Over 1,500 of the Best Hot Rods, Customs, and Classics in the Northwest and Canada at the Goodguys 13th Great Northwest Nationals, August 15–17

Written by Stephanie on August 13th, 2014

Car with flamesOne of the biggest classic auto shows in the Pacific Northwest opens this Friday at the Spokane County Fair and Expo Center. The Goodguys 13th Great Northwest Nationals is an indoor/outdoor event showcasing hot rods, customs, classics, muscle cars, and trucks born through 1972. On All-American Sunday, American-made and/or powered vehicles of all years are welcome. Awards will be presented on Sunday, including the Goodguys Builder’s Choice awards, which will be selected by 2014 Ridler-winning builder JF Launier (his Ridler-award 1964 Buick Riviera will be on display at the show).

The Great Northwest Nationals also hosts a swap meet, where you’ll find everything under the automotive sun from gauges to tires and wheels, vehicle frames to fenders, shop signs to vintage automotive toys, and more. At the AutoTrader Classics Cars 4 Sale Corral, you can even purchase a car or truck that is ready to cruise or restore. Black car

This is a family friendly event, so bring the kids. There is free entertainment just for them: Revell model car make-and-take, PPG kids coloring contest, and clowns. Live music by Nostalgia Entertainment will play throughout the weekend. You can also shop for arts and crafts at the “Goodgals” arts and craft gallery.

To kick off the weekend, there is a Thursday night hot rod cruise that leaves from the Fair and Expo Center, and Friday night you can come to the TGIF party at 6 p.m. in the Mirabeau Park Hotel parking lot. Show hours are Friday and Saturday 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and Sunday 8:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. General admission is $15.00, kids’ admission (ages 7–12) is $6.00, and kids ages 6 and under are free. Active or retired military personnel with ID receive $5 off general admission. Parking is free.


Celebrate Creativity with Regional Art and Musicians at Art on the Green August 1–3 at North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene

Written by Stephanie on July 30th, 2014


Copyright 2013 Citizens' Council for the Arts

Copyright 2013 Citizens’ Council for the Arts

Art on the Green is a highlight of summer in the Inland Northwest. Over 50,000 people come out to see and buy unique, high quality works of glass, leather, clay, wood, metal, and fiber directly from the artists. Most artists are from the Northwest, with a few from farther away, and most of the performers are local. If you want to see if your favorite local artist is at Art on the Green, click here for a list.

Kids can create their own art in a special hands-on art area that provides instruction and materials. Two stages provide a variety of entertainment. Throughout the weekend, you can catch the Coeur d’Alene opera, a youth poetry slam, teen jugglers, and over 20 different music acts, including pop, blues, and jazz. Click here for a full schedule. Naturally, there are plenty of fun festival food choices for when you work up an appetite.

Art on the Green is held on the campus of North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene, ID. Festival hours are Friday 12:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Saturday 10:00 a.m. to 7:30 p.m., and Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Friday and Saturday live entertainment runs until 9:30 p.m. A free shuttle runs from downtown to the campus throughout the festival.

The Taste of the Coeur d’Alenes and the Coeur d’Alene Street Fair will also be running this weekend in downtown Coeur d’Alene as well as at the City Park on the lake. All three events are within walking distance to each other, or you can take the free shuttle that runs all weekend from downtown to NIC. All are free admission. The Taste of the Coeur d’Alenes and the Street Fair (on Sherman Avenue) feature arts and crafts, food booths, and live music.


Swing Upside Down 104 Feet off the Ground, or Just Float on a Lazy River: Silverwood Offers Thrills of Several Kinds

Written by Stephanie on July 4th, 2014
Silverwood Theme Park

Silverwood Theme Park

The Northwest’s largest theme park is situated just a few minutes north of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. Between the two parts, Silverwood Theme Park and Boulder Beach Water Park, you would be hard pressed to see and do even half of the attractions in a day. Silverwood offers wild rides to mild rides, fun areas just for little ones, shopping, and relaxing options such as a slow train ride.

One of the scariest rides and the first of its kind in the world, the Spincycle takes bold riders 104 feet up, legs dangling and wearing only a harness, then rotates 360 degrees at 13 revolutions per minute while swinging like a giant pendulum. Aftershock, also designed for the extreme rider, was voted the top hanging roller coaster by the Travel Channel in 2012 and boasts 177-foot drops. There are nine thrill rides in all, four of them roller coasters.

For those who prefer things a bit less jolting, Silverwood offers 12 fun-for-all rides, including the gentle steam engine train ride around the park (featuring the occasional not-scary robbery), as well as fun favorites like the Ferris wheel, bumper boats, and tilt-a-whirl.

Young kids can have a blast on 10 rides made just for them, including the brand new Krazy Koaster and Puppy-Go-Round. Several of the kid’s rides can accommodate adults riding with children.

When you need a break from the amusement rides, you can see a magic show at the Theater of Illusion, watch an old-timey flick at the Main Street Theater, or catch some live music at the High Moon Saloon.

Boulder Beach Water Park

Boulder Beach Water Park

On the other side of the park, cool off at Boulder Beach Water Park. Slide at up to 55 mph on Velocity Peak or board a raft and splash down a 650-foot slide that ends in a below-ground canyon on Avalanche Mountain. Or you can just kick back on an inner tube and float around Elkhorn Creek. Young kids can play all day at Polliwog Park, and there is even a special play area just for toddlers, Toddler Springs. Everyone can enjoy the two wave pools.

There is so much to do at Silverwood, you may want to stay close by and spend a couple of days there. Click here for nearby hotels that offer discounted ticket packages. You can also stay at the Silverwood RV Park. Silverwood tickets, which include admission to both the theme park and Boulder Beach Water Park, are $45.99 for ages 8–64 and $22.99 for ages 3–7 and seniors age 65+. Purchase your tickets online before you go for a discount of up to $4.00 per ticket. Two- or three-day passes are also available at a discount. Outside food and drink are not allowed; there are numerous restaurants and food/beverage stands in the park. Parking is $5 per day.


Fresh Fruit and a Weekend in the Sun

Written by admin on June 27th, 2014

strawberries-1366317-mEnjoy fresh Strawberries? They’re not only sweet, but they offer a wide range of health benefits from being high in potassium to helping with weight loss. It’s like eating a dessert that actually profits you beyond taste and mental health.

So if you’re looking for a delicious, beneficial dessert over the next few weeks, consider stopping by the Green Bluff Growers for their strawberry celebration June 28th-29th and July 5th-6th. It’s a free, family-welcome event that’ll give you a taste of the summer in Spokane, Washington.

If you’re not into strawberries but like the idea of fruit in general, swing on over to the Green Bluff Grower’s web site for their events calendar (http://www.greenbluffgrowers.com/events/index.html).

The rest of the year promises a cherry festival, an apple festival, a peach festival and even Christmas tree cutting for those special holiday memories. (I know, the last one’s not exactly fruit oriented, but it’s still fun.)

For more information on the Green Bluff Growers, which is an association formed for local growers in 1902, stop by their site at www.greenbluffgrowers.com.


Spokane Golf Courses Open and Ready with Sunshine, Great Scenery, and Competitive Prices

Written by Stephanie on June 6th, 2014
The Creek at Qualchan, which is home to many species of birds and wildlife and is a member of the New York Audubon Society.

The Creek at Qualchan, which is home to many species of birds and wildlife and is a member of the New York Audubon Society.

The long, sunny summers and falls in Spokane are perfect for golfing, and there are excellent courses in and around Spokane to explore. Beginners to professionals will find challenges amidst beautiful views that perfectly illustrate the city’s motto of “Near nature. Near perfect.” Prices are very affordable, with regular rates for 18 holes as low as $24 and package/discount card options for even lower green fees.

Spokane City Golf Courses: The city of Spokane operates Indian Canyon, Esmeralda, Downriver, and the Creek at Qualchan golf courses. All boast a country club experience at public prices, and they are all within 10 minutes of downtown Spokane. Regular rates for 18 holes are $29.00 Monday through Thursday and $32.00 Friday through Sunday and holidays. You can save money by purchasing a discount card for $36.75; see website for details.

Liberty Lake golf course.

Liberty Lake golf course.

Spokane County Golf Courses: Spokane County operates Hangman Valley, Liberty Lake, and MeadowWood golf courses. Regular rates for 18 holes are $29.00 Monday through Thursday and $31.00 Friday through Sunday and holidays. Purchase a $30 discount card to save $5 to $10 off every round.

Wandermere Golf Course: This challenging course is located a few minutes north of Spokane in the lovely Little Spokane River Valley. Regular rates for 18 holes are $25.00 on weekdays and $29.00 on weekends.

Sundance Golf Course: Play amongst tall Ponderosa pines in Nine Mile Falls, just 10 miles from downtown Spokane. Check out the end of spring special: through June 15, pay just $15 for 18 holes Monday through Friday or $20 on weekends.

The Fairways at West Terrace: Natural wetlands and native grasses adorn this Cheney course that is 10 minutes west of downtown Spokane. Regular rates for 18 holes are $19 on Monday, $24 Tuesday through Thursday, and $29 Friday through Sunday and holidays.

If you are traveling from out of the area or just want to have a fun getaway, book a golf package at Stratford Suites Hotel, located just minutes from downtown Spokane. The Spokane city golf course package starts at $189.00 and includes green fees for two at your choice of a city course, a bottle of wine, late check out at 3:00 p.m., and one night in a luxury one bedroom suite. The Spokane county golf course package starts at $199.00 and includes green fees for two at your choice of a county course, golf cart, a bucket of balls, 20% off at the clubhouse restaurant, and one night in a luxury one bedroom suite.


See the Blue Man Group, the Book of Mormon from the Creators of South Park, and William Shatner in the Best of Broadway 2014-2015 Season

Written by Stephanie on May 14th, 2014
The Book of Mormon. Copyright 2014 WestCoast Entertainment.

The Book of Mormon. Copyright 2014 WestCoast Entertainment.

WestCoast Entertainment will once again bring big Broadway hits to Spokane for the 2014-2015 theatre season. The season package features The Book of Mormon (August 12–17, 2014),  winner of 9 Tony Awards, including Best Musical, and by the creators of South Park; the wildly outrageous Blue Man Group (October 16–29, 2014); the Tony Award winning Memphis (February 19–22, 2015); Camelot (March 26–29, 2015); and the classic Guys and Dolls (April 23– 26, 2014).

In addition to the season ticket package, Best of Broadway will also include six special engagements: Under the Streetlamp (Saturday, October 25, 2014), Cirque Dreams, Holidaze (Friday, November 21, 2014), GRINCH (November 26 – 30, 2014), Shatner’s World starring William Shatner (Thursday, December 4, 2014), Alton Brown LIVE! The Edible Inevitable Tour (Sunday, March 1, 2015), and Mamma Mia (March 20 – 21, 2015).


Camelot. Copyright 2014 WestCoast Entertainment.

Your best chance of seeing all the shows you like is to purchase season tickets, which are on sale now ($147–$307; payment plans are available). Season tickets are discounted and include all five of the regular season package shows, and season ticket holders can buy tickets to special engagement shows before they go on sale to the public. All shows are held at the INB Performing Arts Center downtown, located next to Riverfront Park on the Spokane River (be sure to allow extra time for an evening stroll in the beautiful park before the show). Parking is available throughout downtown at garages, surface lots, and street metered parking areas.

Coming to a Best of Broadway show from out of town? Stay at Stratford Suites, just minutes from downtown, and you will enjoy affordable luxury suites with fully equipped kitchens, leather furniture, hi-speed wireless internet, 50″ HD TV and DVD, pillow top mattresses, and down pillows. Call 888-705-8877 for reservations and to ask about our Night on the Town package, perfect for Best of Broadway, which includes a bottle of wine and cab vouchers to take you to and from any destination within the downtown core and back to your luxury suite.


Painting, Drinking, and Fun at Pinot’s Palette: No Experience Required

Written by Stephanie on April 26th, 2014


Since the Pinot’s Palette grand opening in the SoDo district on February 28, almost every class has sold out. It’s not hard to see why. Pinot’s Palette provides easy step-by-step instructions for painting along with local wines and beers. Owner Jackie Casey said, “There is a lot to do in Spokane, but this is something a little different. People embrace art and wine, and we are a combo of the two, so it’s perfect.”

The focus at Pinot’s Palette is less on education than fun. At each class, an instructor creates a specific painting while giving directions and tips to the class. Another instructor or two walks around to provide individual help. “It’s made for people who have never picked up a paintbrush,” said Jackie. “All of our paintings are for beginners. We encourage creativity, so sometimes we will be painting a purple peacock, and someone will change it to a green peacock. Sometimes someone will paint something completely different.”

There are Pinot’s Palette locations elsewhere in the country, but this is the very first one in the Northwest. Jackie was introduced to the idea when she was living in Oklahoma and working as a wine rep. She went with some friends and was apprehensive as she was not artistic, but she had so much fun that she decided to look into opening one of her own. Spokane seemed like the perfect place. Feedback from class participants has been extremely positive, with people showing up guarded and nervous but opening up and having a great time by the end of the class. The instructors are all local artists who excel at encouraging people and making them feel comfortable and confident.

Weeknight classes are two hours long and cost $35, while weekend classes are three hours long and cost $45. All materials are included: acrylic paints in every color you can imagine, paintbrushes, apron, easel, and a 16 x 20 inch cotton canvas, which you can either pin to your wall as is or have framed for an additional $35. While painting, you can purchase local wine and beer or nonalcoholic beverages to enjoy. A bottle of wine to share with friends is offered at a discount.

Pinot’s Palette offers all kinds of private parties, from team building meetings for businesses to bachelorette parties. There is no extra charge for renting the place out for your event, just a minimum of 15 people, and you choose the music, painting, and time and date.

To sign up for a class, you can register online or call 509-290-5098. Pinot’s Palette is located at 32 W 2nd Ave Suite 100, Spokane, WA 99201.


Fly through the Trees on a Zip Line at Adventure Dynamics

Written by Stephanie on April 14th, 2014

  Looking for a new adventure? Adventure Dynamics has a few ideas for that. Their outdoor course in Nine Mile
Falls, WA (just northwest of Spokane) offers 50-foot high zip line rides, vertical climbing challenges, a giant swing that sends you high and far, and more. The programs are designed to build commitment, self-confidence, and teamwork within groups, so it’s a perfect place for family outings, birthday parties, or groups of any kind—it is the perfect alternative to boring company retreats.

Adventure Dynamics isn’t just for groups and teams. Aerial fun is available for individuals, too. Just grab an adventurous friend and go. A few hours here could also make for one of the best date options in Spokane, and you can find out what the other person is made of while improving communication and trust.

Although climbing on an obstacle course and moving through the trees like a flying squirrel looks scary and feels exhilarating, Adventure Dynamics is of course quite safe, with special equipment designed to keep you and everyone in your party happy and out of harm’s way. You don’t have to be an elite athlete to have a great time. According to the website, “People of all ages, shapes, and sizes have successfully completed the Adventure Dynamics program. Special athletic ability is not required. You need only bring a willingness to participate on your own level.”

Adventure Dynamics opens for the warm season on May 6. To make reservations for birthday parties or team programs, call 509-467-0800 or email adventuredynamics@earthlink.net. Reservations for aerial zip line adventures can be made online.