Day Three: Planes and ulus

Monday, I had my first meetings of the week. My first meeting was with Kevin Tripp, the archivist at the Alaska Moving Image Preservation Association (AMIPA) located at the University of Alaska-Anchorage. The archive at AMIPA was very impressive–over 25,000 films, videos, and audio recordings, including the film from Alaska’s Constitutional Convention.  I got to see all of their transfer equipmenphoto-7t, which looked almost like a technology museum.

My next meeting was with Aaron Schott, the President and CEO of Doyon, Limited, one of the twelve Alaska Native regional corporations. I found out that Arkansas has the largest population of Doyon shareholders outside of the obvious (Alaska and the West Coast). The world really is small; two of his uncles live in Batesville, Arkansas, and work with Uncle Gary at Future Fuel!! How crazy is that?!

photo-6After my meetings concluded, Daddy and I spent about 30 minutes watching the seaplanes land and take off on Lake Hood, the world’s busiest seaplane port with over 82,000 planes that fly out of there annually. Our hotel is located right on the Lake, so since we checked in we’ve been hearing the planes come in, but haven’t been able to see them. I bet there were probably 25 planes that landed and took off in the 30 minutes we were watching. It was very cool! I would love to fly on one just for the experience.

We then went to the Alaska Heritage Aviation Museum and learned about the rich history of aviation in Alaska. They had lots of planes for you to see in the museum.

IMG_6075 IMG_6107 This bottom plane crashed in 1947 and wasn’t recovered until 1984. This plane is very similar to the one that my great-uncle Franklin Fehr crashed in during World War II and was never found.


After the air museum, we went to The Ulu Factory, where they make ulus and sell them in a gift shop.

DSCN0292Grandma invited us over to eat supper; she had fixed salmon soup. Let me say, I feel like I was very brave for eating it! She believes in eating all parts of the fish, so when you ate it you had to pick out the bones and fins. It was interesting for sure. Her friend Deborah was visiting from Hooper Bay, and told us many stories about Eskimo life. She told us how she really enjoys uqsuq or stinkheads. This is where they will dig a pit until they hit the permafrost, line the hole with grass then throw the fish heads in. Then they put more grass on top of the fish heads and cover it up with dirt. They let it stay buried for a couple of months, then dig it up and eat it. She said itphoto-5 keeps them warm during the winter months and makes their hearts race!


4 thoughts on “Day Three: Planes and ulus

    • I bought some ulus for souvenirs to give away. I bought one for myself when I was in Seattle a few years ago.

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