We're two weeks away, but it already feels like summer. It's 90 degrees, bike lanes are busy, and the fountain is blasting at Alive After Five.
Speaking of which, I didn't see you at The Grove plaza on Wednesday. Which means you're losing 1-0 - to me and all the other Boiseans who drank beer, BS'ed and watched gifted rhythm and blues singer Curtis Salgado sing his face off.
I'm talking about the annual Summer Boise Bucket List competition. I've checked off Alive After Five. (Photos, page 15.) Game on.
The Boise bucket list is something I concocted a few years ago after realizing that I was a completely lazy pile of Idahoan. I live in Boise, one of the greatest places on Earth during summer. Yet too often, I find myself doing a whole lot of nothing that doesn't involve HDTV and AC. Before I know it, summer is over. Again.
Many of us never get around to doing things that we know would be fun - if we made any actual effort to, like, live life. The only hope? Make a Summer Boise Bucket List.
If you've heard my spiel before, some of this is old hat. That's OK. This reminder exercise needs to happen every year or two - for the good of all of us.
Well, most of us. If you're one of those super-energetic, smiley-faced social whirlwinds who's done everything on this list 100 times already?
@#$* you. Move to California:
1. Alive After Five: For crying out loud, it's free. Go. The crowds will taper off soon. (Yes, the 15-minute beer line was brutal Wednesday.)
2. Boise Greenbelt: It sounds cheesy, but if you haven't done the Belt lately - walking, running, fishing, swimming, nature-/people-watching - you're cheating yourself. Besides, being near the water will remind you about ...
3. Boise River tubing: Too many Boiseans don't appreciate how rad it is to have this float right in town. Floating the river is an affirmation of the Idaho spirit, too. In everyday life, we aren't always so friendly. But everyone is family while bumping inner tubes in the water. I don't care if your grandma rear-ends some pierced, saucer-sized earlobe-holes dude. Instant buddies.
4. Idaho Shakespeare Festival: Nearly 60,000 bodies graced the ISF amphitheater last year, yet producing artistic director Charlie Fee claims he meets someone new every day - including Boise natives - who has never attended: "That's constant. That's the part that blows your mind," he says. Newsflash! You're missing out. Stop freaking out about "culture," pack a wine-and-cheese picnic, kick back and try it.
5. Idaho Botanical Garden Outlaw Field concerts: It's about time you rocked underneath TableRock. The view is pure Boise - just check out the Scene cover. See the list of shows on page 12.
6. One of the following: Hiking/biking Hulls Gulch, Boise Hawks, Les Bois Park ladies night, Twilight Criterium, Eagle Fun Days.
Before you chastise my list (unless you're an online commenter, of course), please understand: I purposely keep my ideas in the Captain Obvious box. I simply want to remember that the things we take for granted might not always be around.
Besides, this is Boise. We do cool, wholesome stuff. We're not, say, Portland, where a summer bucket list includes things like the World Naked Bike Ride. (About 4,000 people are expected to launch in front of the Portland Art Museum this Saturday. The museum is even offering $1-per-article-of-clothing admission to "Cyclepedia," its new exhibit. "That means no clothes, no charge," explains an article in The Oregonian. Oooooooooooooh, joy.)
In other words, you're lucky to live in Boise. If you have unique experiences about the Treasure Valley that you keep telling yourself you should do, add them to your summer bucket list. Challenge yourself.
And if you put the Boise Art Museum on the list, please plan to show up with at least a buck.
- Lucky Fins Seafood Grill has not opened its new location at The Grove plaza yet. The restaurant in the old Brick Oven Bistro spot had aimed to debut in time for the first Alive After Five. It's now looking more like late July or early August.
- We're still two or three weeks away from Crooked Fence Barrelhouse opening, too. Story, page 20.
- Idaho's Snake River Valley finished at No. 2 on a recently released list of "America's Top 10 Wine Destinations" from Redbook magazine. This caused Idaho Wine Commission Executive Director Moya Shatz Dolsby to be "super excited," according to a Statesman article - and me to roll my eyes.
("What is Moya supposed to say? That's her job," countered my wife, who is accustomed to me being a jackwagon about everything.)
Just imagine the ecstasy if Idaho somehow makes the coveted Family Circle magazine wine rankings.
OK, I'll stop. Let's celebrate Idaho Wine Month. Story, page 21.
Michael Deeds co-hosts "The Other Studio" at 9 p.m. Sundays on 94.9 FM "The River"; he appears Thursdays on Channel 6 News.