U.S. Sen. Merkley presents a flag to Oregon Sea Grant Extension marine fisheries specialist Kaety Jacobson at a Newport town hall. (Photo by Tiffany Woods)

"Thank you, Oregon Sea Grant! The Sea Grant program is a textbook example of a smart and targeted investment in local communities that helps create economic growth. I won't stop fighting for this key program." U.S. Sen. Jeff Merkley shared this message in a Facebook post following a town hall meeting in Newport on August 9, 2017.

The senator took time at the town hall meeting to recognized the Shop at the Dock program, which is run by Oregon Sea Grant and the Oregon State University Extension Service.

Since 2014, the Shop at the Dock program has been teaching the public how to buy seafood directly from commercial fishermen during free, guided tours at the docks in Newport. The program expanded to Warrenton in 2017.

Click here to view a short photo album of Merkley's town hall meeting and the Shop at the Dock program. Additional images can be found on Oregon Sea Grant's Flickr account.