I'm Holly Jo, I was the "Gold Girl" tour guide the last 3 years at Porcupine Creek in Haines, AK. Two years at John & Parker Schnabel's Big Nugget Gold Mine and one year at Dakota Fred's Porcupine Creek Gold Mine. Not sure what I will be doing this year as the Gold tours at Porcupine Creek are not offered any more...and I kinda got fired.

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Sunday, May 1, 2011

The Vote for Gold Rush to Porcupine Creek

Parker Schnabel - Me - Joe Ordonez
The Borough Assembly meeting was held at Haines' very own Sheldon Museum last Tuesday evening.  I entered the upstairs gallery to find the owner of Rainbow Glacier Adventures, Joe Ordonez, and Gold Mine owner, Parker Schnabel, signing in to speak about the new tour addition to Haines, "Gold Rush Tour to Porcupine Creek".  Excitement was in the air...
as we talked about the upcoming tour season and all the gold to be discovered.  While we waited for the Mayor, City Manager, and our 6 Assembly Members to be seated I met Haines brand new Tourism Director, Tanya Carlson.  
Haines Tourism Director
Tayna Carlson
She is a bubbly, happy woman who is also excited with all the publicity Haines has received from the Discovery TV Show: Gold Rush Alaska.  She said the Gold Rush crew was indeed coming back for another season and will be in Haines soon.  She told me Dakota Fred and Todd Hoffman will be guest speakers at our "Night of Tourism" event on May 11th.  I will be looking forward to meeting them there.  
My friend said she saw one of the guys from the Gold Rush Alaska show pull up to the bank in a brand new truck the other day.  She didn't know which guy he was. She described him as having red hair, tall, and kinda stocky.  Which one could that be?  She told me she overheard him in the bank exclaiming astonishment over the large amount that was in his bank account.  I guess the Discovery TV show paid him more than he expected, eh? 
Borough Assembly at
Sheldon Museum Tues. April 26, 2011
The Borough Assembly Meeting got started with the pledge and roll call.  Our tour permit was up first, which was lucky for us, borough meetings have been known to go on for hours and hours. Joe Ordonez stood up and told everyone about the tour. We will be driving clients out Haines Highway through the Bald Eagle Preserve and on to the historic Porcupine Gold District of 1898.  We will meet the Schnabel's at Gold Nugget Mine (who are the gold mining neighbors of the Discovery TV Show, Gold Rush Alaska).  Parker Schnabel or his grandfather, the legendary John Schnabel, will show us their gold mining operation which has been successfully discovering gold over the last 25 years.  Then the clients will get to try their hand at panning for their own Porcupine Creek gold.  
Towns people at the meeting
Joe got a big laugh when he introduced me by saying, "Holly used to work as a 911 Dispatcher for Haines Police, she was getting more calls about gold mining in Haines than any emergency calls.....so she decided to quit the Police job and come work for us".  I will be the Gold Rush tour guide. Then Joe introduced Parker Schnabel, who stood up and said he was looking forward to sharing his gold mining experience with people. He said he would answer any questions they had.  One of the assembly members asked if they would actually get some gold on the tour.  
Parker Schnabel - Gold Mine owner of
Big Nugget Gold Mine
(John Schnabels Grandson)
Parker said, "That depends on how good your guide is at teaching you to pan".  Everyone laughed.  Another assembly member commended Joe Ordonez for getting the tour set up this season, in light of the Gold Rush Alaska TV show and its popularity.  We will need to send the gold seekers somewhere when they start coming into Haines lusting for gold.  
A motion was vocalized and seconded.  Then they each took turns stating their vote for the tour - Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes, Yes.  Our tour passed unanimously.  The Gold Rush to Porcupine tour is a go!
You can go to www.tourhaines.com to make a reservation for the richest tour in Haines, literally.  It is the only tour that gives you the possibility to make your money back, because what you find is what you keep.  See you in Porcupine Creek! 

6 comments:

  1. Cool, Holly! Hope business is good this season!

    mh

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  2. Well your dream is coming true - I will follow your blog with excitement to see how it all "Pans" out (pun intended)

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  3. How exciting.... and what a neat thing that Parker is so young and an owner. Family business, aren't they the best. :)

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  4. I tried my hand at panning at the Marshall site in California and now I have gold fever. I sure would like to take this adventure that you are starting. Let me know if you need a bus driver, I've been driving semi for 27 yrs. and plan to retire up there. Best of luck on your business!

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  5. Last August, my wife and I came to Haines on the Statendam. We did not know whether any of the Gold Rush folks (Parker Schnabel & family) were near the town. Now we know. Its a nice town, but I think it has got to be COLD in the winter. We'ed like to come back one day and stick around for a few weeks, see the sights and maybe pan for gold.

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    1. Come on back Rick....it is not soo bad in the Winter. In the 30s today. But we do get cold snaps and lots of snow. Too bad we didn't get you on a gold tour while you were here. But if you come back we will do it.

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