Community

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Sunset on the Kuskokwim

Relocating to Bethel? Scroll down for a list of helpful links to Bethel  resources. The Bethel Chamber of Commerce also has a collection of resources that are especially helpful. 

Bethel is the largest community in western Alaska, as well as the 9th largest in the state, with a 2012 population of 6,371.  It is located 400 miles west of Anchorage, off the road system. It is the main port on the Kuskokwim River and is the transportation hub for 56 villages in the Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.

Bethel is also the school district headquarters for the area, as well as the home of Yukon Kuskokwim Health Corporation, the hospital that serves the YK delta.  Approximately 17 miles of roads are contained in Bethel, and a far reaching network of snowmobile trails. Several grocery stores and restaurants serve the community, as well as an organic farmers market.

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Blueberries and cranberries on the tundra.

Bethel is located in the Yukon Delta National Wildlife Refuge, the 2nd largest wildlife refuge in the United States. It is a major staging area for waterfowl, and the tundra is abundant in wildflowers and berries; just bring your mud boots and be prepared to use some muscles you didn’t know you had!

The Kuskokwim River and other local rivers support sport and commercial fishing during the summer and in the winter are used as ice roads and dog sledding trails. Cross country skiing and snowmobiling are popular in the winter.

Bethel boasts an active arts scene with the Yupiit Piciryarait Cultural Center hosting museum exhibits, community plays and talent shows, Saturday markets, the Bethel fair in August, an annual dog show. The Bethel Council of the Arts sponsors the annual Camai, a native dance festival.

Bethel is a small community with a big heart and provides many social outreach opportunities and services.  It is also a community of over 16 churches, and numerous fraternal and civic organizations and guilds.

If you are on Facebook you might want to consider joining Bethel Bargains; It’s Going on in Bethel; Bethel, AK – Housing Wanted; and Bethel with Kids to find out more about our community, to look for housing and household goods, or to just to ask questions.

Want an outsider’s view of Bethel? Bobby Hundreds, co-founder of the streetwear company, The Hundreds, visited Bethel and BRHS in the Fall of 2013 and wrote about it here.

For more information on Bethel:

General:

Bethel Chamber of Commerce

City of Bethel

Statistics and data

News:

Alaska Dispatch News Anchorage and statewide news

KTUU Channel 2 news

KYUK public media; local radio station

Delta Discovery local news

The Tundra Drums local news

Kusko Net local weather

Education

Lower Kuskokwim School District

University of Alaska Fairbanks, Kuskokwim Campus

Public Library

Yuut Elitnaurviat (regional vocational center)

Yuut Yaqungviat (flight school)

Arts and entertainment

Kuskokwim 300 (dogsled race)

Camai (International dance festival)

Yupiit Picaryarait Cultural Center  (Museum, Saturday Market, Library, etc.)

Movie Theater  Also look for Suurvik Cinema on Facebook for more information