Wild Flowers on Lower Table Rock Trail

Lower Table Rock Trail flower

Cascade Mariposa Lily

Lower Table Rock Trail

This is one of my  favorite springtime trails, especially during the mid-week. I like that it goes through a few distinct eco-systems, each with its own set of wild flowers. The trail starts from the car park and briefly goes through oak savannah, where you see meadow/woodland flowers, such as camas, buttercups, mariposa lilies, shooting stars, with white oak trees and chaparral.  The trail then steadily winds through more forested and shady section as it climbs up the side of the mesa.  On top of the mesa, is where you can see the mounded prairie and vernal pool plant communities.  The meadow flowers that form concentric circles around the vernal pools are especially striking.  Depending on how much spring rain we get, the vernal pools might be seen as late as early May.  It’s usually better to go in April.

Lower table rock trail vernal pools

Last of the vernal pools with fields of Gold on top of Lower Table Rock Trail



The Table Rock vernal pools are micro-ecosystems of habitat that support a federally threatened species of fairy shrimp and a state endangered plant called dwarf wooly meadowfoam (Limnanthes floccosa ssp. pumila). This plant is endemic to the Table Rocks, meaning it is found nowhere else in the world.

You can see Mt. McLoughlin and Mt Ashland from the top of the mesa, as well as the Rogue Valley floor stretching south toward the Siskiyous.


From Interstate 5, take Exit #33 heading east one mile on East Pine Street and turn north (left) at the second signal onto Table Rock Road.  Drive 10 miles to Wheeler Road and turn west (left).  The sign for Lower Table Rock Trail is well posted. The trail head is accessible off of Wheeler Road.

Lower Table Rock trail

Arrowleaf balsamroot

Details of the Lower Table Rock Trail

The trail is 1.75 miles long. It is a moderately difficult trail approximately .5 miles longer than Upper Table Rock Trail. Lower Table Rock Trail offers interpretive signs for hikers. Water is not available along the trail or at the trailhead. Allow approximately 4 hours for a round trip hike.

For those eager to extend their hike, you may enjoy walking along the abandoned airstrip to the edge of the rock. This will add an extra mile to your trip. The south edge of the rock offers a great view of the unique habitat of Kelly Slough. This wetland lies 800 feet below and provides unique habitat for many aquatic birds.



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Lithia Park Nature Walks — Free

Lithia Park Nature Walks

Ashland Creek

Guided Lithia Park Nature Walks — Free

From May to September, no matter the weather, a trained docent naturalists will lead a fun, informative and easy 1.5 hour nature walk through Ashland’s gem — Lithia Park.

Topics include: trees, flowers, birds, climate, water and history of the park.

Days: Sunday, Wednesday and Friday (Saturday in July and August)
Time: 10 am
Meeting point: park entrance nearest the Plaza

And yes, you can do it all!  You can enjoy the Chanticleer breakfast and get to the nature walk on time without being rushed.

OSF Prologue 2015

Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Catherine Coulson Teaches Class on “Guys and Dolls” — May 9, 2015

Catherine Coulson teaches a free class on OSF’s  musical “Guys and Dolls”

Catherine Coulson

Catherine Coulson

Learn more about the Oregon Shakespeare Festival‘s musical “Guys and Dolls” from actor extraordinaire Catherine Coulson on May 9, 2015.

Each year, a variety of OSF actors teach classes for the Siskiyou Center.  Go to Siskiyou Center’s website to see the in-depth theater education programs and other free classes.

The classes are free of charge, but please call 541–482-0260 or email and let her know if you are attending to arrange for the right amount of seating and refreshments.
Location: Ashland Springs Hotel, 212 E. Main Street
Date: May 9, 2015
Time: 10-11am



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Attract Hummingbirds to Your Garden

Attracting Hummingbirds to Your Garden”


Calliope Hummingbirds

Learn what to do in your garden to attract hummingbirds.

Klamath Bird Observatory‘s month of May “Talk and “Walk”” presented by Laura Fleming, a KBO Board Member

Talk: Wednesday, May 6th 6:30-8pm

Laura Fleming is opening Wild Birds Unlimited in Medford this spring.  The “Walk” for this event will be an invitation to visit Wild Birds Unlimited at its new location plus a gift certificate offering a discount on purchases.

$25 fee is for both the Talk and Walk.  Contact to sign up.



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Musical of Musicals (the Musical) Oregon Cabaret Theater

Musical of Musicals

Musical of Musicals

Musical of Musicals (the Musical!)

Music by Eric Rockwell
Lyrics by Joanne Bogart

Oregon Cabaret Theatre presents a hilarious satire of musical theater, a single story is transformed into five mini-musicals, each written and composed in the distinctive style of a different master of the musical theater form: Rodgers & Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Jerry Herman, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Kander & Ebb.

Roberta Kent writing for the Mail Tribune says:

“The Musical of Musicals (the Musical!)” is a delightful spoof on Broadway musicals. Don’t let the way-too-clever title of the Oregon Cabaret Theatre’s new offering put you off. It is a valentine without being saccharine and a tribute without being slavish — and great fun.”

Musical of Musicals plays April 8 – May 17, 2015  For show times and ordering tickets go here.



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Camelot Theatre: “Sunset Boulevard”, starring Livia Genise

Camelot Theatre “Sunset Boulevard” — a Review

Livia Genise’s version of Sunset Boulevard is a “kinder, gentler version of tale told in classic Wilder movie” says Roberta Kent writing for the Daily Tidings.
I always love to promote the ‘other’ performing arts venues in the Rogue Valley.  The town of Talent, just a few miles up the road from Ashland, is the home of the Camelot Theatre.

This community theater does a wonderful job mainly due the untiring efforts of its Artist Director Livia Genise.

Livia Genise plays Norma Desmond and Nathan Monks is Joe Gillis in Camelot Theatre's production of "Sunset Boulevard." Photo courtesy of Steve Sutfin

Camelot Theatre’s production of “Sunset Boulevard.” Livia Genise plays Norma Desmond and Nathan Monks is Joe Gillis in Photo courtesy of Steve Sutfin

Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber
Book and Lyrics by Don Black and Christopher Hampton
Based on the Billy Wilder Film
Starring Livia Genise and Nathan Monks
Directed by Roy Von Rains, Jr.

Go here to read Roberta Kent’s review of “Sunset Boulevard

8 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and 2 p.m.
Sundays through April 19 at the Camelot Theatre, 101 Talent Avenue, Talent.
For tickets ($25–29), call 541–535-5250 or go to


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Guys and Dolls” 2015 Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Big Fat Musical

Guys and Dolls

Guys and Dolls

Guys and Dolls — a Review

Guys and Dolls is truly entertaining and very well done … this coming from someone who loves music and especially dance, but not particularly musical theater.

If you like musical theater, then you must go to see Guys and Dolls.  Others who are musical theater lovers, such as, my friend Jim are loving the show.

The two lead women, Kate Hurster and Robin Goodrin Nordli, really sparkle and shine, nearly stealing the show.  I also loved how Rodney Gardiner played Nathan Detroit.  The dancing was excellent, perhaps the best choreography Oregon Shakespeare Festival has done yet (err, in a long time).

David Stabler’s review (see it here) provides another view, funnily enough reflecting much of what I think and feel.


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Ashland Farmers Market Opens March 17, 2015

2015 Ashland Farmers Market Opens

ashland farmers market

Organic Carrots

Always fun, the Ashland Farmers market, also called Rogue Valley Growers and Crafters Market, provides a wide selection of locally grown fruits and vegetables.  As well as herbs, plants, soaps and crafts.  Music and food booths add to the festive feel.

8:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. at the National Guard Armory on 1420 E. Main Street


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Siskiyou Center: Learn more

Siskiyou Center: Shakespeare, Women and Song

Siskiyou Center

Miles Fletcher and Robin Goodrin Nordli in “Into The Woods” (photo by T. Charles Erickson)

If you want an immersive program to learn more about Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s spring plays and meet those who actually make it happen, check out Siskiyou Center’s program April 19–24.

Theatre Instructor: Barzin Akhavan

Topics that will be covered:

  • What’s the connection between Shakespeare and modern musical theater and how they overlap?
  • Find out how a musical theater performer uses a score with language, not notes, to tell a story.  Learn how an actor uses the musicality of Shakespeare’s words to make the language clear for the audience.
  • Discover some of the unconventional female characters who are on stage at Oregon Shakespeare Festival this season, and how they contribute to the overall production.
  • Delve into the world premiere production of the absorbing tale of Fingersmith, aptly described by Oregon Shakespeare Festival as “a wild ride of a Victorian crime thriller!”

Siskiyou Center Program includes pre– and post-show discussions with an Oregon Shakespeare Festival professional artist who will introduce characters and background information for each performance, and provide guest instructors to help you get the most out of your theater experience.

Daily Schedule

Click HERE to see a day-by-day schedule complete with class times, meals, and theater performances.

Program Fee Includes:

  • Tickets to 3 performances at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival
  • Ticket to 1 performance at the Oregon Cabaret Theatre
  • 13 lectures/discussions with theater professionals and Shakespeare scholars
  • 13 meals (5 breakfasts, 5 lunches, 3 dinners—2 dinners “on your own”)
  • Final dinner at a wonderful restaurant in Ashland


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