Category: Cover Stories

Another Salem Downtown Organization

A private corporation has been formed to promote Salem’s downtown district. The entity, Salem Main Street Association (SMSA) is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) nonprofit that follows a downtown revitalization model called Oregon Main Street. SMSA hosted a public event on April 20 where it shared its vision with local people. “I believe our downtown is the heart of our community and represents who we are and historically who we were,” says Salem’s Hazel Patton, a historic preservationist and spokesperson for the group. SMSA will have no members, meaning that all significant decisions will be made exclusively by its board. The...

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Living with dread

As fears of deportation have shot up in undocumented immigrant communities since the Trump inauguration, thousands of local people have begun to take new steps to protect their families. The effects can be seen in the Marion County Clerk’s office where requests for passports for the children of undocumented people are on their way to being twelve times what they were last year. Passports are purchased to allow children born in the United States – who are documented – to travel to the country where an undocumented family member may have been returned. In Marion County, passports are issued...

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KMUZ team says documents implicate Marion County commissioner; Marion County says their facts are faulty

In a January 17 broadcast, reporters on KMUZ radio reviewed letters and emails obtained by a public records request that suggest that Marion County Commissioner Janet Carlson and other officials in the Mid-Willamette Homeless Initiative Task Force (“Task Force”) acted improperly last year. Carlson and the county say the broadcast presented factually inaccurate information, and that they look forward to a chance to respond. The show was KMUZ’s Tuesday morning Willamette Wake Up (WWU), a public affairs program that features Michael Livingston, Sara Cromwell and Sarah Rohrs. This Tuesday group had previously broadcast numerous shows on area homelessness and...

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Jay’s dream is not The Actor’s Nightmare: It’s Salem’s first — and, he hopes, annual — Cherry Blossom Theatre Festival

In case you haven’t noticed, Salem is fast becoming a theatre nexus. We’re not talking movies here, but live theatre — the original 3D, existential, onstage kind invented by the Greeks and perfected by a playwright from Stratford-upon-Avon and on Broadway’s stages. Fourteen local theatre companies, venues and supporters comprise the growing Salem Theatre Network, led by the Pimpernel himself, Jay Gipson King (disclosure: King also writes theatre reviews for Salem Weekly). That’s remarkable, because just a few years ago, there were only a handful of active theatre companies here in the Cherry City area and longtime residents know...

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Salem Councilor ousted by left wing conspiracy?

Two Salem talk show hosts say that a coordinated  conspiracy by the local Left resulted in the removal of Ward 6’s Daniel Benjamin, a sitting city councilor. They insist Benjamin’s ouster was part of a deliberate process of replacing him with a pre-selected progressive candidate. The assertions were made on January 19th and 20th on Gator’s Radio Experience, a weekday conservative talk show broadcast on 1430 KYKN and hosted by Gator Gaynor and Denise Nanke. “The progressives went on a witch hunt over Thanksgiving,” Gaynor said, “and ousted Daniel Benjamin from that seat… in an unbelievable, unfair, unethical, wrong...

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