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Arts & Culture

Stories about the art and culture.

Alaska filmmaker Anna Hoover and composer Phillip "Ossie" Kairaiuak won the GCI-Walter Kaitz Fellowship last week.
Courtesy of GCI.

Last week, GCI awarded a fellowship to two Alaska Native artists in collaboration with the Walter Kaitz Foundation. One of those artists grew up here in Chefornak.

Shana Silcott and Tom McCallson spent six weeks in St. Croix and Puerto Rico, helping wherever they could.
Teresa Cotsirilos/KYUK

Last fall, Caribbean island communities were devastated by three of the strongest hurricanes in recorded history. The storms’ 100-mile-per-hour winds crushed buildings and flooded streets. Thousands of people in the region are still homeless, and two Bethel residents decided to do whatever they could to help.

Saturday Market vendors received a letter this past weekend saying that if they sell at Saturday Market more than five times a year, they have to get a business license and start charging sales tax.
Christine Trudeau / KYUK

Just as they gear up for the holiday season, Saturday Market vendors received a letter this past weekend saying that if they sell at Saturday Market more than five times a year, they have to get a business license and start charging sales tax. While the law has been on the books for some time, Bethel city officials are just beginning to enforce it.

Troy and Ethan Wilkinson build the traditional kayak frame with the help of their father, Bill Wilkinson.
Gaetana DeGennaro/NMAI

Traditional Yup’ik artisanship and acumen are about to gain a national audience.


Artists Ryan Romer and Jimmy Riordan have received a $10,000 grant from the Alaska Humanities Forum to explore homelessness in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.
Alaska Humanities Forum

Two artists with roots in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta are the first recipients of a new, $10,000 grant from the Alaska Humanities Forum.

Ben Charles

Walk into a courtroom, a legislative office, the Governor’s Manson, or any public space in Alaska and you’ll find art: masks, paintings, textiles, sculptures. Each piece was created by Alaska artists, curated by the state, and is held in the Alaska Art Bank. The collection recently acquired a Yup’ik mask from Bethel artist Ben Charles. Charles is 34 years old and only began carving in February. KYUK visited Charles at his home studio in Bethel.


Michelle DeWitt, surrounded by family and friends, received an Alaska YWCA Women of Achievement Award on November 8, 2017 at the Alaska Center for Performing Arts in Anchorage.
Courtesy of Michelle DeWitt

The Executive Director of the Bethel Community Services Foundation received a Woman of Achievement distinction at the Alaska YWCA annual awards ceremony last week. Nine other women also received awards. Each was honored for furthering YWCA’s mission to eliminate racism and empower women.

Veterans Day; A Family Affair

Nov 9, 2017
Dean Swope / KYUK

In honor of Veteran’s Day on Saturday, we’re talking with veterans in our community about their military service. Elias Venes served in the Merchant Marines during World War II in the Pacific. His nephew, Joseph "Sonny" Venes served in the Marines in Vietnam. Here are their stories:


After giving kids a good fright, Bev Hoffman emerges from her hiding spot to give Trick or Treaters a hug.
Christine Trudeau / KYUK

The spookiest house in Bethel is may have held its final scare on Tuesday evening. For years, Bev Hoffman and John McDonald have transformed their cozy home into a haunted house for Halloween.


Lisa Demer, ADN Western Alaska correspondent, in April 2017 outside her Bethel home/office.
Lisa Demer / Alaska Dispatch News

Alaska Dispatch News reporter Lisa Demer is really going to miss Bethel. After covering Western Alaska for three years, the paper has pulled Demer back to Anchorage following a large reduction in staff. Demer has become a friend to the region and hopes to continue covering the area.

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