Follow Dave and Kathy's 5-day birthday celebration as Dave turns 77 years. This year the birthday celebration location was Jacksonville, Oregon. Congrats to Dave for making it this far! The name of this trip is "all the things we love" so fine dining, winery tours, real estate tours, and music festivals.
August 17
Lunch - Arriving right on time to Medford, Oregon, we headed for our main interest, the nearby town of Jacksonville. This was a gold rush town from the 1860s and is an amazing bunch of landmark buildings. Alas, this is not a town "town," rather, a tourist town so all the buildings and the Britt Music Festival are aimed at visitors. Lunch was at the Back Door BBQ. Not great.
Jacksonville Real Estate Tour 1 - Typical on a Jacksonville side street is this house on 3rd St. South. It is 800 sq ft on a small corner lot and priced at $379,000. This is one of the less expensive homes in Jacksonville that isn't a mobile home. This gives you some idea of prices.
Jacksonville Real Estate Tour 2 - OK, let's find a mobile home. The mobile home park of Royal Mobile Estates (space rent is $7,000 a year), the park right in Jacksonville, had no real estate listings but nearby was this mobile, built in 1965, on a small lot for $189,000. The value must be in the lot because it's sure not in the mobile.
Dinner - For dinner, it was off to nearby Ashland, Oregon, a town best known for the Shakespeare Festival. Japanese food was what we wanted and we settled on the Little Tokyo Restaurant. We spoke with the new owners, who are South Korean, but outside seating by Ashland Creek was a delight. Food was terrific.
August 18
Birthday Breakfast - Happy Birthday, Dave! 77 years. Since this was Dave's OK Day (Kathy can only answer OK), we started with breakfast at the Real Deal Cafe in Medford. This popular breakfast and lunch place was also our launching point for an Ashland Real Estate Tour.
Ashland Real Estate Tour 1 - We noted many, many Open Houses in Ashland this beautiful Sunday afternoon. One house for sale had this amazing view. Of course, at just about $1,000,000 it was slightly out of reach. Click Here to see the listing. (Note, recent price reduction!) Of course, this link will not work at some point.
Ashland Real Estate Tour 2 - Since we like to track down what we think are the best deals, we continued to an Open House for a home in the mid-$300s. Advertising a quiet street, 1/4 acre lot, mountain views, we needed to know more. It was a 1960s Ranch and almost totally original, for better or for worst. Popcorn ceiling, old kitchen, etc. Click Here to see listing.
Ashland Real Estate Tour 3 - A commercial building has always been of interest or something a bit different. This kind of thinking took us to 380 Dead Indian Memorial Rd. The lot was 1 acre and with some tree pruning, a very nice mountain view. Price was $219,000 and the place is within the Ashland town lines. A great price but what's under the plywood covering the windows? 3-bed, 2-bath, really? This called our bluff.
Birthday Dinner - The best restaurant in the area, the Jacksonville Inn Dinner House offers fine dining in an outside patio area. Service was a bit odd but Dave's Cordon Bleu was spot on, and Kathy's steak was prepared perfectly. We toasted Dave's many years with a fine local wine, a Viognier from the Cowhorn Vineyard. Dave says he wants to live forever - so far, so good.
August 19
Breakfast - One of the best breakfast places for pastries and coffee is the Buttercloud Bakery and Cafe in Medford, OR. The logo features a pad of butter at the top so how could one go wrong? And we didn't. Coffee is served in a French press and the baked goods, all done right there, were excellent. This is located in East Medford, the right side of the tracks, the tracks being Interstate 5 that cuts through town.
Medford Real Estate Tour 1 - Keeping in mind that East Medford is where you want to be, we started our real estate tour in that area. As we drove through the various housing areas, we often came across wild turkey, wandering in front yards.
Medford Real Estate Tour 2 - First stop was 220 Vancouver Ave. Priced at $240,000, it was pretty typical for an East Medford neighborhood. It is said that there is less crime in East Medford, vs. West Medford, as if the criminals are unable to cross the I-5 barrier. This house sold within just a few days. Medford is a very hot real estate market, as is all of S. Oregon.
Medford Real Estate Tour 3 - The next stop was 1541 Velia St, This was advertised as a Mid-Century Modern home with tons of curb appeal. There was no garage, just this carport under a large roof overhang and then a misguided installation of French Door from the Master Bedroom leading to the carport. Priced at $260,000.
Medford Real Estate Tour 4 - We're picking the best tour examples for this blog, out of 30 houses. OK, on to a fixer house at 449 S. Wexford Circle. This house was deep into one of the best East Medford neighborhoods and even as a fixer, price was $270,000. The house showed that someone broke into the house by busting out a panel on the garage door.
Dinner - For the evening meal, it was Jackson Creek Pizza. Thin crust, a generous side salad, and friendly service. There are several in town and we went to the Delta Waters version. The menu showed 42 examples from Grandma Rosy to Tattoo Man (if you saw the pizza guy, you would understand).
August 20
Breakfast - Boring us went back to the Buttercloud Bakery and Cafe. Such nice folks, in fact, we found people quite friendly just about everywhere. Once again, French press coffee and bakery items. You can sit outdoor on the patio. We then reviewed our real estate tour for the day, properties outside of town.
Outside Town Tour 1 - We went right to our favorite, 496 Wren Ridge Dr, Eagle Point ($290,000). Along the way, many, many deer of all sizes and yet again turkeys everywhere. This is a view property way up in the hills with big views, super quiet. It's a mobile doublewide but almost new. In the hills but 11 minutes to the Stone Ridge golf course and 20 minutes to Eagle Point, OR.
Outside Town Tour 2 - 683 Vista Park Dr, Eagle Point was a double wide mobile on two acres and huge views. $350,000. In this case, 1/2 of the doublewide was decoupling from the other 1/2 and sliding down the hillside due to a foundation problem (Est. $80,000 to fix). Subtract the fix, $350,000 - $80,000 = $270,000 and you would have about the right price.
Outside Town Tour 3 - 4100 Willow Springs Road, Central Point. At last! An old school house, perfect for conversion into a home. What a view, close to downtown Central Point, OR, and... not for sale. This old school house was in really bad shape until the community fixed it up and made it into a community center. Bless their hearts.
Outside Town Tour 4 - 3955 South Stage Road #54, Medford. $135,000. This mobile is in the +55 Western Carriage Estates, just outside of Jacksonville and close to the Dancin Winery. This is one of the top +55 parks, the others being Royal Mobile Estates (Jacksonville) and Cobblestone Mobile Village (Medford). Space rent is about $400 a month, with a clubhouse, billiards hall, swimming pool, friendly, and close to good things.
Dinner - We were pleased to know there is an excellent Indian restaurant in Medford called Indian Palace. We had our last dinner in Medford here and everything was excellent. This is a family operation with the kids helping out, dad in the kitchen, and mom running the show. They have been doing this since 1996!
August 21
Home - We were going to San Francisco, with 90 minutes between our arrival and our departure for Tucson, but delays in Medford of 90 minutes meant that when we touched down in San Francisco, the Tucson flight was probably taking off. We went to the gate anyway to find they held up the Tucson flight for us. This was an excellent aircraft, an AirBus 320.
Home - Next was San Francisco to Tucson, but this was one of the United Airlines Express flights with the tiny Canadair airplane, with gate-checks for any roller bag and only a small item to bring aboard. A very uncomfortable aircraft but, hey, it got us there and back, and we were back in Tucson before noon.