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Alexander Deedy

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Citizen council remains vigilant three decades after the Exxon Valdez oil spill Donna Schantz has worked with Prince William Sound Regional Citizen’s Advisory Council since 1999 and served as its executive director since 2016. After the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, PWSRCAC was created to give a voice to those who have the most to lose in the event of another spill. The council includes representatives from communities in the spill region and industries like aquaculture, commercial fishing, and tourism. It is mandated by Congress and funded by the oil industry but has complete independence. The Prince William Sound council is one of two such organizations in the United States. The other represents Alaska’s Cook Inlet. Donna Schantz outside the harbor in Valdez Can you share something that the council has accomplished recently that you are proud of? This is always an interesting question because it’s really hard…

Carol Johnson. Courtesy Carol Johnson. Longtime Fairbanks resident Carol Johnson says she grew up in an active family, and that habit stayed with her throughout her life. She bikes in the summer, skis in the winter, and does lots of walking. The 74-year-old is also a regular athlete in the Alaska International Senior Games, where she has competed in power walking, table tennis, cycling, track, and mini golf. “One of the words of inspiration would be, try something new. Second of all, try it with a buddy. I know sometimes it’s a little bit daunting to go out and try something on your own, but if you have a group of people—like when I play table tennis there’s a group of people—you can have a lot of fun. Part of what I like about table tennis is just the group interactions and laughing. We don’t play cutthroat, but we laugh.…

Photo of Virgin Creek Falls courtesy Paxson Woelber. Take advantage of snowmelt in the early summer to see these waterfalls at their peak flow.  Thunderbird Falls These 200-foot falls are impressive to view and easy to access. Just north of Eagle River, the trail starts with a climb of about 100 feet elevation gain, then levels out for a one-mile walk to a viewing platform. The trail continues to the base of the falls for those seeking more up-close adventure. Virgin Creek Falls Head south from Anchorage to Girdwood for this hike. The half-mile trail starts in a neighborhood and passes through lush forest to the small cascade. Continue past the falls to reach the top of Max’s Mountain.  Serenity Falls Accessing these falls is an all-day journey. It’s a 13-mile trek along the Eklutna Lakeside Trail to views of these falls that twist hundreds of feet down a mountain…