Tickets Still Available for December 11th Pre-Event Wine and Dessert Reception


There are still tickets available for our pre-event, wine and dessert reception for The Hearth Holiday Gathering Thursday, December 11th, from 6:30 to 7:30pm at Temple Emek Shalom in Ashland.  Tickets for this special fundraiser are limited. A $50 VIP ticket includes local wines, delicious desserts, live music, and reserved seating for that night’s Best of The Hearth Holiday Gathering (7:30-9:30pm, open to the public) with stories from some of our favorite tellers on the theme “All in the Family.” Tellers include Mary Landberg, Joshua Boettiger, Michael Fitzgerald, Juliet Grable, Lorraine Cook, and Mark Yaconelli. Music by Wendi Stanek and friends. To reserve your tickets email This is our once-in-a-year evening in which all ticket proceeds benefit The Hearth.

IF YOU CAN’T MAKE THE PRE-EVENT RECEPTION you can still attend The Best of The Hearth Holiday Gathering (7:30-9:30, $10 donation) or simply support The Hearth by making a tax-deductible donation. Simply send your check or money order to The Hearth, 400 Morton St., Ashland, Oregon 97520. Thanks friends.


Blues Pilgrimage: An Exploration of Grief and Loss in Portland


Join The Hearth founder Mark Yaconelli for a unique exploration of grief and loss through blues music, storytelling, travel, and shared conversation.

The retreat begins with an award-winning barbecue and a private blues concert by some of Portland’s finest musicians on February 18th (Ash Wednesday) and ends with lunch at the Power Station Pub on Friday, February 20th.

Lodging will be at McMenamins historic Edgefield Hotel (originally build in 1911 as the county poor farm) with onsite brewery, outside heated soaking tubs, award winning gardens, and original turn-of-the-century hand-painted rooms.

Retreat sessions Wednesday night, Thursday, and Friday morning will take place at a beautiful retreat center right on the edge of the Columbia Gorge and will be led by veteran retreat leader Mark Yaconelli who will help participants explore and share stories around personal experiences of grief and loss.

Thursday night the group will head into Portland and seek a bit of transformation through some soul-moving, foot-stomping, hot blues music by Lloyd Jones and the Struggle.

Cost of the retreat is $300 per person, $500 per couple– which includes all retreat gatherings, all music performances, and all meals (two breakfasts, two lunches, two dinners.). This fee does not include drinks, travel, and housing.

Lodging at Edgefield McMenamins: Edgefield is located on 74 acres at the mouth of the Columbia River. It is a one of a kind, historic hotel with vintage furniture, comfy beds, and whimsical hand-painted rooms. Rooms are European style–no televisions nor phones, conveniently located common bathrooms are located down the hallway.

Lodging fees:
Hostel, bunkbed: $60 for two nights.
Single occupancy, twin: $100 for two nights
Double occupancy, queen: $140 for two nights
Up to four occupants, two queens: $180 for two nights

Travel: All participants are responsible for their own transportation. We will help connect people for carpooling. There will be a shuttle van available from Ashland to retreat site in Portland and return for $50, each way, per person. The shuttle will only be available to the first six people who sign-up.

Retreat Reservations: Space is limited to twenty participants. To reserve a space please email Please enter subject line: “Blues Pilgrimage”

Best of The Hearth Holiday Event December 11th!


We will hold our annual Holiday Hearth Event on December 11th at Temple Emek Shalom in Ashland as part of our annual fundraiser for The Hearth. The evening will include a gathering of some of our best storytellers including Mark Yaconelli, Joshua Boettiger, Mary Landberg, Cat Gould and others sharing stories around the theme “All in the Family.” Music will be performed by Hearth favorite Wendi Stanek.  This special evening will begin with a VIP wine and dessert reception beginning at 6:30 with live music and a special presentation by Mark Yaconelli. Tickets are limited (fifty) and include reserved seating for that evening’s storytelling program. Tickets for this special reception are $50 and can be purchased at Paddington Station or you can reserve tickets by emailing

The Hearth storytelling program will begin at 7:30, cost is $10. All proceeds from the evening will go to support The Hearth for another year of community-building. We encourage you to bring your checkbook and make a tax-deductible gift that night to help us develop new programs, provide a better sound-system, and develop a new training program for other communities in Southern Oregon.  This will be a great evening to gather with your neighbors and celebrate a year of doing good work for our community through the Hearth. You won’t want to miss it.

True South Solar to Sponsor Fall Hearth Event

true south solar panels

We are very grateful to Eric Hansen and True South Solar for sponsoring our fall Hearth event on October 30th, from 7 to 9pm at Temple Emek Shalom in Ashland, Oregon. Thanks to True South Solar all proceeds collected at the door for this event will go to Rogue Climate which seeks to bring communities together in Southern Oregon for clean energy and a more stable climate. True South Solar will be present at the October 30th event and will offer a special discount to Hearth participants. Learn more about True South Solar and how you can switch your home or business to clean energy here.

Looking for Male Storyteller


Our upcoming Hearth event is October 30th from 7 to 9pm at Temple Emek Shalom in Ashland. The theme is “Change: True Tales of Transformation.” Unfortunately, we had a storyteller who needed to drop out. We need a male willing to share a story of “change.” If you know someone willing to share a true story, told first person, in 10 minutes or less based on the theme, please email Mark at

Volunteer Meeting Tonight!

Our only volunteer meeting until next fall happens tonight (Thursday, October 2nd).  Join us for homemade desserts, wine, and creative planning. We need folks to help us run concessions, set up events, and other small tasks. Come join us at the First Congregational Church (717 Siskiyou Blvd in Ashland) from 7 to 8:30pm. See you there.