By Chelsea Chambers
There is something magical about Idaho in the wintertime: snow-capped pine trees, wood-smoke billowing from rooftop chimneys, and of course, weekend hot spring trips to the mountains.
Looking for more ways to fill your chilly days? Draw some inspiration from these Boiseans.
So, what do you love about Boise in the winter?
Brionna Queen – Self-Employed Gardener
If we had previous lives, I likely would have been a bear. I go into hibernation mode as soon as cold weather sets in. Rather than skiing or participating in other winter activities, I prefer cozying up with my dog in the comfort of my home and copious amounts of coffee. Predictably, I imagine I’ll be spending this winter working on my many college assignments, cooking warm, cozy food, and enjoying the occasional Netflix binge. I appreciate winter from afar, but revel in staying comfortable and warm. Exciting, I know. However, I see it as a nice reset from the chaos that is typically my day-to-day life.
Eric Rush – Micron Technology
Winter is coming, and like Game of Thrones, is often universally loved at first, though categorically despised at its conclusion (it may last a bit long too). Unlike the slow-motion train wreck of the TV show however, we have a distinct ability to influence our experiences in Boise – and probably survive them with a smile too.
Boise is a hub for countless activities to pursue in all seasons of the year, and winter is no exception. The nearby ski mountains are cheaper than most, with enough of a local community to find all the gear you need at discount. My gang and I plan excursions up to Valley County as frequently as possible. Even if you don’t end up skiing there is something distinctly meditative about bundling up with friends in front of a fire, playing cards, and cooking soup for each other in a cabin surrounded by the snow. It has parallels to summer camping, but with higher stakes because venturing outside after the dark is simply out of the question. And why would you want to when you have everything you need inside?
Boise proper receives little enough snow that most warmer hobbies remain viable year-round despite the insistent cloud cover and temperatures that drive valley girls to reconsider their froyo dependence, if only temporarily. Exploring the miles of hiking and biking trails surrounding the valley can yield quality instagram worthy material that simply doesn’t exist in the summer.
The city itself transforms into something out of an unreleased Frank Capra film during the long night. The beauty of winter in downtown and the recently added Village at Meridian are designed almost as if in likeness of a Thomas Kinkade painting. Spending some hours meandering through either leaves you feeling like an extra in the opening scene of an old Christmas classic rerun.
My final piece of advice is to engage in the abundance of indoor activities that Boise has to offer–which I commit to engage with when I’ve exhausted all else. From Opera Idaho, to the Egyptian Theater, to Liquid Laughs, to all the many music venues in the area, there is no shortage of entertainment to fill your cold evenings with. I encourage everyone to unsheathe the board games that have collected dust, cook enough hot soup for everyone, and spend some time closer with those who we miss in summer.
Boise is a fantastic place, I wouldn’t live anywhere else. And even in the winter, despite so many reasons to complain, there’s still plenty of reasons to call this place home.
Daniel Doolittle – Funky Taco & Cloud 9
Hmm, there’s a lot. I love the tree on top of the Zion’s building, looking at lights at the Botanical Garden’s Winter Garden Aglow. Drinking dark beer at Prost. I was born and raised in the Treasure Valley, so I’m big on snow! Snowshoeing, tobogganing, all of that!
Taylor Allred – Head Chef at Hooligans Pub
The first thing I love about the winter here is the fresh air. There’s just something about it. And not to mention…. this is cooking time! This is the season for my profession. We are in full swing of making people happy with good food. People are cold, we give them warm food and whiskey. Also, I’d like to try to start skiing but we’ll see if that happens… I’ve got mouths to feed. I hope it snows a whole bunch. I want a real wintry winter.
If you’re not inspired yet, check out these great upcoming winter events:
- Paint with Penguins for Kids at the Boise Zoo – January 14
- Jerry Seinfeld at the Morrison Center – January 16
- Treasure Valley Flea Market at the Expo Center – January 11 and 23
- Idaho Remodeling and Design Show at the Boise Centre – January 25 and 26
- Sippin’ in the City Wine Tasting at Idaho Wine Commission – January 30
- Girls Day Out at Wahoo! Event Center – February 8
- Paint with Penguins Adult Night at the Boise Zoo – February 11
- Firkin Frolic Beer Festival at the Basque Center – February 13
- Stomp in Boise at the Morrison Center – February 22
- Cirque du Soleil at the ExtraMile Arena – February 27 through 29
It may be cold but there is always something to do in our beautiful city. So, get up, get out, and get moving! Or at least make a large pot of soup.