Mt. Ashland Update 2014

Mt_AshlandAs of December 19, 2014 Mt. Ashland is officially open to the public. The mountain has a base depth of 16-28”. Currently, the mountain is limited to the Sonnet and Comer lifts only. In addition to the lifts, a few features are open in Sonnet Terrain Park. For a limited time lift tickets are only $7.00. To obtain further details on mountain activity and information check out Mt Ashland’s home page.

As a proud partner of Mt. Ashland, the Stratford Inn is happy to announce the offering of discounted room rates to Mt. Ashland patrons. In addition to the discounted rate, guests will receive a coupon for $7.00 off any lift ticket. As always, the Stratford Inn offers a heated saline indoor pool and spa, on site cafe (Boulevard Cafe), free wifi, free parking, cable television, and access to a 24 hour gym. Call today to book a reservation.

Ashland Culinary Festival

Ashland Food FestivalCelebrating Southern Oregon’s food, drink, talent and creativity, the Ashland Culinary Festival is a three-day event that enables locals, travelers and tourists alike to delve into Ashland’s rich culinary scene.

This year, the event includes a new and improved “Chef Showdown Competition” in which the 12 local chefs competing present their culinary wares in a battle for the coveted Top Chef prize. Larks Restaurant will defend Larks Home Kitchen Cuisine’s title, sending Top Chef 2013 winner Franco Console to the competition for the second year in a row.

The 11 other chefs competing this year are Billy Buscher from Alchemy Restaurant and Bar, Stefano Cipollone from Belle Fiore Winery, Noah Edwards from Smithfields, Skye Elder from Brickroom, Dustin Farley from Porters, Dale Fowler from Regency Grill, Anna Hogan from Salame, Dawn Strickmeyer from Black Sheep Pub & Restaurant, Will Shine from Martino’s Ristorante, Jasmine Turk-Bly from Ashland Creek Inn and James Williams from Omar’s Fresh Seafood & Steaks.

The first day of the festival – Friday – will consist of a “Meet the Chefs Culinary Kick-off” that includes food preparation demonstrations, food and wine sampling, live entertainment and many other engaging activities. The samplings typically come from local food artisans and vintners.

The festival will also host a number of culinary workshops on the Saturday and Sunday of the competition. Up for grabs during these workshops are lodging packages, wine tours of the Rogue Valley’s vibrant winery landscape.

For more information about the festival and other events happening in Ashland and the whole of the Southern Oregon region, visit the Ashland Chamber of Commerce website:

http://www.ashlandchamber.com/index.asp

The Ashland Culinary Festival also boasts its own Facebook page, featuring photos, upcoming events and general information surrounding the celebrations:

 

Post Created  By: Morgan Crane

Halloween Fun In Ashland

pumpkinsHalloween is around the corner, and you may find yourself wondering what fun things are happening around town. Starting at 2:30, the Ashland Public Library will be hosting Halloween Story Time so bring your kids and enjoy some spooky tales! From there, you can head outside where the Halloween Parade will be congregating at 3:15 before making their way down Main Street to the Plaza. Different vendors in the downtown will be hosting various events from Halloween photography to Face Painting and the celebrations will also include live music. Whether you take part in the parade or just come out to listen to the live music and eat treats, there is sure to be something for everyone! For more information check out the Ashland Chamber of Commerce website at Ashlandchamber.com.

Emigrant Lake

EmigrantLakeLocated just ten minutes from the Stratford Inn, Emigrant Lake is one of Ashland Oregon’s hidden jewels. Emigrant Lake is the perfect spot to relax, take a dip, and find some relief from the hot summer sun. For swimming and sun bathing, there is an area equipped with a dock as well as a small beach. If fishing is more your style, there are plenty of quiet areas around the lake to cast your rod for bass, crappie and trout. In addition to fishing and swimming, boating, kayaking, canoeing, and jet skiing are all common at the lake. Combining all of these activities with the beautiful scenic views, Emigrant Lake is a home run all summer long.

In addition to the activities highlighted above, Emigrant Lake also provides a camping and recreational area. This area is available for day and/or overnight use. The highlight of the recreation area is the 280-foot twin flume water slide. The recreation area also provides a play ground, as well as multiple picnic areas that are open to the public. If you are planning a trip to Ashland Oregon, Emigrant Lake is a must see landmark that has something for everyone.

Camping with Shakespeare

lake of the woodsIf you are looking for a change of pace for your next visit to Ashland, consider adding a few nights at Lake of the Woods resort tyour trip. Lake of the Woods Resort is located approximately an hour northeast of the Stratford Inn, in the Cascade Mountains. Amenities at the resort include a general store, restaurant/bar, boat rentals, swimming area, and rental cabins. Lake of the Woods is a wonderful place to relax with family and friends, while enjoying the beauty of the great outdoors. The resort also provides excellent fishing, along with a gorgeous view of Mount Mcloughlin. In addition to all the outdoor fun, every Saturday the resort hosts a family bar-b-que, with music and dancing.

Once you’re done at the lake, make your way to Ashland to enjoy some Shakespeare and relaxation. OSF has plays showing at the three theaters, and this year’s lineup is sure to please everyone in your party. Check out the Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s website for more details. The Stratford Inn is currently taking reservations for the summer and fall. Rooms are booking up quickly, so don’t miss your opportunity to make reservations today. Reservations can be made on our website, stratfordinnashland.com, or by telephone at 541-488-2151.

Picnic Time!

Why not enjoy an impromptu meal outside under the beautiful Ashland sun?

If you are like me, waking up to consistently beautiful summer days has you strategizing as to how to spend more time outdoors.  I recently had a friend in town, and my favorite part of her trip ended up being the few times we were able to picnic in various parks around town.  If this will be your first picnic in Ashland, there are a few parks I recommend trying.  Lithia Park is of course an Ashland staple and is perfect for those who wish to picnic but stay close to all that is happening in downtown.  If however you are looking for a quieter experience with a more “tucked-away” feel, Railroad park is just the place!  Located along a bike path, Railroad Park offers big sky views and a dramatic expanse of Ashland’s mountain ridges.

If you have come in from out of town and don’t have much in the way of kitchen utensils or space to prepare food, I highly recommend picking up sandwiches or other light fare from one of our local eateries and perhaps even a pack of our locally brewed Caldera IPA.  While spending hours preparing a fine picnic meal can be rewarding, sometimes the best picnics are the impromptu ones that take little to no preparation.  So enjoy an afternoon meal in the beautiful Ashland sun!

Rafting the Rogue River

raft

If you are looking for an outdoor adventure you won’t soon forget, a rafting trip down the Rogue River with Indigo Creek Outfitters is just what the doctor ordered. This mix of beauty and excitement is a perfect combination sure to satisfy people of all ages and experience levels. Rafting for the first time? Not a problem, these tours include an experienced guide, transportation to and from the river, and all necessary equipment for the trip.

In addition to the rafting, Indigo Creek Outfitters is the only rafting company to offer in house photos that can be taken home the same day as your trip. After the rafting has come to an end, head back to Indigo’s Ashland headquarters for refreshments and a slide show of all photos taken of your trip.

The trip itself starts out on land with a quick safety tutorial, followed by a few in boat tips on how to handle the rapids. After leaving shore you will experience level two and three rapids that are sure to leave a smile on your face. The climax comes toward the end of the trip where you will encounter the two largest rapids, Nugget Falls and Powerhouse rapids. These rafting trips are perfect for people of all ages and are a great way to take in the beauty of Southern Oregon, while experiencing the rush of white water rafting.

Finding Healthy Breakfasts in Ashland

Ashland, Healthy breakfasts, travelling
Berry yourself in all that Ashland has to offer

One of the hardest things when travelling is finding healthy options while dining out.  For those of you who are looking to maintain a healthier lifestyle while visiting Ashland, I have compiled a list of businesses close to the downtown that offer a variety of healthy options.

1.   NW RAW Organic Juice Bar – New to the downtown area is this super hip juice bar offering a variety of cold-pressed juices, smoothies, and raw granola.  If the routine you are trying to maintain while travelling involves working out in the mornings followed by a light breakfast, NW Raw may be your new favorite morning haunt.

2.  Dragonfly Cafe – While more decadent, Dragonfly Café is the perfect place to enjoy a hearty breakfast filled with local and organic ingredients sourced from their very own farm!  Their menu is a fusion of Latin/Asian inspired dishes and can be enjoyed either in their French door lined dining room as well as their outdoor garden patio.

3.   Ashland Co-Op – While this is not technically a restaurant, I have included Ashland’s Co-Op  Grocery Store because of the way it caters to a variety of health and dietary needs.  Its deli cooks up everything from organic eggs, sausages, and vegetables to breakfast burritos every morning until around 11.  They also offer a fresh juice/smoothie bar where their menu is sure to offer something for everyone.  Fill up a to-go box and enjoy a picnic in Lithia Park!

Here in Ashland we know how important a healthy lifestyle is, and these businesses will surely help you maintain a healthy lifestyle while you are on the road.

What To Do While Waiting For A Play

Ashland things to do, Before my play, Ashland Afternoon Activites Working at the front desk of a hotel lobby often exposes me to short snippets of conversation as people are walking through.   A frequent issue for those who have traveled to Ashland from out of town is that of what to do in the short amount of time before going to see a play at OSF (Oregon Shakespeare Festival).   The next time you find yourself in this situation, consider these options.

What to do when you have 1 hour until your play begins:

If you find yourself with an hour or more to kill, check out Liquid Assets.  Just a few blocks from the Shakespeare theaters, it boasts a great wine list as well as a small but artistically crafted menu.  The ambiance is posh but comfortable and once acquainted, you may find yourself spending long afternoons enjoying a newly featured wine right on the Boulevard (with or without play tickets).

You have ½ hour or less until your play starts:

If you find yourself in that semi-awkward space of time where you can’t really settle into a restaurant before having to leave for your play, I recommend checking out MIX.  Located on the corner of the plaza, it is an easy walk to the play houses.  Not only do they offer great coffees/ lattes, they also have an incredible pastry selection that is prepared in-house.  Grab a macaroon and enjoy a leisurely walk back to the theaters.

You have 15 minutes or less:

Okay, so maybe with 15 minutes or less you should just relax and wait for the doors of the playhouse to open.  If however, you prefer a last minute tour of Ashland’s downtown, grab a coffee at Starbucks and cross the street to Paddington Station.  There you will find a wide assortment of gift ideas ranging from beautiful to practical, and even funny.

No matter how little time you have Ashland’s streets offer a multitude of entertainment options and whether or not you take these suggestions, I am sure you will find enjoyable ways to fill your time as you wait for your next play.

Attention Golfers!

Golf Blog Pic

If you are looking to hit the links while visiting the Rogue Valley, you are in luck. Ashland is home to the one and only Oak Knoll Golf Course. Open year round, Oak Knoll offers a beautiful 36 par, 9-hole regulation course. While on the course, golfers are afforded fantastic views of the Siskiyou Mountains and the Ashland Airport. Other amenities include a driving range, chipping area, putting green, and pro shop. Fees are extremely affordable starting at $16 for 9-holes and up to $24 for 18-holes. If a full 18-hole course is more your style, Centennial Golf Club is just a short drive from Ashland. Located in Medford, Centennial offers a challenging 72-par, 18-hole course that is sure satisfy the needs of any golfer. Centennial also offers a driving range, chipping area, putting green, and pro shop. Prices vary depending on day of the week and season. Be sure to check out our golf package, details can be found at http://stratfordinnashland.com/golf-package/ or explained over the phone (541-488-2151). While visiting, be sure to bring your clubs and take advantage of the wonderful courses the Rogue Valley has to offer.