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Pear Blossom, Table Rocks hikes latest virus casualties

Two more Southern Oregon staples of spring have been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Pear Blossom Festival board has canceled all of its planned activities, and The Nature Conservancy and the Bureau of Land Management have called off most of the guided hikes they organize on Upper and Lower Table Rocks every year.

The Pear Blossom Festival Association nixed all plans Monday for its junior pageant scholarship competition, golf tournament, youth golf contests, Smudge Pot Stroll, Pear A Fare, street fair, parade, cornhole tournament, cutest baby contest and Pedals and Pears bike event.

In a statement issued Monday, the association said it will start planning its 2021 events in May.

However, the Pear Blossom races as of Monday remained open, but race committee members have a scheduled meeting Tuesday to discuss the classic Medford race.

"We're trying to keep the faith, but we'll see," race director Rich Stanfield said late Monday.

The Nature Conservancy and BLM canceled their March and April hikes, but as of Monday the two entities were holding out hope that hikes scheduled in May could go on as planned.

Registration for the May hikes will open April 17 “if public safety allows,” according to a press release from hike organizers.

The trails, however, will remain open and the hike organizers encouraged people to still get outside and enjoy nature this spring.

Reach Mail Tribune reporter Mark Freeman at 541-776-4470 or mfreeman@rosebudmedia.com. Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MTwriterFreeman.