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What to Know When Moving to Idaho

Should you move to Idaho?Are you thinking about moving to Idaho?  There are a lot of interesting and helpful things to know about this great state before you make that move.  Here are just a few to help give you some things to look forward to.

Idaho is the potato capital of the world

Idaho is the potato capital of the world.  In downtown Blackfoot, in the eastern side of the state, you will find the Idaho Potato Museum dedicated to our official state vegetable.  There are nearly 30 different types of potatoes grown commercially in Idaho. Most common are the familiar brown Russets, along with yellow, red and even some purple types.  One restaurant, The Boise Fry Company, cashes in on the variations by offering six different kinds of potatoes on the menu and you can choose from five different ways they can be cut.  But, it doesn’t end there. There are a variety of sauces and salts you can experiment with to help you create a culinary masterpiece. Oh yeah, they do have sandwiches on the side.

Downtown Boise is a great residential area

Downtown Boise is a great residential area.  With four grocery stores to meet residents’ needs and a vibrant social atmosphere, how could you go wrong?  The beautiful Boise river flows through the center of town and can be easily accessed by over 30 miles of the Green Belt, a paved path through verdant vegetation which encapsulates the river on both sides as it winds its way through the city.  Boise’s downtown is also known for being a clean city and is striving to be a bike-friendly city as well. The Green Bike program is becoming very popular. Along the streets, you’ll find rows of bicycles you can rent for a nominal fee. When done with the bike, just return it to any of the Green Bike racks.  Also, along the river is Boise State University. This school is well supported by the community. It’s not uncommon on game days to see the community awash with blue and orange (BSU colors).

Downtown Boise hosts a number of engaging events.  One is First Thursday which is a unique way to shop. It is held, obviously, on the first Thursday of each month.  Downtown merchants throw open their doors to shoppers, diners and passers-by to allow them to participate in special in-store events. These events range from wine tasting to art exhibits to charity events.  Another event is Alive After Five. Every Wednesday evening during the summer months, The Center on the Grove rocks downtown Boise with the Alive After 5 Concert Series. For 32 years, this concert series has brought to Boise artists such as LED, The Ghost of Paul Revere, Afrosonics, the Brad Parsons Band and The Talbott Brothers.  All summer long you can enjoy great music amongst the charming atmosphere of downtown Boise.

Farming in Idaho is big businessIdaho is an agricultural state

Idaho is an agricultural state.  One nice thing about Idaho is that you don’t have to go very far to feel you’re in the rural countryside.  Much of Idaho has urban areas interspersed with rural areas. The view of that lush, green checkerboard has some challenges, though.  Not often, but more so during harvest season, as you drive, you may find yourself stuck behind farm equipment as it slowly makes its way down the road. It usually isn’t for a very long distance and the farmers are considerate.  When they find an opportunity to pull over to let you pass, they will take it. So, be patient. Remember to not follow too closely. There will be times when an adventurous potato, onion, or some other random produce might decide to jump from the back of the truck in front of you.  Also, be kind and considerate to the farmers because they are growing your food.

Idaho teens can start driving at age 14 ½

Idaho teens can start driving at age 14 ½. Yes, that’s right.  Because of Idaho’s agricultural presence, teen drivers are allowed to get a supervised instruction permit (SIP) at age 14 ½.  This opens up the way for teens to help out on the farm driving equipment. This also means that 14-year-olds can get a job without a special age certificate.  So, if you see a driver who looks like he’s fresh out of middle school, you’re not seeing things, he is.

Idaho is a portal to some amazing nature

Idaho is a portal to some amazing nature. In the east of the state, you can easily access two spectacular national parks.  From Idaho Falls it’s just a two-hour drive to The Grand Teton National Park and a little over three hours to get to Yellowstone National Park.  Both parks have some very breathtaking vistas as well as hiking, biking, boating, fishing and camping. But it is Yellowstone with its astounding geysers and wandering wildlife that is the gemstone of the area.  

In the west of the state, you can find the Sawtooth mountains where Sun Valley and McCall are nestled.  If you want to see something really unique, the City of Rock National Reserve is just a hop, skip and a jump away from Boise.  This unusual rock formation is food for the imagination. The area is reminiscent of a lost city where giant rock monsters still lay on the ground where they had fallen centuries ago.

To the north are the cities of Coeur d’Alene (pronounced in Idaho as core da laine) named for the Coeur d’Alene Native Americans, and Sandpoint.  Coeur d’Alene has a history that goes back to the mid-1800’s when the Mission of the Sacred Heart was built.  At the request of the local Native American tribes, Catholic missionaries came to the area to convert the natives.  The natives and the Catholic missionaries developed such a wonderful relationship that they named the building the Mission of the Sacred Heart, which is now the oldest building in Idaho. Sandpoint is nestled on the banks of Lake Pend Oreille (pronounced in Idaho as Ponderay).  These two cities are anchor points for a plethora of activities which boating, fishing, camping, skiing and hiking are just the beginning. 

As you can see, Idaho is a treasure trove of things to do.  Idaho is alive with activities, nature and culture. There is so much to do that it would be easy to fill your days with adventure and activities.  Once you’ve arrived in Idaho, take some time to get to know what your area has to offer.

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