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Tahoe and Napa: Finding Summer Shakespeare

Headed for the lake or wine country before the vacation season winds down?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Jen Schmidt
    "As You Like It" is on at Sand Harbor State Park during the Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival. See it through Aug. 24.

    BARD BENEATH THE SKY: Did William Shakespeare know that, several centuries after his wordly, worldly reign as a prolific playwright and literary game-changer, he'd be synonymous with summertime? Maybe, right? After all, he wrote about flowers and grasses and the sybaritic pleasures of warm weather with aplomb and style. So that summer belongs to Shakespeare makes sense. It also makes sense that we might build our weekend road trips or to-brief vacations around seeing some al fresco plays, if that is indeed what we are into (and fingers crossed that many of us are). The cities have their outdoor Shakespeare, for sure, but so do a few of our popular getaway spots, like Lake Tahoe and Napa Valley. Headed for either? Then make for...

    SAND HARBOR STATE PARK: The Lake Tahoe Shakespeare Festival is in full, tight-wearing, soliloquy-speaking swing, and the ever-delightful "As You Like It" is the work of the summer. Is that the lake in the background? Indeed it is, making this one of the more scenic of the outdoor Shakespeare happenings. Will it feel as though you've been transported to the Forest of Arden? Well, you are in the alpine-y beauty of the high Tahoe country, so that's a good fantasy to have. And will you picnic, with wine? That is permitted. We'd say that Tahoe is very Shakespeare like, what with Emerald Bay and its sublime vistas. Yep, it is very Arden indeed. Through Aug. 24.

    NAPA VALLEY: A different production will be presented indoors at the Napa Valley College Performing Arts Center in September, so hooray to that. But beforehand, in August? Here's a twist on summer Shakespeare: A Gold Rush-themed presentation'll go down in Downtown Napa's Veteran's Memorial Park. It's all about thespians performing the Bard's works in 1849, and the ensuing high jinks. Ready for a wine country weekend and a twist on ol' Will's world? Click here, lovers of al fresco theater.