Anchorage anew

by • January 27, 2014 • ApresComments (0)1060

Rediscover your own back yard with year full of new goals

We need to make a New Year’s resolution not to make crummy resolutions. The big resolutions to get healthy or be more fun often ring hollow even as we ring in the New Year. For 2014, how about no empty promises and no procrastinating and, while we’re at it, no halfhearted resolutions. Here are four ways to get started (for real this time!) on some of the most well-worn resolutions.

One of the best ways to get into shape for the New Year is to take up skiing on Anchorage’s many well-groomed cross-country ski trails.  Courtesy Jody Overstreet

One of the best ways to get into shape for the New Year is to take up skiing on Anchorage’s many well-groomed cross-country ski trails.
Courtesy Jody Overstreet

Spend more time with family

There are any number of ways to get closer to your family, and it doesn’t have to be a smarmy scene. Do something fun that will appeal to all ages. The Anchorage Symphony’s silent film double feature provides a live soundtrack and sound effects for two Charlie Chaplin comedies. The show on the evening of Jan. 11 includes the films “Kid Auto Races at Venice” and “Modern Times” for which Chaplin himself wrote the score. Trust me, silent film pratfalls pack more comedic punch when accompanied by a quick crash of cymbals or a silly slide whistle.

Have more fun

For the 21 and older crowd, your first opportunity for merriment in the New Year is the Great Alaska Beer & Barleywine Festival. If you’ve never been, this is a prime chance to sample beers from all over the state and a few favorites from Outside as well. While Alaska brews are easier than ever to find at Anchorage taps, there are still a few that only brew enough to meet hometown demand and fill glasses at this show. Want to try certain beers from places like Haines or Kodiak? The only other way to try them may be to fly to those towns. The festival is Jan. 17-18 at the Egan Center. You’re sure to have a little fun and make some new friends.

Get in shape

If all that beer affects your physique and a gym membership goes unused every time you sign up, maybe you should get out to get in shape. The Nordic Skiing Association of Anchorage maintains many of the trails here in town, but its programs also include lessons for cross-country skiers of all ages and abilities. If you are brand new to the sport, the instructors are ready for you, but there are plenty of tips and tricks to learn even if you’re already comfortable on skis.  Now is a great time to take a lesson; Ski for Women, the Tour of Anchorage, Ski Train and other events pack the months ahead. Ladies-only sessions, technique tune-ups and private lessons are all available. Details are online at


Heck, this is Alaska! I know people who have lived their entire lives in this state, and there are still places they have yet to explore. These folks aren’t homebodies, either. It is never too early to plan your next adventure. So book a day trip or plot your first summer fishing foray. Ever been dogsledding? Taken the train to Spencer Glacier? What do you have to lose? At the very least, you’ll have more ideas for what to do with your visiting friends and relatives (remember that whole “spend time with the family” thing?) next summer.

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