Bright, shiny objects: State fair, apology demand, pumpkin spice


Fair wear at the Alaska State Fair on Saturday.
For the win: This guy took the prize for fair wear at the Alaska State Fair in Palmer on Saturday.


Although the Tanana Valley Fair was browbeat into apologizing to a pair of Native/black rappers for cutting their performance short due to inappropriate lyrics, the apology isn’t good enough. This is the kerfuffle that some just won’t let die.

Three Alaska Native organizations say they want to see a more sincere show of remorse or they won’t be able to support the fair in the future.

Fairbanks rappers Bishop Slice and Starbuks had their mics cut off and were kicked out of the fair by Fair Manager Joyce Whitehorn. That caused a social media meltdown for the fair, which continued until the board issued an apology. And then it continued some more.

“The members of your board stood behind this behavior and your manager, further fostering an atmosphere of poor management and leadership,” the Native organizations wrote in response to the apology. “The public statement that you issued was not only vague in nature, but it solidified your inability to take responsibility for the aforementioned actions.”

The letter was signed by the Tanana Chiefs Conference, Fairbanks Native Association and Denakkanaaga. The groups went on to declare that the fair condones systemic racism. That supports the allegations of Starbuks, who said to Whitehorn shortly after the incident began, “What I’m starting to personally think the way you approached this, the stage was just a little too dark for you.”

For those wanting to continue their support of the Tanana Fair, they’ll have their fall festival on Oct. 1. There will be no rappers and you can get your pumpkins.


Speaking of pumpkins and Starbucks with a “c”, three-day weekends are the best, but a reason to look forward to Tuesday is that Starbucks will roll out not only the PLS (pumpkin spice latte), which is our favorite caffeine-and-carb loading beverage, but there’s a new one:  Chile Mocha.

The CM has its official launch Tuesday, but if you know what to order you can get it today. The Chile Mocha has a sprinkle of cayenne, ancho chile, paprika, cinnamon, sea salt, and a little sugar. Sweet, spicy, a bit Mexican, this is definitely going to give the PSL a run for its money. And ours.


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