Alaska city declares holiday honoring Iditarod champion

Pete Kaiser talks to Channel 2 at his kennel in Bethel. (KTUU)
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BETHEL, Alaska (AP) — An Alaska city has declared a public holiday honoring the hometown champion of this year's Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

KYUK-AM reported Wednesday that Bethel will celebrate "Pete Kaiser Day" on March 13 in honor of the 2019 winner of the most celebrated event in sled dog racing.

The station reports that Kaiser was on hand Tuesday for the declaration by the city council in the central Alaska community.

The 31-year-old won the 1,000-mile (1,600-kilometer) race across Alaska's wilderness when he and his team of dogs crossed the finish line in Nome on March 13 after beating back a challenge from defending champion Joar Ulsom of Norway.

The station reports that Kaiser is the second Bethel resident to have a commemorative holiday named for him.

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