Gail and Denvy
Almost 50 Years and Counting
Year Three - 1972



Land Barons

     Romance changes its face when children, even as a singleton, enters the fold. Denvy and Gail stayed close to their little home on the hill. A second bedroom became a nursery while riverboating and fishing slowed considerably. Attention was redirected on an investment.
     While in Michigan in 1971 some friends back in Alaska gathered around an idea of buying some acreage, subdividing it and reselling it for a profit. There were five members--four young couples and a bachelor/brother-in-law of another partner. After a month of no sales, three partners fostered the idea of builiding houses on the lots so they would sell faster. So the prints of the first house were drawn and approved. As fall settled in, three of us with our wives (mostly Gail) started building our first house by hand, with a "how to build a house" book in the other hand. Come spring of 1972 the house was sold and finalized with the help of a contractor. We had become land owners and builders.

Being Businesslike

     The first partnership called themselves Taku Developers. The offshoot called themselves the Taku Builders. About the same time Denvy and Gail became interested in food coops and started gathering caselot orders from friends and neighbors, and monthly they would order groceries from a local wholesaler and distribute among the the coop members.
     During these early years of marriage, resources were scarce and scrounging for whatever would be found was popular. They joked about behaving like pack rats. As they dreamt of turning things around, they chose the business name Star Kap, essentially reversing the name as well as the financial future.

A Big Christmas Tree

     The floor plan of the main floor and the basement in the duplex were the same including a picture window in the living room facing the street. Actually the street was an arterial road that lead into the hillside south and east of Anchorage. The house was the second from the last before it started to wind up into the foothills of the Chugach Mountains. At Christmas time Gail and Denvy and the Keeners with hatchet in hand headed into the widerness to hunt a Christmas tree. They chose one tall enough to reach from the floor of the lower floor to the ceiling of the upper floor. They cut the tree in half placing the lower half downstairs and the upper half upstairs.

     Author's note: This was not a good year for photographs.