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The 2016 Race to Alaska came to a close at 6:45 p.m. Friday when Heather Drugge and Dan Campbell, the two-person crew of the last boat still officially on the 750-mile route from Port Townsend, Washington, to Ketchikan, called it quits in Prince Rupert, British Columbia.

Ketchikan isn't Tijuana. And it doesn't want to be. Tourists come to Ketchikan to see and experience the community. Here, businesses allow potential customers to find us through word of mouth, advertising and being intrigued by signage and window displays. We don't hawk or bark — or we shouldn't.

Lloyd Kevin Jackson, 49, died July 19, 2016, in Ketchikan.
Thomas Frank Guthrie Jr., 89, of Metlakatla died on July 20, 2016 in Ketchikan.
Excellent candidates

Ketchikan has three excellent candidates to fill the vacancy on the City Council.

Voters elected Sam Bergeron to the seat, but he resigned this past fall as a result of out-of-town employment. The Council appointed Russell Wodehouse, who served about a week before resigning.

The potential new members are longtime Ketchikan residents, all of whom have volunteered and served on local public bodies in the past.

Former Councilman Dick Coose ran for re-election last fall, but was eased out in a three-way race for two seats. Coose had served two terms on the Council and one on the Assembly. Retired from the Forest Service, he has been active in timber-related and other economic development issues. He is the one possible appointee who has stood for election and received the support of voters.

Mickey Robbins, a retired Alaska Department of Transportation employee, has served on the city's Ports and Harbors Commission. Through commission participation, Robbins has demonstrated an interest in public service and the well-being of the community, in particular the waterfront and related industry.

Jacquie Meck owns The Local Paper and is a member of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough Planning and Zoning Commission, which deals with economic development and land-use issues. She also is active in Rotary 2000 and similar organizations, and is a proven quantity.

All three of the candidates raised families in Ketchikan and are active in their grandchildren's lives in addition to being respected in their professions and appreciated for their community service.

The Council will be making its selection at a Jan. 9 meeting.

The Council will be well served by any of the three. It also will be needing candidates later this year for the municipal election, and the two who aren't chosen are encouraged to place their names on the ballot.

This is the caliber of candidate that city voters appreciate.