One of the greatest things about being part of a community is the culture. And some of the most important parts of that culture the traditional events that are held every year. The Treasure Valley, which is comprised of Boise, Meridian, Garden City, Eagle, Nampa, Kuna, Caldwell, and a dozen more small cities, is very familiar with traditions and events, hosting several hundred each year. In the Treasure Valley, there are many great events and some of them are unique to our area. The following are some of the iconic events that you can look forward to on your next trip to Boise.
Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic
Held at the start of September every year, the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic is one of those events that simply takes your breath away. The balloon classic is a 4 or 5-day long event where hot air balloon pilots from all around congregate to fly their crafts. As the balloons fly over the city, they turn the Boise skyline into a beautiful canvas of color and excitement. The event is usually accompanied by food vendors, live bands, and much more.
One of the most magical parts of the balloon classic is the Night Glow event. This is when the pilots get together in the evening and use the flames from their burners to light up their colorful balloons in synchronized patterns, and to music. It is a beautiful array of warm light that is a spectacle to see. Though the pilots do not lift off, the lights themselves are worth coming down to Anne Morrison Park to see. So, the next time you are in the area at the beginning of September, be sure to check it out.
Western Idaho Fair
Now, most states will have county fairs, but there are few that are as fun as the Western Idaho Fair. Unlike a county fair, the Western Idaho Fair is for Ada County, Canyon County, and all the surrounding counties combined. It is a large affair that brings with it the traditional animal competitions, carnival rides and games, and lots of trinkets to buy.
Not to mention the great food that is available. At the fair, there are vendors that return every year, newcomers and some that are only there for a short time, each with their own mouthwatering goods. There are burgers and fries, hot dogs, pizzas, fried food, and much more. This variety of food, it is hard to go away from the fair hungry— no matter your tastes— especially when you can get eccentric things like deep fried Twinkies.
The Color Run is one of Boise’s many charity races. It is partnered with the Girl Scouts of America and proceeds from the race go to sponsor the education of girls around the world. The fun part of the color run, however, is not the 5k at the beginning, but rather the party afterward. Accompanied by live music and dancing, the color festival begins where everyone who participated gets to throw packs of color at each other for a colorful barrage of fun. The race is usually held in late August.
One of many charity races that are held in the Treasure Valley every year, the Dirty Dash is definitely one of the messiest, and most fun. The Dirty Dash is a 5k obstacle course with one major difference . . . it is all through the mud. The Dirty Dash is aptly named because when contestants start the race they have to run through a thick mud field, then run across inflatable obstacles over muddy water, and so on and so forth. It is a fun way to get some exercise, get dirty, and donate to a good cause.
The Dirty Dash is affiliated with a donation program to bring food to kids around the world who can’t afford to buy their own. It is a program that has helped thousands of kids and has made a lot of people smile-- whether they were in the race, or just receiving their first hot meal in weeks.
Polar Bear Challenge
You’ve probably heard of a polar bear challenge, but you probably haven’t heard of one like the challenge held at Lucky Peak Reservoir on January 1st of every year. The Polar Bear Challenge goes like this: participants gather at the shores of Lucky Peak Reservoir on the morning of January 1st (New Year’s Day) and, when the mark is sounded, they charge into the frigid water in nothing but their swimsuits. Now this isn’t a new practice, but what makes this one different is that it is put on by the Idaho Make-a-Wish Foundation. Proceeds from the Polar Bear Challenge go to the Make-a-Wish Foundation to make the wishes of terminally ill children come true.
The event is usually well publicized and, if you don’t want to get in the water, you can still go down and watch the proceedings.
It is no secret that the people of the Treasure Valley love football. With the late rise of the Boise State Broncos, more and more Treasure Valley residents have found themselves dawning blue and orange and lining up outside the Albertson’s Stadium to watch them play on the Blue Turf. However, even before Boise State was a football giant, Boise was still a well-watched place for football fanatics. As of December of 1997, Boise State's Blue Turf has been the home of the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl. Many a college team have played their winning games there, battling for the bowl championship.
Alive After 5
Boise is a place where music is a way of life. It may not seem like that when you first get here and travel down the concrete streets of downtown, but it never takes long for visitors to see how much the Treasure Valley loves music. One event that makes that abundantly clear is the summer concert series Alive After 5. Alive After 5 is held every Wednesday evening during the months of June, July, and August from 5pm to 8pm and admission is free. These concerts are put on by local artists and are always a fun way to spend a summer evening.
While these aren’t the only events that take place in the Boise area, they are definitely some of the most unique ones. For more information about Boise, Meridian, or any other part of the Treasure Valley, contact one of our local agents today and they will be glad to assist you.