Ravenna Koenig

If you want to incorporate quality time with animals into your yoga practice, you have a lot of options these days. There's puppy yoga, cat yoga, and perhaps the most famous — goat yoga.

Now, in Fairbanks, Alaska, there's a new offering: a yoga class with fauna particular to the cold northern climes of the subarctic. Reindeer.

In the northernmost town in the United States, the sun stops appearing above the horizon in November and doesn't make it back up until January.

That first sunrise of the new year is the pivot-point on which winter turns and begins to move toward spring, delivering people on the northern Arctic coast of Alaska from the long spell of darkness.

When the sun comes up in Utqiaġvik, it makes a dramatic entrance: a thumbnail of neon pink inching above the horizon. And people are so, so glad to see it.

People who live in the town of Utqiaġvik have seen dramatic effects of climate change during their lifetimes.

Utqiaġvik, formerly known as Barrow, sits right on the edge of the Arctic Ocean at the very top of Alaska. It's the northernmost town in the United States, and home to about 4,400. The coastline here used to be edged with sea ice for nearly the whole year. But that period is getting shorter and shorter, and as a result Utqiaġvik locals are dealing with coastal erosion and are changing how they hunt in the fall.

A milestone oil development project in Alaska's Arctic waters is having to extend its construction timeline to accommodate the warming climate. The recently approved Liberty Project — poised to become the first oil production facility in federal Arctic waters — has altered its plans due to the shrinking sea ice season.

Winter in Fairbanks, Alaska can be brutal. Daylight dips below 4 hours, and temperatures regularly fall past -30F.

So spring, when it finally shows up, is a big deal. People can reel off a long list of the things that signal the season is underway.

One of them is a 93-year-old man in a custard-yellow truck.

Glenn Hackney has lived in Alaska since 1948. And every spring, he's irked by the same sight: trash that has piled up over the winter, and is slowly being uncovered by the melting snow.

Mary Matsuda Gruenewald grew up on Vashon Island in Washington State. It's a small town of about 10,000 people — many of whom commute by ferry to jobs in nearby Seattle. It's green, it's beautiful, it's the kind of place where you can't walk into the grocery store without seeing someone you know.

Mary Matsuda Gruenewald says that when she lived there, a lot of the families were farming families, including hers. Her high school experience was pretty typical, until one Sunday in 1941.

How does a scientist become a principal timpanist at the Met?

Jason Haaheim gets that question all the time. The 38-year-old is a former nanotechnology researcher, with a master's degree in electrical engineering. But four years ago, he made a major life pivot: to play professionally with the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra.

Canadian singer-songwriter Simone Schmidt, who performs under the name Fiver, undertook an ambitious project with her latest album. Audible Songs From Rockwood is Schmidt's way of telling the stories of real people committed to Rockwood Asylum, a 19th-century institution near what's now Kingston, Ontario.

Leslie Feist's new album is her first in six years — and it sounds nothing like the polished alternative pop that got her nominated for Best New Artist at the 2008 Grammys, nor the big ensemble sound that won her a Polaris Prize for Metals in 2012. This one is gritty, spare.

With less than a month to go before Election Day, Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump are focused on locking up key battleground states. One of them is North Carolina, a state that Barack Obama turned blue in 2008, but lost in 2012.

It's a pivotal moment in any young person's life — that point at which you turn from the home you've known all your life, breathe in deeply and leap into the vast unknown of the world beyond.

It's a moment that young adult authors know well, and not just because they write for these young readers. They've experienced it themselves, and they've come out the other side, pen in hand.