October 2011

KYUK’s popular weekly radio call-in show, “Talk-Line” is off the air, at least for the time being. The Friday morning open-forum has been on the air for over 20 years, but a show in late September has put the program under review.

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Crowds will miss the fun loving Maryann Sundown. Photo by Chris Pike.

Alaska’s “Dance Diva” Maryann Sundown was laid to rest this Saturday in her home village of Scammon Bay. The 93-year-old inspired countless Yup’ik dancers before she died in her house last week from pneumonia. While Alaska may be without our favorite dancer, there’s reason to believe her legacy will endure through the generations.

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The Bethel Actor’s Guild is bringing the cult classic Rocky Horror Picture Show to the Bethel stage at the Yupiit Piciryarait cultural center this weekend. The audience can expect a local version of the rock musical, but fans can still get fully involved. The show starts at 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets are $20 at the door and costumes are encouraged.

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Known as the Queen of Cama-i, Maryann Sundown prefroms at the Bethel dance festival in 2008. Photo by Chris Pike.

Renowned elder and Yup’ik culture bearer Maryann Sundown has passed away.  According to her family, the Scammon Bay elder died Wednesday night in her home surrounded by her family.

Sundown was at least 93 years old.

Despite her age she continued to yuraq, or dance, at local and statewide festivals.  She was a show stopper at the Cama-i Dance Festival in Bethel where she performed her ancestor’s songs along with newly composed pieces like the Macarena. Read more →

Officers with the Western Alaska Alcohol and Narcotics Team confiscated 3 and a half pounds of marijuana that was on its way to Western Alaska from Anchorage. They also seized alcohol bound for the village of Stebbins. Read more →

For years Maryann Sundown of Scammon Bay has been the main event at the Cama-i Dance Festival in Bethel, Alaska each spring. In 2011 she was honored there as a “Living Treasure”.

Among the many traditional and non-traditional dances she performed, she was known for the Mosquito Dance with her late sister, and the Bruce Lee Dance, which was preformed with her grandson. Both dances drove the crowds wild with laughter and applause.

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Bethel will soon be the home to a new aircraft mechanic school. It will be run by the Association of Village Council Presidents and is scheduled to open in September of 2012. KYUK’s Sophie Evan has more.

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