Ashland's Independence Day Celebration — now more than 100 years old — is what sets the city apart from its neighbors. This year's theme will be "Together We Sing!" to honor the community and its collaborative spirit.
The annual Fourth of July parade is a highlight of Ashland's celebration, drawing thousands of spectators. The Grand Marshal selected for the 2017 parade are the servicemen and women of the Armed Forces. Those who are serving or who are veterans will walk in the parade with their appropriate affiliation.
The parade begins at 10 a.m. at Triangle Park, then follows Siskiyou Boulevard and East Main Street to finish at Water Street near the Ashland Plaza.
After the parade, more than a 100 food, arts, crafts and information booths will be open until 5 p.m. in Lithia Park, along with a Family Activity Zone with children's group The College Fund Street Band performing throughout the afternoon
The Ashland City Band will present a patriotic concert in Lithia Park's Butler Band Shell at noon. Look for "National Emblem March," "American Civil War Fantasy," "Armed Forces Salute" to honor our country's military and veterans, and "La Bamba de Vera Cruz." The latter is in recognition of guests from Ashland's sister city Guanajuato, Mexico. Bench seating is available. Blankets and low-level folding chairs may be used for lawn seating. The band performs again at 12:30 and 1:15 p.m.
At 12:30 p.m. Ashland Mayor John Stromberg will present a welcome address in the band shell; then at 1 p.m., Buzz Fraser will read the Declaration of Independence, and Bob Jackson Miner, dressed as Abraham Lincoln, will deliver the Gettysburg Address.
Short musical performances continue with Jefferson State Choral Coalition at 1:30 p.m.; rock band Jeff K & Overtones at 2 p.m.; 10-piece R&B band Souliverse at 2:25 p.m.; and a finale performances with Jeff K & Overtones and Souliverse.
Jefferson State Choral Coalition, directed by Kirby Shaw, will present "Jefferson State of Mind," a free concert by the 60-voice community choir, at 6:30 p.m. in the band shell. The choir will be joined by guitarist Craig Chaquico, former lead guitarist and songwriter for Jefferson Starship and Starship. The show will open with iconic songs from the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s. Chaquico also will share his personal stories from nearly five decades as a performer, composer and recording artist.
Ashland's Fourth of July events also include 2-mile and 10-kilometer runs that begin at 7:45 at the Ashland library, 410 Siskiyou Blvd. Registration is $25, $10 for ages 12 and younger. See ashland.or.us/julyrun to register.
The Native Plant Society of Oregon's Siskiyou Chapter will present its Irene Hollenbeck Memorial Wildflower Show from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Ashland Community Center, 59 Winburn Way.
Look for free shuttle service between the bus stops in Tolman Creek Plaza and downtown Ashland (on Lithia Way between first and second streets) every 30 minutes. The last pickup will be at 4 p.m. at the downtown stop.
The 200-member American Band College Ensemble of Sam Houston State University's American Band College program will present "Ashland Pops" at 8 p.m. Tuesday, July 4, in the football stadium at Ashland High School, 201 S. Mountain Ave. Featured guest artist will be trumpet player Doc Severinsen, who will conduct and perform with the band. Severinsen also will appear with ABC's ensemble Mariachi Sol de Mexico.
Tickets are $19 for general admission, $29 for reserved seating, and can be purchased at bandworld.org/tickets, Cripple Creek Music, 353 E. Main St., or at the gate. Seniors and kids save $4 per ticket.
At 10 p.m., a fireworks display will take place on the athletic field at Southern Oregon University.