Winter Music Festival Begins

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Local News

Trail Band performs twice Thursday for students

Elementary school students are exposed to a lot of music, but says Marv Ross, very few of them may get to see or hear live music. That’s one reason behind the Kids Concerts going on today at the Florence Events Center… the opening shows of the Winter Music Festival. Ross and seven other musicians in the Trail Band will be on stage.

Marv Ross – “For some kids it can be just a huge door opening up and bringing music into their very heart and soul and hopefully, you know, they can take it with them.”

The Trail Band brings an incredibly diverse blend of music… and instruments to the stage.

Marv Ross – “We’ll definitely do some traditional folk, but we also play Celtic music, we play Hispanic music, we play swing; classical music. We’ll play a couple Tchaikovsky pieces. The band’s incredibly versatile, we have the eight musicians; we play like 32 instruments.”

Students from Florence, Mapleton, Reedsport and other central coast locales will be at the FEC for two shows today.

Performance Audit Committee to evaluate county programs and services

Lane County Commissioners approved the creation this week of a new independent Performance Audit Committee. That panel will be made up of three citizens appointed by the Board of County Commissioners, along with two members of the board.

The committee’s primary task will be to provide “fair information” regarding the degree to which county programs and services are effective. Commissioner Pat Farr said having an audit committee with a “citizen-majority” will help ensure the county’s performance auditor is “independent”.

Commissioners will discuss the selection process for filling the three member panel later this month.

It still costs less to fill up in Florence

The Oregon average price for a gallon of regular gas took the largest drop of any state this week… down seven cents to $2.27 a gallon.

The local average has fallen by two cents in the same time period… but is still well below the state-wide average at $2.09.

Marie Dodds with Triple-A says crude oil prices are at their lowest level in 12 years… and continue to put pressure on reducing retail gas prices. The national average price dipped by three cents this week and is at $1.96.

New scanner offers better and faster performance at Peace Harbor

Technicians at Peace Harbor Medical Center have been working on the installation of a new CT scanner this week. Imaging Supervisor and CT Technologist Kim Leo said the new scanner works much faster… and reduces radiation exposure to the patient by “at least 50-percent”.

The increase speed makes for a more comfortable experience for the patient and will improve image quality, especially for pediatrics and trauma patients according to Leo.

It’s also very precise… she added they can examine blood vessels and see small cancers with greater detail than ever before.

Lane scholarships offered for all ages

College scholarships are not just for high school seniors. Last year, Lane Community College in Florence provided nearly $48-thousand to western Lane County residents taking classes at LCC.

Those awards ranged from $500 to $6,000 according to Laura Merz. She’s an Administrative Support Specialist at the Florence Center. She says applications for this year’s scholarships are being accepted through March 3rd. According to Merz, the money can be used for classes that would enable you to pursue a new career or continue your current educational path.