The Rogue Valley Growers and Crafters Market on Tuesdays in Ashland will relocate Tuesday, June 9 and June 16, while officials inspect the Ashland National Guard Armory premises at 1420 E. Main Street for lead contamination, the market has announced.
Instead of setting up outdoors in the parking lot at the Armory, the market will be held on the lawn at ScienceWorks Hands-On Museum at 1500 E. Main St., Ashland. There’s a good chance the location will be extended through the end of June.
Lead dust is produced when National Guard soldiers fire lead bullets in the armory's indoor firing range. A lead survey released May 21 reported hazardous levels of lead dust in armories in Bend, Pendleton and Ashland.
The Ashland Armory closed to the public June 3. Lead dust can cause health problems if ingested by mouth, such as by touching the mouth or eating food with contaminated hands. Lead can cause miscarriages, memory loss, infertility, brain and kidney damage, even death. Children are especially susceptible. There is no indication that anyone has suffered lead poisoning at the armory.