Bear taking downtown Anchorage tour visits hotel and cemetery

ANCHORAGE, Alaska, Sept. 16 (UPI) — Authorities in Alaska said they kept tabs on a bear that walked through downtown Anchorage, visited the entrance of a hotel and wandered through a cemetery.

Anchorage residents said they were startled Thursday to encounter a black bear walking around the city’s downtown in the 4th Ave. area about 5:45 p.m.

Eddie Parker, manager of The Aviator Hotel, said the animal drew a crowd of onlookers when it approached the front entrance of the hotel.

“He looked into the doors of two of the exits, then took off a cross the parking lot towards the pool.” Parker told KTUU-TV. “He eventually made his way to 4th and A street.”

“He was pretty mellow, just minding his business. A few people were unaware as he drew close to them… but it all turned out OK,” Parker said.

Police said officers and Alaska Department of Fish and Game personnel started keeping tabs on the bear about 4:45 p.m. They did not attempt to capture the predator, but followed it from a safe distance to ensure it didn’t pose any danger to the public, police said.

The bear wandered about 8 p.m. into Anchorage Memorial Park Cemetery, where resident Umut Caken snapped a series of photos of the wandering bruin.

Resident Klaus Mayer also snapped a photo of the bear in the cemetery Thursday night and posted it to Twitter. He said it appeared the animal was being tranquilized by Fish and Game officers.

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