Cooking fire starts grass fire in Lithia Park

Police ribbon surrounds the area where an illegal cooking fire started a wildfire in Lithia Park on Wednesday night. Ashland Fire & Rescue photo
August 4, 2022

Fire spread to a half acre between Ashland Creek and Pioneer Street

Firefighters stopped spread of a grass fire late Wednesday night in Lithia Park believed to have started due to a cooking fire.

The fire was reported at 11:38 p.m. between the park playground and the bandshell.

Ashland Fire & Rescue responded with two structural engines and two brush engines under the command of Battalion Chief Lance Menold. Oregon Department of Forestry firefighters also assisted Ashland. 

The fire burned approximately one-half acre of grass and brush between Ashland Creek and East Pioneer Street above. Crews from Jackson County Fire District 5 were called to assist but weren’t needed once the fire was knocked down. One Ashland Parks & Recreation building was directly threatened, along with homes above.

The fire was human-caused due to a cooking fire in the brush and dry grass, according to a fire department news release, which said the person who caused the fire fled the scene. 

The Ashland Police Department recovered personal property at the origin of the fire and are attempting to locate the individual.

An Ashland Fire & Rescue crew stayed on the fire overnight to extinguish hot spots. Ashland’s battalion chief, fire chief and deputy chief determined on scene that due to the mild nature of the fire, a Nixle evacuation notification wasn’t necessary.

Source: Ashland Fire & Rescue news release. Email Executive Editor Bert Etling at or call or text him at 541-631-1313.

The fire that started late Wednesday night was located in the area between the playground (8) and Butler Bandshell (A). Firefighters were concerned it might spread east (up on this map) toward Pioneer Street. Ashland Parks & Recreation Commission map detail

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Bert Etling

Bert Etling

Bert Etling is the executive editor of Email him at
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