At the Stratford Inn, we take our commitment to the environment seriously. That’s why we are the only hotel to have been recognized by the City of Ashland’s Green Business Program. Our eco-friendly efforts include:
Toiletries: It’s estimated that between 1 to 1.5 million partially-used bars of soap are discarded from hotel rooms every single day in the U.S. Add in all the little disposable bottles that most hotels use for shampoo, conditioner, and lotion, and you’re looking at a lot of needless waste—and a lot of overloaded landfills! New for 2012, the Stratford Inn has installed dispensers in our guest rooms to provide the perfect amount of soap, lotion, shampoo, conditioner, and body wash for every guest. We use Natura products, which are biodegradable, vegan-friendly, and full of gentle, moisturizing botanicals.
Recycling: The Stratford Inn is one of the only hotels in Ashland to provide a recycling bin in every room.
Housekeeping: 90% of our cleaning supplies are environmentally-friendly chemicals. All our laundry is done in house, rather than being transported off-site.
Chlorination: We chlorinate our pool using an eco-friendly saline system.
How You Can Do Your Part: If you’re staying with us for more than one night, we invite you to join us in conserving water and energy by reusing your towels and linens during your stay. To reuse your towels, please put them on the towel rack or on the counter, and our housekeeping staff will hang them neatly for you to use again. If you wish to have them replaced, just put them in the bathtub or on the floor. For a multiple-day stay, we will remake your bed instead of changing your linens every day, unless you prefer otherwise; please let the Front Desk know if you wish to have your linens changed, and we will be happy to accommodate you!
Check out these 3D models of the Stratford Inn and Boulevard Coffee! In a process called geo-modeling, real-life buildings are modeled in 3D and displayed on Google Earth. These models of the Stratford Inn and Boulevard Coffee were created by an Oregon engineer named Dave Reichert. You can rotate them and zoom in to see all the careful details, right down to the distinctive “S” logo in our fence! Want to check out the real thing? On Friday, March 2, Boulevard Coffee is hosting a free coffee tasting!
In an era when we must learn to live differently, a “long view” is required. It helps us see the consequences of choices made or avoided. Choices that continue to arise in different guises. The mission of the Imagine Project is to help provide a “long view.”
Historic places are a lens for taking this long view, but they cannot speak for themselves. They must be given a voice. They need to be interpreted for contemporary times. The Imagine Project combines expertise in media communication and historical research to produce interpretive experiences.
One of the ways the Imagine Project allows you to discover Ashland is with a walking tour as one of Ashland’s finest actors tells the story of a village that grew up in American wilderness. There are three different walking tours you can take and the audio comes from a provided tour player. The Ashland Springs Hotel sells admission to the walk and tour players. For more information on the Imagine Project or there walking tour visit www.ashlandaudiowalks.org.
In downtown Ashland, near Lithia Park, in a small plaza across from City Hall, stands a statute and a public water fountain for the local Lithia water. A mineral water that people once tried in vain to market as having healing properties. It is sulphury and minerally and effervescent, overall quite interesting. Most people do not like it, but I find it fairly enjoyable. It is certainly worth a try if you’re in town. After the locals failed to market it and make the water a prized health commodity, ultimately they decided to build this fountain so all could enjoy it.
Have you tried the Lithia water at the public water fountain in the plaza? If not, stop by on your next trip to Lithia Park and see for yourself if there are healing qualities to the water or not.
On April 16th, after five days of packed theatres, the Ashland Independent Film Festival (AIFF) wrapped up its eleventh year. Each spring, filmmakers and film lovers gather in Ashland to view more than eighty films, including documentaries, features, shorts, and student films.
In addition to the film screenings, which take place at Ashland’s historic Art Deco-style Varsity Theatre, the Festival features a full calendar of events. Festivalgoers can attend Q&A sessions, panel discussions, parties, and a gala Awards Celebration, where seven juried awards and four audience awards are presented. This year, the winning films at AIFF’s Awards Celebration included “Valley of the Saints,” “Gayby,” and two documentaries, “Tchoupitoulas” and “Ethel.”
AIFF’s 2012 Independent Achievement Award went to Julie Taymor, the director of films including “The Tempest,” “Across the Universe,” and “Titus Andronicus,” as well as the Tony Award-winning Broadway production of “The Lion King.” Audiences were treated to an interview of Taymor conducted by Bill Rauch, the artistic director of Ashland’s Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
Each year, the Ashland Independent Film Festival has been growing in popularity and in national recognition. We’re proud to have one of the nation’s most promising up-and-coming independent film festivals right here in the Rogue Valley.
When the Oregon Shakespearean Festival in Ashland first dangled fine drama before an audience in 1935, boxing matches were staged, just in case Shakespeare couldn’t draw a crowd. Now the Shakespeare festival in Ashland, about 300 miles south of Portland, is the one of the largest in the country, attracting more than 100,000 people a year.
The slogan in days of yore was, ”Stay four days, see four plays.” These days, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival still puts on four Shakespeare plays, but also seven others.
And the festival runs much of the year, from the end of February to early November, with the highlight being the opening of the 1,200-seat outdoor theater on June 5. It joins the festival’s two indoor theaters, the 600-seat Angus Bowmer and the 270-seat New Theater, which are already in full swing.
This year, the festival presents the premieres of several new and original productions. Including “Animal Crackers” based around the Marx brothers, the love story “The White Snake”, an adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Troilus and Cressida” and the original “Party People” among others.
Before Shakespeare reinvented Ashland, this southern Oregon town of 20,000 was known for it’s naturally carbonated water, dubbed Lithia Water because it contains lithium. Thought to be salubrious for bathing and drinking, is still piped into drinking fountains in Lithia Park and the Plaza, Ashland’s town square.
Ashland has much more to offer visitors than Lithia Water (its bad-egg taste pronounced ”yucky” by many a daring drinker). There are plenty of excellent restaurants, and shops, bookstores and galleries line Main Street, the Plaza and the recently renovated Historic Railroad District. Nearby are abundant opportunities for outdoor recreation, like rafting on the Rogue River about 20 miles to the northwest through tour groups like Noah’s Rafting & Fishing Tours.
Indoors, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival is presenting “Romeo and Juliet”, “The White Snake”, “Medea, Macbeth and Cinderella”, “All the Way”, “Seagull”, “Troilus and Cressida” and the world premiere of “Party People”. The nation’s first outside theater opens June 5th with “Henry V”, “The Very Merry Wives of Windsor, Iowa”, “As You Like It” and “The Green Show” which takes place in the festival courtyard.
The opening of the Elizabethan Stage and the beginning of summer are traditionally marked by the Feast of Will, a buffet-style chicken barbeque dinner with Elizabethan music in Lithia Park. This year it is on June 15. Tickets are $15 and are available through the festival box office.
For entertainment that’s less high brow, the Oregon Cabaret Theater, at First and Hargadine Streets, (541) 488-2902, www.oregoncabaret.com, is an enjoyable option. Since 1986, it has staged musical comedies in a 1911 Baptist church converted to a 140-seat theater. “The Big Bang” is dubbed the most extravagant musical ever written and is new to this season. For a complete list of plays you can call the box office or visit their website.
A popular event is the First Friday Art Walk, on the first Friday of every month from 5 to 8 p.m. Ashland’s more than two dozen art galleries stay open late, offering free food and music. Maps are available at the Chamber of Commerce, 110 East Main Street and a booth on the Plaza, and at participating galleries. Information: Ashland Gallery Association, (541) 488-8430 and www.atasteofashland.com.
The Britt Festival, June 6 to Oct. 12th in Jacksonville, 20 miles north of Ashland, features many well-known pop, jazz and classical artists, including Earth, Wind and Fire, Bill Cosby, Mellisa Etheridge and Primus. Tickets range in price, for details calls (800) 882-7488 or visit www.britfest.org.
On a sunny day, nothing is more pleasant than strolling through the 93-acre Lithia Park. Scenic Ashland Creek runs through it, with a parallel jogging path. There are two duck ponds, Japanese and rose gardens, a band shell, a picnic area, a playground, tennis courts and, of course, a Lithia Water drinking fountain. For information on the town, see www.ashlandchamber.com.
On weekends from May through October, the Lithia Artisans Market sets up on Calle Guanajuato, a pedestrian walkway next to Ashland Creek behind the Plaza. On Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., you’ll find handmade dolls, birdhouses and candles and furniture made from salvaged materials. The Growers and Crafters Market offers fruits, vegetables and arts and crafts at the Armory, 2140 East Main Street, every Tuesday 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.; (541) 472-9409. Information from passport2ashlnd.com
Three wineries are just a few miles from downtown, and visitors are welcome for tastings. Weisinger’s of Ashland is at 3150 Siskiyou Boulevard, (541) 488-5989, www.weisingers.com, and is open daily 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Ashland Vineyards and Winery, specializing in merlot and cabernet sauvignon, is at 2775 East Main Street, (541) 488-0088, www.winenet.com; open 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday to Sunday. Paschal Winery, six miles from Ashland in Talent, (800) 446-6050, www.paschalwinery.com, is known for its pinot gris; open daily 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
In the restored Historic Railroad District, the A Street Marketplace, Oak and A Streets, (541) 488-3433, is an assortment of boutiques, galleries, salons and restaurants in a former factory. Among them are Tibet Treasures, with clothing, jewelry and house wares from Tibet, and Gathering Glass Studio, complete with a working kiln.
Where to Eat
Cucina Biazzi, 568 East Main, (541) 488-3739, serves Tuscan food in a small house with a terra cotta patio shaded by wisteria and grapevines. A four-course fixed-price meal, including antipasti, pasta, an entree and salad, costs $25 to $30 a person. There are three-course and à la carte menus, too, with entrees $18.50 to $23.50 and pasta $10 to $15. Dessert and wine ($3 to $7 a glass) are extra. Open for dinner daily.
Next to the historic hotel of the same name, the Peerless, 265 Fourth Street, (541) 488-6067, presents a contemporary menu in a contemporary setting that seats 60 and 30 more in a courtyard. The menu includes lavender-honey-lacquered Tasmanian steelhead, riesling-braised Oregon leg and roasted saddle of rabbit, and lamb loin encrusted in oven-dried tomatoes. Dinner Tuesday to Saturday. Dinner for two with wine, $80.
”Texas Mediterranean” is the featured cuisine at Beasy’s on the Creek, 51 Water Street, (541) 488-5009. The warm, semicircular dining room, with booths facing a fireplace, has large windows overlooking Ashland Creek and the hills to the north. Steak and seafood, like char-grilled Salmon Inca Inca (with a creamy garlic, jalapeño and lime sauce), and Cadillac mixed grill (sirloin, chicken and shrimp), dominate the eclectic menu. Dinner daily; for two with wine, $60.
For a more casual meal, Pasta Piatti, 385 E. Main Street, (541) 488-5493, is open every day for lunch and dinner, serving new wave Italian fare at an affordable price. Sesame Asian Kitchen, 21 Winburn Way, (541) 482-0119. They serve lunch and dinner daily as well as offer serving a variety of Asian cuisine at a reasonable price. Both restaurants offer carry out as well as group reservations at their restaurants.
If you are planning to visit Ashland for a night or for a week visit our accommodations. Being blocks away from downtown, being across from safeway and with our heated in door pool, free laundry service, coffee shop, affordable prices and more. We will do all we can to make the Stratford Inn feel like your home away from home.
It’s that time of year again. No, not taxes…yet. That comes later. It’s the gorgeous season of Fall. You know, the time of year when the trees change from their humdrum greens into red, orange and gold colors that just dig into your eyeballs whenever you look outside. Really, it’s not that bad. They don’t dig so much as they gently massage the new colors into your vision and mute the realization that the nights now are longer than the days are. And just think of all the spicy aromas that will be tickling your nostrils soon. Consider the aromas of apples, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg whirling around you in a kaleidoscope of scent and flavor found.
Of course, if your just far too busy or dread thinking of food any earlier than necessary well, I can’t help you. Oh wait, here is something.
20TH ANNUAL FESTIVAL OF LIGHT (opens Nov. 23)
This twinkly bit of festivity is the period of the season where downtown Ashland shows it’s glitz and glamour for all to see by decorating for the season. Rumor has it, this year there will be more than 1 million lights in total! They will have opening night on November 23 and they even have a tentative schedule which is as follows:
1pm-5pm Plaza Stage Entertainment in downtown Ashland (meaning, the plaza)
5pm Santa’s Parade beginning at the Public Library (support your local libraries) and proceeds down to the Plaza.
5:45pm Grand Illumination (after parade): Santa his holly jolly old self will count down with the audience and flip the switch.
6:15pm-8pm Santa’s Workshop at the Black Swan Theatre (one of the Oregon Shakespear Festival theatres on Pioneer street). Here children of all ages can visit Santa and his lovely wife Mrs. Claus.
Also during the Festival of lights, The Ashland Springs Hotel will be hosting three Storytelling days in their lobby. As of this moment, I do not know what they will be reading or will be doing it but it will be happening on Dec. 4, 11 and 18 from 2:30pm to 4pm.
For the winter months, the Stratford Inn of Ashland will be offering cut rates to guests visiting Ashland. Our busy rate is $170 plus tax per night. We’re offering you prices slashed as far as $90 plus tax per night. If you come in to ski at Mt. Ashland, you’ll see even greater savings because we cut the room rates even lower and sell you ski lift tickets on top of it all. Just call us up and we’ll set up a deal for you! Mt. Ashland is rumored to be opening on November 17. Join us for all the fun. Speaking of the mountain, they are closed Tuesdays and Wednesdays of every week. Every Thursday and Friday during January and February they offer Twilight Skiing from 3pm until 9pm. All other operating days they are open 9am until 4pm.
Another interesting draw you may find entertaining is our local ice skating rink that goes by the name of Ashland Rotary Centennial Ice Rink. Their operations schedule is a little more convoluted than Mt. Ashland because they rent out for private and other group functions. You can go to http://www.ashland.or.us/IceRink for more details on pricing and availability.
Calling all Oregon Shakespeare Festival members! Now is the time you can begin ordering your tickets for the 2013 play lineup. Being members you get first pick of times and seating. Once you have those you can give us a call here at the Stratford and make your reservations. Call early because we fill up fast! We’ve got some discounts that we can apply to your reservation throughout the OSF season.
For all the information on the 2013 Oregon Shakespeare Festival Season click here.
2013 SEASON AT A GLANCE
ANGUS BOWMER THEATRE
THE TAMING OF THE SHREW by William Shakespeare (February 15 – November 3)
Director: David Ivers
MY FAIR LADY Book & lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner; music by Frederick Loewe (February 17 – November 3)
Director: Amanda Dehnert
TWO TRAINS RUNNING by August Wilson (February 16 – July 7)
Director: Lou Bellamy
A STREETCAR NAMED DESIRE by Tennessee Williams (April 17 – November 2)
Director: Christopher Liam Moore
DREAMS OF THE MUSE (working title) by Tanya Saracho World Premiere (July 24 – November 2)
KING LEAR by William Shakespeare (February 21 – November 3)
Director: Bill Rauch
THE UNFORTUNATES book, music, and lyrics by 3 Blind Mice (Jon Beavers, Ian Merrigan, Ramiz Monsef) and Casey Hurt World Premiere (March 27 – November 2)
Director: Shana Cooper
THE LIQUID PLAIN by Naomi Wallace World Premiere (July 2 – November 3)
Director: Kwame Kwei-Armah
ELIZABETHAN STAGE/ALLEN PAVILION
CYMBELINE by William Shakespeare (June 4 – October 11)
Director: Bill Rauch
THE HEART OF ROBIN HOOD by David Farr U.S. Premiere (June 5 – October 12)
Director: Joel Sass
A MIDSUMMER NIGHT’S DREAM by William Shakespeare (June 6 – October 13)
Director: Christopher Liam Moore
What makes your thanksgiving special? The turkey, the family, or the football? Or is it your time to reflect on everything that you are thankful for?
Here at the Stratford Inn we are thankful for all of our wonderful guest! Our guest are what keeping smiling and thankful employees, turkey on the table, and football on the T.V. This year we could not be more thankful to have our guest come back year after year.
Thank you Stratford Inn guests that you choose to make us “your home away from home” year after year.
Join the Stratford Inn and the Ashland Chamber of Commerce tomorrow for the 20th Annual Ashland Festival of Light.
Have a safe and warm holiday!
After all the Christmas shopping is done, and you don’t even want to look at another Black Friday advertisement. Make your way down to Ashland for the annual Festival of Light.
Entertainment begins on the Plaza at 1:30pm.
5:00pm, is the lights for Life Tree Lighting, Santa’s Parade with Grand Illumination at the Plaza
6:15pm, Santa and Mrs. Claus meet with all the children at the Black Swan Theatre, on the corner of Pioneer & East Main.
Instead of waiting out in the cold come on inside Boulevard Coffee for some warm refreshments. They are open till 7pm tomorrow evening. Just enough time to watch the prarade and then walk down the Black Swan Theatre with the kids.
You can see the full schedule of the 20th Annual Ashland Festival of Lights here.
Can’t wait to see you all there!