Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Big Blue Visits: Ashland, OR

Our first night in Oregon was spent in Ashland. We anticipated enjoying Ashland - everything we heard about it was that it was our type of town. We rolled in under gray skies that were sprinkling mist on our windshield. We were tired, but excited about our first real stop.

Ashland is home the a Shakespeare Festival, which may lead you to believe that there is a weekend or something dedicated to the "festival". Turns out what that means is that plays are going on pretty much all year except for the winter months. Plays even go on in the rain, which got harder as we headed toward the ticket booth. Performances are outdoors, so we decided to head to get some drinks while we waited to see what the rain would do.

We found Standing Stone Brewing Company which turned out to be an excellent place to shake off the ache of travel and wait out an increasingly rainy evening. At some point during consuming beer and good bar food, we killed the Shakespeare idea due to the rain and decided to walk the rainy streets.

The beer selection at Standing Stone.

We found some fantastic antique stores in the little downtown area and a great independent bookstore - Bloomsbury Books - which we were happy to waste some time in.

Hiding from the rain in Big Blue.

One of the cooler experiences we had in Ashland was when we went back the next morning after camping. We stumbled upon the Key of C Coffee House & Bakery. It turns out that on Sunday mornings (when we were there!) a bunch of crazy Eastern European folks get together and play Eastern European music and do Eastern European dances. It's that sort of gypsy-big-circle-kick-your-leg-out dancing. It's really quite festive to watch.

EP in key of C.


Ashland was no stranger to VWs. We saw this wicked road warrior on the main street through town. I'm not sure what that back air vent-thing on top is. Notice the hardcore lock on the back door?

I think we could have spent another day or 2 in Ashland. I'm sure in the summer, when the weather is awesome and it's filled with people, it is a different experience. But we enjoyed the quiet rainy off-season feeling it had.


Ludwig's Drivers

I'm pretty sure that Splitty is (well, was) an ambulance.


Big Blue's Driver

That might explain the interesting "stripe" paint job.


If you ever find yourself back in Ashland in the summer there's some great swimming up the end of Lithia park complete with a rope swing AND check out the fish and chips at the Black Sheep Pub down on the plaza, in addition to great fish and chips the atmosphere is pretty eclectic

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