Pear Blossom Festival Kicks Off

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MEDFORD, Ore. — The 2013 Pear Blossom Festival activities kicked off this afternoon. The Smudge Pot Stroll and Pear A Fare are just getting started and it’s been a long day already for the vendors at the street fair. They’ve been setting up since early Friday morning.

Shoppers at the fair can find everything from homemade jewelry to fresh fruit and kettle corn. There are more than 100 vendors this year at the street fair. Organizers say 80 percent of them are local.

This part of the festival is a fundraiser for the heart of Medford and the work it does throughout the year. This festival also marks the beginning of a new marketing campaign to lure folks into the downtown Medford area. It’s also the first large event at the commons.

On Saturday morning the runners will wind their way through Medford. That will close some pretty significant streets like Main and Hanley from 6:30 to 9:30.Then of course there is the parade. Those street closures start at 6:30 a.m. on Saturday. Traffic will be rerouted onto riverside avenue because of the parade closures.

The parade will kick off at 11 a.m. tomorrow. This continues Friday night until 10 p.m. and the vendors will be back again Saturday from seven to five.

Also, this year the Pear Blossom Board wanted to honor a local business, so this year’s grand marshal is Motorcycle Superstore. Festival organizers say they chose the business to lead this year’s Pear Blossom Parade because Motorcycle Superstore brings lots of business to the area and employs local people. There are more than 4,000 participants in Saturday’s parade.