Actress Reese Witherspoon hits the Ashland plaza

, Written by Jennifer Elliott, Posted: Tue, October 22 2013 at 2:23 PM, Updated: Wed, October 23 2013 at 1:29 PM

Ashland is in the spotlight: star struck, as Academy award winner Reese Witherspoon is filming in the plaza today. We have exclusive footage of the movie star's first moments on set early this morning.

Quiet on set! Just before 9 this morning, movie star Reese Witherspoon entered the Ashland plaza. "I'll see more what happens today, it's my first time on the set," says Antoinette Nora Claypoole who is one of 200 extras involved in filming the movie "Wild" with Witherspoon. She arrived well before dawn for wardrobe. "You get fitted, you have wardrobe, just like a regular actor." All night, crews groomed and prepared the set. police securing the area.

The story follows author Cheryl Strayed, played by Witherspoon,  on her 11- hundred mile solo trek of the Pacific Crest Trail... including a stop in Ashland the same day Grateful Dead band member Jerry Garcia died. "I was actually here in Ashland when that happened," says Claypoole. "All of us did come out and remembered him."

Take after take.... achieving movie magic proves to be mercilessly slow. First one truck, then Reese takes to the street. Cue the motorcycles and then extras, including Claypoole, follow in behind. Rehearsals, used a stand in for Witherspoon, before the Academy award winner was forced to brave near freezing temperatures dressed only in shorts.

"Hollywood production in a small town, it's really exciting," says Ashland resident Diane Bennett. Despite the chill, she and others crowed around, excited to glimpse hollywood right in their own backyard. "I think it's really special that Ashland has held a love and peace vibe through the years and that's whats going to be remembered," says Claypoole. Breathless and still... today, Ashland is star struck.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013


Ø      There will be no thru traffic on the following streets beginning at 5:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m.:


·         Streets immediately surrounding the Plaza

·         Water Street (N. Main Street to Central Avenue)

·         Oak Street (E. Main Street to Lithia Way)

·         North/East Main Street (Bush Street to Pioneer Street) – traffic will be re-routed onto Lithia Way, similar to the 4th of July parade routing.


Ø      There will be no parking on the following streets beginning at 8:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.:


·         First Street (E. Main Street to B Street)

·         Second Street (Lithia Way to B Street)

·         Lithia Way (Second Street to mid-block between First Street and Pioneer Street)


Ø      Grant Street (Chestnut Avenue to N. Main Street) will have no parking beginning at 12:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and no thru traffic from 2:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.


Ø      There will be intermittent traffic controls on the following streets, expect delays:


·         Lithia Way (Bush to Oak, both directions), from 6:00 a.m. until 10:00 p.m.

·         Lithia Way (at Second Street) from 2:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.

·         North Main Street (at Grant Street) from 4:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m.


Closures on Water Street are to accommodate filming a scene where the main character walks up Water Street towards the Plaza.  Closures on North and East Main Street and the streets surrounding the Plaza are to accommodate filming scenes on the Plaza and in Papaya. Intermittent traffic delays will occur on Lithia Way to accommodate filming a scene on the corner of First Street and Lithia Way. Intermittent delays will occur on North Main Street at Grant Street to accommodate filming scenes at the Breadboard restaurant. Intermittent traffic delays should last no longer than five minutes for each delay.

What do you think? Sound off on our Facebook page and on Twitter, or leave a comment below.

About the Author

Jennifer Elliott

Jennifer Elliott anchors the primetime newscast FOX26 First News at Ten on NBC5’s partner station, KMVU/FOX26. She also reports for NBC5 News.

Jennifer began her career at NBC5 News in 2011 as a production assistant. Raised in Southern Oregon, she studied voice and piano while attending South Medford High School.

After graduating from Brigham Young University-Idaho, she returned home and added organ playing to her music repertoire. In addition to her musical talents, Jennifer is an award winning artist.

She has also co-hosted Southern Oregon’s Got Talent, the area’s premiere talent show. Jennifer is married and the mother of two young sons who keep her busy and very happy.

Connect with Jennifer

Leave a Comment:

Note: Comments with profanity are automatically filtered and hidden. Verbal attacks towards others via our comments section will not be tolerated.