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New KPU phone book distributed

KETCHIKAN (KDN) — The new Ketchikan Public Utilities telephone book is being distributed this month.

The 2019-2020 edition lists numbers and other information for about 30 Southeast communities, from Metlakatla to Yakutat.

The cover features an orange and blue sunset with a Native canoe at Thomas Basin in the foreground. The photograph is by Mike Gates, an annual contributor to KPU’s phone book photo contest. Melissa Miller of the Ketchikan Daily News designed the cover.

Other photographs in the book are by photographers Peaches Wallin, Bill Meck, Carol Rojas, Dawn Hink, Steve Speights, Jeff Owings, Jim Lewis, Keith Jewett, Cindy Batzer, Tim Kistner and Brant Olson.

Gates has multiple photos in the phone book.

The book is delivered to all residences and businesses in the community, according to Kim Simpson, sales and marketing manager for KPU. Some businesses and organizations receive multiple copies.

The phone book is paid for through its yellow pages advertising, Simpson said. A directory company sells the ads, using information provided by KPU, subtracts its costs, and returns any balance to the city, she said.

A new phone book project is started each February, she added, and usually is completed at the end of May.

The book remains popular with locals and visitors alike, according to Simpson.

“There’s one lady who visits Ketchikan every year on a cruise ship,” Simpson said. “She comes in every year to get one. … I think it’s a collector item for her.”

Locals tend to like the maps in the book; they like the space to write numbers in the book, and they enjoy the pictures, she said.

KPU has copies of old phone books dating back to the 50s. One from that decade is a hardbound volume. It contains not only phone numbers, but where KPU customers live, who they are married to and where they work.

“Those were the days of party lines,” Simpson noted.

The latest edition of the annual phone book has 23 pages of Ketchikan telephone numbers listed. This number compares to 24 in the previous copy.

In addition to phone numbers, the book is filled with information ranging from regularly scheduled public meetings throughout the year to energy awareness, and other services provided by KPU — internet and television.

It also includes street maps and a street guide, and lists major landmarks, moorages, parks and geographic features.

The U.S. time zones and Alaska zip codes are available through the phone book, as are 2019 and 2020 calendars.

It also promotes its online directory.