2014 Best of Treasure Valley: Arts & Entertainment

doland@idahostatesman.comJune 20, 2014 

farmers market, boise, downtown, market, capital city,

The Capital City Public Market in downtown Boise on Saturday April 19, 2014.

JOE JASZEWSKI — jjaszewski@idahostatesman.com Buy Photo

This year’s reader picks get to the heart of how we connect with culture in our part of the world. The Treasure Valley’s natural beauty often converges with something fun to do, creating an experience that transcends a simple event.

That’s the goal of Charlie Fee, producing artistic director of Idaho Shakespeare Festival, which again tops Best Performing Arts Group.

“It’s more than just going to see great theater,” he says. “The setting is gorgeous, you see people you know and there is a deep history to the community. I think that’s why we’re so lucky to have the support we do, and we’re super grateful.”

For a diverse urban experience, hit Downtown Boise, the readers’ choice for Best Place to Impress Out-of-Towners. You can dive into the lively dining scene, go to First Thursday gallery walks, hit the Saturday farmers markets or shake your groove thing at the Balcony Club, voted Best Place to Dance.

Why not take the Boise Greenbelt to get there? Readers love spending time on the Greenbelt, the Best Spot for Family Recreation.

“It’s a great place for families,” says Teresa Bray of Boise, who says she visits it every day. “We use it for exercise, we bike Downtown to happy hours or dinner. Anything that’s off the Greenbelt is a favorite of ours.”

The outdoor environment at the Idaho Botanical Garden is the readers’ pick for Best Music Venue. You can relax on the lawn with a picnic, see a touring act at Outlaw Field or just enjoy the summer views around Table Rock.

Other Treasure Valley experiences that made No. 1 include a trip to the lakeside village of McCall (Best Day Trip), a Boise State Bronco football game (Best Community Event), and a Curtis Stigers concert (Best Musician).

Going to a movie at the new 15-screen Village Cinema is an impressive experience, too. The Meridian multiplex squeaked past The Flicks to win Best Movie Theater with its gourmet dining, cocktails and optional D-Box seats that coordinate motion to cinematic action.

Writers, artists and media personalities who earned voter accolades were those who chronicle these experiences. Mix 106 morning hosts Mike & Kate and Channel 7 anchor Maggie O’Mara are the voices that get us on our way each morning. Idaho Statesman columnist and author Tim Woodward tells our collective story in his essays. And painter Ward Hooper’s art captures and lionizes the Valley’s lifestyle.

Place to Impress Out-of-Towners

1. Downtown Boise

2. Boise Greenbelt

3. Idaho Shakespeare Festival

Art Gallery

1. Boise Art Museum

2. Flying M Coffeehouse

3. Boise State University SUB


1. Ward Hooper

2. Unique Irish

3. Sector Seventeen Author

1. Tim Woodward

2. Anthony Doerr

3. Judy Cox

Community Event

1. Boise State football

2. Art in the Park

3. Boise Farmers Market/Capital City Public Market

Place to Dance

1. The Balcony Club

2. Humpin’ Hannah’s

3. Cowgirls Kuna

Day Trip From Boise­

1. McCall

2. Redfish Lake

3. Idaho City

Family Recreation Spot

1. Boise Greenbelt

2. Zoo Boise

3. McCall

Movie Theater

1. Village Cinema 15

2. The Flicks

3. Edwards Boise Stadium 22 & IMAX


1. Curtis Stigers

2. Built To Spill

3. Rebecca Scott

Music Venue

1. Idaho Botanical Garden

2. Velma V. Morrison Center

3. Knitting Factory

Performing Arts Group

1. Idaho Shakespeare Festival

2. Ballet Idaho

3. Boise Philharmonic

Radio Host(s)

1. Mike & Kate, Mix 106 FM

2. Keke luv & Michelle Heart, 103.5 Kiss FM

3. Kevin and Brenda Mee, 107.9 lite FM

TV Personality

1. Maggie O’Mara, KTVB Channel 7

2. Dee Sarton, KTVB Channel 7

3. Carolyn Holly, KTVB Channel 7

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