As of 2014, Stubbs is still mayor, and has been described as a tourist attraction, having been flooded with cards and letters, and drawing 30 to 40 tourists each day (most of whom are en route to other Alaska destinations, such as Mount McKinley) who hope to meet "the mayor". Stubbs's position is honorary, as the town is only a "historical district".
Every afternoon, Stubbs goes to a nearby restaurant and drinks water out of a wineglass laden with catnip.
Early Life and Election
In 1997, Lauri Stec, manager of Nagley's General Store, found Stubbs in a box full of kittens in her parking lot. The owners were giving the kittens away; Stec chose "Stubbs" because he did not have a tail.
A popular rumor states Stubbs was elected following a successful write-in campaign by voters who opposed the human candidates. However, according to NPR, the cat could not have been elected as a write-in candidate because "the tiny town has no real mayor, so there was no election." Nagley's General Store now doubles as Stubbs' Mayoral Office.
On August 31, 2013, Stubbs was attacked by a dog. He was placed under heavy sedation at a veterinary hospital 70 miles away in Wasilla, having suffered a punctured lung, a fractured sternum, and a deep wound in his side. A crowdsourcing page was set up to help pay for Stubbs' medical bills. Stubbs ended up staying in the veterinary hospital for nine days before returning to the upstairs room of the general store; he is now prevented from roaming so far as is practical. Donations toward his care were received from around the world; the surplus was given to an animal shelter and to the local veterinary clinic.
Other exploits from which the feline mayor has escaped include being shot by teenagers with BB guns, falling into a restaurant's deep fryer (which was switched off and cool at the time), and hitching a ride to the outskirts of Talkeetna on a garbage truck.
^Lamb, Jason (July 13, 2012). "Talkeetna Mayor is a Cat Named Stubbs". KTUU-TV. Archived from the original on 2013-04-22. Retrieved July 19, 2012. "cat named Stubbs has been the mayor of Talkeetna for nearly all of his life -- no joke. It's been that way for more than a decade in the small tourist town that boasts nearly 900 residents. The part-manx was named honorary mayor shortly after his birth, and now locals all know the cat as "Mayor Stubbs.""
^"Alaska town elects a cat for mayor". United Press International, Inc. July 15, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2012. "As the story goes, about 15 years ago, some residents of Talkeetna were unhappy with the candidates who were running for mayor, so as a joke, they encouraged others to elect Stubbs the cat as a write-in candidate, and he actually won."
^"Cat marks 15 years as Alaskan mayor". Euronews. July 16, 2012. Archived from the original on 2013-04-22. Retrieved July 19, 2012. "He has been a popular tourist attraction ever since in the town of 900 people. 'He was just in the Alaska Magazine, and he’s been featured in a few different things,' said Lauri Stec, who works at Nagley’s General Store in Talkeetna, where Stubbs hangs out most of the time."
^Duerson, Meena (July 17, 2012). "Cat has been mayor of Alaska town for 15 years". NYDailyNews.com. Daily News, L.P. Retrieved July 19, 2012. "Stec manages Stubbs’s main haunt, Nagley’s General Store, and says the cat has been a good leader when it comes to local small businesses. "He doesn't raise our taxes - we have no sales tax. He doesn't interfere with business,” she told CNN. “He's honest.” Yet Stubbs has exhibited some diva behavior, such as drinking water out of a wine glass laden with catnip every afternoon."