Alaska’s Charming Town Of Talkeetna Loses Their Lovable Cat Mayor

Stubb's the Cat Mayor - Talkeetna, Alaska

 By: Courtney Dowd-Stanley 

It’s not every day that you stumble upon a small town that is led by none other than a furry feline. Since 1997, Stubbs has been the reigning cat mayor of this idyllic hamlet located at the confluence of the Susitna, Chulitna and Talkeetna Rivers. That is, until the night of July 20, 2017, when Stubbs passed away in his sleep. Flickr - Timothy Wildey
As the story goes, the manager of Nagley’s General Store, Lauri Stec, originally adopted Stubbs out of a box full of kittens that the owners were giving away. She chose Stubbs because he did not have a tail (which is where the name came from). There was a popular rumor that mentioned Stubbs being elected as the town cat mayor after a successful write-in campaign by local residents. Talkeetna doesn’t actually have a mayor, so Stubb’s the cat mayor had a very dignified position that was merely honorary, as Talkeetna is only a historical district. cat mayor Flickr - Cody Wellons
Nagley’s General Store in Talkeetna doubled as Stubbs’s Mayoral Office, which has made the store quite the tourist attraction. Throughout his life as mayor, Stubbs has been flooded with cards and letters from fans all around the globe. During the peak summer months, Stubbs attracted between 30 and 40 tourists every single day. cat mayor Flickr - Jenni Konrad
In Talkeetna, Stubbs was king. By the looks of things, we’d say he loved every second of his life as Alaskan royalty. cat mayor Flickr - Rick Fogerty (aka Cowboy Rick)
After some quality time with Stubbs the cat mayor, visitors to Talkeetna would have the opportunity to experience exceptional recreational activities, local shops, and yummy restaurants. Flickr - Rick Fogerty (aka Cowboy Rick)
Talkeetna is located roughly 113 miles north of Alaska’s largest city of Anchorage off of the George Parks Highway, and 150 miles south of Denali National Park. Locals and visitors are attracted to Talkeetna for its quirky charm and distinctive character. Flickr - Sandy Brown Jensen
A leisurely stroll through the historic downtown district will give you a dose of the local art scene. Flickr - Tommy Wiklind
No matter your activity while you are there, life is always good in Talkeetna. Life is good in Talkeetna - PC of Talkeetna Tiny House Cabin
Nearby views of the Alaska Range are guaranteed to catch everyone’s attention. On a clear day, Denali will blow you away. Flickr - Thomas Brando Greenman
Flightseeing and glacier landing excursions from Talkeetna are sure to impress. Fly into Denali National Park and feast your eyes on jaw-dropping views overlooking North America’s highest mountain peak at 20,310 feet. Flickr - Dave Hensley

A trip to Talkeetna on the Alaska Railroad is one that you will never forget. Soaking in scenic views with excellent onboard service—now THAT is hard to beat!

Flickr - Dave Hensley

One of our favorite places to stay in Talkeetna is the Talkeetna Tiny House Cabin.  While it may appear small in size it has all the right touches and even has an infrared sauna inside.  There is more than enough space for four adults to stay there. It is a fantastic place to hang out and enjoy our time in both the winter or the summer.

PC of Talkeetna Tiny House Cabin
Did you ever meet Stubbs the cat mayor? What are your favorite memories in the charming town of Talkeetna, Alaska?
Looking for more where that came from? To learn about another incredible small town check out Girdwood, Alaska - Named Among World's Top 10 Greatest Mountain Towns. Also, Explore The Magnificent Scenery Inside Alaska's First State Park - Kachemak Bay. This Alaska Road Trip Will Lead You Through The Most Treasured Tiny Towns.
If you are living and loving The Alaska Life – share your adventures with us on our Facebook page HERE, and they might just end up getting featured in one of our next blog posts.
Written by Courtney Dowd-Stanley 


I was lucky enough to meet the Great Mayor Stubbs twice. I was married May 24th 2014 and had our honey moon in Alaska. At the time my wife and I lived in NE, but my mother-in-law was in Wasilla so we flew into anchorage and stayed a night in Wasilla to catch the Alaska Railroad to Denali for 3 days and then stopped in Talkeetna for a wonderful day. We went ziplining and than explored the town and met Stubbs. 3 years later we came back with an 18month old and a cousin to show him Alaska and of course the wonderful town of Talkeetna. The first thing we did when arriving to Talkeetna was take my son and cousin to meet the Mayor who was proudly perched on the counter when we walked in. My cousin and I contanstly tell the stories from our trip to Alaska/Talkeetna and when we explain to our group of friends that the mayor is a cat we receive a long pause and finally many questions about Talkeetna. I hope to have my own spot near Talkeetna one day that I can come to and visit whenever I want. I am glad we went when we did, because we were able to see Stubbs shortly before he passed. Now my questions is who is the new mayor or who will it be? Hope to be back soon

Greg April 17, 2021

Perhaps Beaver Hanger Cat who lives at TAT can take over as honorary mayor. Good Katz make good mayors.

Susan Falley April 17, 2021

We met the new mayor “Denali”, saw Stubbs just briefly

Craig April 17, 2021

Lol from a local .

Ken April 17, 2021

I have lived in Talkeetna since 1999. The last time I saw "Mayor Stubbs was when my daughter, Sarah and her fiancee came to visit this past January. We were at the West rib having lunch and Mr. Stubbs was brought out to make an appearance. What a cool cat.?

Anita April 17, 2021

There were 7 or 8 restaurants when you were here & still are. You had to pass by 2 of them to get to & from the train station. I hope the local dog didn’t attack your seeing eye dog!

krystal April 17, 2021

Yes we did see Stubbs .. We were there on May 30th, He looked like he lived the life! Had full run of the place.
Talkeetna was 1 of many stops on our Rv trip thru Alaska, I finally did the number 1 thing on my bucket list.
Now I want to go back to Alaska for a even longer visit! It truly is Heaven on Earth ! Beauty abounds!

Linda Fordham April 17, 2021

In April/May 2012, I made my trip of a lifetime at the age of 64, to Alaska. I took a rental car and drove myself to many wonderful towns, villages and cities from Fairbanks to Valdez thro down to Juneau.
My first Fantastic stay over was at The Roadhouse in Talkeetna. On wandering through the town I popped into a ‘pub?’ and had a wonderful cheese toast with the company of Stubbs! He even did his wineglass of catnip trick for me!!
After 5 weeks travelling and having 3 days in Anchorage before my flight back to the UK, I just had to drive back to Talkeetna to see Stubbs again and take the Alaska Railroad!! Wow, what a day trip that was!!
One day, no matter if with a Zimmer frame!, if the Uk Lotto numbers are lucky for me, Alaska is where I’m heading back.

Kriss Hyman April 17, 2021

Enjoyed the story about Talkeetna and Stubbs. Armchair travel is my way of exploring our beautiful country and world. Thank you for sharing. In my brief visits to my parents home I just saw some of the Kenai Peninsula. Would love to visit Alaska and see more of this majestic state.

Joyce Havenga April 17, 2021

Dear Residents of Talkeetna,

I am sorry for the loss of your dear Mayor Stubbs. He was beautiful. Maybe someday I can visit your lovely little town. If you come south, check out Willow Springs Missouri. I love the name of your general store, “Nagley’s” …. My maiden name is Nagle.

Ann Pulley April 17, 2021

I first met Stubbs in 1998. He was a very good Mayor; traveling around town greeting visitors and in Winter hanging around the warm fire. He had trouble with over the years with trouble makers but always prevailed. I moved outside in 2007 but in the years since I have been back to visit and when I visit Talkeetna always try to find Stubbs. He will be missed. To let you know how far and wide he was known. His Obituary was in the Spokane newspaper this morning. Bless you Stubbs, you will be missed.

Karen Miller April 17, 2021

I have never been to Alaska but I would give anything if I could go to Alaska. My husband and I are doable veteran and have never been on a Honeymoon and we have been married for 31 years . I have watched every show that comes on about Alaska. I pray that I could win a trip to Alaska ??

Gale Wedgeworth April 17, 2021

R.I.P. Stubbs. The town will sorely miss you!

Leslie April 17, 2021

I left a comment above.

Eileen April 17, 2021

What a fantastic story! Thank you.

Susannah Loiselle April 17, 2021

“In battle, in forest, at the precipice in the mountains,
On the dark great sea, in the midst of javelins and arrows,
In sleep, in confusion, in the depths of shame,
The good deeds a cat has done before defend him.”

― bhagavad gita

Robert Somaduroff April 17, 2021

When our train stopped at Tàlkeetna in 202 we piled off the train and made our way to -downtown Talkeetna. At 1st we thought this was just the beginning of the town, not actually the whole town! We stood looking at the General Store and honestly, that*s all i can remember of the town, except for 2 dogs who wandered aroun one went into the store abd we followed! What an amazing place it was. They had some of most unique gifts at reasonable prices in Alaska. We spent about anhour in the store, then the train blew the whistle and we had to hurry to pay for our gifts and then rush back to the train. As i remember there were no resturants there at the time, of course we had to pat the dogs head as we left the store, i think he was the security guard! We will never forget that nice old fashion town in the middle of no where! Hope to visit again in a year or two!

Eileen April 17, 2021

I have always wanted to visit Alaska, but never could afford it. I am fighting Breast Cancer for the second time. This time it’s bad. I love looking at your post. Maybe someday I will make it there. Keep the post coming. God Bless. Diane Nichols

Diane Nichols April 17, 2021

I was there in Aug. 2009. It is such a quaint town with quaint stores. I found Devils claw salve, which is the best for Arthritis, Carpal Tunnel and muscle aches. We also had the best pizza that was the closest to real New York pizza. Would love to visit Talkeetna again one day.

SANDI April 17, 2021

I have many pictures of this Infamous Mayor!!!!!! So sorry to hear. Xo

Peggy April 17, 2021

I have never been to Alaska if i ever get the chance someday but for now looking at the pictures sent here is good enough for me !

David April 17, 2021

I met Stubbs several times while working in Alaska few summers. He will be missed.

Connie Mintz April 17, 2021

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