Bristol Bay and Beyond, Dec. 5 2014

Dec 5, 2014

Dillingham city council picks a new member, residents gear up for a festive weekend, Bristol Bay buy back discussed at Pac Marine Expo, plus a look back at the week's news.

December sunrise in Togiak.
Credit Brian Abraham, Togiak IGAP.

On Thursday night, the Dillingham City Council voted unanimously to appoint Curt Armstrong to the seat vacated by Keggie Tubbs earlier this fall. Armstrong was one of five or six city residents who submitted letters of interest in the seat, though he seemed to do so slightly reluctantly. 

Curt Armstrong's letter of interest in a vacant council seat.

He was the top choice of Mayor Alice Ruby, who joins us now. Alice, you had several qualified candidates for the seat, including others who have past council experience, but you recommended Curt above the rest, and the council was quick to approve. What about Curt stood out to you?


It's shaping up to be a festive weekend in Dillingham. For more on some of the weekend's events, KDLG’s Thea Card sat down with the Arts Council’s Maryanne Dickey for a preview of the always popular Christmas Bazaar that kicks off Saturday morning.

Nushagak Cooperative employees Jeff Fonkert and Tim McCambly help string lights on the town tree Wednesday.
Credit Clark Fair

When the bazaar ends, come rain or no rain, festivities will shift a block or two away for the annual Christmas Tree Lighting at Delta Western downtown.

The lights have been hung, hot cocoa will be served, and Santa is expected to drop in for that event as well. Maryanne Dickey found a new person to lead the town in some Christmas Carols this year. Arwen Gaddis is a recent law school grad and also a recent transplant to Dillingham. She serves as a clerk for local Judge Pat Douglass.

Arwen Gaddis is a trained opera singer, and newcomer to Dillingham. She'll be leading carols Saturday night at the Christmas tree lighting downtown.

In her past life music was a major focus of her time and talent, and she is a trained opera singer. Our first connection with Arwen was through her fiance Nick, who is KDLG’s program director and new open line host. We invited Arwen to share more about her opera singing ahead of the tree lighting. Arwen, thanks for coming on:

Shifting gears to some news from the fishing industry. The Pacific Marine Expo in Seattle is an annual gathering of fishermen and the fishing industry to talk shop, take a look at new products, and mingle. Alaska, and Bristol Bay, always have a bit of an outsized presence at the weekend-long event, which took place the weekend before Thanksgiving.

Gabe Dunham is the Marine Advisory Program Agent in Bristol Bay.

One forum at the Expo pertained specifically to the potential buy back of Bristol Bay drift net permits, an idea which was the subject of a recent study funded by the Bristol Bay Regional Seafood Development Association

Here to talk about that and more industry business is Gabe Dunham, the Marine Advisory Program Agent in Bristol Bay, who was at the Pacific Marine Expo. Gabe, thanks for being here:

We leave you this week with a special poem written and read here by our friend Brian Abraham from Togiak. Abraham included his poem in this month’s edition of a newsletter he writes and publishes in the village. Here he reflects a little frustration at the belated presence of old man winter:

If you have news ideas, poems, thoughts, songs, or stories for us, send an email to or give us a call anytime at 907.842.2200.