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Full December 2019 Issue * Salem Weather * Past Issues * About Us * Ad Rates * Contact Us


The Clairvoyants Christmas
Spirit Mountain Presents

DATE: December 7, 2019
TIME: 7:00 PM (Doors open at 6:00 PM)
TICKETS: $25, $35
AGE: Adults 21 and over

    Amelie van Tass and Thommy Ten are "The Clairvoyants." They were both born and raised in Austria and now reside in Austria and America.

    When they met in October 2011, they began to develop their "second sight" act, and two months later brought it on stage for the first time. Within a year they had developed a full length show. Shortly thereafter, they started touring Europe.

    In 2016, they decided to take part in the biggest talent show in the world, "America's Got Talent." After four months, six different performances and more than 100,000 contestants battling for the trophy, America voted them second place.

    Van Tass and Ten were awarded "The German Champions of Mentalism," "Magicians of the Year 2015," and, also in 2015, were enthusiastically chosen as the "World Champions of Mentalism," a prize that hasn't been awarded in 30 years.

The Future of Local News
Pulitzer Prize finalist Les Zaitz

The Journalists of Salem Reporter
From Left,
Rachel Alexander
(Education and Nonprofits),
Jake Thomas
(State Government and Politics),
Saphara Harrell
(Events and Breaking News)
and Troy Brynelson
(Local Government and Business)

Les Zaitz is a 5 time winner of the Bruce Baer Award. Oregon's most prestigious investigative journalism honor.
(Photo by David Zaitz)
    America's trust in the press is more in doubt than ever.
    For those in the profession, that's deeply troubling.
    If readers don't trust what we report, the hard work of ferreting out the truth is just so much typing practice.
    More importantly, citizens are left struggling to find truth on which to agree and then to act. When facts are in dispute, whether it's over immigration, drug addiction or homelessness, debate becomes immobilized. That's not good for Salem or for Oregon.
    A new study shows signs of hope, at least when it comes to the local press.
    "State of Public Trust in Local News," produced by the Knight Foundation and Gallup, found that Americans tend to trust their local reporters more than the national news. That's heartening.
    But a deeper look at the numbers shows that all of us laboring to cover Salem or Bend or Portland have work to do. We aren't trusted by enough readers.
    The study found that 45% of Americans have a "great deal" or "quite a lot" of trust in local news, compared to 31% for national news. Fine. We do better than our national colleagues. But that's no celebration. That means 55% have less than deep trust in the work of the local press.
    As a local institution, Americans don't rank the local press highly among community institutions. People have more confidence in libraries, local police and local churches. But the study showed a path forward - and one charted by Salem Reporter since its founding.
    First, the study found that 79% of Americans find the local press is reporting on matters that figure in their daily lives. That underscores our belief at Salem Reporter - that people are far more concerned with and interested in what happens in schools and local business and local charities than they are with the State Department or Congress or other federal institutions.
    Second, the study finds a hunger for more. Readers want the local press to dig deeper into topics that matter. The study found more attention should be given to drug addiction, local schools, the environment and the housing market.
    And 60% of Americans quizzed in the study found that local news outfits did only a "fair" or "poor" job of holding local leaders accountable. As those reports and studies rolled out, I spotted a column written by a juror in a federal trial recently that convicted political operative Roger Stone of lying to Congress. "Telling the truth under oath matters. At a time when so much of our public discourse is based on deception or just lies, it is more important than ever that we still have places where the truth can be presented, examined and discerned," the juror wrote.
    Here was a citizen recognizing something so fundamental: Truth matters.
    But truth matters only if you trust the source delivering it.
    At Salem Reporter, the news crew works hard to hold the powerful accountable. That's not easy in a town where tough questions haven't always been asked. We too often have to fight to get at government records that reveal the truth about your leaders. We too often get stiff armed by officials who see no need to answer questions about their conduct, their programs, and their spending.
    Our team of reporters - Rachel Alexander, Troy Brynelson, Saphara Harrell and Jake Thomas - is skilled at leaping such hurdles, and we'll continue sharpening and expanding our coverage of local matters.
    The question for you, the reader, is whether to trust what we report.
    You can't decide, for instance, your view about dealing with Salem's homeless issue if you don't have facts to back your judgment. You can't decide whether new city fees you have to pay are justified if you don't have facts about where the money would go.
    Without key information, you won't know if public officials are saying one thing and doing another. You won't know if government decisions serve your interests - or special interests with the ear of those in power.
    So, what's a reader to do? Understand, first, that Salem Reporter operates on principles it lives by daily. We make those public on our website, a rarity in journalism. We are driven to earn and keep your trust. We are determined to scrub even the appearance of bias out of our reports. We are determined to always serve the citizen, not favor those in power - or fear them.
    Then, you can question us. If you doubt our information or wonder its source, ask us. We are transparent about where we get our reporting and our facts. If we err, we'll fix it and promptly.
    As journalists, we will do all we can to earn your trust. At the same time, consider giving that trust based not on general perceptions of the media but on our performance.
    One wall in the way is the issue of bias. Across the country, people have become more fixed in their views. Because of the unchecked content on social media, people seem to more readily conclude that any view or fact that doesn't fit their own isn't to be trusted and is the result of deliberate bias.
    I can't speak for the national media, which does have much to atone for. Here in Salem, though, we're working every day to build a news organization you can trust. We do so because it's vital to Salem's future, that readers like you believe what they read of ours.
    We want your trust, certainly, to sustain our business, but more crucially to sustain Salem. This community needs citizens who believe in the possibilities for change, for improvement. The community needs citizens to act on facts, not emotions powered by argument.
    We fervently intend to continue building a local news organization in Salem that is an instrument of that progress by earning your deep and continuing trust. Join us by subscribing or advertising. The future of local news is in your hands.
Les Zaitz is editor and CEO of Salem Reporter and a journalist in Oregon for more than 45 years. Send him comments at: les@

Capitol Auto Group Breaks Ground
For New Subaru Dealership

and Event Pavillion

Brian Moscatelli
(Zone Director of Subaru of America),
Scott Casebeer (President CAG),
Matthew Casebeer (CAG GM Capitol Toyota),
Tim Detoni (Toyota Financial Services),
Salem Mayor Chuck Bennett
and Alex Casebeer (CAG President)
Artist Rendering of
The Future Home of Capitol Subaru

    Golden shovels, wielded by representatives of Capitol Subaru and Subaru of America, made the dirt fly on Auto Group Avenue in Northeast Salem. Capitol Auto Group broke ground Nov. 4 for a new, 70,000 sq. ft. Capitol Subaru Dealership.
    Capitol Auto Group President, Scott Casebeer, kicked the event off by thanking his staff and recognizing the impact they have had on the success of the Subaru dealership.
    "The most important part of this is our employees," he said.
    "They've heard me say this 1000 times, that our employees are #1. We were at capacity in our current facility and our employees were doing the best they could to make do with the space we've got. They are so excited about 70,000 sq. feet of Subaru facility."
    The success of Capitol Subaru locally and the popularity of the brand worldwide is what has allowed Capitol Subaru to expand.
    Subaru has been consistently named by Kelley Blue Book as the best overall brand and most trusted brand. The American Customer Satisfaction Index ranks Subaru first in safety and dependability.
    Salem Mayor Chuck Bennett thanked the Casebeers for their investment in the area.
    "This will be a tremendous addition to the business community," he said. "What is really important is Capitol's ongoing commitment to our community. They are tremendous leaders in the Willamette Valley and a great supporter of Salem-Keizer. The generosity of Capitol Auto Group has benefited the United Way, the Boys and Girls Club, and Marion- Polk Food Share, just to name a few."
    Subaru General Manager Alex Casebeer said Subaru is one of the fastest growing brands and the Subaru Outback is the #1 sold car in the State of Oregon. He noted that, interestingly enough, the project is being supported by Toyota Financial Services.
    They funded the initial Capitol campus development 10 years ago.
    "This store is so involved with the community," said Brian Moscatelli, zone director of Subaru of America. "They are always looking to invest back. This investment is pointed at the Capitol Subaru