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Ski and Snowboard Swap is back for 2011

The Medford Ski Education Foundation will hold its annual Ski and Snowboard Swap next weekend, Nov. 11-13, in the multipurpose room at St. Mary's School, 816 Black Oak Dr., Medford.

This year, several large merchants will be in attendance offering deals on new and used ski and snowboarding equipment. They will operate alongside private-party sellers looking for some extra holiday cash or an equipment upgrade.

Used snowboards, skis, boots, helmets and clothing can be checked in prior to the event during a merchant registration from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. Thursday at the MSEF Clubhouse at 303 E. Jackson St. next to the Rogue Ski Shop.

There also will be a late registration from 8 to 11 a.m. Friday at St. Mary's School. An early-bird sale takes place from 5 to 10 p.m. Friday. Admission that day will be $5 per person or $10 per family.

Last year's Friday event drew a crowd of more than 300 bargain hunters looking for deals, MSEF president Brian Winkler says.

The Saturday sale will run from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission that day will be $3 per person and $6 per family.

A closeout sale will be featured Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., with free admission and all merchandise on the floor discounted up to 50 percent.

MSEF is a nonprofit foundation that works to make competitive skiing available for high-school students in Jackson and Josephine counties. The annual swap event is the foundation's largest fundraiser of the year.

Additional details are available on the MSEF website at www.msefskier.com or www.southernoregonskiswap.com.

Federal refuge officials are holding public meetings this month along the Oregon Coast to gather input on draft management plans that will guide actions at the Bandon Marsh National Wildlife Refuge and two northern Oregon estuaries.

The lands are part of the Oregon Coast National Wildlife Refuge Complex, which includes refuges in Nestucca and Siletz bays.

The Bandon refuge information will be presented for comment from 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9, at the Bandon Community Center, 1200 SW 11th St., Bandon.

Other meetings are planned for Thursday, Nov. 10, in Lincoln City and Wednesday, Nov. 16, in Pacific City.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has drafted three management alternatives for these refuges, with the intention of finding the version that will best guide management there for the next 15 years. The plans identify long-range goals and objectives as well as strategies for reaching them.

The 883-acre Bandon refuge, along the lower Coquille River, was established in 1983 to preserve what refuge officials called the last substantive tract of salt marsh in the Coquille River estuary. It includes a 400-acre tract of historic salt marsh that was restored to tidal influence this past summer.

Reach reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470 or mfreeman@mailtribune.com.