Anchorage Press Staff

The readers choose the BEST OF ANCHORAGE.


Best Chiropractor: Whole Family Chiropractic

600 E. 36th Ave.


Established in 2011, Whole Family Chiropractic is a relatively new practice with shiny mid-town offices, young, active chiropractors, and an appreciative clientele. Clients appreciate Drs. Ryan and Jessica Dachowski’s personal touch as well as their expertise in dealing with things like prenatal care, migraines and allergies.

Props to second place winner, Todd Curzie, whose 19-year-old practice just moved downtown.

Second: Curzie Chiropractic, Third: Ireland Chiropractic

Best Yoga Studio: Anchorage Yoga

701 W. 36th Ave


There are a lot of different types of Yoga and Anchorage Yoga seems to offer them all.

Since most of us at the Press can’t reach past our knees, it would probably be worth our staff taking one of their intro classes. But, Yoga practicioners are all so mellow and well adjusted we probably wouldn’t fit it. Begging the question, does yoga just attract mellow, well adjusted people, or does it create them? If it’s the latter, then perhaps there’s hope for our high-strung, neurotic staff.

Second: Dharam Yoga, Third: Spirit Path Yoga

Best Gym/Health Club: Alaska Club

5201 E. Tudor Rd.


Numerous locations and great facilities make Alaska Club the dominant player in this industry. But the chain’s not resting on its laurels. Alaska Club keeps its locations clean and up-to-date and works hard to ensure that members of all levels are welcome.

Second: Planet Fitness, Third: Body Renew

Best Medical Clinic: Medical Park Family Care

2211 E. Northern Lights Blvd.


A new arrival to Anchorage put up a Facebook request recently asking for a reference to a good local doctor. Echoing our Press Picks results, the vast majority of recommendations were for physicians at Medical Park Family Care. Their office is a squat two-story brick building rather than the new glass and steel wonders in the UMed district. Why so popular, then? The people of course. Medical Park Family Care feels like a throw-back to a time when you developed a personal relationship with your doctor that lasted for years, and generations. Special shout out to Dr. Lord!

Second: Primary Care Associates, Third: Avante Medical Center

Best Day Spa: Allure Day Spa

142 W. 5th Ave.


The race in this category was for second and thirrd place, Allure took first by a mile. A clean, comfortable upscale setting, professional staff and great services make this downtown oasis a reader favorite. We remember when that corner held a pawn shop; Anchorage is moving up in the world.

Second: Ice Spa, Third: Intuition Day Spa


Best Bakery: Fire Island Rustic Bakery

1343 G St.


Press readers love Fire Island’s sweet potato/sage croissants, their heavenly ciabatta, and decadent macaroons, and voted accordingly with the five-year-old bakery handily winning this category. Owned by Alaska’s former Director of State Parks, Jerry Lewanski and his wife, Janis Fleischman, this South Addition hole in the wall is regularly packed with loyal customers.

Second: Great Harvest Bread Co., Third: Charlie’s Bakery

Best Burger: Tommy’s Burger Stop

1109 W. 29th Pl.


Sure, you can tell yourself you’re going to Tommy’s for one of its fine salads, but unless you have tremendous willpower you’ll likely be tempted by one of Tommy’s 11 different burgers and walk out feeling so blissfully satiated it may be a few hours before the guilt digests. Located in the heart of Spenard, Tommy’s is a favorite of Press readers, earning more than twice as many votes as the nearest contender.

Second: Arctic Roadrunner, Third: Long Branch Saloon

Best Diner: Kriner’s Diner

2409 C St.


Ah, Kriner’s. Can you get any more American? Good food, friendly staff, gigantic portions, and none of that French stuff. Think American fries, American toast, American dip. Take that, frogs.

Second: City Diner, Thursday: Leroy’s Family Restaurant

Best Sandwich: Brown Bag Sandwich Co.

400 D St.


Our hipster readers dig this little  shop on D Street where you can get a PBR with your sandwich. Well, unless you’re gluten free. Favorites include Wilbur’s Fate, which has Black Forest ham and bacon. Sometimes they will even deliver!

Second: Sarah’s Sandwich Shop, Third: Middle Way Café

Best BBQ: Turnagain Arm Pit BBQ

3637 Old Seward Hwy/ Mile103.5 Seward Hwy


Have a hankering for fried okra or deep fried pickles? This is the place you need to hit up, and while you’re there you can clog your arteries with Southern goodness like brisket, ribs and smoked chicken. But pork is really the way to go, like the 1/3 pound Boar Tide, a pulled pork and bacon creation that is to die for.

Second: Smokehouse BBQ, Third: AJ’s BBQ

Best Cheap Eats (Less than $15): Taco King



After a night of excess nothing quite soothes the soul better than their pozole, a pork and hominy soup you can spice up to suit your hangover. This local chain thrives on late hours and quick delivery, as well as keeping the menu simple and prices accessible.  They also have the best tongue in Anchorage.

Second: Bear Tooth, Third: (Tie) Brown Bag Sandwich Co., Middle Way Café

Best Restaurant for a First Date: Simon and Seafort’s

420 L Street


Simon’s beat Bear Tooth by the slimmest of margins. Apparently nothin’ says lovin’ like bacon-wrapped meatloaf, unless it’s the seafood étouffée. Order your date a series of mojitos and marvel at the mudflats outside your window. Ah, romance.

Second: Bear Tooth Grill, Third: Spenard Roadhouse

Best Fine Dining: Simon and Seafort’s

420 L Street


How do Press readers love thee, Simon’s? Let us count the ways: Thine pan-seared halibut cheeks. Thine Norton Sound Alaskan King Crab Legs. Thine Grilled Teriyaki Tenderloins. And the best damn crab and artichoke dip in the world.

Second: Crow’s Nest, Third: Orso

Best New Restaurant: Rustic Goat

12800 Turnagain St.


Now that the parking issues are resolved, complaints about the trendy new Rustic Goat in Turnagain are hard to find. Foodies love their eclectic menu and the ambiance feels more like Seattle than Anchorage. Using repurposed wood from a Kenai cannery was a genius move.

Second: Fat Ptarmigan, Third: Texas Roadhouse

Best Food Wagon/Street Vendor: M.A.’s Gourmet Dogs

605 W. 4th Ave.

With seven types of big, juicy wieners, M.A.’s is the dominant force among downtown Anchorage’s street vendors. Every year, the savory smell of sizzling sausage officially means spring has returned. M.A. has been dealing dogs for two decades. If you haven’t sampled his work, put it on your calendar for April.

Second: Kastle’s Creations, Third: Benny’s Food Wagon

Best Deli: Sara’s Sandwich Shop

5841 Arctic Blvd./ 2709 Boniface Pkwy.

562-1344/ 337-0153

Sara’s has been putting meat and bread together since the mid-‘80s. Choose from 30 specialty sandwiches or build your own, Subway-style, except unlike fast-food chains, Sara’s uses fresh sub rolls baked right here in Anchorage.

Second: Peppercini’s Deli, Third: Brown Bag Sandwich Co.

Best Vegetarian Restaurant: Organic Oasis

2610 Spenard Rd.


The modest Spenard restaurant has been the center of Anchorage’s organic universe since it first opened its doors on Earth Day in 1999. Half their menu is organic—right down to the beer and wine—which is no small feat in Alaska.

Second: Yak and Yeti, Third: Middle Way Café

Best Brew Pub: Moose’s Tooth

3300 Old Seward Hwy.


This place is always packed, but Press readers know that signature, brewed-on-premises pints of Beer Tooth Ale, Fairweather IPA and/or Pipeline Stout paired with fantastic gourmet pizzas like Spicy Thai Chicken, Santa’s Little Helper and the Avalanche are well worth enduring the long lines.

Second: Midnight Sun Brewing Company, Third: Glacier Brewhouse

Best Pizza Joint: Moose’s Tooth

3300 Old Seward Hwy.


No surprise here. See above.

Second: Uncle Joe’s, Third: Bear Tooth

Best Local Chef: Rob Kinneen

Fork Catering on Facebook


Rob Kinneen’s last meal as chef at Crush was served to celebrity French chef Jacques Pepin, not a bad send off for Kinneen, who is a wizard with charcuterie and indigenous ingredients. Look for him and partner Delicious Dave catering events large and small around town this winter.

Second: Al Levinsohn/ Kincaid Grill, Third: Guy Conley/ Fat Ptarmigan

Best Steak House: Club Paris

417 W. 5th Ave.


Proudly housed in a former funeral parlor, Club Paris has been serving fork-tender steaks in the same spot since the late ‘50s. The dark, cavernous dining area is the perfect spot to sip a stiff martini and contemplate the bloody goodness of dead cow.

Second: Sullivan’s Steakhouse, Third: Double Musky Inn

Best Breakfast: Snow City Café

1034 W. 4th Ave.


Next year we’re renaming this category “Best Breakfast that’s not Snow City,” because it’s never close. Long lines can be avoided by making a reservation. Try the Kodiak benedict: poached eggs, Alaska king crab cakes, and homemade hollandaise.

Second: Gwennie’s Old Alaska Restaurant, Third: Jackie’s Place

Best Chinese: Panda Chinese Restaurant

605 E. Northern Lights Blvd.


Panda’s affordable and consistent American Chinese food hit our reader’s sweet and sour spot for a narrow wing over Charlie’s Bakery, which features authentic Chinese and fabulous birthday cakes.

Second: Charlie’s Bakery, Third: Sweet Pink Pepper

Best Italian: Sorrento’s Restaurant

10 E. Fireweed Ln.


For 40 years Sorrento’s has been serving up Italian classics including pasta, steak, seafood, veal and pizzas. The service is friendly and they recently added gluten free pasta as an option. Don’t let the tired exterior keep you away.

Second: Romano’s, Third: Little Italy

Best Thai: Thai Kitchen

3405 E. Tudor Rd.


The quality of Thai Kitchen’s dishes has earned it an army of loyal customers who love the casual atmosphere and excellent cuisine at this family-run business. The spicy duck is unrivaled and the lunch specials are very affordable.

Second: Thai Orchid, Third: Lahn Pad Thai

Best Seafood: Simon and Seafort’s

420 L Street


Serving up fresh fish whenever possible, and with a view of from whence your meal came, Simon’s is a reader favorite for seafood as well as romance. Look for specials like a chilled crab cocktail and fresh oysters. Open for lunch and Sunday brunch if you’re craving fish in the mid-day hours.

Second: Glacier Brewhouse, Third: Sea Galley (Et tu, Press readers?)

Best Vietnamese: Ray’s Place

2412 Spenard Rd.


The extremely personable owners make Ray’s feel like you’re always dining with friends. Readers especially love their giant bowls of pho, not to mention their salads and inventive dishes like halibut with tamarind. But would it kill them to open on Saturdays?

Second: Pho Vietnam, Third: Pho Lena

Best Japanese: Dish Sushi Bar & Japanese Restaurant

639 W. International Airport Rd.


“Everybody come to the Dish, there never was a spot that was quite like this. The Dish, the Dish, the Dish, the Dish. The place where women want to be taken…” Judging by Dish’s advertising, sashimi isn’t the only fresh meat at the home of Alaska’s first fusion sake bar.

Second: Sushi & Sushi, Third: Ronnie 2

Best Mexican: Taco King



See “Best Cheap Eats” And remember, “Taco King delieeeeevers.”

Second: Gallo’s, Third: Serrano’s

Best “Other” Ethnic: Yak & Yeti Himalayan Restaurant

3301 Spenard Rd.


Although this popular Spenard eatery features neither yak nor yeti on its extensive menu of dishes from Nepal, India and Tibet, Press readers celebrated their favorite ethnic spot, which offers ample options for vegetarians as well as carnivores.

Second: Bombay Deluxe, Third: Hula Hands

Best Late Night Dining: Leroy’s Family Restaurant

2420 C St.


Leroy’s is what it is, and servers and cooks maintain that scrappy attitude. The booths and tables are, well, nostalgic, and the food is quick and perfect for sobering up at 4 a.m. Nothing is fancy, unpredictable or remarkable, and you gotta love that continuity.

Second: Village Inn, Third: Taco Bell

Best Korean: V.I.P. Korean

555 West Northern Lights Blvd.


V.I.P. offers traditional Korean fare along with a few Chinese options. The dishes are large, reasonably priced and served with a half dozen or more banchan (traditional Korean sides). It's a great place for newbies to give Korean dining a try.

Second: Tofu House Restaurant, Third: Korean Gardens

Best Coffee Shop: Kaladi Brothers Coffee



Press readers didn’t specify which of the dozen Anchorage-area Kaladi locations they most prefer for caffeinated conversation, fair trade lattes and free wireless. But they once again drove the red goat to the top of certified-organic, air-roasted bean mountain.

Second: Steam Dot, Third: Side Street

Best Deck/Patio: Snow Goose

717 W. 3rd Ave.


True or false: The name of Mount Susitna, a.k.a. Sleeping Lady is derived from a Dena’ina legend. Answer: False. True or false: A pitcher of beer and the view of Mount Susitna from the Snow Goose deck on a blue-sky day is as good as it gets. Answer: True.

Second: Peanut Farm, Third: Bernie’s


Best Art Gallery: Katie Sevigny Studio

608 W. 4th Ave. #101


Sevigny Studio is a narrow little place crammed with all kinds of strange and wonderful art and art objects. First Fridays in the gallery are crowded, but it's often worth the struggle. Owner Kate Sevingy has not only an excellent eye, but also books high-quality local musicians to provide her event soundtracks. Check the schedule at katiesevignystudio.com.

Second: Artique Limited , Third: International Gallery of Contemporary Art

Best Public Art: "Habitat" by Antony Gormley, Anchorage Museum

625 C St.

First of all, we’re sorry, but that “whaling wall” on the side of J.C. Penny’s needs to go. It’s been 20 years. Enough already. Bansky, can you help us out here? But yes, Press readers, the ice fountain at the library is totally cool, and we respect your choice of “Habitat” as this year’s winner for public art. Some of our other favorites: The red fish on C Street, the bronze bear sculpture at the Boney Courthouse, the raven wall on Tudor Rd., and the “52 Faces of Mt. View,” just for starters.

Second: "Alaska's Marine Life" by Wyland, J.C. Penny’s, Third: Carl Nesjar’s ice fountain at the Z.J. Loussac Public Library

Best First Friday Venue: Sub Zero Bistro & Micro Lounge

612 F St.


Here’s what Press writers and editors are looking for in a First Friday venue: Crowded but not too crowded, kickass DJ, a curator willing to take risks, tasty (and free) food, and the best damn Moscow Mule in Anchorage, served in a proper mug. Our readers agree with us that Sub Zero delivers on all counts.

Second: Sevigny Studio, Third: Tie: Crush Wine Bistro/International Galley of Contemporary Art

Best Local Theater Company: Cyrano’s Theater Company

413 D St.


For nearly 20 years Cyrano’s Theatre Company has been producing plays in downtown Anchorage. And although talented actors, directors and crew have a lot to do with the Theatre’s success and longevity, the driving force between this scrappy little playhouse is

Sandy Harper, who carries on Jerry Harper’s legacy with grace and aplomb. (“Beer Tooth” was voted second, but has been disqualified.)

Second: TBA Theatre, Inc.., Third: Anchorage Community Theater

Best Local Actor: Shane Mitchell

As a performer, Shane is the veteran of over 200 productions. He received Best Actor Awards at both The University of Alaska Anchorage and Wichita State University, where he got his masters in theater communication. He is the recipient of two Patricia Neal Acting Awards, and is director of our readers’ second favorite theater company, TBA Theatre, Inc.

Second: Anthony Loundes, Third: Regina Catherine MacDonald

Best Local Artist: Katie Sevigny


Katie’s work is about bold color and whimsy, from octopi to otters. She credits her three children with inspiration for fun and cheerful Alaskan art, and actually owns two galleries, one in Anchorage and the other in Skagway.

Second: Smudge Monkey, Third: Ted Kim

Best Book Store: Title Wave

1360 W. Northern Lights Blvd.


Title Wave dominated this category by a two-to-one margin in this, sadly, two horse race. With a great selection of used books, their trade-in program and easy access to Kaladi Brothers, Yak and Yeti and REI, it’s no wonder Press readers love spending their time browsing at Title Wave. It is one of the biggest used bookstores in the country and it has grown up right along with Anchorage since its 1991 birth.

Second: Barnes & Noble

Best Musical Instrument Store: Mammoth Music

500 E. 5th Ave.


Good to see Press neighbor and long time Anchorage business Mammoth Music win this category. And this isn’t just a sentimental win. With a great selection of higher range instruments, knowledgeable staff and reasonable prices, Mammoth deserves to win. Looking for a high end Gibson and want to try it out before you commit? Stop by Mammoth and actually handle what you are purchasing. Their selection rivals some of the better music stores in the Lower 48 and it feels good to support locals.

Second: Music Man, Third: Horn Doctor


Best Thrift Store: Value Village

5437 E. Northern Lights/501 East Dimond Blvd.


When Press readers are looking to pop some tags, with only 20 dollars in their pocket, their favorite thrift store in which to avoid getting swindled and pimped is either of Value Village’s two well-stocked Anchorage locations.

Second: Bishop’s Attic, Third: Salvation Army

Best Tattoo Parlor: Rebirth Tattoo

1441 West Northern Lights Blvd.


Online reviews of Rebirth, most of which give five stars, tell a consistent story: Fair prices, polite staff, and talented artists. One Google + reviewer praised owner Vinnie Almanza: "Gave Vinnie a rough sketch of what I wanted, and turned it into my perfect first tattoo."

Second: Body Piercing Unlimited, Third: The Hole Look

Best Piercing Salon: The Hole Look

570 East Benson Blvd. #17


The Hole Look is a small operation (just three piercers on staff, Blake Thomas, Atom Thomas, and Taryl Cordova) that gives beautiful, modern results. Piercings generally run $45- $90, although it really depends on what you want, and where you want it. Wink.

Second: Body Piercing Unlimited, Third: Natural Canvas

Best Independent Boutique: Flawless Boutique (aka Flawless Gemstone Apparel)

337 West 5th Ave #107


Flawless Boutique specializes in "custom Swarovski® rhinestone embellished," club wear, "sexy casual dresses" and some couture gowns and cocktail dresses from "exclusive lines such as MacDuggal, Jovani and Igigi," according to the Anchorage store's Facebook page. And they have hot pink wallpaper, which is pretty damn banging.

Second: Bottom’s Boutique, Third: Blush Boutique

Best Vintage Clothing: Tie for first: Second Run & Bailiwick

Second Run: 720 D St./277-6119

Bailiwick: 245 West 5th Ave./727-9015

It's a tie, folks! Old school, been around the block-ers Second Run share the title this year with newcomer, youth/hipster specialists Bailiwick. This vote caught us by surprise. It's no easy feat to challenge Second Run, so Bailiwick must be doing something right.

Second: Value Village, Third: The Pack Rat Antiques

Best People Watching: Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport

5000 West International Airport Rd.


Tearful partings. Joyful reunions. Before 9/11, all the fantastic human theater at airports was at the departure and arrival gates. Now it’s concentrated on the ticket counter side of security, making it all the easier to pay homage to Uncle Ted by playing voyeur.

Second: Downtown Anchorage, Third: The Alaska State Fair

Best Coffee Shop: Kaladi Brothers Coffee



Press readers didn’t specify which of the dozen Anchorage-area Kaladi locations they most prefer for caffeinated conversation, fair trade lattes and free wireless. But they once again drove the red goat to the top of certified-organic, air-roasted bean mountain.

Second: Steam Dot, Third: Side Street

Best Teacher: TIE: Chuck Strauss/ David Block/ Mr. Brown at Dimond/ Scott Campbell

A four-way tie of awesome educators, but the best online teacher profile goes to Dimond science teacher Scott Campbell: “He seriously believes that he can single handedly ward off winter by wearing flip-flops to school everyday.”

Hippest Neighborhood: Spenard

What was once the raunchiest part of town has seen many changes since the pipeline days, when hookers roamed the streets and gunfire punctuated the night. Take a look at some of the businesses Press readers have selected as their favorites and you’ll find many Spenard addresses. Organic Oasis, Ray’s Place, Bear Tooth, Title Wave, and Chilkoot Charlie’s are all found in Spenard.

Second: Downtown, Third: Fairview

Best Bank/Credit Union: Alaska USA


Thank you, readers, for picking a friendly local credit union as your favorite place to bank. Founded in 1948, Alaska USA has more than 500,000 members and over $5.6 billion in assets. Plus, most of its 68 branches are open seven days a week.

Second: Credit Union 1, Third: Denali Federal Credit Union

Best Doggie Day Care: Dog Tired

310 E. Fireweed Ln.


Dogs can become angry and anxious when left home alone, and take their loneliness out on furniture, walls and carpet. Better to keep them occupied at one of several canine day care centers around town, Dog Tired being our readers’ top choice. With six different classrooms, pool time in the summer, and a daily report card on your pet’s behavior, it’s no wonder Dog Tired is top dog.

Second: Hound Lounge, Third: Arctic Tails

Best Florist: Bagoy’s

8250 Homer Dr./ 341 E. Benson Blvd.

522-1922/ 278-1922

Ninety-two years after Bagoy’s created their first bouquet, Press readers still trust their most important life occasions to the folks at Bagoy’s. This winning, local florist donates two dollars of each arrangement purchased online to the non-profit of the buyer’s choice through their Helping Hands program. Does Costco do that for you?

Second: Mylord’s Floral, Third: Uptown Blossoms

Best Dog Park: University Lake Park

Although it can be muddy after a rain, and the lake is full of ferocious beavers eager to munch on doggie flesh, University Lake is a pooch paradise with plenty of sticks to be gnawed, responsible pet owners armed with plastic bags, and abundant opportunities for inter-breed butt sniffing.

Second: Conner’s Bog, Third: Arctic and Benson Park

Best Republican: Lisa Murkowski

Many who initially cried nepotism when Sen. Frank Murkowski, appointed his daughter to take his seat when he became governor now have reason to celebrate our Senator’s dozen years in Washington. And thankfully, Lisa gave us a very important spelling lesson in 2010.

Second: Dan Sullivan (no, the other one), Third: Bill Walker

Best Democrat: Mark Begich

Three fun facts about Mark Begich: 1) When voters elected him in 2003, he became first mayor of Anchorage born in Anchorage. 2) He went to kindergarten in a log cabin. 3) George Sullivan gave him his start in politics circa 1980 by appointing him to the city’s Youth Advisory Commission.

Second: Les Gara, Third: Hollis French

Best Grocery Store: Fred Meyer

Fred Meyer, Press readers? Seriously? Fred Meyer didn’t even begin as locally owned then sell out, like our second place finisher. Sure, soon enough we’ll all be required by law to buy groceries from Amazon delivered to our doorstep by armored drones but still—Freddy’s?

Second: Carrs, Third: New Sagaya’s


Best Flying Service: Rust’s Flying Service

4525 Enstrom Circle


A battered sign above the Talkeetna Roadhouse bar once warned “Fly for an Hour or Hike for a Week.” That maxim holds true today. Founded in 1963, using a single plane to take hunters and fisherman out to remote spots, Rust’s Flying Service is now the dominant player in the industry, offering flight seeing, hunting and fishing flights from their base on Lake Hood.

Second: Alaska Airlines, Third: K2 Aviation

Best Wildlife Cruise: Kenai Fjords Tours


Sending Outside guests on a wildlife cruise is de rigueur for Anchorage tourist season hosts. The majority of Press readers entrust their friends and family to Kenai Fjords Tours for their knowledgeable captains, wide range of itineraries, and on-board National Park Service Rangers and interpretive guides.

Second: Major Marine Tours, Third: Phillips Cruises & Tours

Best Fishing Service: Saltwater Safari Company

1210 4th Ave, Seward


When they opened in 1991, Saltwater Safari Company brought a new energy to the fishing charter business. With their gleaming, fast, well-equipped boats and enthusiastic crews, the company pushed the range of day trips out of Seward to the great fishing grounds around Montague and Middleton Islands. Twenty years later, they’re the preeminent charter operator in Seward and have added a dockside lodge to their operation.

Second: Heavenly Sights, Third: Mahay’s Jet Boat Adventures

Best Bike Shop: The Bicycle Shop

1035 W. Northern Lights Blvd


An institution on Northern Lights since 1974 (where they moved in their tenth year of business), what makes The Bicycle Shop stand out, and got them to their 50th anniversary, is fantastic service. Their repair department takes on lost causes as a challenge, and their retail department stocks everything from BMX to recumbents to the trendy, new fatbikes in beginner to expert.

Second: Paramount Cycles, Third: The Trek Shop

Best Outdoor Shop: REI

1200 W Northern Lights Blvd, Anchorage, AK 99503

(907) 272-4565

While hard-core local climbers and backcountry skiers patronize AMH, REI is the biggest and best-known playground for Anchorage’s outdoor enthusiasts and urban wannabees. Nice showing this year by new-kid-on-the-block, Cabela’s.

Second: Cabela’s, Third: AMH and Mt. View Sports (tie)

Best Place to See a Moose: Kincaid Park

9401 Raspberry Rd.


“My freezer” voters get points for being clever, but Kincaid topped the list for viewing Alaska’s favorite gangly ungulate. “Any time of the year you may find moose among the thick foliage [in Kincaid],” a Fish and Game website states. “Scan the vertical and lighter landscape of trees for the darker and rounded shapes of moose.” Early morning and evening are prime times.

Second: Coastal Trail, Third: Hillside

Best Ice Fishing: Jewel Lake

When urbanites are ready to dust off their augers and hit the ice, Jewel Lake is Anchorage’s top choice for frozen fishing. The lake even hosts the Jewel Lake Ice Fishing Jamboree with pre-drilled holes in February, shortly after Fish and Game stocks it with thousands of salmon.

Second: Cheney Lake, Third: Big Lake

Best Place to Process Your Meat: Indian Valley Meats

200 Huot Cir., Indian


The coppery odor of blood and cooling flesh is indicative of how popular Indian Valley is for those who care about having their meat handled properly. There’s also a bed and breakfast on the grounds, which guests share with (live) reindeer, pygmy goats and exotic birds.

Second: Alaska Sausage, Third: Mike’s

Best Day Hike That is not Flattop: Bird Ridge

With 3,400 feet of elevation gain in just 2.5 miles uphill, Bird Ridge is no hike for the weak. This classic quad-buster is one of the first trails to melt off in spring. It starts off as a steep ascent through evergreens to timberline, and then follows a ridgeline with spectacular views to Bird Ridge Point at 3,505 feet.

Second: McHugh Creek, Third: Hatchers Pass

Best Place for a Bear Scare: McHugh Creek Day Use Area

To Press readers who voted for The Raven in this category: hah, good one. But seriously, the McHugh Creek day use area and the trails that extend from it are widely known for close encounters of the Ursus arctos kind. Remember: it’s better to have bear spray and not need it, than to need it and not have it. Ditto for a shotgun.

Second: Russian River, Third: Hillside

Best Gun Store: Cabela’s

155 W. 104th Ave.


Though it just opened in April, Cabela’s usurped this throne from local stalwart Great Northern Guns, owing in large part to the Anchorage installation of this national mega-retailer’s signature green-carpeted Gun Library, “the premier destination for discriminating sportsman and firearm enthusiasts in search of the finest new and used firearms, including classic, antique and collectible firearms.”

Second: Great Northern Guns, Third: Sportsman Warehouse

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