Arts & Culture

Stories about the arts and culture.

LKSD will take over operations of Suurvik Cinema, beginning Jan. 1, 2020.
Airn Carl

Bethel's movie theater is open again. Suurvik Cinema reopened on May 28 after closing due to the COVID-19 pandemic last fall. With the reopening, there are now even more opportunities to catch a flick than there were before the pandemic. 

Katie Basile / KYUK

Elder Eula Acurunaq David passed away on May 29 at the age of 90. Originally from Scammon Bay, David was a worldly, culturally fluid and fluent woman who went on to live in Fortuna Ledge, Mekoryuk, and eventually Bethel.


Reyne Athanas

It’s another year without Bethel's Art Camp because of COVID-19, but people will still get a chance to paint dumpsters. Reyne Athanas says that if you have an idea for a dumpster, or even just for one side of a dumpster, contact her at 545-4468, message her on Facebook, or email her at You should also send a sketch of your idea.


Longtime KYUK colleague Lillian Atmak Michael died earlier this month at the age of 64. She passed away on the Russian Orthodox holiday Pascha, also known as Easter. Atmak was a practicing Orthodox Christian, many of whom believe that the gates of heaven are open to those who die on this highest of holy days for the church. While living, Michael shared her boundless energy with others as a teacher, a translator, a reporter, and a storyteller. 


Annalyne Ulroan / Lower Kuskokwim School District

The art made by students in the Lower Kuskokwim School District will take center stage at the Bethel Cultural Center on Friday, May 7. Up until now, all the art made by students could only be viewed virtually. The instruction that took place was also done remotely because of the pandemic.

Sam Elliot / KYUK

On May 2, Orthodox Christians in Bethel celebrated their most important religious holiday: Easter, or Pascha. It’s the first major holiday the congregation has gathered together for in nearly a year and a half.


Christopher Egalaaq Liu

Two Yup'ik engineers are trying to push the Yugtun language into the future, using technology. Their latest project opens the door for Yugtun autocorrect, grammar checkers, and automatic subtitles on Yup'ik videos. 


The UAF Kuskokwim Campus Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center in Bethel, Alaska.
Dean Swope / KYUK

It’s been more than a year since Bethel's Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center hosted a Saturday Market, and it’s going to be a bit longer until there's another one. On the advice of the Yukon-Kuskokwim Health Corporation, the campus has delayed the community event until May 15.

The UAF Kuskokwim Campus Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center in Bethel, Alaska.
Dean Swope / KYUK

Now that over half of Bethel’s eligible population has been vaccinated against COVID-19, the Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center will once again begin hosting community events. The first such event will be a community art show on Friday, April 2. Then, the cultural center will host its first Saturday Market in over a year on April 10. KYUK spoke with YPCC Program Manager Teddi Worrock about the details.

Won Ho Lee is originally from South Korea, but moved to Bethel in the early 90s. Feb. 25, 2020 in Bethel, Alaska.
Katie Basile / KYUK

Bethel has the highest percentage of Koreans among all of the cities in Alaska. Since many of them work in the restaurant or taxi industries, they have been hit especially hard by the pandemic. This is a story about why and how such a large population of Koreans formed in Bethel. Most of the interviews were conducted in Korean and translated into English.