Archive for the 'Businesses' Category

Banks in Palmer Alaska July 17th, 2009

Categories: Businesses

No need to drive all the way to Wasilla for your personal banking, Palmer has 5 different banks of its own, right here in downtown!

A Wells Fargo Branch, on S Bailey St

First National Bank, on Evergreen Ave

Matanuska Valley Federal Credit Union, on S Bailey St

Key Bank in Key Bank Plaza

Alaska USA Federal Credit Union on the Palmer-Wasilla Hwy

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The Stamp Cache: Creativity in Palmer July 10th, 2009

Categories: Businesses

I asked Linda Pendergrass, a resident of Alaska for the last 40 years and owner of the Stamp Cache, why people should come to the Stamp Cache instead of Walmart or Joann’s Fabrics. “Personal care, for one thing,” she said. “A lot of people go to Walmart or other chain stores, buy something and don’t really know how to use it properly.” Here, if you have a question, she has an answer. She’ll show you not only how to use the item correctly, but you can also view countless examples of cards and papers with the effect displayed.

The Stamp Cache offers something you can find nowhere else in the state of Alaska. Great Impressions puts out a different Stamp of the Month item each month and you can find it right here!. Linda offers classes in card-making using that specific stamp, while teaching you different techniques. They even have a variety of other stamps that
match that specific Stamp of the Month theme. July’s theme is Fairy Tales.

Different classes are offered every month for
mini-scrapbooks and Stamps by Judith projects. To view to the entire list of classes and times, visit the Stamp Cache’s website,

There’s a large collection of Alaskan-themed stamps, including a stamp declaring “Hello from Palmer!”. Bears, wolves, moose and more are found on this display, waiting for you to stamp them on a card for out of state family and friends.
Not only does the Stamp Cache carry stamps, you also can find a huge variety of printed, patterned and colored papers, markers, chalk and alcohol inks, punches and

If Anchorageites drive all the way out, it must be great! Linda told me that a large percentage of her customers actually come from Anchorage, because the Stamp Cache is so unique and has a different, better variety than the few stores there. But why not help local businesses and show a fellow Palmeranian our support?

Don’t feel like you have a creative side? Not ‘artsy fartsy’? No problem! Take one of the classes and you may discover a different side of yourself! If you need some ideas, ask Linda, she’s full of creativity and knowledge! August’s theme is Wildflowers…

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Vagabond Blues June 30th, 2009

Categories: Businesses, Restaurants and Cafes

Vagabond Blues is one of my favorite places in downtown Palmer. It’s a great cafe with fresh food and delicious drinks, located on S Alaska St, in the Koslosky building. I go there and work on my computer all the time; they offer wifi through MTA.

Not only is Vagabond Blues a great coffeehouse, it’s also a well-known musical venue. With concerts ranging in genre from bluegrass to metal, V-Blues does its best to keep the music as diverse as our community. The performances are reasonably priced, some are even free. Many local artists are known to come and play as well as groups from out of state.

Soups, salads, breads, all made here in Alaska, if not in V-Blues’ own kitchen, are just part of the menu. They use as much local produce as possible, and offer vegetarian, gluten-free and vegan options as well as “normal” food. If I want something more than a cookie, I’ll usually buy a cup of soup and a hunk of fresh bread for around $6. The soup is always hearty, flavorful and filling and the bread, delectable.

All ages come to Vagabonds to chill. Some order full meals, others (like me) get something simple like an americano and a jumbo chocolate chip cookie, made fresh each morning right there in the kitchen. You can find groups of students from the local schools in the large booths, laughing and talking about the day at school. Elderly couples and families hold meetings and bible studies earlier in the mornings. The atmosphere is very relaxed; with the radio on all the time (but turned down low), smiling baristas and giggling babies of patrons that make you feel at home.

Drop in for a tasty morsel, stay an hour, chat with friends, stay late! It’s open until 8 Mon-Sat and 6 on Sundays. Vagabond Blues is part of what makes Palmer, Palmer. It’s a comfy, slow-paced, community gathering place. Come be a part of it!

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Alaskana Books In Palmer Alaska June 18th, 2009

Categories: Businesses


I made a visit during Colony Days to Alaskana Books
at 564 S Denali in Palmer, Alaska. This is probably my favorite bookstore in the whole state. If you want to read about Alaska this is the place to go. It is one of the temptations in Palmer for me. I can’t seem to go in that store without spending money. They have shelves and shelves of Alaskan books. Most of the books are used, some are extremely old, some are pretty obscure, all are very interesting.

Alaskana Books is owned and operated by Lorie Kirker
She is a long time Alaskan, having spent much of her life teaching in bush Alaska. She spent a lot of time in places like King Cove and Dutch Harbor. She is helped in the store by her good friend Lynette Lehn whom she met in college. Lynette talked Lorie into coming to Alaska with her husband and now they are both retired teachers working together in the store.

The entry way is currently set up on a Colony Days theme with Palmer especially featured. Inside are books arranged in all sorts of Alaskan themes. There are shelves on Russian America, Gold Rush, South East, Interior, First Citizens, Aviation, The Iditarod Race, Bears, Wolves, and on and on. If you are looking for a book on canoeing the Yukon River, they have it. If you want something about early Palmer, they certainly have it. If by some amazing chance they don’t have a book, they will do the research to find it.

Alaskana Books hours are as unique as the store itself. They are open Friday, Saturday and Sunday from noon-5:30. Stop by this weekend.

By Marty Van Diest

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Matsu Transit June 18th, 2009

Categories: Businesses

Matsu Transit provides transportation by bus all around the Valley, to Anchorage, out to Houston and soon out to the Knik area. Commuter buses go to and from Anchorage during the average commute times: early morning, late morning, and early evening.

Matsu Transit buses also make flag stops by phoned-in requests, but you need to call in at least 1 hour before the requested time. I have never ridden the buses in the Valley, but several of my friends have and they think it’s great! The system is really helpful for those without cars, teens with working parents, and those who just want to help the environment.

General one-way rides cost $2.50, and a day pass is $6.00. The commuting fare is $3.00 each direction. Kids under 6 ride free.

For more information about the Valley’s Transit system and its schedules, visit

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