City reminds parade fans not to stake out territory too early

    Bud Clardy l participates in the 2017 Ashland Fourth of July Parade. Daily Tidings / Jamie Lusch

    Want a good spot to view Wednesday’s parade? Just don’t try to do it prior to the night before, the city of Ashland is reminding early birds.

    The city asks Fourth of July parade spectators not to place chairs, blankets and other placeholders on public property prior to the evening of July 3. Public property includes the median on Siskiyou Boulevard, park rows (that area between the sidewalk and the curb) and curbs of Siskiyou Boulevard and East Main Street, plus the Plaza and other public areas.

    In recent years, city staff has seen considerable clean-up issues from the use of duct tape and other adhesive tapes. After being in the heat for a day or two, the tape bakes onto the sidewalk surface and is nearly impossible to completely remove. While all space is public and not guaranteed for any individual resident or guest, following Ashland’s traditional honor system for reserving space would be best done with the use of non-toxic chalk.

    Chairs and blankets should not block sidewalks and should be weighted to prevent items from blowing out of place; however, do not drive stakes into the ground as irrigation systems can be damaged.

    Additionally, the covering of grass areas with tarps and blankets quickly fries and sometimes kills the grass completely. The shorter the amount of time the grass is covered the better.

    Items that create a safety hazard for pedestrians or vehicles may be picked up and disposed of if not able to be easily moved to restore a safe situation. Spectators place all items at their own risk.

    In other parade news, U.S. Senator Ron Wyden’s office has announced he will walk in this year’s Ashland parade as part of his First Amendment mini-tour of Oregon during the Congressional recess.

    “The Founding Fathers knew the First Amendment’s freedoms were core to our country and to creating the values that have made America a destination for all who hunger to be free of fear and liberated to pursue their dreams,” Wyden said. “As the son of a reporter, I learned early on about the importance of the freedom of the press. And as the child of parents who fled the Nazis, I also learned early on about the importance of the freedoms of religion, speech and assembly.

    “In much of the world, people can’t freely assemble, speak, write or practice their religion,” he said. “It’s more important than ever as we in the United States celebrate our nation’s birth date to celebrate all those freedoms and to defend them from assaults with all our might.”

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