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Ashland parks prep for fall fun

Fall has always been my favorite time of the year. The cooler weather, jaunts outside with layers of clothing rather than layers of sunscreen, sweaters, hats, warm drinks by the fireplace, pumpkin bread, the fall colors, the evening lights, the holidays truly makes it th best time of the year. I’ve also come to love the autumn traditions here at APRC.

Our 2019 Fall Community PlayGuide ... ”what to do!” will hit your mailbox the last week of August. The guide will feature recreation programming that will carry us through December 2019. It will highlight the Bear Creek Salmon Festival in October, the opening of the Ashland Rotary Centennial Ice Rink in November and new this year, our communications campaign (more on that in a bit).

The Lithia Park free guided nature walks will continue through the end of September. If we are lucky enough to have a few cool nights in September, the foliage will start to change to colors of vibrant yellow, amber orange and deep red. The walks take place on Sundays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 10 to 11:30 a.m. They are led by a wonderful team of trained volunteer naturalists. If you can’t make it out, you can experience the walk with our StoryMap for the Lithia Park Trail Guide. StoryMaps are digital storytelling with maps. Speaking of StoryMaps, we have two others for you to peruse at your leisure: the Lithia Park History Tour and the Park and Trail Finder. View them all at ashland.or.us/WebApps. Watch for more in the future!

In thinking about our temperate fall weather, it’s the perfect climate to get out and experience the game of golf or FootGolf at our Oak Knoll Golf Course ... be sure to book your tee time by calling 541-482-4311. On Sept. 21, we will wrap up our Rock the Knoll free summer concert series with the band Hog Wild. Our new restaurant, Mary’s BBQ on the Knoll, will be serving food and drink beginning 5 p.m., along with our friends at CABA Empanadas. The music starts at 5 p.m. and invariably a good time! More info is at OakKnollGolf.org.

The 15th Annual Bear Creek Salmon Festival will take place once again from 1 a.m. to 4 p.m. at North Mountain Park on Saturday, Oct. 5. The park is adjacent to Bear Creek and is approximately 14 acres. What’s special about Bear Creek in the fall? The return of the salmon! The Bear Creek Salmon Festival is a free, family event that is the first Saturday of every October. Join us for a celebration of our local watershed and the return of salmon in Bear Creek. Complete info at BearCreekSalmonFestival.net. It’s worth mentioning that once again we plan to cook salmon in the traditional Native American style over an open flame, and you have got to try it!

The Ashland Rotary Centennial Ice Rink will open Nov. 21, 2019, through Feb. 17, 2020. The 2019-2020 schedule will be available at ashland.or.us/IceRink after Nov. 1. Our annual First Frost event will take place , 2:30 to 10 p.m. Dec. 14. What can you expect at First Frost? A hockey exhibition, figure skating performances, a live DJ, holiday lights and discounted prices will culminate over a fun-filled evening. Psst — Special appearance from the jolly old St. Nick himself and his skating elves!

And now what I really want to share with you. ... Our communications campaign, Stay Connected with APRC! We have much more to offer throughout the year. We want you to feel connected and stay connected with us.

We take pride in providing you with outdoor recreation and experiences, recreation programs, special events, education and community engagement. From the parks we manage, the trails we help build and maintain, to our Senior Services Division, the Oak Knoll Golf Course, the Nature Center, to the seasonal outdoor Ashland Rotary Centennial Ice Rink in Lithia Park and the Daniel Meyer Memorial Pool in Hunter Park, it’s our job and our pleasure to communicate all of this to you. Stay up-to-date on APRC happenings, events, programs, projects and alerts by connecting with us!

The ways you can stay connected with APRC:

  • Online at AshlandParksandRec.org, Facebook & Instagram — @AshlandParksandRec
  • Sign-up for Email Notification at AshlandParksandRec.org
  • In-person at any of our facilities, Monday through Friday, generally 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (times will vary between facilities)
  • The Grove
  • North Mountain Park Nature Center
  • Ashland Senior Center
  • Oak Knoll Golf Course

Direct Contact

  • Call 541-488-5340
  • Email ParksInfo@ashland.or.us
  • Contact the Commission with our online form at AshlandParksandRec.org
  • Complete information at ashland.or.us/APRCstayConnected.
  • For more information on APRC visit AshlandParksandRec.org. “Fun, it’s in our Nature!” Enjoy the autumn and we hope to see you hiking in a park, riding the trails or skating at the ice rink!