Local news briefs

Batteries can be recycled at no cost during April

During April, participating American Automobile Association-approved auto repair shops will accept, at no cost, used automotive or marine lead-acid batteries and send them to plants where they can be recycled into new batteries.

Automotive and marine lead-acid batteries that are not disposed of properly can leak and contaminate the soil and groundwater with lead and sulfuric acid, explode and cause a fire, or become a source of lead poisoning to humans and animals.

The lead can be recovered through recycling.

For a complete list of participating facilities, call 800-AAA-HELP or see AAA.com/auto.

Mt. Ashland Ski Area gets $50,000 matching grant

The Mt. Ashland Ski Area has received a $50,000 matching grant from a Los Angeles foundation to be used for its project to expand parking and improve several ski runs.

The Gardner Grout Foundation grant was a match for a $50,000 donation made by Joel and Connie Slaughter. The foundation has awarded Mt. Ashland a total of $150,000 in various gifts over seven years.

Mt. Ashland is raising $250,000 for the summer improvement project, which will include the addition of 101 parking spaces, recontouring the beginner slope and widening several other ski runs.

For more information on the project, see www.mtashland.com/parkinglot.

Arts organizations share $33,000 from commission

Three Rogue Valley-based arts organizations received more than $33,000 in grants from the Oregon Arts Commission.

The grants are intended to strengthen artistic entities in Oregon.

Ashland's Oregon Shakespeare Festival received $20,000 to support a Patron Loyalty Index study, designed to identify the festival's most loyal patrons and develop untapped areas for growth and revenue.

Jacksonville's Britt Festivals received $8,250 to support the expansion of its existing database software.

Medford's Rogue Gallery & Art Center received $5,000 to fund the installation of new software that will better track donations, communicate with volunteers and promote classes.

The grants were among 18 awarded statewide that totaled $349,014.

Compiled from staff reports

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