Side-by-side pictures of an NYO competitor preparing for, then executing, a one-foot high kick inside the St. Michael school gym.

If you ask a Western Alaska school-aged child to name their favorite sport, the most common response will likely be “Native Youth Olympics,” or NYO. The games aren’t just a way for students to compete and develop athletic skills; they’re also a means for youth to connect to subsistence culture and learn to support each other.

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Three men sing on an Anchorage street holding Alaska-Native-style drums

On the streets of downtown Anchorage on Saturday was the usual throng of dog handlers, mushers, and race fans, there to see the annual Ceremonial Start of the Iditarod. New this year was the presence of a protest group from PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, which opposes the race.

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The Nome-Beltz cross-country team inside a Bering air plane, heading to Elim.

Twenty-two athletes represented the Bering Strait, Nome and Kotzebue school districts at the 1A/2A/3A State Championships in Anchorage on Saturday. Not only was it great competition, the Nome co-head coach says, the students also made “memories that they’re going to remember.”

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The Nome hospital at dusk, viewed from the front, with light streaming through its windows.

Recently, a series of inspirational messages — based on the incredible biographies of Western Alaskans — have graced KNOM’s airwaves. Thanks to you, our listeners have heard powerful stories of recovery: from addiction, despair, homelessness, isolation, and other problems endemic in the region.

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Robyn Woyte

In addition to our Nome headquarters, KNOM’s development and business office has opened a second branch in Anchorage. Our new office allows us to serve even more efficiently both our rural Alaskan listeners and the many Lower 48 supporters who make our mission possible.

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