Talent Harvest Fest returns after 2 years – Medford News, Weather, Sports, Breaking News

However, some popular attractions will not be returning

Harley Shepherd painted her face at the 2016 Talent Harvest Festival. The event will return this fall after a two-year absence. [Mail Tribune / Jamie Lusch]

After a two-year absence due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the recovery of the Almeida fire in September 2020, the Talent Harvest Festival will return on October 1.

“It’s been two years since we last held it, so we’re trying to get back to a sense of normal life. I think people are ready and eager to experience (a) urban event,” said Hector Flores, director of urban community engagement Said he was part of the team that organized the event. Talent business alliances are also helping organizations.

Lucero Martinez, the city’s bilingual community recovery liaison, said the festival could be a sort of return for Hispanic residents displaced by the Almeida fires.

The festival will be held in downtown Talent from 10am to 4pm. The 5K and 10K runs will start at 8am. Booths of music, local art, vendors and organisations will all be on display.

Main Street from Front Street to Talent Avenue will be closed to accommodate more than 50 vendors. The city will also close stalls on City Hall Avenue and North Market Street near Main.

There will be two performance stages. The first phase will be at the Grotto car park, which will also feature a beer garden and another vendor area. You’ll be seated with performances by the bluegrass band Seed Grass, Mariachi, Adam Gabriel and the Puerto Rican Band. Between shows, the DJ will play music.

Stage 2 will feature performances for children. It will be located on a stage with seating adjacent to the city hall.There will also be live music at the Camelot Theatre from noon to 5pm and Gather Café from 11:30am to around 4pm

Local organizations that will have kiosks include Jackson County United Way, Unente, Northwest Seasonal Workers, Habitat for Humanity, Phoenix High School Leadership Club, Jackson County Community Long Term Recovery Group, Firebrand Resiliency Collective, and the Talent Business Alliance.

Food trucks and food vendors will be located next to City Hall, near the open space between City Hall and Market Street. Food suppliers include Filipino Fire Food Truck, Sultan’s Delight and Hilltop Coffee.

“The typical vendors you’ll see at farmers markets will be there. For them, it’s the end of the year,” Flores said. Harvested food and handicrafts will be provided. Vendor markets in Phase 1 areas will be extended until 7pm.

City officials will be present at the festival. Flores expects councillor and mayor Darby Ayers-Flood to attend, as well as opponents of their participation in the November election. State Senator Jeff Golden will also be in attendance, he said.

There will also be booths at the Talent Police Department and the Community Outreach Program. The city’s Public Arts Council will offer art activities for children.

Two electric car makers from Portland will showcase vehicles during the holiday season. One is an electric tractor. There will also be a trailer showing electric vehicles and green energy.

Michael Hoch, a former urban sustainability coordinator who now works for one of the manufacturers, was instrumental in arranging the electric vehicle showcase for the festival.

The Talent History Society on Market Street will be open during the festival, showcasing the town’s history.

The revival will be different from past iterations. There will be no parades and some play features will not be available. “Some of the fun stuff from previous years is hard to come by,” Flores said.

Bouncy Castles and Bounce Houses cannot be fixed. The popular slam dunk tank won’t show up either. The former was from Phoenix High School, but since the school was rebuilt, its whereabouts are unknown. This year’s parade cannot go ahead due to a lack of city staff to close parade routes and handle arrangements.

The Talent Library’s book sale, a popular holiday event, is returning. This is the largest fundraiser of the year by the Talent Library Club, which supports libraries.

Librarian Patrick Matthews said more than 200 people had visited the auction in previous years. Items are not priced and buyers make purchases on a donation basis.

“We always try to provide a free book to the kid who comes,” Matthews said. By asking for donations, children have the opportunity to come in and buy things for less than a dollar, he said. Funds raised support library activities for children.

Most books are donated to the library club. Matthews said there is also a large supply of CDs and DVDs this year. Sometimes vinyl records are sold.

Vendors wanting to participate can find an application form at cityoftalent.org. Southern Oregon Runners is providing information on sorunners.org. See Talentbusinessalliance.org/talentharvestfestival for more details. somostalent.net provides information in Spanish.

Contact Ashland freelance writer Tony Boom at tboomwriter@gmail.com.

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