Alaska is the 49th state of the United States of America, acquired from Russia on Oct 18, 1867. Because of its proximity to the North Pole, it encounters the longest summer days, and shortest winter days, than any other state in the nation.1
Something amazing about Alaska's residents is their insistence that Alaska is 'just like any other place in the world', which it obviously is not. Of course, nobody in Alaska lives in an igloo,2 nor do they ride dog sleds to work. However, there are few places left in the world where someone can drive for ten minutes from a bustling metropolis, and end up in the middle of the wilderness surrounded by bears. And as popular media is always quick to point out, moose do in fact walk down the streets in winter-time -- probably as frequently as you can imagine.3
Many Alaskans own a gun, but never use it. Most residents -- particularly the men, middle-aged and older -- speak with a southern accent. Girls wear miniskirts in the dead of winter, and everybody starts wearing shorts and tank-tops in April just as the snow starts to melt (despite the still-freezing temperatures).
Alaska is politically conservative, with exceptions made where recreation is concerned. It is illegal for homosexuals to marry, yet marijuana is legal for 'medicinal purposes'.
Please note that a new guide entry has been approved; Alaska and Hawaii. The author of that entry has plagarized me, and is also completely ignorant on the subject. Please pay him no heed.