We attended the Mushers banquet the evening of our first full day in Anchorage. This was a great casual event a couple blocks from our hotel. The food was great and we got to meet a number of great people. The main focus of the dinner is the drawing of starting positions for each musher. We got invited to Martin Buser's Open House lunch at his house. Mainly it was a great opportunity to meet Martin and his friends at a very casual gathering. The food was great - moose stew, reindeer sausage, salmon, elk, etc. WOW! We also spent time walking around Martin's kennel and petting many of his sled dogs, several of which were to run in the Iditarod. The most friendly dogs I have ever seen. We also got to hold several of Martin's 4 week old puppies.
Bernice, Martin Buser, Jack
Saturday was the Ceremonial Start of the Iditarod. Bernice and Jack worked as volunteers at the Ceremonial Start and the Official Start in Willow the next day. The big benefit of working as volunteers was our credentials got us into the musher and dog areas. We got to meet and talk to many of the mushers and their dogs. Everyone was extremely friendly and went out of their way to thank us for participating. The highlight for Bernice was meeting and talking to Libby Riddles. Libby was the first woman (1985) to win the Iditarod (see picture). What great people.