Want to experience a little piece of rustic, old-timey Ketchikan? Head to the Main Street Gallery at 7 p.m. every second Friday of the month for a night of square dancing. Popular year-round (but especially in the summer), this is a great way to socialize like the pioneers did 100 years ago. Never square danced before? No worries. The regular dancers are a friendly, inclusive crew, ready to teach you how it’s done.
Ketchikan Arts & Humanities Council (KAAHC) is the powerhouse of Ketchikan’s arts community; if there’s an arts event in Ketchikan, this organization is on it! Located at the Main Street Gallery, KAAHC produces dozens of art events annually, such as summer’s Blueberry Arts Festival and February’s famous Wearable Arts Show.
Southeast Alaska is known for its Native carvings, especially of totems and masks. Sometimes it’s hard to put into words what’s so impressive about this artwork, but when you look at a mask carved by Norman Jackson, you can just feel the emotions embedded in one of his wonderfully carved red or yellow cedar mask.
Hear shrieks and squeals of excitement as kids wade around in tidepools with their buckets finding all manner of critters – eels, bullheads, snails, hermit crabs, sea urchins, sea anemones, starfish, blimmies (eeltype fish), small octopus, eelgrass, clams, mollusks, and kelps.
Millions of oysters get their start in Ketchikan each year, right at the OceansAlaska Mariculture Research and Training Facility, a modern new aquaculture endeavor located on George Inlet near Ketchikan. OceansAlaska is a non-profit venture dedicated to the promotion of shellfishing as an economic driver for Southeast Alaska. Growing oysters and large clams (called geoducks) is More...
Seeing what the glaciers left behind is as stunning as viewing the glaciers themselves. Imagine the force it took to carve U-shaped valleys with 3,000-foot sheer cliffs rising above the water (not to mention that they extend another 1000-feet below water!)
Master wood carvers produce historic rattles, posts, masks and totem poles. World-class weavers, practice an art form going back thousands of years. Using cedar bark and spruce tips, Native weavers made items essential to living in a rainforest: jackets and classic conical rain hats, and watertight storage baskets.
BOOMbal’s been a craze here since 2010, making great use of a 1946-era building that was purchased and renovated by the Ketchikan Area Arts and Humanities Council. The classic hardwood floors of the Main Street Gallery are perfect for a two-step, rhumba or jitterbug – and you could learn any of these alongside an eclectic mix of folk – from fishermen and artists to high schoolers and summer workers.