News ...if you haven't read it ...it's news to you!
Alaska musher Jonrowe's mom faces cancer surgery
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - AP - Iditarod musher and breast cancer survivor DeeDee Jonrowe says her mother is facing her own battle against the disease. Jonrowe told the Anchorage Daily News that her 81-year-old mother, Peg Stout, has been scheduled for a double mastectomy by March 15. Jonrowe had a double mastectomy after her cancer diagnosis in 2002. "I wish I could just throw a blanket around her and make it not be true," Jonrowe said. "The next best thing is knowing how to be able to help her." Jonrowe still plans to run the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, which begins with the ceremonial start Saturday in Anchorage and restart Sunday in Willow. Her mother wants her to race, Jonrowe said. "Dad feels it would signal the wrong thing to Mom if I didn't go," Jonrowe said. She twice placed second in the 1,000-mile race. She estimated the first time she may be able to call home is in White Mountain, 77 miles from the finish line in Nome. "Hopefully I can do well enough that I can give Mom something to look forward to every day, besides another medical procedure," Jonrowe said. Like her daughter, Peg Stout has beaten cancer before - when Jonrowe was an Iditarod rookie 30 years ago this month. "That was uterine cancer," Stout said. "I saw her off on Fourth Avenue and was in the hospital for a few days." Jonrowe's father is former East Anchorage Assemblyman Ken Stout. Peg is a retired Anchorage school librarian and, Jonrowe said, a 30-year Iditarod volunteer. Peg Stout said the family officially learned of her diagnosis days ago. They decided DeeDee would still compete while her younger sister, Linda, would fly from Oregon to help out with Mom and Dad. "I think it's easier on me than it is for them," Peg said. "Because they feel, they feel kind of helpless. And I do too, but I know how I feel ... and right now, of course, I feel OK." Jonrowe is one of the most popular figures in dog mushing, with her silhouette appearing on a commemorative Alaska statehood stamp. She has become a fundraiser and spokeswoman for cancer awareness, often wearing a signature pink kuspuk as a tribute to breast cancer prevention. This year she bought her dogs 2,000 pink booties to match the team's harnesses and coats.
WORKING ON IDITAROD FOOD DROPS
Planning out each Iditarod checkpoint with the proper gear and food is crucial to your race. Here DeeDee and her
handlers begin the task of sorting and bagging up drop bags that will be shipped to each checkpoint weeks before the
Iditarod begins to be sure thay make it out there before the mushers need them.
4 Paws for Logan!
You can be the key to opening a doorway for an autistic young boy from the Village of Unalakleet.
We need your help to to get a service dog for Logan Erickson. Logan is a nine year boy diagnosed with Autism. Jeff and Donna, his mother and father, have five boys and Logan is the youngest member of the family. This fall 2009, Iditarod musher, DeeDee Jonrowe was visiting Unalakleet, his home, presenting for their church camp. She brought with her a dog named "Mr. Miyagi". Logan watched him with interest.
Logan until this day had not spoken one word. After DeeDee left on the airplane Logan walked around the air station, where his mother works for Bearing Air and said, "Miyagi" several times. At first his mother did not recognize what he was saying but then she made the connection. This was an emotional breakthrough. Logan first word was a name of a loving dog. Jeff Erickson has shared that since then in a time of crisis Logan has said, “Mom.” Logan also has numerous problems sleeping and still wanders away at times. These are problems service dogs can solve with warmth and affection. A service dog will give Logan the motivation to communicate and provide him with independence.
The 2010 "Tag Along with DeeDee" Hoodies are here!
Follow DeeDee on the Klondike 300
Klondike 300 sled dog race starts friday February 12, 2010 at the Tug Bar in Knik, Alaska.The race starts at 10 am. For more information visit the Klondike web site - Click Here
Ididamush: Part One!
Scott Elnes, a weather man by trade and Alaska adventure enthusiast from gotoak.com, takes to the trail as a cheechako musher. But before he does, he gets a little advice form some seasoned mushers like DeeDee, Martin Buser and Lance Mackey.
Scott says " This was simply one of the greatest adventures of my life and I'm working nearly round the clock to put the whole thing into something that can even remotely do it justice".
DeeDee takes 3rd in the Tustumena 200
photo courtesy of David Wartinbee
DeeDee grabbed 3rd place in the Tustumena 200. A 200 mile sled dog race running in the Caribou hills near Homer Alaska.
DeeDee said "This race brought out what I needed to know about my Iditarod picks. I learned that one young dog was a little too imature for iditarod this year, one boy did not really fit and all the others are strong options. I am very happy with how it turned out and what it revealed to me".
DeeDee's 3rd place paid out $3,750 for her efforts. DeeDee said " I am so proud of this group of dogs. They are amazing".
Race & Training Updates:
Jan 13, 2010 - I waited until the last minute on racing in the Kusko 300 and I just do not want to test the conditions on the wind blown, icy trails this year. I am really going to miss the people in the delta, there is such a great group of people that put this race on. I am sad not to be there.
Because of that change, I have switched gears and entered the Tustamena 200 for next weekend. Jamie Kinzer, one of our wonderful handlers, has entered the T-100 with one of our teams. This coming weekend 2 of our handlers, Jamie and Justin, plan to race in Aurora 25/25 in the Big Lake area. I will be THEIR handler. All of the attention and effort is towards a successful 2010 Iditarod
Training behind a great 2010 Iditarod team!
Most Wanted Christmas Gift
This week I recieved what I "most wanted" for christmas; my best friend Jim Culler, is cancer free. Jim has been helping me with my kennel and nearly everything else in my life for the last 20 years. He is 82 years old and has been going strong, running his own 6 dog team, fishing his own river boat all over the upper Susitna River area and keeping me going especially when Mike is fishing in Bristol Bay each summer. He has been feeling poorly for awhile and a mon or so ago when downhill dramatically. They found issues in his lung and were fairly certain they were dealing with lung cancer as well as pneumonia.
Many tests, and weeks of waiting, he got the good word on tuesday. He still needs to take it easy, which is not his strong suit, but today he started working on the 2010 food drops. We have hosted his team while he has been sick so they will be going home for the holidays with smiles on their little muzzles. God answers prayers!!!! and I am VERY grateful. Just wanted to share good news this Christmas season. Anyone who has visited me in the last 20 years I am sure has met Jim. He is a very special person.
Dog Tag & a signed Bootie!
Tag along with DeeDee Jonrowe. Now you can get a 2010 DeeDee Jonrowe dog tag and an autograpghed bootie.Your purchases help with DeeDee's 2010 Iditarod race expenses. Thank you for being part of our team. Click Here for details...
Norton Sound Packs a Punch!
Had quite an eventful week. I flew with the GCI crew to Unalakleet on monday to film some new cell phone spots with a winter background. We got that and much much more. Wednesday night one of the most forceful fall storms in decades hit the Norton Sound coast with 70mph + winds and at one point 16ft waves. It was a priviledge to see the resourceful people of the coast pull together evacuating their elders, checking on each other, housing anyone that needed shelter and keeping a watchful eye on their neighbor's homes. I was staying with Donna Erickson and her son Logan. The rest of her family was in Stebbins at the Bering Sea School District regional wrestling and cheerleading tournament. We got a call about 3 pm wed afternoon that we had to evacuate the water level would double before it started to receed.
Bebucks and Anne Ivanoff gladly hosted us up the mt. at their house. We had a total of 16 people and 3 pet dogs at their home for a sleep over wed night. In addition to filming for GCI I was invited to speak to the 230+ kids at the regional wrestling and cheerleading tournament over at Stebbins about the value of healthy living. Mr. Migayi and I were finally able to fly in on thursday morning for several hours. Wow what a great chance to see rural Alaska's sports programs in action. I had a chance to encourage these athletes to take care of their MINDS as well as their bodies with an emphasis on staying tobacco free. It was so special being able to do something however small to help these great people that have been there for the last 28 years to encourage me as I have raced to Nome.
Mr. Migayi and I finally arrived back in Willow late thursday night. We quickly regrouped here and caught up on the events here this past week which included 9 inches of snow and then hit the trail early friday morning . It is late sat night. I ran the dogs again today, cleaned house and am looking forward to thanking God in church tomorrow for protecting the people of Norton Sound this past week. God sent a layer of slush ice in wednesday night just when the waves were poisted to do a great deal more damage . This ice weighted the waves and settled the water. What a week. I wonder what is in store for NEXT week!
Future stars harness up & pups receive their "forever" names
The "Nemo" Litter : Nemo, Crush, Coral, Dory & Nigel
Training Update: 10/27/09 - The last two days were bright ones for the future of my race team. The youngsters from this spring got to join their mentors in harness for the first time. "Hickory", "Dickory" and "Dock" were a handful of unfocused energy. It was hard to get them to stay still long enough to even get their harnesses ON but once they saw their harness as the key to running they were thrilled. They have spent the summer running along side Vern Halter's adult dogs enjoying showing off for Dream a Dream Kennel's vistors. Today they seem to get the hang of the "team" concept better and look to have a great future. The second litter, my V's because all their names start with V, and they spent the summer with the famous Van Zyle family; ran today in a 10 dog team like they had been doing it all their life. They were focused and excited. There seem to be no transition needed for them, all the experiences they had during the summer set them up perfectly for their debut in harness. The future looks bright with these 7 young ones in training for the race team of 2011.
The fall pups had a watershed day as well. They recieved their forever names. These guys officially became the "NEMO" litter. The 2 females are "Coral" and "Dori"e. The 3 males are" Nemo", "Crush" and "Nigel". I just love this theme because I first saw this movie in Kona with my niece when I was where I could walk out of the theater and swim with fish and turtles making me feel like I was a character in the movie myself. The bright colors and happy story always makes me feel happy and so do these silly guys. Their parents are a daughter from my most gifted retired race leader "Ivan", her name is "Sweetie": and one of last year's finishers in my team," Eddi"e. If they take after their genetics their movement ought to be smooth as silk. For now they have cool names and a great start.
Tag along with DeeDee for the 2010 Iditarod!
Show your Iditarod spirit and support for DeeDee Jonrowe with these new and adorable DeeDee Jonrowe dog tags. Tag along with DeeDee for the 2010 Iditaod. Dogs tags are available with pink or silver chains.
DeeDee is headed to Anchorage tonight for a hockey game. It's the annual Paint the Rink Pink Anchorage Aces game – breast cancer awareness night. DeeDee will drop the puck for start of the event at 7:15.
The Aces v. Kalamazoo, proceeds to benefit Breast Cancer Focus, Inc! The Aces will once again wear commemorative pink jerseys that will be auctioned off following the October 8th game, and both teams will play on Sullivan Arena ice dyed pink in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month.
Join the Alaska Aces for the 3rd annual "Paint The Rink Pink" event to raise money for cancer research and awareness in our great state. The games are schedules for October 7th & 8th at 7:15pm, at the Sullivan Arena. Call 258-ACES for more information.
More than sled dogs reside at DeeDee's kennel....
DeeDee Teams up with "GCI"...watch her cool commercials! Click here
Good-bye to a dear friend!
July 14, 2009 - Sunday I lost "Parker", one of my wonderful house dogs. It is still hard for me to even admit it. He was perfect right up to the last minute. I still can't believe he is gone. I wish I could turn back time and still have him. He came into our lives the night we came home from the hospital in Fairbanks after a very bad car accident. We had lost our dog " Remimington" in that accident. He had given his life to save my husband Mike's and "Remmy" was our hero. "Parker" looked nothing like him, he was not a "stuff strutter" but he was so gentle and very very loyal from the very beginning. I took him everywhere. He hiked Crow Pass for the first time at about 6 months. He would walk logs, swim rivers, climb mts. run along the the sled dog team for 50+ miles. He road on the back porch of my single cataraft. He wore antlers one Christmas and was a reindeer with the dog team bringing Santa into the Sullivan Area. He went horse back riding, he swam along side me as I trained for the Ironman, he climbed every mt. in southcentral that I have climbed including Mt. Marathon, Matanuska Peak, Pioneer Reak, Twin Peaks, Lazy many many times, and numerous trails and ridges up Hatcher Pass. "Parker" slept beside me the year I navigated chemo treatments, and was my exercise partner the next year when I was not capable of keeping up with my girl friends. When I was very sad and considered that I might be too much of a burden to the people around me "Parker" would lay his adoring head in my lap and his love kept me going. He helped me teach Vacation Bible school gently playing with the kids showing how God could demonstrate love thru the devotion of a dog. This guy ALWAYS make me feel like I was JUST the person that made his life worthwhile. Tonight I feel like I have lost my best friend. ~ DeeDee
DeeDee takes on the Mountain for the 11th time
Runners head up Mt Marathon
It was the 82nd Running of Mount marathon in Seward, Alaska Saturday, July 4, 2009. It was DeeDee's 11th run of this grueling run up the mountain. DeeDee said " It's been quite a year, the coldest Iditarod in a very long time and hottest Mt. Marathon. My body has whiplash". She finished 183rd out of a field of 286 women with a time of 01:53:47.
The foot race is a climb and descent on Mt. Marathon - a mile and a half up and a mile and a half down, complete with cliffs, scree fields, waterfalls, and a spectacular view. This annual event draws runners from around the world.
Over the years, this home town historical event has drawn increased participation resulted in new milestones. 54 women finished the first-ever women's race in 1985, juniors began logging their records in 1994, and 2005 heralded the beginning of the "staggered start" for the senior races. The popular Mini Marathon race starts them out young - toddling just a few feet to victory!
The tradition of the Mt. Marathon Race, according to folklore, began when two sourdoughs had an argument about whether it was possible to climb and descend the mountain in less than one hour.
"Impossible" one said, and to settle the argument and the resulting wager it was decided to hold a race with the loser to furnish drinks for the crowd.
At the same time, enterprising merchants put up a suit of clothes and other attractions for the winner and proposed the race take place on a holiday - why not the 4th of July?
The optimistic sourdough lost his bet. The winning racer took one hour and two minutes. Official records disclose that the Mt. Marathon Race actually began as an organized run in 1915 and has since become a regular part of the Independence Day celebration in Seward, Alaska.
2012 Iditarod Dogs
DeeDee shares some quality time with one of her pups named "Volt". This litter is on loan to the
Van Zyles for some socializing and play time before they start sled dog training.
DeeDee explains some of her training techniques to the "Iditarod Teachers on the Trail"
Sixty three kids from Koyuk to White Mountain gathered this past week for Bible Camp. DeeDee
was honored to be a speaker at the camp. DeeDee said she really enjoyed the time with the kids!
Relay for Life Join DeeDee and many Alaskan's for the Chugiak/Eagle River Relay for Life at Mirror Lake Middle School (MLMS) on 15 May at 7pm
ALL INQUIRIES REGARDING DEEDEE'S SPEAKING ENGAGEMENTS,
APPEARANCES, & SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES - PLEASE CONTACT:
The 1, 2 & 3
doggers at the Willow Carnival had a great day! Kids, jumping, dogs barking, sun
shinning, what else do you need. The Willow Winter Carnival
was full of excitement. DeeDee helped out as one of the
timers, helping Bonnie Church with the junior races. There
were eleven 1-doggers, four 2-doggers, and six 3-doggers.
DeeDee said "It was
so much fun". Temperatures settled at -15F on the
lake, with blue skies a bunch of eager kids and dogs ready
Carnival - photo by Stephanie LaRousse
My very good friend Bonnie Church and me doing the timing
at the kids
Willow Winter Carnival races - photo
by Donna Quante
Welcome 2 new sponsors ProvidenceAlaska
Medical Center joins up with DeeDee Jonrowe
as a 2009 sponsor. Providence Health System has a long history
of serving Alaska, beginning when the Sisters of Providence
first brought health care to Nome in 1902 during the Gold
Rush. This pioneering spirit set the standard for modern
health care in Alaska and formed the foundation for Providence's
growth as the state's leading health care provider.
The Jonrowe kennel
would also like to welcomeBradley,
Reid and Associatesas a 2009 sponsor. Before
you even consider the work they do for their clients, Bradley
Reid is all about people. Their staff is responsible for
where they are today, and are their most valuable asset.
They have creative minds, business professionals, goof-offs
and dreamers. The collage that is Bradley Reid is less of
a fine tuned machine, and more of a consistently happy accident.
Ahhh Team work!
Radio Media Tour Schedule
DeeDee Jonrowe, Iditarod Participant and Breast Cancer
Survivor. Talks about the Discovery Channels newest hit
series "TOUGHEST RACE ON EARTH: IDITAROD”
Anchorage Convention Center Opens
Anchorage, Alaska Oct 19,
The Anchorage downtown convention center celebrated it's
grand opening this weekend. The
Dena'ina Civic and Convention Center has been open for
about a month, but with limited access.The center is 200,000
square feet and has meeting rooms, a ballroom, and even
DeeDee was on hand to welcome Alaskans and tourist to
the roomy center.
DeeDee signs posters
at the Discovery Channels showing of
"Toughest Race on Earth"
Discovery & Iditarod Alaskan
fans were treated to a sneak preview of Discovery's latest
gem. About 1,200 people were able to view the first episode
of the 2008 Iditarod sled dog race.
You will follow mushers DeeDee Jonrowe, Martin Buser,
Bruce Linton, Lance Mackey and Jeff King along with others
that come along for the ride of their life.
"That was awesome" exclaimed many, as they piled
out of the auditorium, "the footage was incrediable"
said others."The best I have even seen" shouted
some long time volunteers. Everyone seemed pleased.
The difference between this coverage and others before
them, is the Discovery crew spent a considerable amount
of time following several mushers from the start in Anchorage
to the finish in Nome and many check points in between.
Cameras were duct taped to sleds so you can get a real
feel of the trail and the demand on the mushers. You will
get to know each musher, cheer them on, feel their pain,
their energy and their joy.
premier of "TOUGHEST RACE ON EARTH: IDITAROD",will air Tuesday, October 14th at 10 PM ET/PT.
The six hour miniseries follows mushers and their sled
dog teams across more than a thousand miles of rugged
terrain as they take on Mother Nature - and each other
- in The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.
2008 Iditarod/Discovery Channel gang - From
left to right: Bob Ormberg: VP, Content Products, Jeff
King, Martin Buser,
Bruce Linton, DeeDee Jonrowe, Lance Mackey & Bob Gold
not all dogs, sometimes it's chicks!
Yes, DeeDee tends to a yard
full of sled dogs. She also cares for 8 plymouth barred
rocks, 2 black sex-linked, 2 road island reds, and 2 buff
orphingtons. They are all laying ladies and live close
to her sled dogs which has provided them protection from
the grizzly bears that lurked around the property all
summer. As you can see, she is quite in love with them.
Enough so that she recently completed a cozy new insulated
winter hen house complete with 2 windows. She says "I
have been amazed how intelligent they actually are".
What is your biggest
To me the most important concept to working with animals
is consistency. They must be able to KNOW that you will
respond the same way each time for any given behavior.
The next step is to determine the motivation behind their
behavior be it something you want to encourage or something
you must discourage. You then study each individual and
determine what that dog’s most rewarding motivation
is. The motivation in many breeds, like my labs, is food.
There is nothing else they seem to enjoy more, but my
sled dogs are much different. They have a number of motivators
and some of them trump food by a great deal.
Tell us about your
This is a very special relationship. There are a lot of
dogs capable of running lead, but to have that special
leader takes a lot of time. This is a very independent
dog that wants to please you particularly. That is why
it is hard to "sell" or "buy" a lead
dog. The owner's personal relationship with the dog is
as important as the dog's natural instinct for the position.
When I have found that special dog that really loves being
with me, I proceed to develop the dog's self esteem to
think he or she is invincible. I want them to ALWAYS succeed
at everything!!! That includes in the dog lot, in all
situations. Once they are totally "full of themselves",
I then go about teaching them things I need them to do
on their own for me and the team.
What is your motivation?
This is as varied as the number of animals I own. I use
food, positive attention, withholding attention, free
running, grooming, anything that that individual dog enjoys.
Trotter, a retired leader now, likes stuffed toys. He
has a whole den of them that he likes to line up. He never
feels like he has enough of them. I spend a lot of time
with them so I can see what each dog enjoys the most.
What advice would
you give to someone interested in getting into this sport?
I did not have this opportunity, but today there are a
lot of chances to be a "handler" in a kennel.
The better the kennel is, the better the training. These
are often mentoring positions. The best way to understand
the nuts and bolts of our life's passion is to "shadow"
us. There is so much that is just my natural instinct
that I might not think to say but when you watch you will
understand the motivation behind what I do and why I do
it EVERY DAY. Dogs are creatures of habit and honestly
so are we.
What are your strength
Strengths would be my love for animals since the day I
first remember being alive. I was taught as a little girl
to value life through my pets. Mom showed me, I guess
you could say used, the love I received from my pet as
a motivator to do the hard stuff, cleaning up after them,
feeding them, being dependable no matter how I personally
felt at the time. This has served me well with people
as well as animals. I believe God has a purpose for the
love He has given me for animals and it is my desire to
use it to make the path I walk this side of heaven a better
place. My most notable weakness is my physical strength,
particularly upper body strength, which was significantly
compromised from breast cancer. You do not lose both breasts
and 22 lymph nodes without noticing the diminished strength,
and this sport requires a lot of strength.
USPS Alaska Stamp
to Sport DeeDee & Team
This is the year for Alaska recognition, and a USPS stamp
is no exception.
Teamed together with Alaska
Stock Images and the perfect shot of DeeDee slipping through
Rainy Pass during the "Last Great Race"™
the Iditarod, a stamp was born.
The new Alaska stamp was
unveiled at the Alaska State chamber Annual fall conference
gathering in Fairbanks on September 19, 2008 to commemorate
the 50th anniversary of Alaska statehood.
"I'm honored and blessed
that one of my photos was chosen to represent Alaska Statehood
on a U.S. postage stamp. I'm just plain ecstatic that
it's this particular photo, because it's one of my all-time
favorite photos from the Iditarod---DeeDee Jonrowe mushing
in the Rainy Pass area at dusk with alpenglow on the Alaska
Range. For me, it was one of those magical moments where
everything came together to complete my idea of what the
Iditarod is. I couldn't be more pleased." says Jeff
Schultz, from Alaska Stock Images.
DeeDee said "It is humbling to be part of the image
chosen to represent Alaska as the U.S. postage service
recognizes our beautiful state's 50th birthday. I have
been blessed to live my dreams for over a quarter of a
century combining my love of my dogs, my passion for this
beautiful state, and to experience adventure beyond my
wildest imagination. Thanks to Jeff Schultz's God-given
talent for capturing that on film, I now have the honor
to celebrate this through this stamp.”
CHANNEL WORLD PREMIERE SERIES
DATE IS CHANGED TO OCTOBER 14!
Mushers and their sled dog teams endure more than a thousand
miles of unforgiving Alaskan wilderness along the Iditarod
Trail in hopes of making it across the finish line –
Discovery’s premier of TOUGHEST RACE ON
EARTH: IDITAROD, aired Tuesday, October 14th
at 10 PM ET/PT. The six hour miniseries follows mushers
and their sled dog teams across more than a thousand miles
of rugged terrain as they take on Mother Nature - and
each other - in The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.
The series follows mushers DeeDee Jonrowe, Martin Buser,
Bruce Linton, Lance Mackey and Jeff King along with others
that come along for the ride of their life. The difference
between this coverage and others before it is the Discovery
crew spent a considerable amount of time following several
mushers from the start in Anchorage to the finish in Nome
and many check points in between. Cameras were duct taped
to sleds so you can get a real feel of the trail and the
demand on the mushers. You get to know each musher, cheer
them on, and feel their pain, their energy and their joy.
View the Discovery Channels trailor...
It's that time of year. The Jonrowe
Kennel is in full swing, excited dogs,
mud puddles and the sweet sound of a focused team headed
down the trail.
DeeDee Jonrowe Iditarod start 2008
Milke Williams and DeeDee enjoy
the Volunteer picnic and first day
to sign up for the 2009 Iditarod. Mike got lucky and was
one of 2 mushers that
received his entry fee back in a random drawing.
off the Parks Hwy
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the downy-soft underwool from the
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