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Letters to the Editor December 2

Tool donations needed for self-help housing

On Friday, Nov. 20, the tools at the Rogue Valley Community Development Corporation Rice Park low-income mutual self-help housing project were stolen. The tool storage shed was broken into with a crow bar, and $10,000 worth of power tools belonging to the nonprofits RVCDC and Youth Build were stolen.

These nonprofits have no insurance on the tools. They are hoping for any donations of power tools, including but not limited to power saws, chop saws, nail guns, air compressors, power drills, staple guns, jig saws, drill bits, etc.

Cash donations can also be made at Ashland/Ace Hardware and Home Depot in the name of Rogue Valley CDC/Rice Park and Youth Build. RVCDC will also pick up any tools that you'd like to donate; just call 734-2355. Donations are tax deductible.

For more information about RVCDC, see their Web site: www.RogueValleyCDC.org. Applications for low-income homeowner opportunities are also now being accepted for phase two of Rice Park.

Youth Build, the second nonprofit whose tools were stolen, is a program for young adults ages 16 to 24 who earn money acquiring construction skills as well as earning their GED. Youth Build is sponsored by the Job Council and Federal Grants. They are also accepting applications and tool donations at this time. For more information, go to www.jobcouncil.org or call 842-2566.

Cathy Freeman


Thank you for the book fair support

The 2009 Southern Oregon Book and Author Fair would like to send a big thank you again this year to the Rogue Valley community of readers who visited this year's fair at the Ashland Springs Hotel on Nov. 21. The authors all had a great time talking with all of you and autographing books. I also want to acknowledge with gratitude the wonderful venue and services of the Ashland Springs Hotel. Plus, thank you to the Mail Tribune, Daily Tidings, Grants Pass Courier, Ashland Chamber of Commerce and Ashland Resource Center for providing such magnificent publicity prior to the event. Southern Oregon events require the PR provided by these organizations in order to ensure public awareness that leads to a successful event. Book and author fair organizers and authors are grateful that you felt us worthy of such great coverage!

Claire Krulikowski


Breaking records at the food bank

As most of you are aware, the numbers from the Ashland School District show that a large percentage of families in Ashland fall below the poverty line. Many of those families come to the Ashland Emergency Food Bank for an emergency supply of food each month. In the three days before Thanksgiving, AEFB served 124 local families. In those three days, we distributed more than 5,805 pounds of food! On average, we distribute more than 21,000 pounds of food each month.

And where does that food come from? From the amazingly generous citizens of Ashland. Words cannot express our gratitude for your generous contributions of food. We received a record amount of food donations in November — 21,605 pounds!

We would like to thank the individuals and organizational food drives that made this happen. A special thanks to: Oak Knoll Men's Club, Amy's Kitchen, Ashland Community Hospital, Albertsons, Maranatha (INSpire), The Siskiyou School, Paddington Station, Ashland Food Co-Op, Ashland Grange Co-Op, The Dollar Tree, Boy Scouts of Ashland, Oregon Student Public Research Group (OSPIRG) on the SOU campus and the Rotary Club of Ashland.

Ashland is a community that cares. And for that, we say, thank you!

Ann Marie Hutson,

president, Ashland Emergency Food Bank

Geppetto's owners kept library open

Thanks for your Nov. 24 feature on Ron Roth and Kathleen MacMichael and their long history with Geppetto's, an Ashland eatery famous for its eggplant burgers and ambience. What many readers may not know is the couple's major role in keeping our libraries open and welcoming. When the county libraries closed in April 2007, Ron asked what he might do. For the last three years, these unsung heroes have hosted the Barbecue for Books at Eagle Mill Farm, an occasion that has brought the community together to celebrate in tough times. It's also raised thousands of dollars for the Friends of Ashland Public Library. Due to Ron and Kathleen's generosity, many programs have been supported, including a new effort to provide books and literacy materials for all babies born in Ashland.

After 32-plus years running Geppetto's, Ron will continue to offer Eagle Mill's pumpkin patch and garden for hundreds of local children to enjoy. He'll continue to be the jolly host wherever he is. We wish this fine couple well and hope Geppetto's will prosper under its new ownership.

Many thanks from the Friends of the Ashland Public Library.

Sue Lopez

president, Friends of the Ashland Public Library

Common sense

The guest opinion by Laurie Baden published in the Nov. 23 issue of the Ashland Daily Tidings was, without a doubt, the best example of common sense I have read in the paper in many months. The final sentence, "Let's call it what it is: indecent exposure," said it all.

Now, City Council, get on with it!

Marjorie R. Jensen