ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The University of Alaska Anchorage says more than 1,500 people could receive free plane tickets in November -- funded by an appropriation from the state’s capital budget -- from 18 Alaska cities to Anchorage with the purchase of tickets to the 35th annual Great Alaska Shootout.
House Finance Committee co-chair Rep. Bill Stoltze’s (R-Chugiak) office confirmed the source of the funds Friday afternoon.
The committee’s other co-chair, Rep. Bill Thomas (R-Haines), pushed for the $2.5 million appropriation to UAA. He said the money was meant to keep the Shootout alive, but didn’t come with restrictions on what UAA could do with it.
According to UAA, the complimentary tickets will be available on a first-come, first-served basis to people who buy $127 general-admission ticket packages to the Shootout, which go on sale starting at 12:01 p.m. Wednesday. UAA’s athletics program is currently promoting them on its website.
Communities eligible for the airfare program include Barrow, Bethel, Cordova, Dillingham, Fairbanks, Homer, Juneau, Kenai, Ketchikan, King Salmon, Kodiak, Kotzebue, Nome, Petersburg, Sitka, Valdez, Wrangell and Yakutat.