Welcome to North Idaho

To live in a place other people dream of visiting is incredible. Through the lens of my camera OnLocation North Idaho will bring you a slice of life as we know it in the Idaho panhandle. Enjoy!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Home Sweet Summer Home

Marshall Chesrown, developer of The Club at Blackrock, bought this beautiful lake lodge at Kidd Island Bay from OXYfresh owner Richard Brooke and then sold it to former Denver Broncos quarterback John Elway. Across the bay is a five-story stunner, designed by Bill Brown of Post Falls. But the real "Gold Coast" of the Coeur d'Alene/Post Falls area is the Spokane River between Lake Coeur d'Alene and the Post Falls dam. The homes there are spectacular beyond description. Amway millionaires Ron and Georgia Lee Puryear's 26,000 sq. ft. home on the Spokane River, nicknamed the River House, is the fairest of them all.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Dog Days of Summer

Maybe Puppy Days is more like it but a few days of 90 degrees and sunshine are just what we need to mark the end of summer vacation. In North Idaho even our four-legged friends find lots of ways to keep cool and look cool at the same time.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Rodeo in North Idaho

The artistry and athleticism of the sport of rodeo was on display during the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association-sanctioned North Idaho Fair Rodeo. Cowboys and cowgirls ... bulls, broncs and barrels came together in the arena like an Old West ballet. Standing room only crowds showed their appreciation for the showmanship displayed.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

America's Mayor

In our darkest moment New York Mayor Rudy Guiliani inspired more than a city, he gave a nation strength. And not since Ronald Reagan a quarter century ago has a presidential candidate visited Idaho ... until Thursday when Guiliani was the guest of honor at a reception at the Coeur d'Alene Lake home of John Magnuson. He arrived smiling and relaxed on the lawn of the Coeur d'Alene Resort and then was welcomed aboard hotel magnate Duane Hagadone's boat for the trip across the lake.

Monday, August 20, 2007


Hummingbirds are flocking to feeders in North Idaho as they prepare to migrate south in the coming weeks. These tiny birds have voracious appetites and need to double in weight to make their journey to warmer climes.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Wood is good

It takes something special to stand out in a sea of awe-inspiring boats and yachts moored in the Coeur d'Alene Resort Marina on Lake Coeur d'Alene but dozens of vintage and brand new wooden boats of all sizes did just that. The annual Coeur d'Alene Wooden Boat Show featured wonderful wood on all manner of watercraft from all over the country. The largest sailboat on Lake Coeur d'Alene was displayed as was a tiny tugboat. The pride in ownership and the sheer joy of slicing through the water is evident in each one of the boats. A walk around the world's longest floating boardwalk on a sunny, breezy day was a delight.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Up in smoke

The Rathdrum Prairie is now dotted with homes. As recently as last year there were more grass fields than subdivisions. This year, for the first time since the 1970s, thousands of acres of bluegrass stubble will not be burned as summer draws to a close. As more people moved to the area, the more controversial the field burning became. A tradition and a way of life for generations of Rathdrum Prairie farmers has ironically gone up in smoke with a federal court ruling banning the practice. No grass burning, more homes and cars. Progress.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Settlers Grove

Settlers Grove of Ancient Cedars is an Idaho National Forest hiking and biking trail just north of historic Murray in the Silver Valley. The grove wraps around the west fork of Eagle Creek and contains century-old trees, some with trunks up to 10 feet in diameter. An easy walk on hard packed trials, the trail head features a large parking area. If you walk beyond the first half-mile there are even more groves of the giant trees and the remains of an early mining operation.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Illuminating art

At Falls Park in Post Falls, young art campers celebrated their last day of creative day camping by setting adrift dozens of milk carton luminaries, creating a sea of color on the fishing pond. The Art on the Edge program is one of many opportunities for the youth of North Idaho.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Singing in the "rain"

The new park at Riverstone is the site of weekly free concerts on Thursday evenings through August. This week the band barely made it through their second song before the sprinklers on the grassy hillside above the amphitheater startled the crowd. Within a few minutes the water was turned off and the lovely evening under the stars overlooking the pond continued without the appearance of Gene Kelly and his umbrella.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Huckleberries - Idaho's purple "gold"

The mountains of the Coeur d'Alenes are known for an abundance of native huckleberries, the official state fruit of Idaho. Sunlight enhances production, so the best berry picking is usually found along abandoned logging roads, in areas where timber has been harvested or where forest fires have occurred. When venturing into the forest, it's good to remember bears like berries, too. High in carbohydrates, they're one of the primary food sources for grizzly and black bear. George and Betty Poteet have a cooler full of huckleberries at their produce stand on Government Way between Dalton and Hanley in Coeur d'Alene. Betty tells OnLocation North Idaho that her regular berry suppliers report a bumper crop of berries and of bear sightings this year. So be careful out there or just stop by Poteet's produce stand and buy a bag of purple "gold."
*more info on huckleberry picking is on The Guide to North Idaho link to the right.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Yard Art

As summer wanes we're spending more time in our North Idaho backyards, literally. Wayne Girlen of Artique Expressions displayed his spinning copper and glass lawn sprinklers at Coeur d'Alene City Park over the weekend. A beautiful way to water the lawn. Now if there were an artistic alternative to mowing...

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Sand castle architecture

Sand castle engineer/artist Scott Dodson of Post Falls started with 16 tons of sand on Wednesday as he began to create a 14th century gothic castle. The sand is sprayed with an Elmer's glue and water mixture to help it retain moisture and last up to two months. At 12 feet high and 10 feet wide, the castle drew a continuous crowd of admirers during Art on the Green in Coeur d'Alene. Photos don't do justice to the intricate detail and sheer whimsy of the project. Go see it for yourself at the west side entrance to Ft. Sherman Park, adjacent to North Idaho College. Then when you're inspired, grab your sand bucket and shovel and head to the beach to try your creativity in the art of sand castles.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Strike up the band

Formed in 1925, the 25th Army Band of the Idaho Army National Guard is comprised of different musical segments; the concert band, the jazz or dance band, the marching band and many small combo groups playing dixieland jazz, brass ensemble, woodwind quintet, rock and country and western music. They came to Rathdrum City Park on Friday night and delighted and inspired everyone gathered. The band will play another free concert Sunday, August 5 at 7 p.m. at RedLion Templin's Resort in Post Falls ... on the lawn, overlooking the river, under the stars.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Going Downtown

There's no shortage of places to go in North Idaho on a sunny summer weekend but this is the weekend to be in downtown Coeur d'Alene. Art on the Green at North Idaho College, Taste of the Coeur d'Alenes in Coeur d'Alene City Park and the Street Fair on Sherman Avenue provide a little something for everyone. I'd venture a guess that there's not many cities where this many events, all connected by walking paths and sidewalks, are within view of a beautiful lake. Music, food, arts and crafts, sidewalk sales at downtown merchants ... it's a good weekend to be in Coeur d'Alene.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Picnic in Post Falls

Over two decades ago local businesses hosted the first community picnic in August to say thanks to the people who supported them throughout the year. The population of Post Falls was around 5,000 and at least 500 people would come out to celebrate. Things have changed in Post Falls, there's now more than one stoplight by dozens and over 20,000 people call the River City home, but the sense of small town and community remain. On the first Thursday in August the Post Falls Community Picnic brings out families, seniors and everyone in between. Post Falls native Kelly Hughes for years has set aside the date to provide the music, including the crowd-pleasing favorite Chicken Dance. The chamber has joined with the Post Falls Community Volunteers to grill thousands of burgers and hot dogs, although some people bring a picnic basket and blanket to enjoy the evening at Q'emlin Park on the Spokane River. The 7,200 sq. ft. Lions Grand Pavilion is used for many events year 'round but there's no other gathering quite like the community picnic to showcase the very reason people have made Post Falls their home.