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!

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Holiday Postcards

This view of the crowds on Sherman Avenue and on the front lawn of the Coeur d'Alene Resort is from the 5th floor of the parking garage. Lake View Towers is in the background. Commodores John McGruder and Patricia Richardson accompanied the Coeur d'Alene Chamber float in the Festival of Lights ParadeDarling little dancers treated the crowd at the Festival of Trees Senior Social.Ava Yates was delighted by the beautiful trees and entertainment.

Friday, November 28, 2008

It's Christmas in Coeur d'Alene!

The day after Thanksgiving is a spectacular beginning to the holiday season in North Idaho. Coeur d'Alene's Festival of Lights kicks off with a downtown parade at dusk followed by spectacular fireworks over the lake as the lights are turned on at the Coeur d'Alene Resort. Cruise boats take bundled up revelers around the shore to oooh and aaah at the decorations at the Coeur d'Alene Resort golf course and at Casco Bay. Inside the hotel thousands will get their first glimpse of dozens of incredibly decorated trees as Kootenai Medical Center's annual Festival of Trees begins a four-day run. Don't forget to check out Gingerbread Mountain at the Resort Plaza Shoppes!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Home on the Grange

The Mica Flats Grange, south of Coeur d'Alene off of US 95, hosted a Thanksgiving potluck dinner in their 110-year-old former schoolhouse hall. Homemade treats galore, including minced elk meat pie! There are 36 granges in Idaho, six in Kootenai County alone. For 140 years the National Grange has worked to preserve family farms, rural communities and the rural lifestyle they represent.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Over the river and through the woods

Traveling to Grandma's house for Thanksgiving this year will be less painful at the pump as prices in Coeur d'Alene dropped to $1.69 a gallon. *that's $1.80 less per gallon than prices on Oct. 1.

Turkeys on the run

While we all prepare to enjoy the Thanksgiving holiday with family and friends, these wild turkeys are on the run in the Mica Bay area near Lake Coeur d'Alene ... no doubt hoping they will not be the guest of honor on anyone's holiday table.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Sparrow Spa Day

On these cold fall mornings I chip the ice from the backyard bird bath and fill it with warm water. My resident sparrows enjoy splashing in their "spa" almost as much as I enjoy watching them.

The Friendly Skies

About 41 million Americans will travel 50 miles or more from their home over Thanksgiving weekend, the busiest travel holiday of the year. Our daughter, Sarah the flight attendant, goes on-location around the country in her line of work. We always appreciate her taking to the sky on her days off to come visit us in North Idaho.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Starlings in the sun

Hundreds of starlings swoop and soar into the fields off of Poleline Avenue in the winter sun.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Wings of Ice

Sunday morning in North Idaho dawned foggy and cold but there's beauty to be found at every turn. The eagle statue in our front yard was outlined in ice crystals.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Rain drops

This week in North Idaho has been alternately wet and sunny as the temperatures begin to dip down to freezing. In my four-plus decades of living in a place I love, we usually see the first snowflakes of any measure on or about Thanksgiving Day. Although last year the snow came early and stayed until April!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

A little bit lower

It's taken a while for the gas prices in North Idaho to fall below the $1.80s per gallon but considering on October 1 we were paying $3.45 for a gallon of regular unleaded, who's complaining.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


The simplicity of a single leaf suspended underwater on a mild North Idaho November day.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Antler Art

One of the great things about North Idaho is the old west feel to entrepreneurism. I came across a nice young man driving an old pick-up truck with some incredible elk antler art bungied in the back. A gorgeous antler chandelier - perfect for a mountaintop log home, an antler saddle rack and several antler lamps. Oh, and there were the requisite hound dogs riding shotgun.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hit the road

Before the snow arrives and the holiday hustle and bustle is upon us, take a leisurely drive on the highways and byways of North Idaho. Bring a camera for those unexpected wildlife sightings and the beautiful scenery I guarantee is right around every turn in the road.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Leaf Fest 2008

We love any reason to celebrate in North Idaho so it's perfect that the City of Coeur d'Alene street department makes the fallen leaves of fall into a two-week extravaganza of community cooperation. From the 12th through the 26th of November trucks and plows are pressed into service on the city streets. I spent some time this afternoon "on location" watching the choreography of two face-to-face plows filling the scoops with leaves as an empty truck backed into place between them to be loaded. When one truck was full another would take its place and then the process was repeated at each intersection. For more information go to www.cdaid.org or call 769-2233.

Over 25,000 Served

Just noticed the counter that began the end of May 2007 has turned past the 25,000 visits mark. It's incredible to me that these slice of life photographs of my North Idaho home have been enjoyed by people from all over the country and even across the seas. This is the 420th post in about as many days since OnLocation North Idaho came online. Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Just in time for Christmas

If you're looking for the perfect gift for someone who has everything, how about a 70' yacht? Duane Hagadone, owner of the Coeur d'Alene Resort, has put this three-story luxury yacht on the market. The Lola III is one of the largest pleasure boats ever to grace the waters of Lake Coeur d'Alene. When construction began on Duane and Lola's 22,000 sq. ft. Casco Bay lake home earlier this year, they commissioned the construction of the yacht to be used as their summer living quarters. The Lola III is sea-worthy as well, so she just may end up with a coastal owner. This photo of The Lola was taken in July at Hagadone's Casco Bay dock.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Veterans Day

In the beginning of conflict, the patriot is a scarce man, and brave, and hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds, the timid join him, for then it costs nothing to be a patriot. ~Mark Twain *Robert Downs' 1865 resting place is in Pinegrove Cemetery, just east of of Rathdrum on Highway 53, one of the oldest cemeteries in Kootenai County. The 1971 gravesite of Vietnam Purple Heart recipient PFC Larry R. Oleson (marked by the red flowers) is in the first rows of the veterans section of Coeur d'Alene Memorial Gardens on Government Way.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Semper Fi

Today marks the commemoration of the 233rd anniversary of the United States Marine Corps. In North Idaho the most famous Marine was the late Col. Gregory "Pappy" Boyington, born in Coeur d'Alene and the recipient of the Congressional Medal of Honor. The Pappy Boyington Detachment of the Marine Corps League waged a successful years long battle to name the Coeur d'Alene Airport Field in his honor. And on Saturday night they gathered to celebrate the birthday of the Corps.

Inset: my favorite Marine ... Ronald D. Rankin: 1929-2004. Dad enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1946 and after surviving Korea's Battle of the Chosin Reservoir, he was honorably discharged in 1951. He was a life and founding member of the Pappy Boyington Detachment 966 of the Marine Corps League, where he served as Judge Advocate. Semper Fi.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Hayden Veterans Day Parade

Saturday's Veterans Day Parade was a celebration of veterans and the sideline parade spectators on Government Way. Driving the FYImobile topless ... the car, not me ... with the Hayden Veterans Affairs Council, provided an opportunity to photograph the flag-waving citizens who turned out to honor veterans. The Cub Scout with his grandpa was a real ray of sunshine on a rainy day and the couple with their well-dressed and well-behaved pooches stood respectfully as the entries passed. I love veterans and our men and women in uniform and I love parades. It was a good day in North Idaho.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Obama meets Bush

Tyler Bush, that is. Tyler is a Post Falls native who now makes his home in Boise. In Tyler's words ... "February 1, 2008 I had the opportunity with my friends David, Jared, Shea & William to be part of what we called our secret mission "Barack O'Baggage". It was our job to get the luggage from the tarmac of BOI (Boise Airport) to the Grove Hotel, and back again the next morning. Barack was in Boise to give a speech at the Taco Bell Arena. After all of our hard work we got to meet the man himself." From l-r: David Munson, Jared Meyer, Barack Obama, Tyler Bush, Shea Sutton, William Thomas
See the creative side of Tyler at www.awkwardgallery.com

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

The Oval Office

A new president will occupy the Oval Office in our nation's capitol come January but if you're in Post Falls you can visit another, less official Oval Office. After repeal of a 1939 law this year, Idaho now allows state liquor stores to be open on election day. Individual cities regulate the serving of hard liquor by the glass on this day, though. In Post Falls, the Oval Office cannot sell a martini before the polls close but beer and wine can be sold. The ban on liquor sales dates back to the 1930s when polling places were located in saloons and buying votes with drinks was the precursor to hanging chads.

Election Day

Election Day in North Idaho has dawned. Polls will be open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. In Kootenai County you can view candidate information, locate your polling place and follow the returns in real time at www.kcgov.us/elections
This plaque on the base of the eagle in the Ronald D. Rankin Veterans Memorial Plaza at the Kootenai County courthouse is a reminder that we live in the greatest nation in all the world ... and of those, through the generations, who have fought and died for our freedoms; including our freedom to cast a ballot. Vote.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Under $2!

With two days to spare before my election day prediction, gas prices in Coeur d'Alene dropped below $2 a gallon on November 2. I saved $20 today when filling up the tank on the FYImobile over what it cost me a month or so ago. Nice.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Fall Back

It's official, tonight before turning in don't forget to turn back your clocks one hour. The North Idaho panhandle is in the Pacific Time Zone. At the Idaho/Montana border at Lookout Pass, the Mountain Time Zone starts. Southern Idaho, including capitol city, Boise, is also in the Mountain Time Zone.