A couple sure signs that spring really is here:
1) Today I spent an hour of work time with about 15 co-workers cleaning up around the Daily News. We're nearing the end of the Citywide Cleanup in Anchorage, and Daily News employees always clean up the area around our building.
It's amazing how much trash accumulates during the winter months, and how quickly the orange trash bags gather alongside the roads in early May. I'd be afraid of what Anchorage would look like -- and ashamed to show it to visitors -- if community folks didn’t take time to do all this work.
2) This weekend is the first of the year for the Anchorage Market and Festival. It is a great place to shop, eat, watch entertainment and just enjoy. The market -- with more than 300 vendor booths -- is one of the largest open-air markets in the country.
The market is open from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays from this weekend through Sept. 7. Organizers say that 30,000 to 40,000 people visit the market each weekend. If you’re in town and looking for jewelry, art, crafts, ulu knives, fur, leather, sweatshirts, bike clothes and just about anything else, this is the place. There also are fresh vegetables. In fact, the market started in 1992 mostly as a place for shoppers to buy fresh Alaska produce.
And the food is great too. Food options include roasted corn, clam chowder, corn dogs, salmon quesadillas, funnel cakes, pizza, gyros, reindeer sausages, halibut and other goodies.
It's a great time. If you're here this weekend, enjoy. If you're coming up later this summer, be sure to put the market on your to-do list.