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While this backpack is more about camping than campus, we thought that this new backpack company, ME-2 Packs, was the right person to track down for our Back-to-School Mind Your Business column. Currently hosting a Kickstarter campaign, Candace Spears is hoping to introduce her strap-free backpack to the region. A

Over the next two months, the Messenger is providing Q&A with candidates for local positions. We start with the incumbent Mayor of Ashland. Answers were provided by email (hence, the emoticons). Rogue Valley Messenger: After eight years as mayor, what do you feel is your biggest achievement so far? John

Phoenix-Talent School District spans three cities with five schools—Phoenix High School, Talent Middle School, Orchard Hill Elementary in Medford, and elementary schools in Phoenix and Talent. That’s 2700 students. Superintendent Teresa Sayre is retiring next year after 30 years in education; 18 at this particular district. Sayre is known in

“We’re in the epicenter,” declares Mitra Sticklen. “Everyone is really passionate about the role they fill,” she says, and with a script that could come from a Silicon Valley startup, goes on to explain that they hold quarterly feedback sessions “to make sure everyone has an equal voice in the

It is not new news that the housing market in Ashland is tight, with a reported one or two percent vacancy rates. And, as first-time renters without rental history and often without full-time jobs, students and young residents are often shunned by landlords. But, starting in September, students will receive

Our second installment in our new column, “Mind Your Business,” which profiles local entrepreneurs, checks in with Grant Pass-based Curt Pearce at CP Designs, which designs and sells the Up Rooter, a specialty tool for pulling out small trees and invasive species. Rogue Valley Messenger: You had worked with Tom

Last Monday, two dozen teens gathered at the Bureau of Reclamation office in Klamath Falls. One was wearing a Haz-mat suit, and holding gallon jugs of polluted water from the Klamath Straits Drain. “Would you give this to your kids to drink?,” many in the group shouted at Jason Cameron,

We are starting a new column in the Messenger, “Mind Your Business,” which profiles local entrepreneurs. We kick off with Chris Duncan, who is working with Southern Oregon Angels to secure funding to re-launch production for his latest business adventure, Alpaca Guitar.    Rogue Valley Messenger: The Alpaca is a

As the Fourth of July rolled through with its fireworks and patriotic fanfare, it also marked the beginning to a new, troubling fiscal year for Josephine County. While belts have been tight over the past several years for county services like the sheriff’s department, the District Attorney and jails, the

RVM: From looking at the proposed budget, public safety will receive $14 million this year.  How far below do you believe that is for “adequate” funding for public safety in Josephine County – and what do you consider “adequate” services? SH: In the current fiscal year 2016-17 the public safety