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.

The state of Alaska and a long list of Alaska agencies want Alaskans to Pay It Forward with acts of kindness and then share the happy news with others.

This week, Feb. 12-19, is Pay It Forward February — Spread Kindness, Not COVID-19. The Alaska Department of Health and Social Services encourages Alaskans to Pay It Forward with an act of kindness and to document that kindness with a photo or video. Tag two friends and challenge them to Pay It Forward. Then share the act of kindness with the hashtag #WithYouAlaska.

“Together, we can spread kindness, not COVID-19,” the press release says.

According to the Facebook page, “Alaskans know that it’s easier to make it through winter when we help each other.

“We can all contribute to a kinder Alaska. When we act together, the kindness spreads. A special bonus: helping others is good for your own health as well.”

Here are some suggestions for acts of kindness for family, friends, neighbors, community members and even strangers: 

Check on your loved ones by scheduling a virtual video chat. Run an errand, like picking up a prescription for a loved one. Babysit your niece and nephew so their parents can have a “date night.” Pay one utility bill for a loved one.

Check in on your neighbor by texting or calling them. Chop firewood and leave a bundle on your neighbor’s doorstep. Safely prepare and individually wrap baked good, snacks or meals to leave on your neighbor’s doorstep. Clean up your favorite park in your neighborhood.

Take a moment to genuinely thank someone in customer service for their efforts. Compliment someone — from six feet away. Leave unused coupons next to corresponding products in the grocery store. Purchase a gift card and leave it at a gas pump, with a note, for someone to find.

Volunteer at local COVID-19 response efforts. Donate school supplies to your local district. Donate gently-used clothing and/or unopened toiletries to local shelters. Donate non-perishable food to local food banks.

Here is the Facebook page with more information:

“The more people that participate, the kinder we can make Alaska,” the Facebook page says.


Student art

Fairbanks Arts Association (FAA) is looking for student art to include in the annual Up With Art (Reimagined) Student Art Show. 

“In years past, the exhibition has featured artwork made in the classroom in conjunction with art specialists and teachers,” said Jess Pena, FAA director . “However, in light of the special circumstances of this academic year, we are inviting FNSBSD student artists to submit one (1) piece of original artwork made at home or at school within the past year, to be on display in the Bear Gallery.”

There is no fee to submit artwork.

Registration deadline to submit art is at noon on Feb. 26.

The show will debut the month of March and include artwork from K-12 grade students who attend Fairbanks North Star Borough School District Schools and affiliated institutions.

The show will be open for viewing Friday. March 5 through Friday, March 26. A virtual celebration and awards ceremony, via Zoom, is scheduled for 5:30-7:30 p.m. Friday, March 26. The show is free.

Community judges will choose five award winners in these categories: Imagination, Stories, Connection, Environment, and Health. 

Artwork can include painting drawing, sculpture, ceramics, print, mixed-media, jewelry, fiber and photography. Complete entry guidelines are at

For more information, contact or call 907 251-8386, ext. 3.

Reach columnist/community editor Kris Capps at Follow her on Twitter @FDNMKris.