Away from home for the holidays

Home in Ashland for the holidays but wishing you could get away? Well there's no reason to stay holed up in the kitchen, slaving over the stove or making small-talk with the in-laws.

If you'll be in town this Christmas Eve or Christmas, you may opt to duck out of the house and gather your brood around a bountiful table that no one spent all day preparing — except the paid chef.

Three Ashland restaurants will be open on Dec. 25 and even more will throw open their doors the day before, according to a list compiled by the Ashland Chamber of Commerce.

On Christmas there'll be ambrosia salad at Callahan's Lodge, fresh Dungeness crab at the Hyatt Lake Resort and persimmon bourbon cake at Larks Home Kitchen Cuisine.

Callahan's will serve a traditional Christmas dinner from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. The Hyatt Lake Resort will feature a similar menu and a buffet format from 11:30 to 4 p.m. Larks will serve a holiday supper inspired by local and organic ingredients from 1:30 to 6 p.m.

Reservations are required for Dec. 25 dining at Hyatt Lake and Larks, and strongly recommended at Callahan's, restaurant representatives said.

Both Larks and Callahan's are expecting several hundred diners on Christmas. On Thanksgiving, Larks served about 300 and Callahan's had twice that many diners, officials from both restaurants said. Hyatt Lake is expecting to serve about 160 dinners, said Donna Olivier, a front desk clerk and bookkeeper at the resort.

"It's a special time to be able to celebrate with our regular customers," said Michelle Glass, food and beverage director at Larks, which will be serving its fourth annual Christmas dinner this year. "People do really expect a nice holiday dinner from us now."

"It's always a great day for us and we really enjoy being able to put on a really nice Christmas dinner for the guests in the hotel and locals."

Callahan's, which has already booked 300 Christmas dinner reservations, expects to serve more locals than lodge guests, said Tasha Funderburg, a hostess and front desk clerk at Callahan's.

"People need a place to go, and we have the facility and we have the staff that's more than willing to sacrifice their holiday to make someone else's special," she said.

Staff writer Hannah Guzik can be reached at 482-3456 ext. 226 or

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