Welcome to the Arctic Circle Club, President Obama

Alaska Airlines CEO signs a certificate initiating President Barack Obama into the "Arctic Circle Club."

When President Barack Obama announced plans to visit the state of Alaska, the entire state was buzzing with rumors and suspicions as to where he would go. Many suspected Dutch Harbor, some had heard that it would be Barrow. Others suspected Kotzebue. But when Kotzebue Station Manager Dawn Carl received a phone call from the White House, she knew that rumors of the visit were true. Those rumors became reality on Sept. 2, when Air Force One touched down in Kotzebue – the first time a current U.S. president had been north of the Arctic Circle.

Often when customers travel to a destination above the Arctic Circle, Alaska Airlines will surprise them with a certificate signifying their induction to the “Arctic Circle Club.” All of the certificates are signed by Alaska Airlines President and CEO Brad Tilden.

Although the president flew on his own plane into Kotzebue, Tilden thought it would be fitting to recognize President Obama as part of the select group that is the Arctic Circle Club. Tilden signed an Arctic Circle Club card for the president today. While there are no membership benefits to the club, other than bragging rights, the decorative certificates have been available to customers who make the long journey to the Arctic for half a century.

Alaska Airlines serves three communities above the Arctic Circle: Kotzebue, Barrow and Prudhoe Bay.

Have you joined the Arctic Circle Club?


  1. Yes! I’m a Blue Nose – Thule AB Greenland

  2. I’ve been to OTZ and Barrow lots of times, I never received the “Above the Arctic Certificate” that would be kind of cool to receive.

    1. Kevin – email newsroom@alaskaair.com with your best mailing address. We’d love to send you one!

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