Talk:Soldotna, Alaska

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Music scene[edit]

I'm not suggesting these bands don't exist, but that there are no reliable secondary sources to back up this claim. It also not shown or even asserted in the article that any of these bands have relevance outside of Soldotna. Please read this for more information. Beeblbrox (talk) 01:21, 25 February 2008 (UTC)

Peninsula Savings and Loan[edit]

Found a Federal Reserve website which answered a lot of lingering questions about the history of financial institutions in Alaska, many of which failed during the real estate crash of the late 1980s. I've had faint memories of a savings and loan in the Blazy Mall and of that S&L being the first of these institutions to fail. Here's what that website returned:

  • 1979-02-07 PENINSULA SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION located at BLAZY MALL STERLING HIGHWAY, SOLDOTNA, AK was established as a Savings & Loan Association.
  • 1986-08-09 PENINSULA SAVINGS AND LOAN ASSOCIATION failed. FIRST FEDERAL BANK OF ALASKA, S.B. acquired the remaining assets.

According to the same website, First Federal Bank was itself founded as an S&L in 1955, becoming a bank in 1983 before failing in 1990, with its assets picked up by First National Bank of Anchorage. FFB's location in Spenard wasn't kept by FNBA, being too close to their existing branch a quarter-mile to the west, built nearly three decades before. The FFB building was later headquarters of VECO Corporation for many years before they moved here.

I assume the failure of Peninsula S&L was a significant enough event for Soldotna, though I question whether the institution itself was that significant to Soldotna overall. Looks like National Bank of Alaska, after lobbying an early state legislature to allow for branch banking, acquired the Bank of Homer soon afterward and expanded to Soldotna probably not long after that. I have a photo in my collection of the Soldotna NBA branch taken sometime in the mid 1960s, showing it to be alongside one of the highways but otherwise completely surrounded by wilderness. RadioKAOS / Talk to me, Billy / Transmissions 05:30, 21 December 2015 (UTC)

I have settlements in nearly every state and some Canadian provinces watchlisted and I cannot recall even one that has any discussion of banking in the community. Do not see why we would start with this community. Oppose any discussion of any of this in the article. John from Idegon (talk) 06:08, 21 December 2015 (UTC)
I'm not at all surprised by your rationale. It seems as if we're willing to automatically confer notability upon every present-day bottom-feeding government agency, non-profit organization and D-list pseudo-celebrity seeking out yet another Internet site to promote themselves, while holding private-sector entities and historical topics to a different standard (more on that below). The failure of Peninsula S&L occurred not only on the front end of the aforementioned events in Alaska, but also on the front end of the S&L crisis. That article states: "While not part of the savings and loan crisis, many other banks failed. Between 1980 and 1994 more than 1,600 banks insured by the FDIC were closed or received FDIC financial assistance...From 1986 to 1995, the number of federally insured savings and loans in the United States declined from 3,234 to 1,645. This was primarily, but not exclusively, due to unsound real estate lending." Framed within that context, it's an extremely insignificant event. OTOH, the fact that the majority of Alaska's financial institutions failed or were otherwise snapped up by larger institutions in a span of less than five years, a number of which had existed for many decades (during this time, KeyBank acquired the B. M. Behrends Bank in Juneau, which had existed for 98 years, plus the First National Bank of Fairbanks, about a decade younger), would be rather important to a reader's encyclopedic understanding of Alaska. There's no reasonable explanation for why it wouldn't, other than the fact that it occurred 25–30 years ago and therefore certain favored sources aren't going to be discussing it today. Compare the attention we've given to the Alaska political corruption probe with our (lack of) coverage of the North Slope Borough corruption case, the latter of which has been discussed in a far broader variety of reliable sources, which makes the coverage of the former out to be a WP:NOTNEWS poster child or a curious snapshot in time. RadioKAOS / Talk to me, Billy / Transmissions 10:49, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

As for the article in general...[edit]

First off, thanks to Ajohns90 for the work done to improve this article. However, several things. I thought that the practice of placing ELs directly into prose was deprecated years ago and is generally discouraged today. There's no DMOZ link and I haven't checked to see if a DMOZ page exists for Soldotna, but I would think that to be the more appropriate place for such links. While there's nothing I would consider harmful, there's also nothing I would consider useful. The most puzzling is the one pointing to the Donald E. Gilman River Center. Don Gilman served as borough mayor for 14 years and also served in the state senate, yet we're not acknowledging that notability, instead offering the impression that some random facility named for him is somehow more notable. More importantly, I don't see this as something that the world at large would really care about. The Alaska State Troopers is something that the world at large would care about due to that TV program. One of AST's detachments is based in Soldotna, which isn't mentioned, making a lot of the more trivial details which are mentioned out to be gratuitous advertising/promotion in comparison.

Any complaints about that pale in comparison to the notable people section, which is just one bad joke. When I think of notable people from Soldotna, I think of Burton Carver and Dolly Farnsworth and Justin Maile and Marge Mullen and Pat O'Connell and yes, even Les Anderson, not the names I'm currently looking at. From what I've read, Emily Johnson is actually from Clam Gulch. She was born in Soldotna because Soldotna is the location of the single hospital serving a large geographic area. This also appears to be the case with Travis Hall. That's called a contextual hole big enough to drive the Space Shuttle through, yet we create such a contextual hole in article after article after article. Pat O'Connell is locally legendary as a hockey coach and teacher at KCHS. More relevant to his notability is that he co-founded the Peninsula Clarion and was the first state legislator to identify as a Soldotna resident (though from what I can tell, he lives or lived on K-Beach Road outside city limits). As a legislator, he is still remembered today for being such a fierce partisan Republican that he once filibustered one of his own bills when the two Libertarians in the House at the time, Ken Fanning and Dick Randolph, signed on as co-sponsors. There's also John C. Davis, the owner of KSRM and sister stations, who has been associated with Soldotna and the broadcasting industry on the Central Peninsula since the late 1960s, very much a longstanding pillar of the community. "The Church of Born and Raised", the practice of artificially attaching significance to one's birthplace where none actually exists, combined with the slavish devotion to mentioning things strictly for the purpose of providing wikilinks to other articles instead of mentioning things because they're contextually relevant, makes up part of the reason why people question the need for notable people sections. Are we going to try and claim that Loren Leman and Mike Navarre aren't "from" the Kenai Peninsula because they were born outside, even though both spent almost their entire childhoods on the peninsula (Leman in Ninilchik, Navarre in Kenai and Nikiski)? RadioKAOS / Talk to me, Billy / Transmissions 10:49, 23 December 2015 (UTC)

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