Though Will Volpert founded Indigo Creek Outfitters in 2011, his river-touring experience began much earlier. As a kid, his parents ran an outfitting business in Salmon, Idaho, where salmon guides would stay with them for the summer. During six-day rafting trips, he learned the ways of river culture and fell in love with fishing and navigating rapids. Today, he shares his expertise with families of all experience levels, leading whitewater trips on the Rogue River and building custom vacations in Oregon and Idaho. For a bit of local flavor, the staff also organizes walking tours of local restaurants and tastings at nanobreweries.
Named for the famed German soprano, Lotte Lehmann Concert Hall pays homage to a wealth of musicians during its slate of concerts. Throughout the year, the USBC music venue welcomes gospel choirs and symphonies to its stage, as well as wind ensembles that double as the venue’s air conditioning system.
Multiplatinum-selling and multiple-Grammy-winning quartet Third Day’s stirring Southern rock thrills multitudes on its Make Your Move spring tour. One of the most popular Christian bands of the A.D. era, Third Day has moved millions of fans with hits such as “Cry Out to Jesus” and “Love Song,” as well as hundreds of tumbleweeds with its tour bus. With a sound that evokes Lynyrd Skynyrd in its Sunday best, the band tenderly testifies while rocking through a hook-laden marathon live show.
A girl stands frozen at the edge of a cliff 35 feet above the Klamath River. A group of friends, each of whom has already made the exhilarating plunge into the water, shouts words of encouragement. Slowly, the girl releases her fear and jumps from the cliff's edge, spending a few seconds in midair before splashing safely into the river and experiencing a feeling of great peace and accomplishment. For the staff of Kidder Creek Rafting Trips, it has been a decades-long journey in their effort to bring moments like these to life. In 1976, Richard Jones founded the nonprofit Christian organization, setting up shop in Scott Valley amid the Marble Mountain Wilderness region. Initially a horse camp, the organization grew over the years to include more adventurous activities such as rock climbing or the less-popular rock leaning. Despite the growth, the business has always retained its primary focus: to help young people step out of their comfort zones, experience new things, and grow in their faith. More than 35 years later, the horse camp still welcomes kids into its classrooms, onto its trails, and into the arena to practice horse gymnastics. Rafting guides, all of whom have completed Kidder Creek's guide program, lead exhibitions down the Klamath River's scenic waters, which are sprinkled with class III and IV rapids. These experts occasionally pause to play rafting games, hike to waterfalls, and exchange family photos with Bigfoot while encouraging others to try new things.
Over the course of three days, yogis and laypersons alike gather at Jackson WellSprings in the peaceful pursuit of community and individual prana, or life force. Surrounded by the 30-acre campus—a botanical garden situated around a natural hot spring and founded in 1862 as a refuge for healing—guests soak up a host of healing activities. At two stages, musicians lead communal singing, or kirtan, during sets that range from call-and-response chants to energetic electronica to a performance by Jai Uttal, a Grammy-nominated guitarist.
Throughout the day, attendees can clean out their chakras during myriad yoga sessions led by top-shelf yogis or dive headlong into meditation at the live sweat lodge, constructed of still-photosynthesizing willows. Nestled in a cozy corner of the WellSprings, the Goddess Temple shelters festival-goers as the resident priestess uses the ceremonial immersion pool to purge them of negative energy in much the same way regular bathtubs capture and drown our evil reflections.
Located in the thick of Southern Oregon's wine trail, Applegate Valley Inn's picturesque bed-and-breakfast offers grape gurus a place to rest between vigorous gulps. Under the shade of a colossal tree and surrounded by romantic gardens, the two-story inn houses guests in themed rooms, such as the valley of the vines nook. Touting access to the front balcony and a jacuzzi tub, this room also features a quaint, four-post wooden bed, whose expertly carved corners can moonlight as miniature maypoles. Double-night guests also receive a bottle of wine and two chances to sample vintages at local wineries.