Weekdays after the news, closing out the 8 o'clock and noon hours; 8:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

Sometimes light, sometimes serious. "Coffee@KYUK" is where our community connects.

Ways to Connect

Alaska Public Health Nurses Donna Bean and Evelina Achee
Courtesy of Donna Bean

Many of us are asking questions about the duration of the pandemic and our efforts to practice social distancing. When will this be over? When can we resume our normal daily activities?

In an attempt to answer these questions, The New York Times recently published the findings from a survey of 511 infectious disease specialists asking when they personally expect to resume 20 activities of daily life ranging from getting a haircut to attending a concert or sporting event.

Here to talk about why these questions are so hard to answer is Alaska Public Health Nurse Donna Bean. 

Courtesy of Dr. Al Gross

As of the June 1 filing deadline, there are five people running for the seat currently held by Dan Sullivan in the U.S. Senate, including Sullivan himself. On the phone and joining us for Coffee@KYUK is Dr. Al Gross. He is an Independent candidate who has been endorsed by the Alaska Democratic Party.

Gross grew up in the state, the son of the state attorney general under former governor Jay Hammond. He has been a commercial fisherman, a doctor, and now he’s running for one of Alaska’s U.S. Senate seats.

This year has already begun breaking temperature records. With us is Alaska climatologist Rick Thoman to talk about how this winter, and the month of May, broke some records.  

Shane Iverson / KYUK

At 12:01 a.m. on June 1, sections of the Kuskokwim River, along with certain tributaries, have closed to gillnets to allow the initial push of king salmon to reach the headwaters. Alaska Department of Fish and Game Kuskokwim Fisheries Biologist Ben Gray and Alaska State Wildlife Trooper Walter Blajeski join KYUK to outline these regulations.

A fisherman pulls a king salmon from the Kuskokwim River during a subsistence fishing opening on June 12, 2018.
Katie Basile / KYUK

Kuskokwim River salmon fishing is just around the corner. On Monday, June 1, sections of the river, along with certain tributaries, will begin closing to gillnets to allow the initial push of king salmon to reach the headwaters. Joining KYUK to talk about these restrictions is Ray Born, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Acting Refuge Manager for the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge. 

Windy Willow Hair and Nail Salon in Bethel, Alaska.
Courtesy of Tracey Wilbanks

Last Friday, May 22, Gov. Mike Dunleavy lifted many of the state's health mandates, allowing businesses around Alaska to open at full capacity. While Dunleavy recommends that people continue practicing social distancing, mask wearing, and frequent hand washing and disinfecting, he left it up to business owners to decide how to enforce these recommendations within their own establishments. 


Here to talk with us about running a business throughout the pandemic is Tracey Wilbanks of Windy Willow Hair and Nail Salon in Bethel. Not only has she managed to keep her business afloat during the pandemic, but she also recently expanded it.


Alaska Chamber of Commerce.

As summer kicks into high gear, Aniak is figuring out how to protect its community from the novel coronavirus with two major construction projects underway. Also, the tribal council is starting a community garden program for everyone in town. With us today is Wayne Morgan, Chief of the Village of Aniak  

Earlier this month, KYUK produced a video in collaboration with the musical group Pamyua. We asked people to submit videos of themselves dancing to a specific song called "Tarvarnauramken," also known as the Blessing or Purification Song, while social distancing. We then edited the videos together into one cohesive dance. On this episode of Coffee@KYUK, we welcome one of the founders of Pamyua, Phillip Blanchett, and humanities professor, Yup’ik Tradition Bearer, and Phillip’s mother, Marie Meade. Both Phillip and Marie are featured in this video. 

Teresa Cotsirilos / KYUK

The packets are on their way to Calista Corporation shareholders. Calista Director of Communications Thom Leonard says that information for the annual meeting in July will go in the mail Friday, May 22, and arrive in electronic mailboxes that afternoon.