Press Release from the Medford Pear Blossom Spring Fair:
Everything Old is New Again!
The old Pear Blossom Street Fair is now renamed the new Pear Blossom Spring
Fair and is celebrating its 30th year. In addition to the new name is a new venue at
The event, as always, follows the Pear Blossom Parade on Saturday, April 10th from 10
AM to 7 PM and has the largest potential crowd of any Southern Oregon event. The
event continues on Sunday, April 11, from 10 AM to 5 PM.
With crowds of 20,000 or more at this two day event (previously held on Friday and
Saturday), the Alba Park venue was outgrown. The event had been held there for the
past 29 years. The Heart of Medford Association (HMA), a nonprofit organization
(www.heartofmedford.com) , decided to move the event to Hawthorne Park giving the
event more room for people and room to expand the features of the event.
It is a leisurely walk through downtown Medford from Alba Park, where the parade ends
on Saturday at about noon, to Hawthorne Park and shuttle service will be provided from
park to park on Saturday. The new venue will also provide room for 24′ wide aisles, so
people can easily stroll down the rows of vendors.
HMA engaged an Ashland-based fundraising consulting and events management firm,
Marshall Fundraising Management,(www.marshallfundraising.com), headed by
Managing Partners, Joy and Larry Marshall. Their challenge was to build on the
existing event of the past and to create a fresh approach, with novel and unprecedented
features. Says Joy Marshall, “Once we resolve all the logistical components, everything
should be set to make this event run very smoothly…the best ever!”. And Larry Marshall
comments, “The great challenge we have now is communicating the venue location
change from Alba Park to Hawthorne Park and the changed days of the event, Saturday
and Sunday (formerly Friday and Saturday), as well as the great fun, new attractions for
the entire family on both days. To do so, we will have a Pear costumed-figure (“Buddy”
or “Blossom”, our event mascots) and other volunteers following the Parade, and at Alba
Park, with signs directing the huge crowds to Hawthorne Park, along with sustained
radio and TV spots, posters and major print/broadcast media hype, etc., creating great
community awareness… ala P.T. Barnum, the greatest event promoter (born 200 years
ago in 1810)!”
This year, in addition to the 100+ retail, arts/crafts and other vendors along with 14
food concessions, there will be something for everyone! From medieval jousting to a
challenging rock climbing wall just waiting for energetic kids of all ages to try!
New this year in the Kids Zone will be activities for kids created especially for them by
ScienceWorks with interactive space-orientated projects and Kids Unlimited creating
“tattoos” using removable ink with glitter and sparkles. Wildlife Images will be
featuring some of their ‘traveling’ animals and teaching about exotic animals; all the old
standards will still be there, too, with cotton candy, pony rides, face painting, bounce
houses, and elephant ears to eat and alpacas to meet! The Southern Oregon Alpaca
Association (SOAA) will be introducing their unique and adorable ‘farm’ animals to
many kids for the first time.
There will be a special nonprofit section where many of the area’s organizations will
provide beneficial information of interest to the community, including area historical
societies embracing the legacy of the Rogue Valley.
For the first time, an outstanding music component is being added to the event to make
it even more enjoyable! There will be a large professional mobile stage with first-class
sound and many of the best Rogue Valley musical talent groups will perform…with the
professional entertainers generously donating their services back to the event! The
musical theme will be spirit-uplifting in keeping with the mission of HMA.
The performance roster is as follows (subject to change):
• 12:00 -12:40: “Random Sound”, 13 year old kids rock & roll band, covering
Beatles songs, as well as originals;
• 1:00 -1:40: “The Relief”, a dynamic group full of energy and passion will
perform all original songs that will have everyone dancing in front of the stage;
• 2:00-2:40: “The Rogue Suspects”, playing well-known funky blues, rock and Motown;
• 3:00-3:40: “Michael Mish”, environmental-oriented musician/composer, will
hit the keyboard singing many of his Emmy-award winning children’s songs,
R&B, and covering songs from iconic legends, Elton John, Cat Stevens and The
• 4:00-4:40: “Michael ‘Hawkeye’ Herman and Friends”, acoustic blues
musician and global blues educator;
• 5:00-5:40: “Apropos Musique”, unique sounds of contemporary pop group;
• 12:00-12:40: “Siskiyou Violins”, nationally-honored, teen ensemble;
• 1:00-1:40: “The Gayle Wilson Band”, long-time favorite, performing classic
• 2:00-2:40: “4 Stories High”, recently transplanted duo from New York City,
Laura Berman and partner/husband, Craig Benelli, will perform ‘New Thought
Inspirational’ community music;
• 3:00-3:40: “The Hedgehogs”, soulful gypsy jazz and swing group with Brad
Kauder, Dan Fellman and gang;
• 4:00-4:40: “Havurah Choir” led by Allen Kenner & delivering uplifting
Background on performers and production:
Entertainment Producers are Larry & Joy Marshall, Marshall Fundraising Management;
Production Manager is Brent Waroniecki, Marshall Fundraising Management;
Stage Manager is Shawn Montgomery, Profound Entertainment.
During both days, KRWQ, KISS and KOOL radio stations will be handling the mic and
providing ‘color’ between shows. They also emcee the event. Ivan Velasquez,
Dreamweaver Productions, will volunteer additional DJ services during the weekend.
The Pear Blossom Spring Fair sponsors include: Charter Communications, Bicoastal
Media-KISS, KOOL and KRWQ, Profound Entertainment, PacificSource Health Plans,
MURA (Medford Urban Renewal Agency), PacificCorp, Umpqua Bank and many others.
HMA is a nonprofit organization whose mission is to help revitalize and build awareness
to the renewal of downtown Medford along with its retail merchants, and to renewing
foot traffic to the area and its environs. Proceeds from this event support all other yearlong
HMA events, such as Art in Bloom in May, The Taste of History in June and Winter
Light Festival in December.
Pear Blossom Spring Fair Performer Backgrounds:
Random Sound with Nick Chouard, Cole Coster, Tejas Leir-Heyden, Spencer Tesluk .
The boys of Random Sound met on a soccer field, but soon discovered they have another
passion in common. . . Rock and Roll. Just a few years ago, they could only play three
or four chords and now they have developed into real musicians who rock their
audiences with high energy performances.
The Relief is a group of young artists and jokers who are natural-born performers. Their
all-original rock sound is influenced by many of the ‘greats’ in rock music from The
Rolling Stones and The Doors to Bob Dylan and The Who. Their history starts at the
beginning, since Chris Doran (Lead Vocalist-Rhythm guitar) and Spenser Doran
(Drums/Percussion)are brothers. Then, in early childhood they met up with
bassman/vocalist Shane Kell, and the music and the chemistry began! Rounding out the
group is lead guitar, Jesse Kennemer. Together they say, “We’d perform even if no one
listened…we can’t stop, won’t stop…until our hearts stop”.
“The Rogue Suspects:
There are so many reasons to love these Rogues, and, yes, that is with a capital “R”. The
Rogue Suspects, or Suspects for short, is one of Southern Oregon’s local bands and is a
perfect musical storm – a culmination of agonizingly amazing talent, energy, charisma
and magnanimous spirit. These Rogues are Keys Angermaestro, Soul Man Bolen, Greg
Fretless and Tex, also known as keyboardist/vocalist Dean Angermeier, drummer David
Bolen, bassist Greg Frederick and guitarist/vocalist Dirk Price. http://www.roguesuspects.com
Emmy-award winning environmentalist-composer of original kids songs, musician and
singer, covering Elton John, Cat Stevens and The Beach Boys, etc. The LA Times calls
him “The Pied Piper of the Environment” and he has appeared on PBS specials and
many national network TV programs. He has also created acclaimed videos for many
nonprofit organizations. http://www.michaelmishmusic.com
“Michael ‘Hawkeye’ Herman”:
With over 40 years of performing experience, Michael “Hawkeye” Herman exemplifies
the range of possibilities in acoustic blues, and personifies versatile musicianship,
originality, and compelling artistry as a blues storyteller. Award-winning,
internationally recognized blues performer/recording artist,educator jamming with
local musician friends, singing and playing dynamic acoustic blues and R&B. Let the
good times roll! His dynamic performances have won him a faithful following, and he
leads a very active global touring schedule of performances at festivals, concerts, school
programs, and workshops. Hawkeye performs a wide variety of traditional blues,
ballads, swing, and original tunes, on six-string and twelve-string guitar, and is an adept
and exciting practitioner of slide guitar and slide mandolin. http://www.HawkeyeHerman.com
Apropos Musique is a newly formed contemporary acoustic musical group comprised of
three talented musicians: Curt Masterson, Neil Henderson and Stephanie Oaks. The
wide backgrounds of each of these individuals lead to a very nice fusion of diverse styles.
Working hard to blend Rock, R n’ B, Country and Jazz into unique Pop music, they seem
to have immense fun singing together. http://www.equuspro.com
Siskiyou Violins, led by Artistic Director Faina Podolnaya, consists of around 40 teen –
and sub-teen – violinists from the Rogue Valley. They were one of only two youth
orchestras from across the United States to be invited to the annual conference of the
American String Teachers Association in California earlier this year.
“The Gayle Wilson Band”:
This high-energy group plays hits everyone remembers. From “Mustang Sally” to
“Footloose”, you can count on this band to let the good times roll. Band members
include Dal Carver on piano & vocals, Brent Norton on guitar and vocals, Dennis Freese
on sax, flute, clarinet & vocals, Jeff Addicott on bass & vocals, Mike Fitch on drums,
Gayle Wilson on harmonica and vocals. http://www.gaylewilson.com
“4 Stories High”: Laura Berman and Craig Benelli:
“Our songs are our stories, and we have a multitude of stories to tell.” From their days
in the New York City “singer/songwriter scene,” to performing at the Agape
International Spiritual Center in Los Angeles, and alongside inspirational authors
Marianne Williamson and Neale Donald Walsch, 4 Stories High, have inspired
thousands nationwide with their songs, wit and honesty. They continue to perform at
numerous conferences, music venues and spiritual centers across the country.
The Hedgehogs play Gypsy Jazz and classic swing-era tunes. Gypsy Jazz – also known
as Gypsy Swing or Jazz manouche – combines the passion and romance of traditional
music with the uplifting bounce and swing of the WW-II Era big band music.
Spearheaded by manouche gypsy guitarist, Django Reinhardt, Italian violinist, Stephane
Grappelli and their Paris-based “Hot Club of France” – Gypsy Jazz is currently enjoying
an enthusiastic following worldwide. Come swing and sway to the jazz sound of Gypsy
Jazz at this year’s Pear Blossom Festival!
“Havurah Choir” led by Allen Kenner:
The Havurah Choir, led by Allen Kenner, featuring Paula Flowers and Yvonne Wolfman
and composed of singers of all ages from diverse faiths, celebrates the joy of singing
spiritual music together. The choir sings primarily at Jewish services at the Havurah,
but also spreads healing, understanding, and tolerance through music by performing at
other venues, including interfaith events in the Rogue Valley. The Havurah Choir sings
a wide range of spiritual music including traditional melodies, chants, modern folk-style
music, both liturgical and secular, as well as original music. Many of the pieces the
Havurah Choir sings were composed and arranged by Allen Kenner