It’s a race at the heart of the culture of our region, a race that traverses the massive state we call home, and a race that inspires and captivates thousands of Alaskans each year. Last month, The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race — often called “The Last Great Race” — saw more than 70 sled dog teams run from Anchorage to KNOM’s hometown of Nome, and thanks to you, we covered the race for our listeners, just as we’ve done since its inception in 1973.
As many of our supporters and Static readers may know, the Iditarod is a 1,000-mile competition that runs through some of Alaska’s wildest and most scenic countryside, and it celebrates and helps keep alive the practice of mushing, or running sled dogs, a traditional form of both recreation and transportation going back many generations, especially within Alaska Native communities. (In the Alaska Native language of Inupiaq, as Nome deejay Marjorie Tahbone recently shared in her Wednesday morning show on KNOM, the word for musher is qimuqsiaġati, pronounced “kim-ook-see-ah-GAH-tea.”)
In 2016, our coverage involved KNOMers both past and present, since new news director Emily Schwing reported from the trail alongside KNOM news alumnus Zachariah Hughes. Thanks to the generous support of local sponsors, Emily, like Zach, was able to send back daily updates, round-the-clock, from many of the remote checkpoints along the Iditarod Trail, keeping KNOM’s listeners updated on their favorite mushers and hometown heroes.
With a race of a thousand miles, there are probably at least as many stories — and photos — to share, and you’ll find many of them in our extensive Iditarod coverage on this website. Thanks so much for helping us make our Iditarod coverage possible! It’s one of the most joyous and exciting moments of our broadcasting year.