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Articles written by Erin Kirkland

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 By Erin Kirkland    COVID-19    April 1, 2020 

COVID-19 digest, April 2, 2020

Alaska’s current case count As of April 1 at 3 p.m., Alaska had 10 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of affected citizens statewide to 143. There are nine individuals hospitalized, no new deaths, with 5,000-plus coronavirus tests...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    April 1, 2020 

Learn about walk-and-bike-friendly communities at Sitka conference

Located on remote Baranof Island at the gateway to the Pacific Ocean, the city of Sitka is probably the last place one would expect to be at the forefront of the walking-biking movement. Yet this...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    COVID-19    April 1, 2020 

COVID-19 digest, April 3, 2020

Current COVID-19 statistics from State of Alaska At the time of Thursday’s press briefing, the novel coronavirus had affected 157 Alaskans, with 11 new cases, 15 total hospitalizations, and no new deaths related to the disease. Governor Mike...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    March 1, 2020

Golden, Colorado shines for senior travelers

Wild West, here we come; cowboy boots, big belt buckles, and a sense of adventure in tow. It's Golden time. Located just 20 minutes from downtown Denver, the small city of Golden packs a punch for...

 

Safe and successful shopping during COVID-19

Alaskans may be good at maintaining distance from each other, but if you’re a caregiver (and even if you’re not), eventually you’ll have to leave the house to get groceries, replenish medications, or gather other supplies. If you usually stock...

 

COVID-19 Digest update, March 30

The Denali Center, a 75-bed rehabilitation and senior center in Fairbanks, recently began testing its residents and staff after one confirmed case of COVID-19 was established on Saturday, March 28. The facility, run by Foundation Health Partners,...

 

COVID-19 digest update: March 31, 2020

Current COVID-19 cases continue to increase across Alaska At the nightly press briefing on Tuesday, March 31, Dr. Anne Zink, of the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services (DHSS) today announced 14 new cases of COVID-19 in five Alaska...

 

America's public lands beckon to seniors in 2020

As the new year moves swiftly forward, United States travelers over age 62 wanting to explore the nation's public lands should begin planning now. With the now-termed "America the Beautiful" National...

 

Risk is inherent in travel: What can we learn?

The accounts and photographs from New Zealand’s White Island are grim. Tourists on day excursions to the country’s most popular attraction were one minute hiking to the rim of the active volcano, enjoying the landscape’s awe-inspiring sights; t...

 

Great gifts for seniors on the go

If you’ve got adventures big or small planned next year, it’s important to travel with the right gear. And by “right,” I mean appropriate for the changing senior’s body, mind and soul. Let’s face it, seniors, the days of toting backpacks...

 

Sailing the Alaska Marine Highway in 2020? Better read this

"What a beautiful sight that was. We could take our car, or walk on board, and GO SOMEWHERE! Our highway had arrived!" ~ Betty J. Marksheffel, describing her first view of the ferry as a historical no...

 

Washington sales tax exemptions for Alaskans

Alaskans who head to Washington state for a shopping trip won’t be able to enjoy the easy sales tax break they have gotten for more than 50 years. A new law enacted by Washington legislators now requires Alaska residents to save their receipts and...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    July 1, 2019

Big Delta State Historical park worth a stop - and stay

A (usually) wonderful occupational hazard of travel writer life is setting out to explore Alaska's lesser-known sights. I've just returned from a four-night journey to do just that, swinging around...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    June 1, 2019

Explore historic (and sunny) The Dalles, Oregon

Most Alaskans who hop on an airplane and fly south aren't typically looking to land in Oregon for a dose of sunshine and dry heat. After all, the beaver state is among the rainiest on the west coast,...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    May 1, 2019

Cruise lines switch up traditional entertainment styles

Cruising in 2019? Don't expect the usual from scheduled onboard entertainment, say cruise lines. Instead, how about the chance to rub shoulders with a feature film makeup artist, or perhaps sitting...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    April 1, 2019

Real ID: What you need to know

As if the logistics of travel weren’t murky enough, the Dept. of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Real ID program will be enforced in Alaska beginning Oct. 1, 2020. On that date, Alaska residents will need to present a Real ID-compliant license or ID,...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    March 1, 2019

State Museum in Juneau is well worth a visit

Think you know Alaska's entire story, told from the perspective of our capital city's residents? It might be time for a refresher at the Juneau State Museum, and March is the perfect month in which...

 

Spiritual touchpoints as a cornerstone of travel

"A traveler am I, and a navigator, and every day I discover a new region within my soul."    ~ Kahlil Gibran  There's a new trend afoot, encouraging the exploration of religious, philosophical, and...

 

Traveling safe (and smart) in 2019

After a 7.2 magnitude earthquake rattled both homes and nerves in November, many Alaskans are finding themselves thinking twice about safety and emergency preparedness like never before; and this includes travel. Whether embarking for an internationa...

 

All aboard the Aurora Winter Train

If you've ever listened to the lyrics to the tune 'Wabash Cannonball,' you'll get a sense of train travel's intrinsic hold upon us: "Listen to the jingle, the rumble and the roar As she glides along...

 

Have a "Bermudaful" experience this winter

With refined charm hinting of a British past combined with carefree, beach-life style of the Caribbean, Bermuda's got it all. This 22-mile island chain of volcanic rock and limestone has attracted eas...

 

Denali Highway: Fall for it

Labor Day weekend was a glorious jumble of color, sunshine, and a yearn for open roads, so drive them we did, up and over one of Alaska's most underutilized roadways. The Denali Highway, once upon a...

 

Fall in Fairbanks: Good fun and few crowds

Alaskans annually play a waiting game with winter. The frenzied pace of summer begins to slow around mid-August as kids and grandkids return to school, daylight wanes, and weather patterns become a...

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    August 1, 2018

An All-American road, on water

There's no question that Alaska is a place of uniqueness. From people to landscape and everything in between, there's no state like the 49th State, and that includes the mechanics of infrastructure....

 
 By Erin Kirkland    Travel    July 1, 2018

RV park or public campground

Summer has finally arrived in the Last Frontier. After a wet, windy spring, Alaskans are fueling up and hitting the highways and byways in search of a night or two (or many) among Alaska's wild...

 

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