Newspaper Archive of
The New Era Paper
Sweet Home, Oregon
August 1, 2012     The New Era Paper
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August 1, 2012

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Page 4 1, T,, r,, - Au,qust 1,2012 COMMUNITV OPINION 0 0 From Our Files Looking back on more than 80 years of coverage in east Linn County... Aug. 2, 1962 The old New Era building at 1103 'L' street, which had housed The New Era for a major portion of time since its founding in 1929, was evacuated and tom down last weekend. Equipment and facilities of The New Era have been moved to the new building at the comer of 12th Avenue and 'L' Street. At the pres- ent time, work remains to be done on both the interior and exterior of the new building. Once these jobs have been com- pleted, The New Era plans to invite the public to come in and inspect the new plant. It has been indicated that the area formerly occupied by the old building willbe paved and used for off-street parking. 4-H'ers of the area participated in a fair sponsored by the Calapooya 4-H Livestock Club last Saturday at the Buss Robnett Ranch at Craw- fordsville. This year, trophies went to Diane Wilkening, Crawfordsville, rabbits; Steve Pyle, Crawfordsville, swine and poultry; and Judy Estill, Brownsville, dairy and beef. Aug. 5, 1987 The U.S. Postal Service is pres- ently considering the possible con- solidation of the Foster and Sweet home Post Offices. The plan is tentaitve and will not lead to a formal proposal unless it appears that it will benefit both the community and the postal service. With 60 competitors in the field, Corvallis' Jeff Storie finished first in the YMCA Industrial Strength Tri- athlon for the second straight year Saturday, in 3:36.09. The runner-up finished in 3:48.54. Storie's heroics started at Foster Reservoir with a 2-kilometer swim, an 80-kilometer bike ride and then a 16-kilometer run, with the race end- ing at South Albany High School. Gut check time for Sweet Home on. Josai The news we're hearing about the Josai exhange program (page 1) is not good. If you've lived in Sweet Home any length of time and have been reading this newspaper or just paid attention, you'll know that Josai is a bi-annual exchange between Sweet Home High School and Josai University High School in Tokyo, Japan. Every other summer Josai sends Students to Sweet Home for a couple of weeks. Sweet Home reciprocates on the" alternative years, such as this one, sending a group to Tokyo, where they stayed with Japanese students and their families -- ate with them, went shopping with them, visited tourist attractions with them, and generally just got a good taste of life in a different culture. Plus, nearly every year two Notes From The Newsroom I Scott Swanson Publisher or three Josai students spend the school year at Sweet Home High School, living with local families and learning about America. Sometimes Sweet Home students spend a year at Josai. If you read our story in June about the "Five Amigos" (a takeoff on the title of the movie "The Three A locally owned newspaper founded Sept. 27, 1929 Scott and Miriam Swanson, Co-Publishers www.sweethomenews.com Office: 1313 MainSt., Sweet Home, Oregon Mailing address: The New Era, Box 39, Sweet Home, OR, 97386 Phone: (541) 367-2135 Fax: (541) 367-2137 WHO WE ARE Scott Swanson, Editor/Co-Publisher scott@sweethomenewscorn Sean C Morgan, Staff Writer sean@sweethomenews.com Miriam Swanson, Advertising Manager, Co-Publisher miriam@sweethomenews.com Christy Keeney, Classified Ads class#ieds@sweethomenews com Firiel Sevems, Advertising Sales firie/@sweethomenews.com The New Era (USPS 379-100) is published each Wednesday. Penodical postage paid at the Sweet Home, Ore., 97386 Post Office. Postmaster: Please send address changes to The New Era, Box 39, Sweet Home, Oregon 97386 SUBSCRIPTIONS In Linn County: $32 Elsewhere: $40 Snowbird: $38 NEWS QUESTIONS/TIPS Call (541) 367-2135 or e-mail news@sweathomenews.com Amigos," for those who didn't get that), you'll remember the impact last year's crop of exchange students had. Not all exchange students are quite as talented or are as outgoing as last year's, but those kids showed what can happen. As someone who has lived in a different culture Japan, actually, I see value in the contributions Josai makes to Sweet Home's schools and young people. We Americans tend to be pretty ethno-centric. (There's more to the world out there?) We !hink we know it all, but when we ravel elsewhere, sometimes we ealize we don't. And that's why it's really Jisappointing that, at some aureaucratic level, the ball has gotten dropped and necessary 9aperwork was never completed to nsure that the two Josai students echo were planning to attend at Sweet Home next fall will be able to do so. This isn't an attempt to point the finger at anybody. I know people are busy. We have a new superintendent who is still figuring everything out and sometimes communication isn't what it needs to be. Fact is, though, Sweet Home needs to decide how important Josai is to us. The program has continued for 30 years nearly twice the age of most of the participants this year. Coordinator Cynde Burford brought back a classy plate that was presented with much pomp and circumstance by Josai school officials, commemorating that milestone. Then this happens. It's embarrassing and we need to fix it. Josai presents a great opportunity for Sweet Home's kids, most of whom likely don't really understand that. We're talking about two opposite cultures mixing it up here. Not only are there the language and cultural differences that any Japanese would experience coming to the United States and vice versa, we're talking about deeper differences than that. When Josai students come here, we're hosting young people from one of the most modem, technologically advanced cities in the world, from an elite high school that attracts some of the brightest kids in the Tokyo area. These students commute from all over the Tokyo metropolis to Josai, riding the trains, the subways, buses some of them for hours a day. Josai isn't cheap, so you can figure that most of them come from pretty ambitious and successful families. They come to Sweet Home, a rural Oregon logging community of a little over 10,000 people, not 10. million. Stores aren't open 24 hours. In fact, they often are not open at all if the owner isn't there. The only WRITE A LETTER We encourage readers express their opinions in letters to the editor on matters of public interest. Letters should be typed and may he submitted by mail, e-mail, faxor in person atThe New Era . E-mailed letters may be sent to news@sweelhmenews'cm" Please include a  number in case we need to contact you. Also, we require that you include your name and city of residence or your letter will not be published. There is no le , but letters may be edited for lenglhaad all letters will be edited content. We d letters Jhat  or n about private cns or businesses on a personal level. Also, letters containing comments on topicsdeemed by  editorial staff to have been exhausted in previous letters will be edited accordingly. public transit is a bus that runs a few times a day to Lebanon and Albany. If you want to go somewhere in Sweet Home and you don't have a car, you either have to find someone who does, walk or ride a bike. Although we have some bright students who can certainly hold their own at Josai, or the American equivalent, we also have a culture that historically has not placed a high emphasis on higher education which is the opposite mentality you'll find at Josai. Everybody is there because their parents want them in college. Yet they come and they keep coming. Japanese, culturally, are infinitesimally polite, but I get the feeling that, behind their kind words, the Josai folks really do value their relationshil with Sweet Home. They sent a group to Albany this summer. I looked at photos of their trip on Josai's website. They send kids to Australia and other locales. But they like Sweet Home. Maybe they realize how unique this town is in its toughness and volunteer spirit. The Oregon Jamboree this weekend is celebrating its 20th year, a testament to exactly those qualities. Maybe they love the setting - it's certainly different than skyscrapers. Maybe they realize, as many Americans would, that their sons and daughters benefit greatly from a taste of life in another world. I don't know. But if we want to keep this good thing going, we need to apply Sweet Home resilience and can-do attitude. We need to get this paperwork thing fixed and we need to step up and make sure these kids find solid homes with local families. We need to let the Japanese know that we sincerely value this relationship. Do we really want this to end after 30 years?