The summer may have been a slow, chilly start, but activity has really ramped up this fall. The Igiugig Barge Landing Road was finally approved after three years of right-of-way issues. All of the work is already completed in a few weeks! The barge landing ramp went to bid and the project awarded to ILC. Unfortunately, however, we received news that Denali Commission does not have the funding for Phase II of the High Ridge Road to Float Plane Lake. In addition to these larger projects, we have made progress with the cultural tourism project: renovate the front fence of the Russian Orthodox Church and provide signage. The Greenhouse will be receiving a water well and interior piping to aid watering efforts. The hangar building will be operating a wood boiler soon, and we have a years’ supply of wood to feed it. Recently, the Alaska Energy Authority, the Lake and Peninsula Borough, and our new Representative Bryce Edgmon visited Igiugig to see the improvements.
The month of August also saw the end of the Summer Reading Club, the beginning of the school year and the welcome of a new teacher family, and a new health aid family.
I took time out of the office to help with a park service project: “Evaluating the Effects of Tourism on the Alagnak Wild River”. This involved taking four Igiugig elders to visit traditional home sites and subsistence use areas. The trip was the highlight of my summer and a reaffirmation that the knowledge our elders have of this region is priceless. I enjoyed listening to the old time music played on an accordion and harmonica and think that we need to get back to impromptu dances!
I hope all of you enjoy the fall!