Wikimedia Commons

How Much America Can You America, America? Wikimedia Commons

It ain’t easy living in the greatest country on earth. With so many awesome things to be patriotic about, come July 4th the patriotic pressure can get downright overwhelming. Luckily, with a bit of careful planning the average Patriotic American can cram every patriotic impulse into one entire freedom-filled day. What follows is a suggested itinerary for any individual ready to embrace a … Read the rest

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Red, White and Effectively Paired Cheese

Sure, July 4th is thick with parades and patriotic hollering. But that can be a bit overwhelming, and you can America just as hard in a more subdued way: a picnic. It gets you outside into those purple mountains majesty and does it with snacks.

Here’s The Messenger’s favorite picnic spots around Southern Oregon.


Lithia Park

Less a park than a magic forest with amenities, … Read the rest

‘Merica, ‘Anada and ‘Exico

Much as it can seem like it at this time of year, America is not the only country in the world. We even have other countries totally, ahem, “touching us down south” like creeps. And since those neighbors can direct influence on our cultural, economic and political existence, we should probably know a thing or two about them so that we can better keep up with the Juanses.… Read the rest

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Going Rogue

Southern Oregon’s cast of Fourth of July parades are organized by local chambers of commerce. To participate, you fill out some forms and pay some fees. But this is the land of the free, and if you want to qualify as one of the brave, then toss bureaucracy to the wind and go Rogue by jumping into an open space and joining the parade off-script with your own DIY float.… Read the rest

Apple Pie at Debby's Diner in Phoenix.

Baked America Apple Pie at Debby’s Diner in Phoenix.

In Europe they use the metric system, but here in ‘Merrica, the primary unit of measurements are mom and apple pie. And since it would be weird to write about the five best moms available at local restaurants this Fourth of July, we’re going to focus on that lovely spawn of Mr. Appleseed and Mrs. Smith: the pie.

Here are The Messenger’s five … Read the rest

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All the Fourth Fit to Print

There are some holidays that are ginned up by greeting card companies. Other you could easily sleep through without missing much. Between every high school student in the county marching down the street blowing a trombone, the copious wearing of red and white pinstriped trousers, and the night sky being lit up like a warzone from fireworks, that’s not the case with The Fourth of July. … Read the rest

Other Articles in This Issue

Edmond Dantès (Al Espinosa, right) seeks his revenge and battles Danglars (Raffi Barsoumian), as Noirtier (Robin Goodrin Nordli) and a passing couple (Kyle Hines, Erin O'Connor) look on. Photo Credit: Jenny Graham

The play tells the story of Edmund Dantes, a trusting merchant sailor who is wrongfully thrown into prison through the scheming of those who coveted what he had. After 18 years in prison, he finally escapes, procures a fortune and sets about exacting his revenge on those who framed him. All in all, it is a rather depressing story in which so much pain and heartache could have been avoided if it … Read the rest


Professionally Lific Credit: Mike McClellan

Most bands release an album every two years or so. Some workaholics crank out a new work annually.

Jerome Arizona-based Nathan Payne, who will be playing at Club 66 in Ashland on Mon., June 29 with his band The Wild Bores, has 26 albums available on Bandcamp—15 from the last four years. Payne put out six albums in 2013 alone.

“I’ve just been writing for years and … Read the rest

The members of Rising Appalachia, ranked in order of facial hair.

Boom Bap Banjo The members of Rising Appalachia, ranked in order of facial hair.

The average listener would find little in common between banjo-plucking and turntable-scratching. Leah and Chloe Smith, the principal members of folk band Rising Appalachia, who will be performing at Britt on Thur., July 9 are not the average listeners.

“I think hip hop is the contemporary folk music,” says Leah Smith. “It’s a music that was created by … Read the rest

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And They’re Off!

For those of us in Southern Oregon who didn’t make it to the Kentucky Derby or the Triple Crown this year, our chance to enjoy this age-old sport has arrived in our neighborhood. Racing on the Rogue horse races at the Grants Pass Downs located within the Josephine County Fairgrounds will continue through July 12.

The racing season in Grants Pass opened last Saturday with excellent attendance and even … Read the rest

Red, White and Blue: a Preventable American Killer

As you purchase hot dogs and ice cream for your upcoming Fourth of July barbeque: consider. Cardiovascular disease claims more lives each year than cancer, chronic respiratory disease and accidents combined. It remains the leading cause of death in the United States despite current guideline driven care and good therapeutic efforts. There are many reasons for this, but one of the main problems has … Read the rest


What makes The Legendary Goodtimes work is a total lack of hypenation. While other bands are exploring sub-genres and micro-niches, they are unapologetic about their one-word genre: rock. Even the band’s cover of funk masterpiece “Superstition,” by Stevie Wonder is a purely power-chord affair, with amps cranked and no fucks given about Mr. Wonder’s many percussive nuances on the keys.

In April, the band did what every loud-ass electric band discusses after … Read the rest