Walk into the new year

An annual tradition of walking the labyrinth at the New Year continues in Wesley Hall, First United Methodist Church, 175 N. Main St., Ashland.

The labyrinth will be open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. The space will feature decorated altars and musical performances.

Performing today are Victor Novick on flute and Japanese koto, flutist Ryk Shadix, singer Nancy Bloom, Roma Sprung and James Edwards on violin and guitar, vocal group Ancient Men, harpists James Excell and Elizabeth Markell, opera singer Pauline Sullivan, Andy Bayliss performing chant and harmonium music, and Nancy Spencer and Syd Smith playing musical saw, flute and guitar.

The moving meditation is free, but donations are accepted to fund the annual event. For information, call Elizabeth Austin at 541-482-4132.

For walkers who want to get outside, head to Valley of the Rogue, which is participating in the "First Day Hike" program for the first time.

The hike will run from noon to 3 p.m. and cover about three miles of the Rogue Valley Greenway path along the banks of the Rogue River. It starts at the park's program area off Interstate 5 at exit 45B. The hike, led by Ranger Lyle Scott, will focus on riparian vegetation and local birds.

The hike is open to everyone and suitable for families, even babies in strollers, organizers said. Dogs are welcome on the hike but must be on a leash, and owners must collect waste. Hikers are encouraged to bring a water bottle, snacks and binoculars.

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