The 2014 Bloomsday poster has been released! What that means is that the weather in Spokane is about to change. There’s no surer sign of spring than Bloomsday registration. Officially named the Lilac Bloomsday Run, “Bloomsday” as it is typically called, has had over 40,000 participants every year since 1986. The 12k race has been held the first Saturday in May every year since 1977.
March is known for being a lot of things – “in like a lion, out like a lamb,” a fervent college basketball time – but there’s another event to look forward in March. It’s called Taste Washington Wine Month, and it’s an annual celebration of the award winning wine industry in Washington State.
There are daily events happening and you can find them all at the website for Taste Washington.
Though there is snow on the ground, we’re on the back nine of winter. In fact, we’re expecting temperatures into the 50’s by the end of the week. With spring is right around the corner, many of you might be thinking about golf.
While there are plenty of courses throughout the region, there are eight municipal golf courses throughout Spokane County maintained by Spokane County, The City of Spokane, and Liberty Lake. The City of Spokane maintains four of those courses, while the county is responsible for three more. Liberty Lake also has it’s own city operated course.
The best part about these municipal courses is the cost of 18 holes, with the average cost being less than $30. These local courses are known for being excellent public courses. The fact that they are public and affordable only adds to their appeal.
The courses may be unplayable now, but that shouldn’t stop you from planning the perfect golf getaway. Visit our packages page for more details on several golf packages.
Treat yourself to a fine dinner created by Spokane’s elite culinary talent this week. During Spokane’s Restaurant Week, from February 21 to March 2, you can choose from 74 great restaurants in the Spokane area that are offering a special prix fixe menu for either $18 or $28. Each menu features a minimum of three courses, with different options for each course. You choose an appetizer, entrée, and dessert.
Inlander Restaurant Week is a delicious, affordable way to discover some of the best chefs and restaurants around. Click here to search for participating establishments in your neighborhood, with a Restaurant Week menu for each. Be sure to make reservations.
Visit Spokane and the Inlander have teamed up to present Restaurant Week. Officially titled ‘Inlander Restaurant Week,’ the event takes place between February 21 and March 2.
During Restaurant Week, participating restaurants present the public with specially priced menus. The menus offer minimum of three courses with several options for each course, and are priced at either $18 or $24. The courses offer appetizers, entrees and desserts.
For more information on Inlander Restaurant Week and the participating restaurants, visit the Restaurant Week website.
To make this special week even better, book our Night on the Town Package which offers you a taxi voucher from Stratford Suites to downtown, and back!
Traveling with children? There are plenty of fun things to do in Spokane to keep the whole family happy.
At the Mobius Science Center (811 W. Main), kids have fun while learning scientific concepts. Exhibits in the 26,000 foot facility feature hands-on learning in physics, acoustics, optics, engineering, flight, Northwest geology and ecology, chemistry, space, fluid dynamics, chaos theory, and more. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday 10–6 and Sunday 11–5. Admission prices are adults $10.00, ages 18 and under $7.00, ages 3 years and under free. Seniors (65+), military families, and students with ID receive $1.00 off daily admission.
Kids can play and interact in six themed exhibit areas at the Mobius Kids Children’s Museum, located on the lower level of River Park Square. Some fun activities include taking control of traffic lights in a miniature city, creating unique art in the Out of Hand Art Studio, and performing in costume with musical instruments in the Globe Theater. Hours are Tuesday through Saturday 10–5 and Sunday 11–5. Admission is $6.00 for adults and children, free for babies 12 months and under, and $5.00 for military families and seniors.
The Mobius Bounce Pass single day admission to both Mobius Kids Children’s Museum and Mobius Science Center is $15.00 for adults and $12.00 for children. Both facilities offer birthday party packages.
Visit an entire zoo of wild cats, including tigers, lions, leopards, bob cats, and more. For a memorable experience, Cat Tales, offers hand feeding of a big cat for adults and kids 8 and older. It is a nonprofit zoological training center as well as a zoo. Some of the animals are rescues who lived in poor conditions, some were transferred from other facilities, and some were born at Cat Tales. You can learn about each animal’s story in the informational tour given by knowledgeable staff members. The zoo is open year round. Click here for hours and admission prices. Cat Tales is located in Mead, at 17020 Newport Hwy.
MAC Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture and the Campbell House
The MAC showcases the history, native cultures, and art of the Inland Northwest. Five galleries hold long-term and visiting exhibitions, including traveling exhibitions in collaboration with the Smithsonian Institute. Many exhibits are fun for kids (call to ask if you are not sure).
Upcoming exhibits include 100 Stories: A Centennial Exhibition, which will feature themes of the American West in honor of the Eastern Washington State Historical Society’s first century; and Meet Me at the Spot: The Art of Patrick Siler. Both open February 22. Your admission to the MAC also gets you a tour of the gorgeous Campbell House early 1900s mansion right next door, which is fascinating for kids and adults alike. Tours are available Wednesday through Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. on the hour. The MAC is open Wednesday through Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Admission is $10.00 for adults, $7.50 for seniors ages 60+, $5 for students with ID, and free for kids 5 and under.
Spokane’s beloved Riverfront Park is a great place to take energetic kids, even in the winter months. Although the IMAX is closed for the season, the Ice Palace, one of the best outdoor ice skating rinks in the nation, is open. The historic 1909 Looff Carousel is fun for all ages, as is the Skyride over the Spokane Falls, and during the winter you can often see beautiful ice-encased waterfalls. Don’t forget to take the kids to the giant red wagon slide. The garbage eating goat is another favorite with kids. Check the calendar for hours on all attractions—the Skyride closes in extreme weather, and the Looff Carousel has occasional maintenance closures.
This is a great place to spend a few hours playing. Attractions in the 2,200 square foot Wonderland include black light or outdoor mini-golf, air hockey, climbing wall, lazer tag, batting cages, and go-karts. There are over 80 video and redemption games, with ticket rewards that can be exchanged for prizes. In the eating area (pizza, soda, and snacks available), kids can climb, crawl, and slide in the adventure playhouse. Outdoor activities are weather dependent, but there is plenty to do inside for adults and kids alike to have a great time. Click here for hours. Wonderland is located at 10515 N. Division.
Get those restless kids out of the car and into the skating rink to use up some energy! Pattison’s North, located at 11309 N. Mayfair Rd. just north of Wonderland, offers affordable roller and inline skating for all ages. Click here for schedules of sessions and lessons.
My name is Justin. I am a Senior at Eastern Washington University in the Business program. I am a few months shy of a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Marketing with an Economics minor. Before going to Eastern, I completed five years of active duty in the United States Navy as a Hospital Corpsman. I am still active the Reserves, and am attached to 5th Battalion, 14thMarines, Battery P out of Spokane as one of battery’s hospital corpsmen. I have worked at Stratford Suites since July, 2011, and love the friendly atmosphere at the hotel, and working with the best staff at any hotel in Spokane!
When I am not at work or school, I am an avid snowboarding in the winter and wakeboarding the summer. While stationed in Hawaii, I took up Diving, so I try to dive some of the local lakes in the summer if I have a chance. Staying in shape is important to me, so I spend quite a bit of time at the gym burning off those famous Stratford Suites cookies. I have lived in Spokane since I started attending college at Eastern, and have found that Spokane offers a little something for everyone, especially if you enjoy the outdoors. My favorite thing about Spokane is probably the endless amounts of quality mom and pop restaurants that the city has to offer. Spokane is a city on the rise, and I am glad to be a part of it!
Once a year, Spokane hosts screenings of some of the best films made all over the world in the last two years that have not yet been released for widespread distribution, meaning you will not see them anywhere else, unless you travel to the Cannes, New York, or Toronto film festivals. The Spokane International Film Festival (SPIFF) 2014 programmers have traveled far and wide to select outstanding documentaries, comedies, dramas, shorts, animation, and even a little sci-fi. You can see the full schedule here. Three films are of local interest: Evergreen: The Road to Legalization documents the legalization of recreational marijuana use in Washington State; Find Your Way: A Busker’s Documentary is about Pike Place Market; and Best of the Northwest 2014 is a collection of shorts made in the Pacific Northwest.
At the filmmaker forums, you can learn more about how the films were made and ask questions of visiting filmmakers. Click here to see the featured filmmakers who will attend. The forums are January 26 at 2:00 p.m. and February 1 at 2:00 p.m. Both will be at Magic Lantern Theater, 25 W. Main. Forums are free with either a festival pass or a ticket stub.
Love international film? Make a marathon of SPIFF and purchase a festival pass for $150. With your festival pass, you will go to the front of the line, receive priority seating, and gain admission to all films (there are about 30) and special events. If you purchase a festival pass, be sure to arrive at each show early. You’ll need to pick up a ticket from will call, and you will want to enter the theater before the priority seats (yours) are opened up to general ticket holders 10 minutes before screening. You can also buy individual tickets online (check out the 10 for the price of 9 special), which is a good idea, especially for shows at the Magic Lantern, which sell out fast (small theater). As with festival pass holders, you will need to arrive a few minutes early to pick up your pre-purchased tickets at will call—they will release your tickets 10 minutes before movie time. The 2014 venues are Magic Lantern Theater (35 W. Main), AMC River Park Square 20 (in River Park Square downtown), and Garland Theater (924 W. Garland). See you there!