Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon

The 2015 Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland opened last month and will run until October. The season includes 11 plays, 4 of them are Shakespearian. All plays performed in the OSF campus that includes two indoor and one outdoor theaters. 

Ashland is a small town near the border with Californian. It is located 350 mi/563km north of San Francisco and 285mi/459 km south of Portland. Having such a large cultural event in such a remote small town is due to the its origin in the Chautauqua Movement (1874-1920s). The movement had the agenda of bringing culture and education to remote parts of the US.  The OSF campus was built in the 1930s and to this day it continues the tradition of the Chautauqua Movement, long after it had officially ended. 

Main street is the downtown of Ashland: A small street with small shops, caf├ęs and restaurants, one Irish pub, one historic hotel, library, and of course – the OSF campus. The festival attracts hippies from all over to the area. The locals are very friendly and diverse and they seem to handle the street hippies very well. 

Looking for accommodations in the area, you might stand a better chance looking in Medford, the biggest city in the area.  It is a 20 minutes drive north on highway 5 from Ashland. When visiting the area, make time to see Crater Lake, a lake that formed at the top of an inactive volcano. From Medford it is an easy 2-hour drive east.

While in Ashland, I highly recommend you should have the Margherita pizza at Martino’s, it is one of the best pizzas I have ever had.