“We came,” says Dave over the loudspeaker, “we ran, we blocked Tudor Road.”

The organizers of the Heart Run have always been remarkably obliging about drumming up a nice day for the event but this year they’ve outdone themselves: a clear sky and a record high of 62 degrees. We haven’t really had a winter this year and everyone can’t wait to get outdoors. The Heart Run is our first excuse to do so en masse, and massing are us, it is nonstop people from Lake Otis to Alumni Drive. Next to the administration building the Anchorage Scottish Pipe Band, with six sets of bagpipes, two drums and eight kilts, are skirling away at “Bonnie Lassie.” A group of red-shirted girls poses near the Pile O’ Junk sculpture next to the UAA arts building. “They’re the Lady Patriots Soccer Club,” says Chris Kennedy, proud parent of Lady Patriot Esther, 12. “This is the before photo. If they can get them lined up.”

Dana Stabenow. Alaska Traveler (Kindle Locations 2321-2327). Gere Donovan Press.

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Author and founder of Storyknife.org.

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