Friday, May 29, 2009

2 Days in Sitka

I took a trip to Sitka for 2 days this week for work. I was able to spend some time seeing the sights. Because there are only 14 miles of road in the entire island I was able to give myself a walking tour of the island and see almost everything that doesn't charge admission. Here are some pictures I took from my walks around town and through the national park inside the city limits of Sitka.

Here is a statue of an Alaska pioneer in front of the Pioneer House

A view of Sitka from atop Castle Hill, which not only used to be the location of a Russian castle/fort, but was also where Russia formally ceded Alaska to American control.

St. Michael's Cathedral

A statue of Alexander Baranov, the first governor of Russian Alaska.

A view of some of the smaller islands around Sitka. I sat on a bench and watched 3 bald eagles fly around in the sky.

And I saw a bunch of totem poles.

I also ate at a restaurant that I had read about in an airline magazine article about Sitka. It was the first and likely only time such a thing will happen as I seldom find myself in cities that are profiled in airline magazines.

While it was a fun trip, it would have been better if Adria and the kids were able to come along. It is also good to be home.

Monday, May 25, 2009

The World Beard and Mustache Championships: The Main Event

I don't even know where to start. The World Beard and Mustache Championships was a lot of fun and was quite the spectacle as one might imagine. We were even able to meet some of the contestants, some of whom we remembered from the beard parade. Above is a picture of us and Jack Passion, who is now the 2-time defending world champion in the Natural Full Beard category. It was kind of weird meeting him not only as I had imagined that he was taller, but also because at 25 he is much younger than most of the competitors and younger than both Adria and I.

Here is Adria with Ted Sedman who is the 4-time defending champion in the Fu Manchu category. You can here him talking about his Fu Manchu in this video from the 2003 World Championships.

Here we are with some more competitors. The guy on the left is Jeremy Felton, who took first place in the Alaskan Whaler category. Perhaps because it was a new category, or perhaps because the championships were held in Alaska, the top 3 finishers in this category were all Alaskans.

Here is Adria with a group of German contestants. She is standing between the 2nd and 3rd place finishers in the Full Beard Freestyle category. The one on the left got 1st in the Dali Mustache category.

Thomas and Isaiah both seemed to like the contest, although Thomas spent most of his time pushing the stroller back and forth

We also saw the man who told us "Beards, not bombs" at the parade. We got confirmation that his beard was wire augmented.

Other notes:
  • The winner of the Garbaldi category claimed to have been working on his since since merely October
  • The third place finisher in the Imperial Mustache category said that when he decided to compete he looked at some pictures of the beard winners and realized that we couldn't match up with that, so he grew a mustache instead.
  • The competition was held on the third floor of a downtown convention center. At roughly the same time on the first floor of the convention center, Cedric The Entertainer had a show. I was walking behind the 2nd place finisher in the Freestyle Mustache category when he walked past a couple on their way to see Cedric. Their reaction to his mustache was priceless.
  • Jack Passion being declared the natural full beard champion was met with a thunderous roar from the crowd. After the roar subsided, Jack announced that it was his beard's sixth birthday and the crowd sang "Happy Birthday" to his beard, which is named affectionately "Big Red"

Other interesting Links about the Championship:

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Making Progress

When he isn't attending beard parades Isaiah has been honing some of his skills.

Friday, May 22, 2009

Beards On Parade

Almost 3 years ago I stumbled upon the website for the World Beard and Mustache Championships where I learned that the World Championships would be coming to Anchorage in 2009. Needless to say, I circled my calendar and waited. After many months of waiting the championships have arrived. As part of the festivities a Beard Parade through downtown was held. We had a fun time watching the parade.

Here are some pictures from the Beard Parade:

Here are some of the German competitors.

Some members of the Antwerp Beard and Mustache Club

Beard Team Australia

Beard Team Canada

Some members of Beard Team USA

This contestant is obviously going to compete in the Musketeer category

The man on the right is Jack Passion (I have no idea if this is his real name or just a stage name) the 2007 Full Beard Natural World Champion, which essentially makes his beard the best beard in the entire world. I was in awe of his beard.

Adria and I disagree if that his real beard is augmented by a coil (I say no, she says yes), but he did tell us "Beards, not bombs"

Members of the South Central Alaska Beard and Mustache Club

Me and the boys after the parade in front of a giant stuffed puffin.

Here is a video of the event from the local paper. Adria's favorite was the guy with the barbell.

A slideshow of all of our pictures from the event.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Isaiah Being Isaiah

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Nueve de Mayo

Life Cycle of a Pinata:


The Finished Product

Hanging From A Stick


Final Resting Place

Thanks to everyone who made our fiesta excelente. See you next mayo!



Ashley's Hot Air Balloon

Crowd Shot