John Baxter

Jefferson Exchange Producer

John Baxter's history at JPR reaches back three decades.  John was the JPR program director who was the architect of the split from a single station into three separate program services.  We're thrilled that John has taken a hiatus from his retirement to join JPR as co-producer of the Jefferson Exchange.

U.S. Geological Survey

If you spot a bumble bee that looks interesting, now you have a bigger reason to tell someone.  Several organizations are joining together to create a Pacific Northwest Bumble Bee Atlas

It will use the work of citizen scientists to track the numbers and overall health of several bumble bee species, at a time in history when bee populations appear to be in decline. 

The Xerces Society, based in Portland, is one of the partners. 

HIV, the human immunodeficiency virus, is not as scary as it once was.  Testing positive for HIV used to mean a progression into AIDS, and an early death.  Treatments for people with HIV have improved vastly. 

And the numbers of cases have generally trended downward.  But parts of the region, including Coos County, have noticed an uptick in HIV reports. 

The Oregon Health Authority keeps an eye on numbers, causes, and treatments. 

Racism is a hot topic in our times (as if it ever really cooled down).  And a historical perspective helps us better understand the very concept of race. 

Katharine Gerbner provides such a perspective in her book Christian Slavery: Conversion and Race in the Protestant Atlantic World

Gerbner details the efforts to give Christianity to African slaves brought across the Atlantic, and how a shared religion brought about some ethical gymnastics: how can a Christian person maintain bondage over a fellow Christian? 

Slaveholders, slaves, and missionaries are all followed in the book. 

Governments on both sides of the state line are working hard to keep up with the legalization of marijuana.  But the process is not without its problems or complaints. 

The environmental group Friends of the Eel River is taking the Humboldt County supervisors to court. 

The group says the new land-use regulations for legal cannabis grows in the county lack environmental protections. 

Lisa LaPierre/Britt Festival

Big thanks go to the people who thought a grassy hillside would be a good place to enjoy concerts of classical music.  That's how the Britt Music & Art Festival got its start in Jacksonville, in the summer of 1963. 

The Orchestra Season returns on July 25th for its regular season of seven concerts. 

But "regular" is a relative term.  New works and surprises are part of any Britt Orchestra program. 

stevepb/Pixabay

More than a quarter of Oregon's millennial generation get monthly cash infusions from family members.  More than half take family money at some point in the year. 

And it's not just "buy yourself something pretty;" the money is needed for rent and other expenses in a state where housing costs rise faster than incomes. 

Country Financial tracks the picture in Oregon and all states, and actually finds Oregon doing somewhat better than the national average, by some measures. 

thetrek.co

70 is generally not the age we associate with long-distance hiking. 

But Southern Oregon's Dami Roelse works to push the boundaries, both for herself and people her age.  She's been known to set out on the Pacific Crest Trail for two weeks at a time, even in frigid conditions. 

Dami tells her stories in the book Walking Gone Wild: How to Lose Your Age on the Trail

Candiix/Pixabay

Think globally, act locally. 

But yeesh, what can one family do to slow climate change?  A little bit at a time, and it counts. 

Sue Reed and Ginny Stibolt say instead of wringing our hands, let's roll up our sleeves, and get busy in the garden. 

They provide tips for planting in harmony with nature's current ways, in the book Climate-Wise Landscaping: Practical Actions for a Sustainable Future

Jsayre64, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=15415531

Hayward Field at the University of Oregon is almost more shrine than athletic facility.  It has a storied history in track and field, a history known across the country and across the sport. 

So it's not surprising that the plans to renovate Hayward have raised a few eyebrows and tempers. 

Especially since "renovate" meant tearing down the East Grandstand. 

Tom Heinonen, a former coach at UO, has many memories from his years coaching track. 

Lorie Shaull, CC BY-SA 2.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=56412956

The 1973 Roe vs Wade decision legalizing abortion across the United States has been in the news again of late. 

Not like it's ever out of the news for long, but the nomination of a new federal Supreme Court justice raises the possibility that the court will consider, and restrict or overturn, Roe vs Wade in the next couple of years. 

That is a concern to NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon, which supports the maintenance of abortion rights in the state. 

Oregon has some of the most liberal abortion laws in the country, but the group is monitoring events just the same. 

Public Domain

Do you remember the first time you saw a magic trick as a kid?  Something vanished, or appeared, or broke and got fixed again.  And you wondered how it was done. 

Magicians are not supposed to tell their secrets.  But magic designer and author Jim Steinmeyer tells a few, with co-author Peter Lamont, in The Secret History of Magic

Not so much tricks, as the secret of magic's own story, and some of the myths that have grown around it. 

It's warm, it's light late into the evening, and we have a little spare time.  That's the reason summer is so conducive to a little extra reading. 

Or a lot, if we're lucky. 

Our Summer Reads segment is back for a second summer, visiting with local and locally-owned bookstores to get ideas for good summertime reads. 

Mendocino Book Company is the latest independent book store to check in with some items for your reading consideration. 

Ray Ok, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=56226311

Converting farmland to solar power collection does not necessarily mean the end of its use as farmland. 

A growing number of farms are able to continue growing certain types of crops, on the same land occupied by solar panel arrays.  And right next to each other, too. 

The National Renewable Energy Laboratory, a federal agency, monitors and assists the development of these mixed-use farms. 

Robert J. Boser, EditorASC, http://www.airlinesafety.com/editorials/AboutTheEditor.htm

This is likely to be one of those years in which drivers on Interstate Five will wonder what happened to Shasta Lake.  Another drought year has the lake well below its fill level, something that happens in many years.

stevepb/Pixabay

If you're skeptical about the world moving to new forms of energy, just remember that some people probably had doubts about any fuel replacing wood. 

We have a long history of ways to keep our houses warm and lit.  And Pulitzer prize-winning author Richard Rhodes takes in a lot of that history. 

His book is Energy: A Human History.  From wood to coal, from horses to steam to internal combustion, from burning fuels to capturing the son, the book takes it all in. 

Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=68908707

Growing cannabis is now legal in both California and Oregon, but that doesn't mean all the practices involved with growing it are legal. 

Noble Coffee Roasting/Instagram

Jared Rennie picked a good time in history to get into the coffee business. 

He started Noble Coffee Roasting in Ashland at about the time the taste for coffee products of all kinds exploded.  His belief in coffee certainly paid off in the success of his business. 

His is truly a story of knowing when to get in on the ground floor. 

Alexas_Fotos/Pixabay

Are we in love with bees?  And sadly, is it too late for the relationship? 

Bees have been around a long time and are a critical part of life on Earth, but they are in deep trouble in many areas. 

Conservation biologist Thor Hanson, who joined us in the past with his book on seeds, returns with his latest: Buzz: The Nature and Necessity of Bees

From the evolutionary roots of 125 million years ago to the pollinator gardens of today, there's a lot to learn. 

João Felipe C.S./Public Domain

The supermarket age is all about food traveling great distances to reach us.  So the chance of getting to know the people who grow your food is limited. 

Unless you buy local food... which is encouraged by many people these days.  The Rogue Valley Farm Tour enhances the eat-local experience by taking people out to meet the farmers. 

Ashland Food Co-op and Medford Food Co-op are partners on the tour. 

socompasshouse.org

Mental illness often shows up early in adulthood, but it can affect a person earlier in life. 

This month on Compass Radio we hear from Debra, a Southern Oregon Compass House member who has experienced episodes of mental illness since childhood.

She told Compass House interviewer Bryce Harding that her illness first manifested itself in the form of premonitions – she would actually predict events before they happened. 

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