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Best Bets: Five picks for this weekend

First Friday Art Walk

Galleries, restaurants and studios in downtown Ashland and its Railroad District unveil new exhibits, host art demonstrations and live music from 5 to 8 p.m. the first Friday of every month. Some artists will be on hand to discuss their work. Art walk maps are available at any of the venues. Art & Soul Gallery will hold an opening reception from 5 to 8 p.m. for watercolorist Charlotte Peterson’s work “Come the Spring with All Its Splendor.” For a full listing of events and participating galleries, see ashlandgalleries.com.

Hearts & Hops

Sample beer and food from local and regional vendors at the Hearts & Hops charity fundraiser from 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at Pear Blossom Park, 312 E. Fourth St., Medford. Live music will be performed by The Brothers Reed with Buckle Rash, and The John Dough Boys band. Also look for a food and beer pairing competition and a silent auction. Tickets are $75. Must be 21 or older to attend and a dress code of resort casual (collared shirts for men required) is required. All proceeds will fund grants for local organizations actively working to serve, educate and help prevent domestic violence in our region. For tickets, see heartsandhops.com or call 541-770-0189.

The Hamazons

Warrior Princesses of Improv Cil Stengel, Eve Smyth and Kyndra Laughery will present “Improv on a Hot Tin Roof” — a performance where comedy improvisation smolders in the Southern Gothic world of Tennessee Williams. Shows are set for 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday, May 3-4, and at 2 p.m. Sunday, May 5, at the Bellview Grange, 1050 Tolman Creek Road, Ashland. Inspired by such plays as “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “Cat on a Hot Tin Roof” and “The Glass Menagerie,” The Hamazons will deliver a full-length improvised play filled with charm, passion, ruin, redemption and laughter. Musical accompaniment is by Darcy Danielson. Tickets are $15 in advance and are available at hamazons.com, or $18 at the door.

‘The Gin Game’

The winner of the 1978 Pulitzer Prize, “The Gin Game” uses a card game as a metaphor for life. Weller Martin is playing solitaire on the porch of a seedy nursing home. Enter Fonsia Dorsey, a prim, self-righteous lady. They discover they both dislike the home and enjoy gin rummy, so they begin to play and reveal intimate details of their lives. Directed by Gwen Overland. Performances are set for 8 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays, and 2 p.m. Sundays, May 2 through May 19, at Camelot Theatre, 101 Talent Ave., Talent. Tickets are $28 to $36. A preview night will be held Thursday, May 2. Tickets for the preview are $20. A benefit performance will be given at 8 p.m. Wednesday, May 8, with proceeds going to the Tudor Guild. Tickets and information available at camelottheatre.org or by calling 541-535-5250.

Arbor Day Celebration

The city of Medford will hold a free Arbor Day Celebration from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, May 4, at Hawthorne Park, corner of East Jackson and Hawthorne streets, Medford. Highlights include a Tree City USA award presentation, keynote speaker Arborist Mario Vaden, ceremonial tree planting and live animal ambassadors for Badger Run Wildlife Rehab. Also look for information booths, children’s activities, bounce house, police car display and free tree seedlings. Call 541-774-2400 or see playmedford.com.

Hearts & Hops.
"He Loves Me Two." Watercolor by Charlotte Peterson.