As the 2014 Oregon Shakespeare Festival kicks off another incredible season of contemporary and Shakespearean productions, we at the Stratford Inn want to take a moment to reflect upon the founder of Ashland’s Shakespearean Festival, Angus L. Bowmer. Originally invited to teach English at Southern Oregon University’s predecessor school, Bowmer moved to Ashland to take up his post as teacher and soon began organizing theater productions. It was Bowmer’s idea to offer Ashland’s community staging of Shakespearean plays on an outdoor Elizabethan stage. Since Bowmer’s first productions, attendance for Ashland’s Oregon Shakespeare Festival has grown exponentially. When it became so popular that thousands of people were being turned away, the city of Ashland joined the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in raising funds to expand the Oregon Shakespeare Festival including the addition of the 600 seat theater soon named the Angus Bowmer Theater. For more details on the life of Angus Bowmer as well as the theater named in his honor, visit osfashland.org.