With a lasso and tourists, boat saves drowning deer

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgCommunity | Environment | Juneau | Southeast | Tourism | WildlifeWith a lasso and tourists, boat saves drowning deerJuly 29, 2016 by Lakeidra Chavis, KTOO Share: (L to R) Orlando, Fla.-based tourist Zoran Kojic helps Gastineau Guiding Company Naturalist Audrey Benson hold down a deer Wednesday, after they saved the animal from drowning. (Photo courtesy of Jasna Kojic)While passing the west side of Juneau’s Shelter Island on Wednesday, an 18-passenger tour vessel saw more than just whales.Audrey Benson, a naturalist with Gastineau Guiding Co., was on the tour when the crew got some news over the radio.“We heard that there were two deer that were swimming across in the water,” Benson said. “So after we watched the whales for a bit our passengers were curious and wanted to see the deer, and so we motored over to them and it turns out there was only one.”And it was struggling to stay above water. After a larger tour boat tried to rescue the animal a few times, it gave up. But Benson, along with the passengers and crew, decided to keep trying. They were eventually able to lasso the deer and pull it onto the boat.“The deer was immediately bewildered and disoriented and it was shaking a lot, it was shivering a lot,” she said. “Its teeth were chattering. It tried to stand up but collapsed because it was so weak.”The crew was able to drop the deer off at Shelter Island—but not before it tried to swim back into the water again.“It was the craziest thing I’ve ever seen on any of my tours,” Benson said. “I mean, you never know what’s going to happen but for a deer rescue—I’ve never even been that close to a deer, I’ve never touched one—and to have an opportunity to assist this struggling animal, it was very intense.”The other deer disappeared before the group reached it, and is presumed to have drowned.The Alaska Department of Fish and Game said it’s very uncommon for deer to drown, adding that deer regularly swim from island to island.Share this story:last_img read more


Indictments handed up on transit center death, visitor center burglary cases

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgCrime & Courts | JuneauIndictments handed up on transit center death, visitor center burglary casesJuly 14, 2017 by Matt Miller, KTOO Share:A Juneau man arrested for the deadly assault of another man at the Capital City’s Downtown Transit Center has been indicted on felony charges of manslaughter and criminal negligent homicide.A Juneau grand jury handed up the indictment Wednesday against David Evenson, 51.The grand jury did not indict Evenson on the more serious charge of second-degree murder, which means causing someone’s death while knowingly engaging in conduct with an extreme indifference to human life.Authorities accuse Evenson of kicking Aaron Monette, 56, in the head June 30 at the bus terminal. Monette was eventually medevaced to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle, where he died July 4.Bail for Evenson has been set at $500,000 cash.Also Wednesday, a Juneau grand jury indicted Mack Parker, 51, on two counts of second-degree burglary, two counts of third-degree criminal mischief, and a single count of second-degree theft. Those are all felonies.Parker was arrested after a burglary at the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center on July 2.The indictment alleges that the estimated damages and the amount of property taken both exceeded $1,000.Share this story:last_img read more


Trump calls for steps that make ‘a difference’ on school shootings, without specifics

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgCrime & Courts | Federal Government | NPR News | Public SafetyTrump calls for steps that make ‘a difference’ on school shootings, without specificsFebruary 15, 2018 by Brian Naylor, NPR Share:Addressing the nation after Wednesday’s Florida school shooting that left 17 people dead, President Trump said no child or teacher “should ever be in danger in an American school.”He said he will meet with governors and attorneys general to deal with the issue of mental health.Speaking from the White House, Trump said it was “not enough to simply take actions that make us feel we are making a difference, we must actually make that difference.”Watch his remarks here:But he did not offer specifics, made no mention of stricter gun control laws in his remarks and instead focused on mental illness.He added, “No parent should ever have to fear for their sons and daughters when they kiss them goodbye in the morning.”Trump, who had planned to fly to his Florida estate this weekend, said he will visit Parkland, where the shooting took place, and meet with local officials and families.Trump weighed in on Twitter earlier Thursday, saying there were “so many signs that the suspected Florida shooter was mentally disturbed.” He noted that the suspect been expelled, writing that “neighbors and classmates knew he was a big problem” and obliquely warned: “Must always report such instances to authorities, again and again.”There is evidence that concerns about the 19-year-old were raised. The FBI said Thursday that in 2017 after receiving a tip, it had investigated a YouTube comment that stated: “I’m going to be a professional school shooter.”But Special Agent In Charge Rob Lasky said at a Florida news conference that after conducting data reviews, the bureau was unable to identify the user.Although Trump talked about the shooter being “mentally disturbed,” he signed a Republican bill last year that makes it easier for people who are mentally ill to purchase guns.“If a specific individual is likely to be violent due to the nature of their mental illness, then the government should have to prove it,” said Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, a chief supporter of the legislation, when the bill was being considered.Attorney General Jeff Sessions directed a Justice Department policy unit to work with other federal agencies “to study the intersection of mental health and criminality and identify how we can stop people capable of such heinous crimes.”Sessions made the remarks Thursday morning to the Major County Sheriffs’ Association.At least one member of the Trump administration, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin called on lawmakers to address gun violence.“I will say, personally, I think the gun violence — it’s a tragedy what we’ve seen yesterday,” he told a House panel, “and I urge Congress to look at these issues.”Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California criticized the lack of action on a measure she introduced after the mass shooting in Las Vegas last year to ban bump stocks, which allow semi-automatic weapons to fire more rapidly.Grassley said he would sit down with Feinstein and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, a member of Senate GOP leadership to discuss the next steps.Former President Barack Obama, waiting until after Trump’s remarks, called for action on guns: “We are grieving with Parkland. But we are not powerless.”The White House sent out a statement Wednesday sending out “thoughts and prayers” for victims and their families and issued a formal proclamation, stating that the nation “grieves with those who has lost loved ones in the shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.”It ordered flags at the White House and other federal buildings to be flown at half-staff.Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.Share this story:last_img read more


Hawaii Volcano’s Lava Spews ‘Laze’ Of Toxic Gas And Glass Into The Air

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgNation & World | NPR News | Recent NewsHawaii Volcano’s Lava Spews ‘Laze’ Of Toxic Gas And Glass Into The AirMay 21, 2018 by Camila Domonoske & Bill Chappell, NPR News Share:Lava flows from fissures near Pahoa, Hawaii, on Saturday. (USGS/AP)Lava from the Kilauea volcano is pouring into the Pacific Ocean off of Hawaii’s Big Island, generating a plume of “laze” – which Hawaii County officials describe as hydrochloric acid and steam with fine glass particles — into the air. Officials say it’s one more reason to avoid the area.“Health hazards of laze include lung damage, and eye and skin irritation,” says the Hawaii County Civil Defense agency. “Be aware that the laze plume travels with the wind and can change direction without warning.”The U.S. Coast Guard is monitoring the area to help keep people away from the coast; the county says that “only permitted tour boats are allowed in the area.”Two lava flows are now entering the ocean, and emissions of sulfur dioxide have tripled downwind of at least 20 fissure vents, according to the civil defense agency.“There continue to be explosions and earthquakes from the volcano’s summit — many are saying it sounds like a war zone,” reports Jackie Young of Hawaii Public Radio.“As soon as the generators go off, it’s just booming,” Big Island resident Corey Hale says. “It’s really loud booming.”Hale has lived in Lanipuna Gardens for about three years. She evacuated her home on May 3, the day of the first big eruption. Nearly every day since then, she and her cat have been staying in the parking lot of the community center in Pahoa.Based on the latest information she has, Hale says her land is surrounded by lava on three sides but hasn’t yet been consumed by the flows.“It’s been scary,” she says. “None of us think that there’s going to be some sudden crazy random eruption here in the parking lot, but it’s just scary to be so close to such a powerful natural event, and feeling the ground shaking all the time and see the red of the sky. And then just not knowing — you know, the not knowing.”Late Saturday night, explosive eruptions at Kilauea’s crater sent an ash cloud up to 10,000 feet into the sky, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The explosions registered as the equivalent of a 5.0 magnitude earthquake, the agency says.Residents are also being warned of possible new evacuations, particularly in cases where lava flows threaten to cut off arterial roads. A lava flow crossed one of those roads, Highway 137, on Saturday.Despite the disruption to her life, Hale says she has also found beauty in the eruptions.“It’s an amazing experience to be on the ground watching Pele do what she does,” she says, referring to Hawaii’s goddess of volcanoes. “This is a beautiful, amazing event, to be here at the birth of new lands. And there’s been sadness. And you know, there’s grief for losing what we had and what it was. But we aren’t sad. To live out here you gotta be resilient or you don’t make it.“When asked whether she will try to live again on her property after the eruptions have finally stopped, Hale says, “Absolutely. Absolutely.”In its latest update on the overall status of Kilauea, the USGS says, “Seismicity and deformation continue at the Summit. Deflation is ongoing and additional earthquakes are expected as long as the summit continues to deflate.”Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.Share this story:last_img read more


Kenai Peninsula schools could soon form esports teams

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgEducation | Southcentral | SportsKenai Peninsula schools could soon form esports teamsDecember 18, 2018 by Aaron Bolton, KBBI-Homer Share:Homer High School could soon play host to club-level high school esports teams. (Photo by Aaron Bolton/KBBI)Students in Kenai Peninsula schools could soon be forming esports teams.The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District activities board considered officially sanctioning esports back in November, but decided to approve club-level teams.District spokesperson Pegge Erkeneff said the decision to approve club-level video game — or esports — teams came after the Electronic Gaming Federation approached the district about joining a statewide league.“So that began the whole conversation about the district and potentially any schools or principals (being) involved in the league,” she explained.The Electronic Gaming Federation sets up both college and high school level esports leagues around the country. Teams compete in video games such as Overwatch and League of Legends.Erkeneff said that no schools within the district have expressed interest in forming an esports team quite yet, and that was part of the reason the district strayed from officially sanctioning the activity.“Due to possible budgetary costs and the cuts that might be coming, we decided to keep it at a sport or club activity level,” Erkeneff added.The approval of club-level status allows schools within the district to use one of a set number of stipends to pay someone to coach and organize a club-level team. Teams could then compete against other clubs in the state, but those matchups would have to be organized by the individual clubs because there is currently no statewide structure for esports teams.Alaska Schools Activities Association Executive Director Billy Strickland said that could soon change. The ASAA organizes statewide high school sports and activities. Strickland said the ASAA board will consider sanctioning esports in February.“Sanctioning sets it up for potential state championship competition, if you will, and just some of those things,” Strickland explained. “Kids can now letter in an activity, per se, depending on how the school deals with those types of things.”The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District activities board considered officially sanctioning esports back in November, but decided to approve club-level teams. (Creative Commons photo)Students participating in esports would then need to meet the same grade and attendance requirements other student athletes do.Strickland said there are club-level teams currently in the Matanuska-Susitna Valley and Dillingham that could help start a statewide league. He added that other districts and schools have expressed interest in forming teams as well.“Homer could be playing Barrow in a competition that doesn’t involve any travel and travel expense and time out of school. I think that’s pretty enticing to schools,” Strickland said. “Also, we feel like this is an opportunity to engage some students and connect them to the school that may not be already participating in something as a school member.”However, Strickland explains there are some concerns about the number of hours students would spend in front of a computer screen and the types of games they may be playing.“Particularly anything that involves a first-person shooter game, just because the message that would be sending students,” he said. “But again, some of these games are really the electronic version of chess and involve a lot of high-level thinking skills and are very good for students.”Both the Electronic Gaming Federation and a similar organization named PlayVS will give presentations to ASAA board members in February.If the board does move forward with sanctioning esports, Strickland said the ASAA would likely work with one of the organizations to set up a statewide high school league.However, he doesn’t expect the board to come to a decision until its April meeting.Share this story:last_img read more


Recall Dunleavy campaign says it’s received more than 4,000 petition requests

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgPolitics | State GovernmentRecall Dunleavy campaign says it’s received more than 4,000 petition requestsApril 17, 2020 by Andrew Kitchenman, KTOO and Alaska Public Media Share:Residents gather on Feb. 29 at a kickoff event for organizers of an effort to recall Gov. Mike Dunleavy in Juneau. The campaign to recall the governor from office said it has received 4,150 requests since March 20 for sheets to petition for a recall election. And the Alaska Supreme Court received more information this week in response to a request it made to lawyers in an appeal seeking to block the recall. (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)The campaign to recall Gov. Mike Dunleavy has been moving forward by gathering signatures by mail, but it still needs tens of thousands of signatures to hold a recall election.Separately, the Alaska Supreme Court this week received new arguments on an appeal that could block the recall.Recall Dunleavy campaign manager Claire Pywell said the campaign has received 4,150 requests since March 20, when the campaign shifted to being based by mail. Each request is mailed a sheet with space for up to 15 signatures.The campaign had gathered 30,200 by March 20, and will need 71,252 to hold an election. While the organizers originally aimed to hold an election before the August primary, the deadline to ensure that is passing this weekend.Pywell said the campaign plans to mail petition sheets to the Alaskans who signed the recall application but haven’t signed the petition to hold the election yet.The signature-gathering has been proceeding while the state Supreme Court has been considering an appeal that would block the recall.The court asked both sides to further explain their arguments about one of the four grounds for recall listed on the recall application: that Dunleavy violated the separation of powers between the executive branch of government and judiciary by vetoing court system funding.Gov. Mike Dunleavy listens to questions from a reporter in January in Juneau. (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)On Monday, both sides filed their arguments.Recall Dunleavy lawyer Jahna Lindemuth wrote that Dunleavy went beyond his constitutional authority to issue line-item vetoes when he linked the veto to court decisions. He reduced funding by the amount the state Medicaid program paid for abortions that courts have ruled are required.Lindemuth compared the veto to a hypothetical example: Suppose a governor vetoed funding for rural schools and said it was because the governor disapproved of funding schools for Alaska Natives. Lindemuth said this would be unconstitutional, and that the abortion veto is also a violation of the constitution.Lindemuth argued that if a governor threatens court funding over decisions, that would attack the courts’ independence.Arguing for the state Division of Elections, Assistant Attorney General Margaret Paton-Walsh wrote that one problem with the recall application is that it alleges Dunleavy violated the separation of powers and attacked the judiciary, without directly referring to Dunleavy’s statement in the veto linking it to court decisions.Paton-Walsh said that the state constitution clearly grants the governor the power to issue line-item vetoes like the one on the judiciary.She also noted that the veto affected less than 1% of the court system’s funding. She wrote that there might be an issue if a governor vetoed basic funding for a constitutionally-mandated service, but that’s not the case with this veto.Paton-Walsh also wrote that allowing voters to vote on this issue would make the recall political, when state law doesn’t allow for a political recall process.It’s not clear when the court will rule on the appeal.Share this story:last_img read more


Alaska reports 50 new COVID-19 cases, breaking record for state’s biggest one-day increase

Posted On Aug 24 2021 by

first_imgCoronavirus | Health | Southcentral | State GovernmentAlaska reports 50 new COVID-19 cases, breaking record for state’s biggest one-day increaseJuly 2, 2020 by Tegan Hanlon, Alaska Public Media Share:Alaska recorded 50 new coronavirus cases from Wednesday, but no new deaths or hospitalizations. It’s the biggest one-day increase in infections in Alaska since the pandemic began, breaking the prior record set earlier this week.The latest COVID-19 cases include 39 Alaskans and 11 nonresidents, according to the latest data update Thursday from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services.The jump follows a series of double-digit, one-day case increases in Alaska for much of June. And it comes as case numbers surge throughout much of the country, in the days leading up to the Fourth of July weekend.By the end of Wednesday, the total number of COVID-19 infections among Alaskans topped 1,000. Of 1,017 cases, 535 are considered recovered and 468 are active. There have been 14 deaths.The newly-diagnosed Alaskans are mostly from Southcentral Alaska. They include 13 from Anchorage, nine from Wasilla, four from Palmer and three from Seward.The newly-diagnosed nonresidents tested positive across the state, from Unalaska to Petersburg to Seward to Anchorage. At least four work in the seafood industry. But the state has not yet listed the reason most of them are in Alaska.By the end of Wednesday, 18 people were in the hospital in Alaska with COVID-19 or suspected to have the disease.Also, the state reported that nearly 116,000 COVID-19 tests have been conducted — up roughly 1,500 from a day before.Despite the rising COVID-19 infections in Alaska, the state continues to have one of the country’s lowest case counts per capita.In preparation for the upcoming holiday weekend, the city of Seward is limiting capacity for campgrounds and for businesses with indoor seating. Earlier this week, Anchorage Mayor Ethan Berkowitz began requiring face masks in indoor, public spaces.Share this story:last_img read more


Inside L.A.’s Secret Society of Jeopardy! Champions

Posted On Aug 18 2021 by

first_imgCelebrityTVInside L.A.’s Secret Society of Jeopardy! ChampionsSome of the show’s most famous former contestants have turned a weekly pub quiz into a communityBy Jackie Fuchs – April 22, 20199314ShareEmailFacebookTwitterPinterestReddItIt’s the Wednesday evening before the Oscars, and all of the TVs at O’Brien’s Irish Pub in Santa Monica have been tuned to ABC. The bar is screening the first night of the new Jeopardy! All-Stars Tournament. Onscreen Brad Rutter—the show’s all-time money winner—is engaging in some moderate trash talk with his fellow contestants: a little verbal sparring with Buzzy Cohen, the bespectacled music executive who won the 2017 Tournament of Champions, a little more with Pam Mueller, the redheaded think-tank policy researcher who is not only a former Jeopardy! college champion and an All-Star but my personal game-show idol.Weirdly, as we are watching Brad, Buzzy, and Pam on TV, the live versions of the trio are also in the unpresuming bar, just a few feet away from me. While I am stuffing French fries into my mouth, Buzzy is introducing his family to Brad and Pam.This isn’t an isolated incident. Every Wednesday for the last five years, I have been testing my trivia mettle against Brad, Buzzy, Pam, and a host of other “Jeopardy! people” at the O’Brien’s Irish Pub Quiz, which regularly draws some of the most recognizable game-show champions in the world. Buzzy won nine regular games and the Tournament of Champions; Brad has won more than $4,455,000 playing Jeopardy! and has never lost to a human opponent (his sole defeat having been delivered by Watson, the IBM supercomputer).This also means that I lose on a regular basis.But I’m OK with it. I’ve earned my stripes among this group of trivia elites. You see, I am a Jeopardy! person: I won on four episodes last December. (Although, four-game winners are in no short supply at O’Brien’s, and by the time you hail the barkeep, chances are you’ll have rubbed elbows with a half-dozen one-and-done champs.) I’m also an alum of two other game shows, Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? and The Chase. Turns out trivia is like any other competitive activity—even if you’re smart, you’ve got to work at it to get good, and eventually you have to go up against people who are smarter than you.O’Brien’s quiz regulars are the kinds of people who correct the dates on Timeline history cards at your weekly game night. The kinds of people who, when asked what the capital of Sri Lanka is, bypass “Colombo” and respond by explaining that the legislative capital is Sri Jayawardenepura Kotte, a suburb of Colombo, which is only the commercial capital of the country. The kinds of people who know that Scotland isn’t technically a country but rather a somewhat autonomous region (as are Wales, Northern Ireland, and England).But O’Brien’s wasn’t always this way.Turns out trivia is like any other competitive activity—even if you’re smart, you’ve got to work at it to get good, and eventually you have to go up against people who are smarter than you.In the early days the O’Brien’s quiz was a garden-variety pub trivia contest with a regular host and straightforward questions on a plethora of topics. The environment was collegial. Players hopped on and off teams, and newbies could simply drop by and join a table that needed a teammate. Winning was nice, but it wasn’t the point.All of that changed in January 2006, when a former Jeopardy! champion named Jerome Vered stopped in on a whim. Jerome, a writer and former researcher for the show Win Ben Stein’s Money, was no one-and-doner. He was a Tournament of Champions runner-up as well as a finalist on the 2005 Ultimate Tournament of Champions.Impressed with the quality of the questions at O’Brien’s, Jerome returned a week later with a few fellow Tournament of Champions vets in tow. Unsurprisingly, they won, and the first O’Brien’s superstar team was born. Several more would follow. Not everyone was thrilled.“People were resentful of them at first,” says Beth Milnes, a legal assistant who has been playing the quiz since 1999 and once served as its weekly host, “but we were losing our regulars to new jobs and kids. The Jeopardy! people are the reason the quiz survived.”Today the quiz is thriving, though Beth—who went on to become a Jeopardy! champion herself—no longer hosts every week. Rather, players take turns writing and asking the questions, which lends the contest an entirely different flavor week to week. Some hosts favor accessible, pop culture-heavy topics: Who was the first actor to have two different characters he’s played made into Lego minifigures (1)? Others prefer more obscure subjects that provoke fist-pounding arguments among teammates: Name four of the nine countries that have a subway but no Subway (2).The quiz also draws its share of out-of-town Jeopardy! contestants for whom a visit to O’Brien’s is a must-do L.A. attraction, right up there with Disneyland and the Getty Center. Thanks to various secret Facebook groups and an annual trivia convention in Las Vegas, they often already know many of the regulars and are eagerly welcomed onto one of the six to 14 teams competing for $150 in prizes. (Unlike most pub trivia contests across L.A., the spoils at O’Brien’s come in the form of cash, not free booze.)This being Los Angeles, the most glittering night of the year at O’Brien’s is the annual Oscars Quiz. Which brings us back to Brad, Buzzy, Pam, and me with a mouthful of French fries.The first night of the 2019 Jeopardy! All-Stars Tournament happens to fall on the same night as the 2019 Oscars Quiz, making this Wednesday evening a particularly star-studded affair.In addition to Brad, Buzzy, and Pam, some two dozen former champs are milling around, including the evening’s host, Inception and Avatar actor Dileep Rao. Dressed nattily in a dark pinstriped suit, Rao sweeps through the room and distributes copies of an oversized handout that looks like a Sweet 16 bracket on steroids. To refer to this handout as expert-level movie trivia is an understatement; what makes it even more difficult is that teams must complete it while simultaneously answering rapid-fire questions that Rao reads over the bar’s PA system: Name the three Los Angeles hotels that have hosted the Academy Awards (3). Who is the only person to win both an Olympic medal and Oscar? (4)Psychologists call this a “divided attention” task, though the rest of the world usually just calls it multitasking.Inception actor Dileep Rao (right) and his teammates ponder a question at O’Brien’sChristopher FowlerWhatever you call it, it’s not easy. On the televised All-Stars series, Brad, Buzzy, and Pam did well enough to qualify for the finals (and Brad and company would go on to win the $1 million first prize). But even they didn’t prevail at the Oscars Quiz. The movie trivia expertise in the pub tonight is too deep. Another team—a haphazard mix of Jeopardy! and non-Jeopardy! people—walk away with a grand prize of $80 and the right to have an MVP of their choosing wear the O’Brien’s fez in the winner’s photo (a tradition whose origin no one can quite remember).But finishing in the middle feels like an achievement at O’Brien’s. And should you be the only one in the room who knows an answer—which happens more often than you might think—the experience can be downright addictive. There are no endorphins quite like I-knew-something-Brad-Rutter-didn’t endorphins.As much as we love winning—whether it’s $80 or $1 million—what makes the O’Brien’s pub quiz different from its more conventional contemporaries is the community it has created. Players often get together on weekends to go to a museum or lunch. And in March we all came together in support of the ultimate Jeopardy! person: Alex Trebek. Though most of us have met Alex only once or twice, he’s been a towering figure in our lives for decades. The announcement that he was suffering from stage 4 pancreatic cancer was like a punch in the gut.And so, a few weeks after Alex announced his diagnosis, all of the Jeopardy! people gathered outside O’Brien’s to record a message of support for the man who has inspired us to learn more about our world. As I huddled in the wind with Brad, Pam, Jerome, Dileep, and the rest of the crew, I realized that these cutthroat know-it-alls are not just friends. They are family—win, lose, or draw.Answers: 1. Harrison Ford; 2. Algeria, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Iran, Kazakhstan, North Korea, Ukraine, Uzbekistan; 3. the Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, the Ambassador, the Biltmore; 4. Kobe Bryant.RELATED: What Surprised Me the Most About Being a Jeopardy! ChampStay on top of the latest in L.A. food and culture. Sign up for our newsletters today. TAGSAlex TrebekBuzzy CohenJeopardy!Previous articleKanye West’s Sunday Service Turned Coachella Into a Big, Mauve MegachurchNext articleMall Mogul Rick Caruso Is Considering Running for MayorGwynedd Stuart RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHORA $500k Gift from Alex Trebek Is Helping Fund a Bridge Housing Center for L.A.’s HomelessWho’ll Be the Next Jeopardy! Host? Oddsmakers and Fans Have Different FavoritesAlex Trebek’s Land Gift to the City Is One of Its Best Kept Secretslast_img read more


Only a Handful of People Showed Up to “Raid” Area 51,…

Posted On Aug 18 2021 by

first_imgInternetPop CultureOnly a Handful of People Showed Up to “Raid” Area 51, but It Still Got WeirdAbout 100 alien enthusiasts—and a whole bunch of reporters—traveled to Nevada to see how an internet joke would play out IRLBy Zoie Matthew – September 20, 20192631ShareEmailFacebookTwitterPinterestReddItThis week, a long-awaited “raid” of the secretive government site Area 51—which has for decades been rumored to contain evidence of extraterrestrial life—was set to take place in the small town of Rachel, Nevada. Inspired by a joke event on Facebook, which turned into a viral meme and garnered over 2 million attendees who claimed to want to “see them aliens,” the event has been a hot topic on the internet for months, as media outlets and government officials tried to determine exactly how many people would actually show up, and if the tiny desert community—which has a population of 54 and only four businesses—could handle it.While the so-called “Alienstock” event it didn’t turn into the “humanitarian disaster” or Fyre Fest 2.0 that some folks—including the event’s original founder Matty Roberts—feared, a handful people did, in fact, make the pilgrimage to Rachel this week. And, needless to say, things got a little weird.According to the Las Vegas Review-Journal, about 100 alien enthusiasts gathered outside the back gate of the government facility on Friday morning at 3 a.m., along with a handful of law officers. While some crowd members acted like they were going to “storm” the gate, and others sporadically chanted “clap them cheeks”—in reference to an internet joke where people claim they wanted to have sex with the released aliens—mostly they just “stood there,” underwhelming some who had traveled long distances for the occasion. “I’m a little disappointed because it’s a lot less people than they said online,” one crowd member told the Review-Journal. “I don’t think I’ll be back (to the area). This was kind of the thing.”Before the gathering dispersed, two people were arrested—one for reportedly trying to enter the gate and another for urinating on the fence. But this was apparently only the beginning of the festivities, which are planned to continue in towns surrounding the base into the weekend.The New York Times described the scene later in the day in Rachel, where a festival stage was erected on Thursday: “People were setting up tents, hoisting inflatable green aliens and zipping through the desert on all-terrain vehicles.” Said one tinfoil cape-draped attendee named Mike Main: “I feel like I’m part of some awakening.”According to TV station KTUU, Daniel Martinez, a 31-year-old Pokemon card dealer from Pomona donning a wolf spirit hood and faux fur jacket, “was among the first to whirl and dance at the dusty makeshift festival grounds.” “Here’s a big open space for people to be,” Martinez told KTUU. “One person starts something and it infects everybody with positivity. Anything can happen if you give people a place to be.”Workers at the Little A’Le’Inn, which is the only hotel in Rachel and was booked up long before the event, seemed slightly less enthused. One employee told the Times that she and other employees had been working around the clock to accommodate the visitors. “We’ve got someone coming in a panda bear suit right now,” Pam Kinsey said early on Friday. “There’s all kinds of all kinds.”However, Connie West—the co-owner of the Little A’Le’Inn who decided to spearhead the event after the original Facebook founder dropped out—seemed over the moon about the gathering in a Thursday evening interview with the Review-Journal. “I’m fabulous; I can’t even describe it,” she said. “This is the highest high I’ve ever been in my life. They said we couldn’t do it, and I did it. We did it.”Meanwhile, 30 miles from Rachel, in the town of Hiko, Nevada, a more formally organized event called “Area 51 Basecamp” is set to take place, offering talks from self-proclaimed UFO experts, artists, musicians, and filmmakers. On its website, it calls the “mainstream momentum” of the Area 51 raid a “once-in-a-generation opportunity for the global public to learn more about the truth behind the UFO secrecy.”But for those who really want to find out what’s going down inside the secretive government base, perhaps the best plan is to come back after things quiet down—just last week, two Dutch vloggers were able to make it three miles into the area before being detained and questioned.RELATED: This Obsessive Americana Meme Account Is Our New Favorite Thing on the InternetStay up to date with everything you need to know about L.A. by following us on Facebook and Instagram. TAGSAliensArea 51Little A’Le’InnNevadaRachelStorm Area 51UFOsPrevious articleVideo: Communing with Boomers at an Expo for Senior CitizensNext articleUnderstated vs. Over-the-Top: The Best and Worst Emmys FashionZoie Matthew RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHORThe Stranger-than-Fiction History of the IntegratronSome Very Weird Things We Saw at the L.A. County FairScientists Have Identified More Than 100 New Planets That Could Be Home to Alienslast_img read more