Community editor and columnist Kris Capps is a longtime resident of Fairbanks and Denali Park. Contact her at, in the office at 459-7546 or by cell at 322-6334. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMKris.

"Breaking Barriers” is the theme for this year’s 22nd annual Fairbanks History Day. The five-day competition and exhibit takes place Feb. 10-14 at the J.P. Jones Community Center, 2400 Rickert St. 

The public is invited to view the exhibit from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 11-13. This is well worth the visit and I recommend readers stop in and see how local students address the “Breaking Barriers” theme. Seeing youth perspective on a theme like this is often enlightening.

More than 250 students in grades K-12 are expected to participate in the exhibits and other categories, including documentary film making, performances, essays and websites.

Winners of this contest go on to compete at the state and national level. The final round is in Washington D.C. in June.


Nominations due

Nominations are due Feb. 28 for the 24th annual Women of Distinction awards, an annual Fairbanks North Girl Scout Council event that honors women who contribute to our community, in many different ways.

The banquet will be held at 6 p.m. on May 7 at the Westmark Gold Room.

This program honors women who are strong contributors to the state of Alaska and the city of Fairbanks. Some of these women work in the spotlight to improve communities. Others work behind the scenes. Each May, the Girl Scout Council recognizes three women, who contribute to a better community and who serve as positive role models for young girls.

The event is an annual fundraiser, presented in partnership with BP.

Funds raised at previous banquets have helped hundreds of girls enjoy the fun of Girl Scouts in troops, and at camp, from all around the state.

A list of past honorees is available at

More information at 907-456-4782 or


Gospel choir 

Fairbanks Summer Arts Festival’s popular winter edition featuring the popular Gospel Choir begins next week. No experience is required.

Bobby Lewis and Eustace Johnson travel to Fairbanks from Harlem every year for this special event. As one reader emailed me this week, “It is a fantastic joy-filled week that will lift anyone’s spirit.”

Practices are every night next week, 6-7:30 p.m. The choir presents a free concert to the community on Feb. 23 at Journey Church, 1201 Haselton Road.  Register to participate at

In addition, a special Motown concert will perform on Feb. 21 at Raven Landing. Tickets are available at

Marimba is also featured during the festival’s winter edition and there are still slots available for beginners.

Beginning marimba practices 5-6:30 p.m. Feb 17-21 at The Music Room, 407 First Ave. Intermediate marimba workshop is 7-9 p.m. Feb 17-21 at The Music Room. Register at

Reach columnist/community editor Kris Capps at Call her at the office 459-7546. Follow her on Twitter: @FDNMKris.