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Honor this Female Civil Rights Leader

Sealaksa Heritage Center

Courtesy of Sealaska Heritage Center in Juneau, Alaska

Courtesy of Sealaska Heritage Center in Juneau, Alaska/Ken Graham Photography

Pay respects to Elizabeth Peratrovich, a Native Alaskan civil rights leader who advocated for the passage of the nation’s first anti-discrimination bill in 1945. In Juneau, where Peratrovich moved her family to better lobby for Native rights, you can visit the Senate building, the hallowed ground where she gave famous testimony, and even see her grave site at Evergreen Cemetery where she is buried next to her husband. To learn more about Peratrovich and Native Alaskans like her, visitors can head to the ornately carved Sealaksa Heritage Center building in downtown Juneau.  

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See the Ice Before it Melts

Mendenhall Glacier

Exploring the ice caves | © Jenna Kunze/Unearth Women

Exploring the ice caves | © Jenna Kunze/Unearth Women

Rent a car and drive out to Mendenhall Glacier, a fantastic mass of blue ice that you can ski or walk out to during Alaska's winter months. If the time is right, go beyond the main viewing point by another half mile and explore the idea caves. Scientists have been studying the glacier for decades, and predict that it will continue to shrink year by year. The caves are formed from melting water and re-form every year in different locations. Make sure to bring crampons and check with officials on weather conditions before walking out. 

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Visit this Female-Founded Museum

Aunt Claudia's Doll Museum

Handmade dolls at Aunt Claudia's Doll Museum | © Jenna Kunze

Handmade dolls at Aunt Claudia's Doll Museum | © Jenna Kunze

Just off the main drag downtown, there’s a nondescript 8x10 sign pasted in an upstairs window that reads: Doll museum. Aunt Claudia’s Doll Museum is a whole lot more than the sign suggests. Claudia Kelsey’s collection of Native Alaskan dolls has lived and grown well past her death a decade ago. The museum provides a unique snapshot of history, culture and craftsmanship. The current director museum curator, Mary Ellen Frank, was a friend of Kelseys’ and has made a large portion of the wooden carved Alaska Native dolls herself. Admission is free. 

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Art That Explores Themes of Gender and Race

Melanin Auntie

Juneau has what locals have described as “a wildly active drag scene.” Tahir McInnis, a well-known local drag king, also owns an online shop called Melanin Auntie , which markets clothing with fantastical characters. "Juneau artist and rising drag king Tahir McInnis addresses themes of gender and race through performance, art and fashion,” a local publication wrote of McInnis. McInnis’ art is also locally displayed around Juneau. Check the Rendezvous’s facebook page for events. 

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Shop Locally, Women-Made Goods

Kindred Post

The front table at Kindred Post| © Jenna Kunze

The front table at Kindred Post| © Jenna Kunze

Shop local at a post office that doubles as a gift store and social meeting ground. Kindred Post, owned by Christy Namee, sits downtown in an old trade post building that sells niche knick-knacks and locally made goods from temporary tattoos to ornate earrings. The space also serves as a gathering spot for art showcases and concerts, and promotes one female artist per week. When you walk in, you’re greeted by a girl power table displaying female-made and supported goods. 

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Grab Some Waffles from this Husband and Wife Owned Spot

GonZo’s

GonZo's in Juneau, Alaska | © Roland Mueca/Google Images

GonZo's in Juneau, Alaska | © Roland Mueca/Google Images

Driving back from Mendenhall Glacier, stop for brunch at GonZo’s, a husband and wife-owned cafe in Auke Bay. Locals rave about this place as the best breakfast spot in town, serving sweet and savory waffles and gourmet coffee. The spot has a cozy atmosphere with large sunny windows and local art-adorned walls. 

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Enjoy Classic Russian Fare

Pel'meni

Pelmeni | © Eugene Kim/Flickr

Pelmeni | © Eugene Kim/Flickr

Until 1867, Alaska was Russian territory. Alaska's Russian roots can still be found at this local eatery, which specializes in simple Russian fare. Pel’meni has just two things on their menu: potato or meat dumplings with all the classic fixings including butter, curry-curry-powder hot sauce, and sour cream. Served in styrofoam take-out cartons with a thick slab of Rye bread and pizzeria-style seating, seven dollars will get you 20 plump dumplings. Located downtown along the waterfront in an unassuming little corner shop, locals say its one of the only late-night eateries in town. 

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Sip on Bloody Marys from this Local Joint

Amalga Distillery

Amalga Distillery in Juneau, Alaska | © TravelJuneau.com

Amalga Distillery in Juneau, Alaska | © TravelJuneau.com

A local distillery and tasting room in downtown Juneau run by a husband and wife team. If you happen to be in town for the first Sunday of the month, Amalga hosts Sunday brunch with a fully-stocked Bloody Mary bar and bagel snacks. Drinks are made with in-house gin, whiskey and vodka and the sleek tasting room offers lots of comfortable seating with large windows for people watching. 

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A Bakery-turned-Boutique Hotel

Silverbow Inn

Courtesy of Silverbow Inn

Courtesy of Silverbow Inn

A historic bakery turned boutique inn, this business is owned by New York couple Jill Ramiel and Ken Alper. Silverbow Inn boasts the only Juneau downtown hotel with a roof hot tub and is strategically located within walking distance of bars, restaurants and the ferry terminal. Rooms go for about $120 per night and include breakfast. 

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The Only Hostel in Juneau

Juneau International Hostel

Courtesy of Juneau Hostel International

For the cost of $20 per night and one chore, guests can stay in a gendered dormitory room at Juneau’s only hostel, converted from a historic home. The hostel is downtown and open to all ages. Keep in mind that there is a daily curfew and guests will not be allowed back in after 10:30 p.m. The hostel closes from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and guests must be out. Cash only.

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A Historic Hotel Run by a Woman

The Jorgenson House

Courtesy of The Jorgenson House

Courtesy of The Jorgenson House

Built during the Klondike gold rush era, this house-turned-bed-and-breakfast was passed down to owner Renda Heimbigner from her uncle, Bill Jorgenson. Located in downtown Juneau, the property is easily walkable to major attractions. There are four guest suits for between $400-$500 per night for a penthouse suite.

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