Dec. 1, 2022 — Dr. Beth Baker — The Joy of Playing Music During Winter Holidays

Make reservations for this luncheon

Dr. Beth Baker will play a variety of instruments and share stories of her outdoor adventures, including climbing Denali, running dogs in the Iditarod, ocean kayaking, and her interest in recent science about music and the human brain.

Dr. Baker, a retired physician, was drawn to Alaska in 1982 because of all the outdoor opportunities. Her lifelong interest in music, especially holiday music, will help sound in the holidays.

Beth Baker

Beth Baker

Nov. 3, 2022 — Corinna Cook — Leavetaking

Corinna Cook asks how can a geologically-enlarged sense of time benefit writing that is motivated by immediate concerns and/or lived experience?

Corinna is a former Fulbright Fellow, an Alaska Literary Award recipient, and a Rasmuson Foundation awardee. She offers writing workshops, teaches at Alaska Pacific University, and is working on an oral history account of the early years of the Alaska Eskimo Whaling Commission. Her current creative focus is a book project centered on Yukon-Alaska art, ecology and history. More at

Corinna Cook

Oct. 6, 2022 — Bill Jack — Persevering on the Appalachian Trail

Author Bill Jack will discuss his memoir about hiking the Appalachian Trail, Perseverance. The presentation will include a video with photos.

During his adult years, Bill ran 5Ks, 10Ks, and some half marathons. Upon turning 70 years of age, he gave up running and decided to hike the Appalachian Trail. He didn’t realize that he had picked one of the most difficult long-distance hikes in the world. Learn what hiking the trail is all about and how Bill persevered. Attendees might be motivated to attempt their own new and exciting adventures.

Bill grew up active and loving the outdoors in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. After high school, he attended Greenville University in Greenville, Illinois. After graduation, he was offered a teaching position in Point Hope. After teaching and coaching basketball in several remote Alaska communities, Bill retired in 1998 and moved his family to Anchorage. His wife Penny and he now enjoy 11 grandchildren.

Perseverance is Bill’s second memoir. His first, Majestic Journey, described his Iditarod Trail Race experiences.

Participants can join the Zoom meeting at 11:30 a.m. for conversation and to troubleshoot connections. Please sign on by 11:50 a.m. to be prepared for start of the program at noon. Get details by sending a message to

Bill Jack

Bill Jack on the Appalachian Trail

Sept. 1, 2022 — Mr. Whitekeys — “Adventure, Danger, Scurvy, Romance” by Mr. Whitekeys

Adventure, Danger, Scurvy, Romance by Mr. Whitekeys

The true story of the largest expedition ever organized during the 1898 Alaska Gold Rush. Eighty greenhorns from Chicago sailed to Alaska, built a 110-foot sternwheel riverboat, sailed up the Yukon and Koyukuk Rivers, and endured one of the most brutal winters on record. One of the prospectors lugged a 40-pound camera for 2 1/2 years and documented his time in the gold fields with over 100 images. His photos have been stored unseen for 120 years. This meeting will be the FIRST presentation about this book.

Mr. Whitekeys’ Bio

For all of his fifty years in Alaska, Mr. Whitekeys’ job description has proudly been “mouthing off and making snotty comments.”

In the early 1970s, while performing with The Oosik Music Company at Chilkoot Charlie’s, he gave the bar its world famous slogan, “We Cheat The Other Guy and Pass The Savings On To You.”

In 1980, he opened Mr. Whitekeys’ Fly By Night Club—Anchorage’s center for “Spam, Booze, Rhythm and Blues.” The Whale Fat Follies musical comedy satiric revue was a legendary production involving music, singing, dancing, costumes, and a photographic multi-media show. It was truly The Alaskan Show The Department of Tourism Does NOT Want You To See.

In his spare time, Whitekeys has written a book version of The Whale  Fat Follies (Alaska Bizarre,)  a monthly column for Alaska Magazine, and a weekly satirical segment for KTUU-TV in Anchorage. He also produced a cinematic lampoon of the state’s history, Alaska—The First 10,000 Years—and a DVD version of The Whale Fat Follies Live in Concert.

Since performing The Whale Fat Follies  “Farewell Tour” in 2019, Mr. Whitekeys has proudly continued to embarrass the entire Alaskan environmental community as the Commander in Chief of the Anchorage Audubon Society.

Mr. Whitekeys

June 2, 2022 — Evan Swensen — While you’re out there having fun in Alaska outdoors, I’m doing the same thing, but I’m working.

Evan Swensen, book publisher, editor, author, and Author Masterminds charter member, and his wife, Lois, publish books by authors worldwide. In addition, he has been the publisher and editor of Alaska Outdoors magazine and producer of Alaska Outdoors television show and outdoor videos, and host of Alaska Outdoor Radio Magazine. He has been an Alaska resident since 1957.

As a pilot, he has logged more than 4,000 hours of flight time in Alaska in both wheel and floatplanes. In addition, he is a serious recreation hunter and fisherman, equally comfortable casting a flyrod or using bait or lures. Evan has been published in many national magazines and is the author of five books and publisher of more than 1,000 books by other authors.

Evan claims to have the best job in the world; he gets up in the morning, puts on his fishing vest, picks up his fly rod, kisses his wife goodbye, and tells her he’s going to work—and she believes him!

See more about Evan Swensen and Publication Consultants at

Evan Swensen

May 5, 2022 — Jen Jolliff — Promoting Navigational Literacy and Decision-Making Through Her Book Fogrunner

Jen Jolliff, a competitor in orienteering races, will introduce her first novel, Fogrunner. The book is set in a world where map reading, good decision making, and efficiency are the keys to success. It is her way of encouraging navigational literacy in a generation for whom computer algorithms have seemingly taken over the need for individuals to process visual information.

Jolliff grew up in Waco, Texas, and graduated from Middlebury College in 1992 with a BA in English/Creative Writing, a life-partner from Alaska, and a love for navigation-based adventure. Two years later, she moved back to Anchorage. Jolliff ran the couple’s whimsical fleece hat company (Gimme Dat Hat Co.), worked as an activities therapist, and began competing in navigation races put on by the Arctic Orienteering Club.

Around 2000, she began to work as a custom visual artist, painting murals in homes around the city and creating wood carvings as commissions and gallery work. Jolliff has designed and facilitated two dozen large-scale permanent art pieces in schools and libraries through the Teaching Artist and 1% for Art programs. In recent years, Jolliff has shifted much of her energy to literary arts. More information is available at

Participants can join the Zoom meeting at 11:30 a.m. for conversation and to troubleshoot connections. Please sign on by 11:50 a.m. to be prepared for start of the program at noon. Get details by sending a message to

Jen Jolliff

Jen Jolliff

April 7, 2022 — Dr. Suzanne K M Marcy — Nature’s Wisdom: What We Gain by Listening Deeply

Dr. Suzanne K M Marcy is a scientist, master facilitator, and author who works for the protection of nature. Her presentation will share what her research has taught her, why she paddles into the wild alone to recharge her soul, and her vision of the natural world she treasures.

Suzanne is passionate about the natural world and the animals with which we share the earth. Her passion was spawned early in life as she enjoyed visits to Mt Rainier National Park where her grandfather was Superintendent. Later a science class captured her heart and led her to earn her doctorate in Animal Behavior and Ecology at the University of Washington, Seattle. Her dissertation research was on Northern Fur Seal behavior conducted on the Pribilof Islands in the Bering Sea.

Following a “postdoc” in science policy, Suzanne dedicated her career to protecting the environment, both in our nation and the world in her professional roles as Senior Scientist for Ecology and then Senior Scientist for Arctic for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Communicating her work effectively has been central to her accomplishments.

Suzanne serves on the Board of Directors for the Alaska Wildlife Alliance and is currently organizing a non-profit to restore, maintain, and enhance stewardship of hiking trails in the Chugach State Park wilderness surrounding her home.

Suzanne feels that there is a key element not normally addressed in the scientific realm—recognizing and listening to the wisdom of living beings within our midst and on whom we have such powerful influence. She says, “Communication is about listening first and then sharing what we learn; it is time for us to listen more deeply to our fellow creatures.”

Participants can join the Zoom meeting at 11:30 a.m. for conversation and to troubleshoot connections. Please sign on by 11:50 a.m. to be prepared for start of the program at noon. Get details by sending a message to

Suzanne Marcy

Suzanne Marcy

March 3, 2022 — Victoria Shanklin — Internet Safety for Children: A Million Strangers in Their Pocket

Victoria Shanklin, Executive Director of Victims for Justice, is an experienced nonprofit leader who has been working in the field of victim services since 2004. Here presentation will describe a multimedia project to promote Internet safety for children.

Shanklin has served in management roles in communications, outreach, and development at two other Anchorage nonprofits that serve disadvantaged Alaskans. She began her career as a Peace Corps volunteer leader in Romania and holds a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Washington.

Victims for Justice, an Anchorage-based organization, is the only agency in Alaska that specializes in serving victims and survivors of violent crimes other than domestic violence and sexual assault, including homicide, arson, robbery, assault, hit and runs, kidnapping, and hate crimes. As such, Victims for Justice helps to fill a void in a state with the highest per capita rate of violent crime.

Shanklin sets strategic vision for the organization, secures and manages grants, hires and oversees staff, ensures organizational stability by building unrestricted funding, and manages the annual budget, among other duties. She represents victim voices in policymaking forums and advocates for improved services at the statewide level for those whose lives have been affected by violent crime. Shanklin serves on committees and work groups including the Missing and Murdered Indigenous Persons Workgroup, a Restorative Justice forum organized by the University of Alaska, and several Alaska Criminal Justice Commission work groups.

Participants can join the Zoom meeting at 11:30 a.m. for conversation and to troubleshoot connections. Please sign on by 11:50 a.m. to be prepared for start of the program at noon. Get details by sending a message to

Victims for Justice

Victims for Justice

Feb. 3, 2022 — David Reamer — From Housing Discrimination to Chinchillas: Engaging with the Full Spectrum of History

David Reamer is an academic and public historian who has published on subjects as diverse as baseball, housing discrimination, the 18th century English Gin Craze, and toilet paper. He writes weekly for the Anchorage Daily News (Histories of Anchorage) and daily on Twitter (@anc_historian).

Although most historians specialize in topic, approach, or both, David’s subject choices do not fit these norms. He says, “I have covered a broad range of historical narratives, from the tragic to the ludicrous. This reflects the reality of history, whiplashing between disasters, the mundane, and outright comedy. No personal anecdote better illustrates this truth than how a deep dive into the depressing history of housing discrimination in Alaska led me to one of the silliest episodes in local history, the midcentury chinchilla breeding boom and bust.”

Participants can join the Zoom meeting at 11:30 a.m. for conversation and to troubleshoot connections. Please sign on by 11:50 a.m. to be prepared for start of the program at noon. Get details by sending a message to

David Reamer

David Reamer

Jan. 6, 2022 — Frank Baker — 50 years of Alaska outdoor adventures through the seasons: nature’s and his own

Author, photographer, and outdoorsman Frank Baker will begin his presentation with a 10-minute slide show of the four seasons. He will follow with a discussion of how his outdoor adventures paralleled those season while dealing with age-related health issues, injuries, and other challenges. Frank will describe his motivations to write and photograph these adventures and what living and working in Alaska for three-fourths of century has meant to him.

A resident of Eagle River, Frank arrived in Seward from Pennsylvania in 1946. He received a B.A. degree in Journalism from the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 1974. Soon after that he began a career as a writer in Alaska’s oil industry that spanned more than 40 years.

Following his retirement in 2015, Frank contributed articles and opinion columns to publications and websites both inside and outside Alaska. He has published three books of poetry. Frank also produced a weekly radio program on Anchorage’s KLEF 98.1 FM radio station from 2002 to 2007.

Participants can join the Zoom meeting at 11:30 a.m. for conversation and to troubleshoot connections. Please sign on by 11:50 a.m. to be prepared for start of the program at noon. Get details by sending a message to

Frank Baker

Frank Baker