Kirsten Swann

A trio of Gruening Middle School students took a stand before the Anchorage School Board Monday, urging board members to consider adding substance abuse counselors to local high schools.

They were scared, they said, but they didn’t show it.

Lauren Waite, Aubrey Roberts and Alyssa Adrian had spent weeks studying their topic, part of an annual eighth-grade assignment known as Project Citizen. The public testimony was one of the final steps.

A former Eagle River resident and Marine reservist was shot and killed by police after a standoff near Denver on Friday.

According to the Denver Post, police in Englewood, Colorado were called Friday afternoon for a report that an armed man was barricaded inside a home holding several hostages. During the incident, police fatally shot Michael Kocher, 32, in the torso.

Despite rising statewide unemployment and widespread economic fears, the Chugiak-Eagle River housing market is going strong, marked by steady demand and low inventory.

“I’m going to say it’s historically low,” said Barbara Crittenden, a longtime local realtor and resident. “Because it’s low, it’s going to tighten up the market.”

Gruening Middle School students were sent home after a mysterious odor filled the building Monday morning, according to the Anchorage School District.

The sulfur-like smell was ultimately discovered to have come from a cleaning solution in a drain in a school art room, said Heidi Embley, an ASD spokeswoman.

Approximately 600 students attend the middle school. Embley said it took about a half hour to get all the students onto buses during the evacuation — a procedure practiced by school staff every year.

Following numerous court cases, extended bureaucratic back-and-forth and a lengthy public process, a controversial construction project along a vital Eagle River thoroughfare is set to break ground this summer.

The Yosemite Drive expansion has been years in the making, required by Anchorage Municipal Code since the construction of Eagle River High School.

On sunny recent Friday afternoon, more than 100 students from Gruening and Mirror Lake Middle School boarded buses bound for Chugiak High School, where they filed into the auditorium to watch a high school cast spin through the first act of “Bye Bye Birdie.”

“Goin’ steady, goin’ steady, steady for good,” sang the girls on the stage.

Behind the bright stage lights, two teenagers in costume held hands in the wings.

(Editor’s note: The Chugiak-Eagle River Star is owned by Morris Communications, which also owns the Alaska Journal of Commerce.)

Two familiar local faces are among the latest round of Alaskans to be named Top 40 Under 40 by the Alaska Journal of Commerce.

Ariane Aramburo, 34, an anchor and reporter for KTUU Channel 2 News, and Bill Lierman IV, 39, an investment officer with Alaska Permanent Capital Management, were named for their community involvement and professional accomplishments.

“It was humbling,” Lierman said.

You may have seen one around at the Eagle River post office, Wal-Mart, a particular local gym or a neighborhood school. Smooth, painted stones, they’re covered with multicolored designs and friendly slogans, abstract patterns and eye-catching hues.

On the back, they all bear the same name: Chugiak-Eagle River Rocks.

The community Facebook group is the brainchild of Lesley Hasbrouck, an Eagle River mother of four.

“I think it’s a huge community builder,” she said.

Amid growing concerns about area crime, dozens of Chugiak-Eagle River residents met Feb. 25 for a meeting with public safety officers and state officials at the Chugiak-Eagle River Senior Center.

Chugiak and Eagle River-area lawmakers are backing measures that could pave the way for ridesharing companies like Uber or Lyft to operate in Alaska.