Talkeetna is a community of about 800 residents, with a few hundred more folks living in the outlying areas. It has a history rich in gold mining, hunting, and trapping. Talkeetna’s downtown is a National Historic District, with several buildings on the National Registry of Historic Places. In addition to attracting a growing number of tourists, Talkeetna serves as the staging area for climbers attempting to scale Mt. Denali and other peaks in the Alaska Range. At the confluence of three rivers (the Talkeetna, the Susitna, and the Chulitna), Talkeetna is also a prime fishing spot and playground in general to outdoor enthusiasts of all kinds. Opportunities abound to view the natural beauty and resident wildlife by air, boat, train or trek. One of the most breathtaking views of North America’s tallest peak, Mt. Denali can be seen from Talkeetna.
Trapper Creek is a small community due west of Talkeetna, 2 miles away as the eagle flies, but 30 road miles apart. The area is home to many sled dog kennels and snowmachine enthusiasts. Extensive trails can be found north and south of the Petersville Road. This historic road brought old miners from Talkeetna, across the Susitna River, and along the road to work gold mines in Peters Hills and Cache Creek areas and there is still gold mining activity in this area today. Views of Mt. McKinley and the Alaska Range are outstanding in this area, and Trapper Creek is the gateway to the new (proposed) Southside Denali Park Visitor Center.
The Alaska Folk School is part of the Northern Susitna Institute. We provide learning to think critically and creatively and to develop capabilities through a diverse program of applied-learning and experience-based courses, activities, and projects that take place in the real world, for its students.
Denali Arts Council creates and nurtures community-based opportunities for artistic expression. We value diversity, artistry and community. The focus is on arts opportunities by and for the community. We strive to have individuals involved at all levels: participating in the arts, behind the scenes, volunteering, supporting and attending events. Although we do a little bit of presenting visiting talent, our mission and operations is largely locally produced arts.
KTNA operates a non-profit, educational, community radio station with local access; to provide a broad base of educational, cultural and informational programming to challenge, broaden and enrich the listening audience; to foster a sense of community within the Upper Susitna Valley; and to share programming and services with a larger Alaskan community.
Mat-Su Public Schools are organized to put students and families first. Our facilities include 20 elementary schools, five middle schools, six high schools, and four K-12 schools, including a comprehensive home school. Additionally, the district hosts six charter schools, and three alternative education schools which offer a range of specialized programs. The Matsu Borough School District has educational opportunities available for adults through the career and technical education programs and preschool for students with special needs.
The Northern Susitna Institute, a collaborative nonprofit educational organization, provides students of all ages the opportunity to learn, share ideas and develop real life skills through creating, supporting, facilitating and implementing a variety of experience-based academic programs, workshops, conferences, and community partnerships.
The Sunshine Transit Coalition is a 501 c 3 organization that provides inexpensive, reliable transportation to break down the barriers to health care, wellness, education and employment in the Upper Susitna Valley.
The Veterans of Foreign Wars – Post 3836 is fostering camaraderie among United States veterans of overseas conflicts. We serve our veterans, the military, and our communities and advocate on behalf of all veterans.