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I could have been strolling amongst farm exhibits at the Alaska State Fair.

Instead, I was out on the Beach Lake trails, surrounded by skinny people in brightly-colored clothes charging around a four-mile loop so ridiculously hilly that I was ready to call it quits after the first lap.

I was racing the third-annual A Day at the Beach, a timed event offering runners the chance to test their endurance during six-, 12- and 24-hour timed races.

Items in the Police Briefs are taken from the Anchorage Police Department’s online crime mapping website. Details about individual events are provided by the department’s public information office. Defendants are presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

Students busted for smoking pot

On Aug. 28 at around 10:45 a.m., a school resource officer at Chugiak High School walked through a foot tunnel on the school grounds where police said students “are known to hang out during lunchtime.”

Ric Davidge brought his own cameraman to film his Thursday appearance at the South Fork Community Council meeting.

There weren’t a lot of highlights.

The chairman of the Alaska Veterans Foundation got more than an earful during his first appearance before the council in whose backyard he wants to build a facility to house up to 100 homeless veterans.

“This community is completely against your proposal,” council chair Karl von Luhrte told Davidge.

Nobody seemed to disagree.

Summer’s over and local boards and community councils are gaveling back into action.

Most local advisory groups elect to skip meetings in June, July and August due to members being busy, but September brings a full return starting with the Thursday, Sept. 6, meeting of the South Fork Community Council. The meeting at 7 p.m. at Eagle River High School on Yosemite Drive is the first of five area council meetings scheduled this month, according to information posted on the Federation of Community Councils homepage.

A pair of local young women will be wearing tiaras for the next year after winning titles at the Miss Alaska USA pageant Aug. 4 in Anchorage.

Neither expected to win.

“I think I said out loud, ‘What?’” said Chugiak’s JoEllen Walters, who was crowned Miss Alaska USA at the event held at the Wendy Williamson Auditorium. “Then I cried.”

Like Walters, Miss Alaska Teen USA Meghan Scott was surprised when she heard Audrey Johnson’s name called instead of hers as the first runner-up.

Michailia Massong, waist-deep in a muddy bog Friday afternoon, fought to hold her best friend’s head above water.

“Don’t you dare give up on us!” she pleaded, as Luna, her 13-year-old American quarter horse, shivered in a swamp a half-mile off Birchwood Loop in Chugiak.

Luna had unexpectedly bolted during a routine ride and wound up stuck. The two had been struggling to get out of the bog for two hours. Massong was getting colder by the minute. Luna’s gums were turning pale, her breathing was becoming labored.

On Aug. 28 at around 5:50 a.m., Anchorage police received a call from a woman who said she had been assaulted by her ex boyfriend while they were delivering newspapers.

Beach Lake Road was recently paved from Birchwood Loop to the existing pavement starting near the Chugiak Dog Mushers Association parking lot. The 2-mile municipal road is now paved from Birchwood Loop to the Beach Lake Lodge at the end of the road.

The road provides access to Beach Lake, where there’s a public fishing/viewing dock, public access, a parking area and the lodge, which is available for rental.

While in Ketchikan last month, a gardener friend showed me how to grow nutrient dense microgreens from seeds planted inside and harvested every seven days. Needless to say, this got my attention because they were absolutely delicious!

Berries have been bringing bunches of pickers to Arctic Valley, where the fall hiking and gathering season is well underway.

On a recent weekday, more than a dozen people scoured the mountainsides in search of blueberries, which can be readily found in the area. The trails leading into the Chugach Mountains also hosted a few hikers and mountain runners, who flock to the wide-open ridgelines offered high above the valley.

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