
9 am - Noon Kettleson Memorial Library’s Alaska Day Book Sale to benefit Friends of the Library. Contact 747-8708.
9:15 am Tour of the Seawalk begin/meet at Crescent Harbor Parking Lot
10 am Ribbon Cutting Ceremony at the beginning of the Seawalk's Breakwater spur by Sitka Sound Science Center and Crescent Harbor Playground
10:15 - 11 am Refreshments at Sitka Sound Science Center
10:00 am - 1 pm (subject to change) Russian Bishop’s House Open House.  Explore the upstairs restored residence and chapel.  National Park Service rangers provide short interpretive talks about this historic structure, its artifacts, the people who resided there, and its historic and cultural significance.  No fee.  747-0110
10 am - 12 pm (subject to change) Tea Service and Historic Children’s Games.  Warm up with Russian tea served from a samovar and try your luck at historic children’s games like the Game of Graces.  Front lawn of the Russian Bishop’s House.   747-0110
11 am - 4 pm Pie Sale, community fellowship, and silent auction bidding on quilts and wall hangings. At Sitka Lutheran Church, 224 Lincoln St. 747-3338, 747-6447, 747-6525
? 11 am - 3 pm Luncheon with Fish Pie (salmon or halibut), clam chowder, salad and dessert. $12. At St. Michael’s Orthodox Cathedral. Contact 747-8120
11:00 am- 1:30 pm Open House at Sitka Fire Hall hosted by SFD Volunteers. Refreshments. Greet members of Seattle Firefighters Pipe Band. Contact Cathy Watson, 738-6875 or 747-3233
11:30 am - 4:30 pm Chili Cookoff and Feed with corn bread and beverage.  $5.  By Knights of Columbus at St. Gregory Catholic Church, Lincoln St.  Benefit for youth travel.  Contact Joe Meador, 738-5109
* 12:30 pm Line up for parade along Lake Street
* 1:30 pm Parade of bands, marching units, decorated vehicles, classic cars, costumed individuals, and Alaska Marine Highway’s FVF Fairweather cruising from Swan Lake to Lincoln Street to Totem Square.  Coordinated by Duane Vilandre, 747-8086 or 738-1551
Immediately following parade:
* Transfer Ceremony 1867 Commemoration on Castle Hill. Lowering of Russian Flag and Raising of American Flag. Roll Call of States as admitted to the Union. Raising of Alaska Flag. Ceremonial music. Coordinated by Steve Dalquist, 747-4835, 752-0750 or 747-1001
2 - 4 pm Sitka Pioneer's Home Open House. Entertainment. Refreshments. Contact Kristi Greinier, 747-2121
2 - 5 pm Open House at Brave Heart Volunteers (home visiting and respite care services). Information offered. Chowder, bread, and dessert sold as fundraiser. At Manager’s House next to Sitka Pioneers’ Home. Contact 747-4600
2 - 4 pm Open House at Mt. Edgecumbe Preschool next to Sitka Pioneers’ Home. Children’s activity. Contact 966-2675
2:30 - 3:30 pm

(subject to change)

Russian Bishop’s House Tours and Historic Children’s Games.  Ranger guided tours of the restored residence.  Historic children’s games including the Game of Graces held on the Bishop’s House front lawn.  747-0110
6:30 pm Slave Auction to benefit local breast cancer awareness/Cancer Survivors Society. At Pioneer Bar on Katlian Street. Contact 747-3456
Saturday, October 19
9 am - 7 pm Food booths and other sales by non-profit service organizations at Crescent Harbor Shelter area.  Coordinated by Elaine Strelow, 747-3469
11:45 am Seattle Firefighters Pipe Band members depart on Alaska Airlines. Contact Lisa Langenfeld, 747-3456
* 7 pm Melodrama “Paris of the Pacific”, an unveiling in readers’ theater by Greater Sitka Arts Council.  At Centennial Hall.  Admission $5, $2 under age 12.  Contact Jeff Budd, 747-4821
2013 Festival trustees are Ted Allio (chairman), Joan Berge,
Helen Cunningham, Steve Dalquist (vice chairman), Jen Houx,
Lisa Langenfeld, Marsha Lysons, Elaine Strelow (secretary),
Linda Trierschield, MaryLou Vilandre, and Ann Wilkinson (treasurer),
with LT Christopher Stoeckler as U.S. Coast Guard liaison.

Thank you to all who had a part in the success of our 2013 Festival.  Help us plan for 2014.  Alaska Day Festival Committee, PO Box 1355, Sitka, Alaska 99835

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