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Ailing man crashes car into Jacksonville GoodBean; local briefs

A Jacksonville man suffered a medical emergency Monday afternoon and crashed his car into Jacksonville's GoodBean Coffee, putting a crack in a pillar on the historic building.

Timothy Hutchinson, 54, was headed north on South Oregon Street at about 4:40 p.m. Monday when his vehicle swerved and slammed into the business, located in the old Table Rock Billiard Saloon building at 165 S. Oregon St., the Jacksonville Police Department reported.

"It appears that the driver had some type of a medical issue and then lost control of the vehicle," Jacksonville Police Chief David Towe said.

The strike cracked a pillar and damaged the car's front end. A damage estimate was not available. No one in the building was injured.

Hutchinson was taken to Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center where he was listed in critical condition Tuesday afternoon.

The building was built in 1860 as Table Rock Bakery, State Historic Preservation Office records say.

An 18-year-old Gold Hill man snapped off a power pole next to Highway 234 Monday when he allegedly drove his vehicle into the pole intentionally, Oregon State Police reported.

The incident happened at 3:30 p.m. as the man was driving westbound on the highway northeast of Gold Hill near milepost 5. Oregon State Police reported he suddenly swerved off the road while driving at about 60 mph. He struck the pole and his 1995 Nissan Pathfinder came to rest in a ditch. Power lines fell to the ground.

The man stumbled out of the vehicle, police said. A witness cared for him until medical personnel arrived. He was transported by helicopter to Asante Rogue Regional Medical Center for a mental health examination and some non-life threatening injuries.

The eastbound lane of the highway was closed while Pacific Power repaired the downed pole.

Southern Oregon's best-known ghost town will become its busiest from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 31, with the arrival of the annual Buncom Day event.

There will be a parade at about noon, along with a "chicken splat" contest, in which contestants draw a number shown on a board and wait for a chicken to "mark" its spot on the board.

The Applegate Lion's Club will serve a barbecue lunch. There also will be a country store, sales of books and plants, children's activities and a variety of exhibits.

Music will be provided by several entertainers, including former Kingston Trio member Bob Haworth and a four-piece bluegrass band.

Admission is free. To get there, follow Highway 238 to Ruch, turn south at Ruch on Upper Applegate Road, travel three miles, turn east on Little Applegate Road and go another three miles to Buncom at the intersection with Sterling Creek Road. See www.buncom.org for more information.

Three Medford high school students have been named winners of the Jackson County Republican Women's annual scholarship contest.

The contest, open to high school juniors in Jackson County, required submission of an essay on freedom and its connection to the U.S. Constitution and the principles on which the nation was founded.

First place and a scholarship award of $1,000 went to Rachel Bennion of St. Mary's High School. Keyari Sleezer of South Medford High School finished second and received a $300 scholarship, and Lauren Arnold of North Medford High School was third and received a $200 scholarship.

Compiled from staff reports