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PAY IT FORWARD FUSION Magazine and the Arsenio Saakyn branch of farmers insurance would like to thank the following businesses for their generous donations to the Pay it Forward Christmas. With your aid we were able to brighten up the holidays for a deserving family at the Ronald McDonald house. Barbacoa Fork The Reef Brick Yard Matador Willow Creek Dunkin Donuts Treasure Valley Coffee Memjet Home and Office

OOOOOPS (Winter Issue Mistakes) The cover photo was taken by Peter Carrera Date on the before pic for Triumph: The Rise, Fall, and Transformation of Rocky Detwiler is 2009 not 2001. (pg24) The explanations for the chart on page 25 are from another article in this issue. For the correct chart visit




The photographer for The Art of Layering Article is Levi Bettwieser. (pg 60) The photographer for Jamie Mueth in the Fusion Fitness Focus is Matt Hagler (pg 100)

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Hotel 43 • 981 W. Grove St., Boise


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BRIAN SHIELDS Here we are, with another issue of Fusion Magazine in the books. It draws a certain emotion in me each time I get a new mag in my hands. Yes, there is a level of pride and self-accomplishment that I receive, but my greatest joy stems from finally holding the result of the hours upon hours of hard work from many individuals. There are a number of people who contribute to our success and continually make sacrifices in order to see our vision unfold. There are too many of you to name individually, but I want to take one second to tell you that I love you guys and truly appreciate all you do, especially my son Kaydin Shields who is forced to make the biggest sacrifice on my behalf. Some of you will never have your name in the masthead or contributors section, but I recognize your dedication. This issue of Fusion highlights three individuals who I am honored to have been able to meet—Sandy Anderson, the Executive Director of Buy Idaho, Ben Quintana, founder of Boise Young Professionals and now a Boise City Councilman, and John Michael Schert, an accomplished dancer and the Executive Director of the Trey McIntyre Project. These three trailblazers are on the forefront of helping establish the Treasure Valley as a location, driven by progression, with a thriving economy and social scene that attracts transplants and visitors, while keeping native Boise rooted. This issue also covers the Treefort Music Festival, local fashion designers, and the Volkswagen Cycling Team. I am especially proud of this issue and the work that our team produced. We have learned a lot in a small amount of time, and I feel that our progression is really expressed through the quality of this issue. From the writing and photography to the system in which the magazine operates, a level of growth is evident.

Follow Brian on Twitter @bigshotbrian

Now, it is with great anticipation that I look towards the future. Our next issue will mark Fusion’s one-year anniversary. We’ve launched a new website ( that compliments the magazine with daily updates and photo features, as well as our newest project, Fusion TV. Like John Michael, Ben, and Sandy, we embrace the opportunity to showcase this blossoming city and aid in its progression. Enjoy, Brian Shields Editor in Chief



RYAN WHITE The first time that a person sees what they’ve written printed in a magazine is a magical moment. For me, that was last year when I joined the Fusion Family. I remember opening to my stories and feeling like I was eight years old on Christmas morning! Then, at the onset of our spring issue, I experienced that same feeling again when I was given the opportunity to become Fusion Magazine’s Managing Editor. Five years ago, when I first moved to Boise, I never dreamed I’d be where I am today. I am so grateful to have a job doing what I love and I’ve been able to progress in so many other ways. It only seems fitting that my new position would coincide with an issue that focuses on Boise’s progressive movement. In the short time that I’ve called Boise home, I’ve seen this city grow in leaps and bounds, while still keeping the sense of community that give Boise heart and makes it unique. In the same way, I’ve watched the Fusion Family grow into its own exciting community, one that’s vibrant, passionate, and incredibly talented! I have never met another group of people who were more willing to work towards a common goal—to create a magazine unlike any Boise has ever seen. It’s this amazing team that is driving Boise’s best lifestyle magazine in the same direction as our wonderful city. With the same pride that I take in calling Boise home, I invite you to delve into this issue and discover the magic that jumps from our pages. Ryan White Managing Editor


STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS MAGAZINE STAFF EDITOR IN CHIEF Brian shields MANAGING EDITOR Ryan White LITERARY DIRECTOR Jennifer Sanders Peterson CREATIVE DIRECTOR Jenn Carter LEAD PHOTOGRAPHER Wendi Flores PHOTOGRAPHER Cesil Raphino SALES DIRECTOR Claudia Ripley CHIEF WEB EDITOR Lizz Anne Naughton SALES Tai Simpson FICTION EDITOR Rick Coonrod FASHION DIRECTOR Delila Gutierrez FASHION EDITOR Vanessa Smith CREATIVE SOLUTIONS Prince McClinton, Danish Ishaq, and David Scholer STYLE TEAM Tia Lee, Dale Tu, and Wendee Weber EVENTS COORDINATOR Elizabeth Obregon and Mel Jones GRAPHIC DESIGNERS Kelsey Hawes, Kyle Farmer INTERNS Ashley Runion, Alexa Nasland, Amy Sperline, Shay Brinster, Jeff Cochran, Jordon Hubbs Our talented team of writers and photographers are listed with their respective articles. COVER PHOTO Levi Bettwiser of LB Photography




JENNIFER SANDERS PETERSON Is like the part of a Rocket Pop where the blue and white converge and you’re not sure what flavor is being created but you know it’s good. She is a published writer and poet, a graduate of the Boise State Writing program, and cohost of the “Writers’ Block” on Boise Community Radio. In her free time, she loves longboarding with her four boys, supporting Boise-based music, beating everyone at Scrabble, and utilizing air quotes in her conversations as much as possible. Jennifer serves not only as a writer but also the fearless Literary Director at Fusion. Look for her current work in SP CE and at www.theboysquad. CHRISTIAN A. WINN A Seattle-ite who moved here to complete his MFA, Christian now teaches fiction at Boise State University. His work has appeared in Gulf Coast, The Chattahoochee Review, Hayden’s Ferry Review, McSweeney’s, and most recently Pinch. His collection of vintage thrift store t-shirts rivals that of any hipster. You can also find him out and about downtown on his bike and working the occasional shift at The Falcon. PHIL BODE A 2011 graduate of the Boise State Writing program, Phil was known for running the Writing Center with an iron fist. He now puts his talents to work as a freelance writer and editor. When not helping out at Fusion, he enjoys football, punk music, good beer, getting dorky tattoos, smiling, and referencing himself in the third person. Look for Phil’s stories coming to a major publication near you soon. AK TURNER is a freelance writer, humor columnist, and host of "The Writers' Block" on Boise Community Radio. She serves on the boards of The Cabin and the Idaho Writers Guild and was a writer in the Artist-in-Residence program for the 2011-2012 term. Her blog, writing links and podcasts are available at

Personal Training


LIZZ ANNE NAUGHTON Was one of those grammar-loving kids who grew up to be an English major. Now, she runs the website/social networks for Fusion Magazine and balances a day-job in the corporate world. When she isn't posting on the internet or answering to the man, Lizz enjoys reading comic books; buying shoes; yelling at the Philadelphia Eagles, while cheering Boise State Broncos during football season; advocating for the local LGBT community; baking out-of-this-world cupcakes; and collecting tattoos. LEVI BETTWIESER Creative portraiture is my passion. When taking stills of people, no two frames will ever be the same. The opportunity to manipulate light, to create something truly artistic, is unmatched by any other style of photography. I usually only see the flaws in my work, which constantly forces me to hone my skills, and improve with every shoot. Photo by Von Giltzow Photography


+ Circuit Training + Strength Training + Weight Loss + Calisthenics + MMA Conditioning + Injury Rehab

PETE GRADY A freelance photographer based in the Treasure Valley. Besides the editorial work he does for Fusion, Pete makes images for other local publications, as well as commercial and government clients. His retail work includes commencement photography for College of Idaho, family portraiture and a wedding photography business where he teams up with another accomplished photographer, a producer and equipment assistant. His personal work has been shown at various galleries in the Intermountain West. You can see more of Pete's photography at


Located at Dfine Athletic Club The Grove Hotel 245 South Capitol Blvd Boise, ID 83702 5th Floor

WENDI FLORES My soul screams artistic release, whether it's photography, dance, music, or drawing I'm not myself if I'm not wrapped up in the ambiance of it all. Trained in all mediums artistic, my passion is help children find their voice in creative expression. Currently a Senior at Boise State, my mission in life is give a voice to the voiceless. After graduation I plan to pursue a Masters of Art Therapy.









TABLE OF CONTENTS 10 COVER STORY 3 Voices Amidst Boise’s Progression

67 OUTDOORS Hot Springs For Beginners

20 SPORTS From The Blue Turf to the NFL Gridiron

69 TECH Socialize With Social Eyes

24 ENTREPRENEUR SPOLIGHT Rex Chandler- The Art of Perfection

72 GUEST COLUMN Rick Moorten- Status Update

30 LOCAL BUSINESS Boise Diamonds – The Stem of a Gem

74 LIFESTYLE VW Racing Team- Pedal Proud

34 ART Sector 17- Behind the Spray Paint

76 LIFESTYLE Revolution Vodka- Killer Distiller

38 LOCALE FLAIR Treefort Music Festival

78 RIDES Limited Edition Bentley

44 FICTION Just Have to Be Ok With It.

84 FUSION FITNESS FOCUS Tara Heinz & Mitch Boehlke

48 FASHION SPREAD Homegrown- Local Designers

90 HEALTH AND BEAUTY The Value of Sleep

56 STYLE 4 Styles

92 HEALTH AND BEAUTY Oliver Finley Presents: Summer Trends

58 MUSIC Ryan Bayne- Unrepentant Road 60 MUSIC Hardcore- Catch Me Killer





V.1.3 SPRING 2012 9


Boise is a city full of potential, a looming possibility, a beautiful, isolated, highdesert city with a kind populace, steady employment base, and a dynamic western history; it’s an affordable city, an active and healthy city. But couched somewhere between urban and rural, sophisticated and down-home, Boise is a city that sometimes struggles with identity—perhaps more so for those assessing from afar than for those who make this their home. Yet, even for those of us living in the heart of this community, it is often hard to know just what Boise is, how one might define its residents, or what, as a civic entity, Boise will become in the teenage years of the 21st century.




SOME DAYS HERE, as you coast through the North End or stroll down 8th Street—the sidewalks full of tony urbane couples, indie-kids, and families biking out for a fine sunny day, with laughter rising from restaurant patios and the warm comfort of the slip of slow traffic—this place looks so like the perfect city to live vibrantly, create progressive art, open a business, start a new industry, or begin a political movement. There is energy. There is life. OTHER DAYS, NOT SO MUCH. Other days, Boise seems a slow city, a stuck city, a city struggling to outrun its good-old-boy past—politically and in arts, business, education, agriculture, and mindset. Complacency, that familiar (if clichéd), middle-American trait has at times taken serious root here, dug itself in nice and deep.


The inaugural Treefort Music Festival is on the threshold of bringing a complex weave of regional and national independent music our way this March 22 - 25.


Trey McIntyre Project is carrying its avant-garde, Boisebased, contemporary-ballet company across the globe.


A thriving Capital City Public Market is bringing us a continually expanding weekly dose of local agriculture, art, and food, perhaps even year-round soon.


Free-form Radio Boise, KRBX 89.9, is now established, viable, and readily accessible.


Boise Young Professionals is carrying forth its message and deep-seated desire to see the city’s professionals keep thinking young and fresh, no matter their age, as the business scene evolves.


The Treasure Valley Food Coalition, as a progressive nonprofit, is raising awareness and promoting the local food economy.


Think Boise First is moving forward as an energetic advocate for Boise’s businesses and overall well-being.


Buy Idaho, established twenty-five years ago, has hired a new Executive Director and is aggressively operating as a friend and promoter of all things Idaho.


The multi-genre Visual Arts Collective is keeping the cutting-edge of theatre, music, and gallery-art sharp.

Fear of change, lack of exposure, and misunderstanding what progressive may actually means are all elements that have been at work here. And of course, to change a city’s habits, its mindset, and its sense of identity is as difficult as any endeavor.

10. Boise-dwelling author, Anthony Doerr, is winning international story prizes.

But there are forces of progress seriously at work in our city right now, perhaps more than ever. The old Boise—what it has been conceived to be and what it has represented itself as—is shifting, morphing, and wishing to become something brand new, if also uniquely carrying forward its history.

12. The nascent establishment of the monthly Story Story Night is giving artful forum to wise-minded Boiseans who have a need to tell their stories.

The burgeoning of this hopeful renaissance in the wake of a global recession, as well as in the wake of our old guard making way for the new, has brought Boise a pleasant glut of forward-thinking organizations, individuals, entities, and movements.


11. Boise Contemporary Theater is world-premiering gorgeous and moving stage-plays.

13. Payette Brewing Company, which opened last year, is consistently bringing us inventive Idaho-minded beer. 14. Our food trucks are multiplying and corralling; our university is expanding on about every level; we have passed a smoking ordinance; the mayor rides a bike.



“THE CITIES THAT ARE READY TO ATTRACT THE BEST AND THE BRIGHTEST ARE THE ONES THAT WILL BE THE CITIES OF THE FUTURE. EVERY DAY I THINK ABOUT WANTING BOISE TO BE ONE OF THOSE CITIES.” –BEN QUINTANA, BOISE CITY COUNCIL IN BOISE, THINGS ARE INDEED AFOOT. And within all of this fine progressive momentum, we went out and found three voices, three people at work in this move to bring Boise fully into the 21st century’s teens. Here is what they had to say about the nature of progress here in our city and what they are doing in the midst of it. FIRST, LET’S VISIT WITH BEN QUINTANA, who in January was sworn in as the youngest member of the Boise City Council, and who founded Boise Young Professionals just over five years ago. Quintana—a friendly, shake-your-hand-and-look-you-in-the-eye 33 year old—has worked with Leadership Boise and the Leadership Boise Academy programs, on top of working with the Boise Metro Chamber of Commerce, since 2004, and working in the public sector in both sales and management in electronics and wireless. He’s lived in Idaho since his air force father moved the family, when Quintana was in third grade, and he’s lived in Boise proper for sixteen years. The afternoon following his swearing in, Quintana and I met up over coffee to talk about this idea of progress in Boise, what it means to him as a Council member, a young professional, and a resident of this shifting city. “So, to let you know my City Council situation,” Quintana said, “I’ve taken the spot vacated after Vern Bisterfeldt moved into the position of Ada County Commissioner. I’m in a two year term, so, in 2013 I’ll be up again for reelection, an opportunity I’m looking forward to already.” Quintana sat forward and continued, “And to orient people to the role of the City Council, we’re basically the legislative branch of the city. We’re here year round, and we meet every Tuesday night, as well as have a lunch meeting once a month. We write laws for the city, basically, that help shape the actions and working decisions for Boise—for instance, we set the budget, and as a corporate analogy we’re pretty much the city’s board of directors.”

way it is, government does not create jobs, but entrepreneurs do, and that’s where I want to start, stimulating established businesses and creating new ones.” “As I see it, and how my work with the Council can help carry this off, is the more you create a livable city, a city that’s easy to get around, a city that is easy to do business in, jobs happen. Boise has so much of this going already in our weather, our geography, the nature of our population, established successful businesses, organizations like Boise Young Professionals, and Kickstand, which is a real voice of business innovation here in Idaho, an organization where I sit as board president.” “My first priority is to work with what is already here economically, enhance it and grow it. Working with Kickstand and entrepreneurs all around this city keeps helping me think about what we can do, what I can do, and what policy decisions will help move us forward.” “For instance, I researched and posted, via Facebook, an article I read in The Economist regarding New York City’s creation of an entrepreneurial fund, a fund with around $22 million allotted to help start-ups get off the ground, to stimulate economic growth at the base level.*” “There is talk in the capital, and with the governor’s office here in Idaho, to get a similar program like this going, though the funds are a little closer to $5 million. I’m going to advocate this type of thing, to put the money where it can do the most good, with those businesses trying to get into the mix, add to the job opportunities, and thus the tax base. This is where real growth can take root.” Quintana took a moment to look across the room and take in the bustling crowd. “Education, too. Absolutely education. The Boise School levy is coming up, and I’ve endorsed it.” “I’m constantly reading, researching, looking for anything that I can do to enhance our education system, make jobs happen at a city level, here now and into the foreseeable future. Also, if we want to attract the best talent from around the country and around the world—educators and artists and business people alike—we need to be able to pay the best wages and offer them Boise at its very best.”

When asked what, on a personal level, his agenda, goals, and platform will be, Quintana answered, “The biggest one is job stimulation. This is my background and really what I’m most passionate about. Right now, every politician, and most business people in our country, are trying to figure out how to create more jobs. I’m no exception. The





“I have friends who love this place and who would love to move back to Boise and they ask me all the time when the wages will rise enough to make their compensation worth it here. A number of them make about twice as much elsewhere as they could here and it’s just too hard for them to justify, right now, moving back to Boise. I’d like to bolster the economy in any and all ways, to get these types of talented folks back here.” Quintana laces his fingers together, a pleasant but serious look in his eyes. “It’s been talked about a lot, when the Baby Boomers go, when in droves they leave the workforce—something that’s been postponed right now because of the big economic downturns—there is going to be a talent vacuum and a real need to fill it with qualified individuals. Boise needs to be a city that can draw in those younger talented individuals, a solid, progressive economic base, and a quality education system. These are keys. We have much of the quality of life—the recreation, the weather, and the mindset—dialed. We need, I feel, the rest of the puzzle filled in with quality pieces. “The cities that are ready to attract the best and the brightest are the ones that will be the cities of the future. Every day I think about wanting Boise to be one of those cities.”


In response to how he sees the short two years of his first term with the Council playing out, Quintana smiled and nodded.


“Yes, well in government, nearly always, things that you begin to put into place—policies, progressive dialogues even—don’t come to pass for a number of years. I’ve been getting my mind around that notion, trying to be good with it, and I think I am. I understand that I am working in a system here and that I am only a part of the Council, one of six members; it’s not my individual visions that will always, or often, take precedent.”

I caught up with Sandy Anderson a few blocks down 8th Street and chatted about what she felt Buy Idaho, with her at the helm, can do to move this city and this state forward. As well, we spoke of what progress means to Buy Idaho and how it might help strengthen the fabric of Boise.

“I have goals to keep creating vibrant urban density in Boise and to keep the Arts and History components of the budget alive and extraordinary. We need to create social capitol in our city, and I have goals to make this happen constantly. I understand, too, that much of what I put forward won’t be seen through in this term, and possibly not even in the next. But it’s all important, and I’m willing to put in the work to see it happen some way, some time. I’m going to participate; I’m going to learn; I’m going to go about making Boise a better city.”The nonprofit Buy Idaho has a new Executive Director in Sandy Anderson, a strong believer in the health of Boise and a huge advocate of doing your business locally. Buy Idaho is pretty much what it sounds like—a membership-based organization that advocates and encourages the notion of buying all that you possibly can from instate companies, entities, and individuals.


Anderson sat down with a handful of Buy Idaho material—their history, membership, and most recent newsletter. “Here is some info,” she said, smiling and handing it over. “Probably more than you’ll need to know, but I wanted to give you the whole package. Of course, we have a website too. Most all of this is on there.” She spoke to the established history of Buy Idaho, their twenty-five years of networking and promoting Idaho businesses. “It was actually Governor Otter who gave birth to Buy Idaho when he was Lieutenant Governor, back in 1986. He saw a need and a real desire to make people aware of who is doing business in Idaho and where those companies are, in order to encourage Idahoans to, whenever possible, buy Idaho.” “I think it was a progressive idea then and I still think it is. Certainly, in light of the groundswell movements of buying local, we’ve never been more relevant, I feel. With entities out there like Think Boise

and where the notion of doing commerce in your own community was instilled in her. Anderson has been in Boise for ten years and is all smiles when she talks about calling this city home.




with one of our members, Teton Brewing, who wanted to have a Buy Idaho event where they could sample their beers and have people gather and socialize. My background is in advertising and event planning, so this is a perfect fit.”

“For instance, M and W Market on Warm Springs is a member. The owner told us that he was watching customers walk up one of his aisles to buy mustard. There is a mustard brand made here in Idaho and our sticker is on their packaging. This grocer was telling me that he’s seen people reach for one of the national brands, then notice our Buy Idaho sticker, and go for the Idaho mustard.”

Anderson chuckles, nods, and continues, “But no way we were getting alcohol into the Capitol, and The Falcon Tavern, who have recently become a Buy Idaho member, put together an event that will feature Idaho foods, beer and wine, and encourage the members and the public to get to know Buy Idaho and each other all the better.”

“People want to support local and I want to really keep that awareness rising, to build upon that desire for the customers out there, and especially for the business people.”

“I feel like this type of event can help personalize the whole entity, progressively allow Buy Idaho to reinvest in Boise and in Idaho as a whole, and I’m excited to keep this all moving forward. We have a storefront down 8th Street too, in BODO. You should come check us out.”

Anderson leaned in and continued, “We want to work with anyone who is helping promote Idaho. The folks at Think Boise First are a little more retail focused, where really we have a lot of members in the service industry too. But we’re all in this together. To be a member, for us at Buy Idaho, the criteria are to have a storefront and be registered with the Secretary of State. You need to provide employment opportunities, do business in Idaho, and pay sales tax here.” When asked what she feels she can do as the new Executive Director to keep Buy Idaho moving forward, progressing here in Boise and statewide, Anderson had this to say: “Well, certainly this organization has been doing nicely, for quite some time, without me at the helm, so I’m not coming in here trying to totally reinvent the entity. But I’d like to take Buy Idaho into the public a bit more. I’d like to have a bigger presence via social media— Facebook, Twitter, but I’d also like our members to interact and have more opportunities to meet each other face to face.” “For instance, our annual Capitol Trade Show is coming up, where we get all our members together at the Capitol and let them display and promote themselves, their goods, and their message. Well, I spoke

THE NEXT VOICE WE SOUGHT OUT WAS JOHN MICHAEL SCHERT, dancer with, and the dynamic Executive Director of, Trey McIntyre Project (TMP), which moved its studio headquarters and far-reaching influence into an industrial singlestory brick structure on Fulton Street in 2008. Trey McIntyre Project is an internationally performing dance company with a mission statement that reads, “To nurture, support and produce the work of choreographer Trey McIntyre and advance the form of contemporary ballet in innovative and groundbreaking ways.” Trey McIntyre, himself, is a lauded and award-winning choreographer who made the rather bold move to relocate his Project to our midsize city and to launch his vision and performances from a place not so cloistered and society as New York, Chicago, or San Francisco. He brought his troupe here, not simply to perform here, or even regionally—though TMP performs in Boise at least twice each run, but to springboard from Boise into the world. This year, TMP performed at Carnegie Hall with luminaries such as Steve Earle and My Morning Jacket, and its spring run will take them to the South


Pacific, Vietnam, China, and South Korea. And each year, the Project performs for what Schert estimates is over 100,000 people. John Michael Schert is a big reason TMP is wide-ranging and internationally recognized. He is a force of vision and followthrough, clearly a talent not only as a dancer, but also as a promoter of TMP. He is innovative and articulate, and had plenty to say about the role of TMP dancers and the Project itself in Boise, as well as how they and he plan to keep the thinking and acting forward in this community. We spoke on a snow-gloomy midday in January, Schert just coming off a rehearsal session, a bit winded but full of words as he guided me back to his partitioned office and sat down with a bottle of water. Around us hung and leaned a few remaining pieces of artwork from TMP’s recent third-annual 10+1 fundraiser, an annual opening up of their studio to invited artists of all disciplines—poets, painters, candy-makers, song writers, and bartenders, who all create work inspired by one or more of the dancers with the Project. The art is sold to benefit both the Project and the artist, a progressive and profitable collaboration for all. “See now, the 10+1 is a perfect example of what we’re doing progressively with the Boise community,” Schert said, picking up a poetry chapbook and handing it my way. “We get to collaborate



with other artists in the community and they get to use our name, our notoriety. Last year we had over 800 people through here, which was fantastic for all of us.” “We’ve done it for three years now, and like everything we do, the 10+1 is a project; each year it shifts, becomes something new. But it’s been great in terms of educating our community and working with them as partners at the same time.” Schert crossed his hands at his chest and leaned back in his rolling desk chair to answer the further question of how he and TMP think of themselves as a Boise entity. “More to your angle, we have been here now four years,” Schert said. “And we came here in many ways as a sort of experiment, tackling the idea of what happens when a world-class choreographer and world-class dancers come to what is considered a second-tier or, even by some, a third-tier city and call it their home.” “We certainly bucked the trend. And so many people in our community, the community of dancers and critics, asked why. There’s no funding there, they’d say, or there’s not an educated audience or the audience isn’t going to understand you. These were the biases, the preconceptions. But for us, it was about creating an environment where we could be uniquely who we are, a place where


‘we want to learn from you,’ and that’s deeply satisfying—to educate and to keep us all moving forward, that’s as progressive as it gets.”

“The experiment was: will a city like Boise embrace us? And of course it has worked, on all levels really; it’s been wonderful. The city has made us the Economic Cultural Ambassadors, renewed now for a second year, which means to us that they are recognizing what we’re doing in a positive manner. And for us, we see that the arts world that we participate in now thinks of Boise quite a bit more.”

Schert paused to consider what else and what more, but only for a moment. “Oh, yes. Okay. Also, I feel that we’d like to see our model be something businesses can learn from. We aim to live a creative, innovative life, not simply to entertain. I hope others— in business, sports, education, and all of society—can learn from what we’re doing here. For instance, I’m lecturing to the executive MBA program over at BSU for the fourth or fifth year now and I’m often meeting with the mayor’s office.”

“Certainly there are incredible arts organizations here, no doubt—Shakespeare, the Boise Contemporary Theater, and the Phil(harmonic), but their reach is not quite as far as ours, nor is it intended to be. But it’s fantastic being able to play Carnegie Hall with My Morning Jacket and Steve Earl and answer questions about Boise, Idaho to people involved out there. And so many people had questions.” Schert smiled at this, raised his eyebrows, and nodded. “So for us, this is to say that yes, we have been successful in what we sought to do in being a part of the Boise community and the city has put us forward as an emissary, a mascot, a flagship of what they want the community to be perceived as—in the arts, as a progressive organization. It’s satisfying, but I feel that it’s been win-win, for certain. We feel like we can make world-class art better here, in Boise, than we can in any other community.”

“And I meet with a group we call ‘The Gang,’ a group that includes Coach Peterson, the Sheriff, people from Healthwise, the Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Microsoft, and White Cloud. We discuss ideas about the community, business, and the arts. It’s smart, productive, and it’s staying connected.” “This, I feel, is all helpful and progressive. To stay out there, to participate—it’s key, and it’s what we do at TMP. And we do it here in Boise and plan to continue it in brand new ways, as we step forward into our fourth year in this city. We’re nothing but excited for it.”

SO, TMP AND BOISE HAVE BECOME A SUCCESSFUL COUPLE, WHICH CERTAINLY BEGS THE QUESTION OF WHAT’S NEXT AND HOW DOES THIS PROGRESSIVE RELATIONSHIP REMAIN SO? Schert was quick to answer. “The second phase of our life, here in Boise, is really just taking off. The city has renewed us as Cultural Ambassadors, as I said, and we just received an NEA Our Town grant for $100,000 and a $450,000 federal grant from the ArtPlace fund, which is unbelievably great. Both of these organizations are looking to fund the idea of giving a place a sense of innovation and furthering the sense of creativity residing. We feel like we can be a model, the poster child, and make Boise a model for creative place making.” “We want to put Boise at the center of this, and not just at the periphery, and that’s what we feel the second stage of this relationship is about. We are supported more and more, so we can keep going into the hospitals, the schools here, and performing at Idaho Stampede games. Today, we were over at Coldwell Banker, a real estate company, bringing a performance to them. It seems like the world and the community here in Boise is reaching out and saying

*Here is the excerpt from the Boise Metro Chamber’s legislative agenda that describes the Support a Business Expansion Fund referred to: “A deal-closing fund would be used to award funds to new or existing companies, growing jobs and investment in the state. Consideration for this fund would include wages, investment and type of industry that would be created. A $5-10 million appropriation would be allocated to the State’s existing Business & Jobs Development Grant Fund.”



AFTER SETTING RECORDS FOR EARNING 50 WINS AND CAPTURING THREE BOWL VICTORIES, MOST NOTABLY THE 2010 FIESTA BOWL, ONE MIGHT EXPECT MEMBERS OF THE BOISE STATE FOOTBALL 2011 SENIOR CLASS TO TAKE SOME TIME OFF THE GRIDIRON TO WIND DOWN AND RELAX, UPON COMPLETING THEIR SCHOLARSHIPS. NOTHING COULD BE FURTHER FROM THE TRUTH. WITH THE INCREASED VISIBILITY THE BRONCOS HAVE EARNED BY CONTINUALLY CONTENDING IN THE COACHING AND PRESS POLLS, NATIONAL FOOTBALL LEAGUE SCOUTS ARE PAYING MORE ATTENTION THAN EVER TO INDIVIDUAL PLAYERS AND THEIR PROSPECTS TO COMPETE IN THE PROS. While many people in the Treasure Valley will be following where quarterback Kellen Moore winds up in the NFL draft, in April, two of the most intriguing prospects to watch are running back Doug Martin and defensive back George Iloka. While not receiving as much mainstream media attention as Moore, both players are training exhaustively, striving to make it in the pros. Iloka is especially excited and anxious, as the days tick down until the April draft, “It’s every football player’s dream to make it in the pros and right now, I’m at the door, waiting to get in, dreaming to get in,” says Iloka. Iloka’s main focus this offseason, in preparation for the draft, is attending the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, Indiana, where college football players perform physical and mental tests in front of NFL coaches, general managers, and scouts. Players are gruelingly scrutinized through strength routines, speed drills, physical inspections, and football I.Q. assessments. “All I can do at this point is keep working hard and anticipate that all of my hard work will pay off at the Combine,” says Iloka. Iloka and Martin also spent a solid amount of their offseason preparing for the annual Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama. Much like the Combine, NFL coaches and scouts flock to Mobile to assess future talent available in the April draft. While there is a game played

between teams designated “South” and “North” (Martin, Iloka, and teammates Moore, Shea, McClellin, and Winn playing for the North squad), Martin says, “the actual game isn’t that important because playing is so limited, with so many players on each squad; most of the scouts are going to be watching us at the practices prior to the game.” Indeed, Iloka and Martin both made strong impressions on scouts in the practice drills leading up to the game. Martin was lauded for his pass blocking and kick returning, while Iloka made the defensive play of the week, with a diving interception. Over the past twenty years, The NFL draft has become increasingly more media-covered, with round-the-clock updates from sports television analysts and reporters promoting mock drafts and player rankings, in the several weeks leading up to the big day. “Draft experts,” as they like to be called, like Todd McShay and Mel Kiper Jr. have become household names through their bold claims and prognostications of players’ stocks and potential. When asked, however, both Martin and Iloka stated they avoid looking at these scouting reports. “If you start paying attention to the Mel Kiper Jr.’s and the rest of them, you just start over thinking and it throws you off your game,” says Iloka. Martin concurs, “I don’t want to look at what they’re saying about me because they haven’t seen up close what I’m capable of on the football field, and don’t take into consideration all the hard work I’ve done to get to where I am,” he says.


V.1.3 SPRING 2012 21


Martin is listed by Kiper Jr. and several others as the top senior back coming into the draft, but doubt he’ll be taken in the early rounds of the draft, assuming his 5’9 frame will not be able to handle the girth and force at the professional level. However, a Baltimore Raven running back is of similar build and has earned All-Pro honors in multiple seasons. Others covering the draft predict Iloka will be going in the later rounds, as well. It should be noted, though, that Kiper Jr. and other scouts predicted Ryan Leaf, the epitome of an NFL bust, would be a better quarterback than future hall-of-famer Peyton Manning. Both Martin and Iloka are aware of how difficult the transition from the college game to the pros will be. “I have to prepare for brand new playbooks, new defensive schemes, and just the overall increased speed at that level,” says Iloka. Martin says he has to have a business mindset to prepare for the transition. “But I know I can adapt to any team’s system and I’ll work my butt off to fit in as best I can,” says Martin. Iloka and Martin feel their time at Boise State has prepared them well for the transition, however. Iloka’s four years as a Bronco has tested his versatility as a defensive back, “I’ve lined up at every position possible: at corner, safety, the slot, and I also have my four years of studying film.” The NFL has increasingly become a passing dominated game, meaning Iloka’s versatility to play several positions in the secondary, similar to the Green Bay Packers Charles Woodson, will be a great asset to the pro team that picks him up. On the offensive side of the ball, the same reliance on the passing game in the pros should allow an opportunity for Martin to flourish, “People who have watched have seen that I can catch out of the backfield, can go into the flats to take on linebackers, and am an effective blocker,” says Martin.



Martin and Iloka are mindful about the experiences of past Broncos making it in the NFL, such as Kyle Wilson, Ryan Clady, and Titus Young. In all, there are currently fifteen former Broncos on NFL squads. “It’s definitely inspiring to see our other guys do so well, knowing that you played with them,” says Martin. Seeing Young’s success with the Detroit Lions is especially inspirational for Iloka, “I can watch Titus and how great he’s been and think ‘I went up against this guy at practice,’ and know I’ve faced up against NFL talent.” There is a lasting effect of individual players’ success in the pro level that extends back to the Blue Turf. With increased notoriety for producing professional-caliber players, recruiting greatly benefits. In recent years Boise State has expanded their recruiting well outside of Pacific Northwest into the Midwest and Southwest because players in those regions have become increasingly aware of Boise State’s reputation for molding distinctive athletes, capable to go pro. With the school’s recent inclusion into the Big East conference, the Broncos recruitment base will expand even further. While both players say they will miss the fan support of Bronco Nation, they can’t help but look forward to experiencing the pro game. Martin eagerly anticipates playing with the greats, “I can’t wait to have the chance to line up across from Troy Polamalu and Ray Lewis. Going head-to-head against those guys is my dream match up.” Wherever Iloka and Martin end up in the pros, Boise State fans can expect to be proud of the effort they’ll put in at the next level; as Martin puts it, “People have seen all of our accomplishment on the field, next they’ll get to see all the hard work we’ve put in off of it so we can be successful.”





REX CHANDLER’S ROUTE TO FALLING IN LOVE WITH BOISE WAS A CIRCUITOUS ONE. HE STARTED AS A SURFER KID IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA, WORKING OFF AND ON, BEGRUDGINGLY, IN HIS MOTHER’S SMALL RESTAURANT. IN HIS LATE TEENS HE MOVED TO HAWAII, BUT QUICKLY LEARNED THAT IT TOOK TWO JOBS JUST TO LIVE THERE. HE TURNED AGAIN TO THE RESTAURANT BUSINESS, BUT INSTEAD OF A STINT WAITING TABLES, CHANDLER FOUND HIS CALLING. AT THE AGE OF 25, HE OPENED UP HIS FIRST RESTAURANT IN WAIKIKI CALLED THE REX. HE LATER BOUGHT THE PRESTIGIOUS NICK’S FISH MARKET & BLACK ORCHID IN HONOLULU. It’s easy to assume that Chandler worked his way up to restaurants the caliber of Chandlers, but his is a different story. His establishments have been fine-dining from the start. Early in his career he began winning awards for his restaurants in Hawaii and the others he owned in Southern California, including The Rex, 21 Oceanfront, and The Oyster Bar & Grill in Newport Beach. It was at one of his Hawaiian restaurants that he met his future wife, a ski instructor on sabbatical from Sun Valley. He had to look at an atlas, not just to find Sun Valley, but also Idaho, though he now considers himself a born-again Idahoan. The skier and the surfer had a son, Tyler, and shared the dream of raising him in the mountains; in 1993, the family moved to Sun Valley. He began the move as semi-retired, but his passion for restaurants didn’t go quietly.

A year after relocating, he opened Chandlers in Sun Valley. It wasn’t all smooth sailing; with a background in fine-dining seafood, moving to Idaho came with a learning curve. “Our first holiday season in Ketchum, I ordered a 140 pound yellowfin tuna direct from my supplier in Kona. It was coming United Airlines through L.A. It ended up in Chicago.” Eventually, he worked out the kinks. Today, he receives the seafood he orders within 24 hours of the catch. It comes direct via the FedEx Jet Fresh program and without detour to The Windy City. When Tyler left home to attend college on a ski scholarship, Chandler realized he wasn’t fulfilling his own dreams in Sun Valley. The restaurateur’s itch attacked any thoughts of entering retirement. He looked again at Hawaii and



A RESTAURATEUR HAS TO UNDERSTAND THAT “THE MAGIC THAT MAKES IT ALL WORK IS REALLY YOUR STAFF. I SURROUND MYSELF WITH A TEAM OF MASTERS. I GIVE THEM DIRECTION, BUT I LET THEM EXECUTE THE PLAN.” Southern California, but it was Boise that he’d had his eye on for years. He began visiting Boise a few days a week and looking for a location in earnest. At that time, the Chandlers location was a coffee shop and what is now Hotel 43 was the Statehouse Hotel. When friends mentioned the location and the idea of combining an independent fine-dining restaurant with a boutique, upscale hotel, Chandler knew he was on to something. “It has been a great marriage,” he says, of the relationship between Hotel 43 and Chandlers, which opened in May of 2007. For Chandler, being a restaurateur means pulling together all of the elements of the evening. He understands that the food must be excellent, but that doesn’t necessarily ensure success. In addition to business acumen, a restaurateur has to understand that “the magic that makes it all work is really your staff. I surround myself with a team of masters. I give them direction, but I let them execute the plan.” Chandler makes a point to note that he doesn’t buy restaurants, he builds them. When asked to elaborate on this point, he describes his role as he would in the world of film. “I’m more like a movie director or producer, bringing all of the elements together, recognizing talent in others and providing direction. I am not one of the stars.” The construction of Chandlers is sound because many of those stars, in fact the majority of the staff, is the same as it was when they opened their doors nearly 5 years ago. That’s not a typical statistic in the restaurant business, but Chandlers is far from a typical restaurant.

Chandler thought it was pretty apparent that the niche that needed to be filled in Boise was that of fine-dining steakhouse. He put his love for seafood just slightly to the side. “It was wiser for me to open up a prime steakhouse that serves great fish than to open up a seafood restaurant that serves a great steak.” Frutti di mare naturally swam its way into the menu. “Seafood reigns the appetizer list,” Chandler smiles, “I couldn’t resist.” When it came to the beef of the menu, Chandler decided to serve USDA prime, which is usually Black Angus. Snake River Farms’ American Kobe beef, which is the marriage of Waygu steer and Black Angus, was also added to the menu. Then a trip to Argentina in 2009 convinced him that Argentine steaks could hold their own. “I thought it would make the menu exceptional to have a choice, so I offer three styles of meat, from different regions. You don’t just have a choice of what cut, but also from what country and what style of beef you want.” With the prime steaks (some of which are actually above prime) in place and the Jet Fresh seafood arriving via FedEx, Chandler wasn’t finished. He’s also a big fan of salads, and decided it was important to have a prix fixe menu. “In many places a prix fixe menu means dinner for $125 dollars; we took the concept but made it for $30. I wanted to make sure that the mix of people in Idaho was accommodated.” With a clientele ranging from the millionaire cowboy who wants the prix fixe, to the couple that comes in only once a year on their anniversary but orders the porterhouse, Chandler has the bases covered. But he’s not sitting on his laurels, rather he’s constantly refining. As an example, he’s currently serving wild Tasmanian salmon (in

the winter he buys from the southern hemisphere), but in the summer he’ll return to buying directly from Alaska.

master musician; I have a great deal of confidence in him. We talk about the style of music, but I let him run it.”

This is what fine-dining means to Chandler. It’s not about a restaurant driven by the personality of a chef, and Chandler doesn’t presume to create new cuisine. Rather, he searches the globe (literally) for the finest ingredients and brings them to Boiseans with a standard nothing less than consistent excellence. You won’t find nightly specials at Chandlers; 80% of the menu is set, the other 20% changing only when a season demands it or he discovers something, like Argentine steaks, that he feels merits inclusion.

Chandler is equally modest when asked if he’s a good cook. “Yes, but I don’t ever call myself a chef. I spent my early years in the kitchen, but a chef is someone who is entirely dedicated to the profession. If I can play a guitar, that doesn’t make me a musician.” Chandler paid his dues in the kitchen, but that wasn’t his passion. “My passion is pulling the party together, making sure everything is taken care of from start to finish, all of the thousands of little things that have to come together to make it a perfect evening.” When you strive for perfection, there’s nothing like practice, and Chandler has had plenty, with Chandlers as his 14th restaurant.

You can’t get away with relying solely on excellent food and superior service. It’s a killer combination, but Chandler knew from the start that entertainment would also be a key ingredient. “I built entertainment into it; it wasn’t an afterthought, but very much a part of the design from the start.” He’s not just referring to his vision, but also the physical design of the restaurant. Speakers are strategically placed to keep the music in the lounge, while a glass partition allows the fine-diners to enjoy the music but maintain their conversation, to still see and feel a part of the action. “We have live music 7 nights a week, and the musicians understand that music is the icing on the cake, it’s not the cake itself.” It is, however, another piece of the puzzle that Chandler wants to deliver to Boiseans; the restaurant represents more than a meal, it is an evening. When asked if he is musically talented, Chandler replies that he plays a mean stereo. “I have a good sense for what works in a restaurant, but I like to give the musicians the freedom to be creative. My music director is Dan Costello, a very talented

His latest creation opened last May in Meridian. Ling & Louie’s is his 15th, and his first foray into what the restaurant industry deems “fast-casual.” “I’d never had to consider a children’s menu before,” he admits. And like everything Chandler does, he approaches this task with careful thought. He’s obviously proud of the menu he came up with, a bento box design that mirrors the actual meal, and an idea quickly adopted into corporate standards. A franchise is something that Chandler had successfully avoided for years, until a trustworthy friend (also Chandler’s first partner in Hawaii) developed the Ling & Louie’s concept and convinced him to give it a try. “I decided it was ok to do it because it was different from Chandlers - different geographically, demographically and culinarily. And it didn’t have my name on it. The concept is fun, the food is killer and I like the upbeat, youthful environment.”




RESTAURANTEURS HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY TO STAY AHEAD OF THE GAME; IF YOU’RE NOT MOVING FORWARD, THEN YOU’RE FALLING BEHIND. IT’S A CHALLENGE THAT CHANDLER IS UP FOR, AND ONE HE SEES BOISE AS REMAINING HIS HOME. When asked what he likes most about Idaho and Boise, in particular, Chandler makes brief mention of the outdoors. An avid skier, he’s also a fan of hiking, biking, tennis, and golfing, as well as more specialized leisure like racing his Porsche (he’s president of the local Porsche Club). “But the thing I love most is the people, both the people I work with and the customers. The people are very loyal, they know what they want and if you’re honest and give them great food and warm hospitality, they’ll be supportive. This staff is the best group of people I’ve ever worked with. Boise feels like home.” Part of what home means to Chandler is involvement in the community and local charities. “Success is not measured by what you have, but by what you can give.” Every month Chandlers opens their private dining room for a lunch for the Idaho Foodbank, providing the food and a striking venue for Foodbank representatives to pitch potential donors. “For a successful fine-dining restaurant, one of the most expensive places in the community, it is critically important to give back to that community. The Foodbank was a natural tie-in.” Other charities he’s supported include the Beds for Vets Program with the Veteran’s Assistance League and the Women and Children’s Alliance. “On Father’s Day we do a ‘man brunch’ for the WCA; this June will be our third year.” While Chandler wouldn’t trade Boise for any other city in the world, he does see the importance of travel. As a restaurateur, he’s constantly observing how restaurants operate in other cities. He also travels to keep current with the world of wine. You can’t get Wine Spectator’s Award of Excellence 13 years in a row without visiting the wine countries of the world to seek out the best. His wine list is currently among the top 2,000 wine lists in the world. In typical Chandler fashion, he wants an even better rating, no doubt attainable with the assistance of his sommelier Jeff Moore. “I like to think that my passion for the world of wine is one of the best things I bring to the table, but keeping track of it is more than a full time job.” It’s a job he enjoys. “France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Argentina, everybody has a different way of making wine.” Further talk of wine makes him light

up. Mention Malbec and he’ll give you the history of the noble grape of France, decimated by phylloxera, and its later reemergence in Argentina. He mentions Tempranillo, Granache and Pinot Noir. His menu includes featured Idaho wines. “Wine is what makes the meal.” When it comes to that meal, he’s unable to pick a single favorite item from the menu, torn between the Chilean Sea Bass or Argentine Ribeye for an entrée. On the appetizer list he champions the classics, escargot and oysters Rockefeller. One of his favorite aspects of a life in fine dining is quality control, constantly tasting the menu offerings for the consistent excellence he knows is the key to longevity in the business. Chandler’s future is bright, and he feels the same about the city of Boise. “I think that downtown Boise is on the leading edge of recovery from the economic downturn. You can see it in the projects that are starting to bud up, the city of Boise is ready to take another big push forward, I think you’re going to see a great deal of growth. It’s not only an attractive, clean, well-organized city that has a bit of everything, but it’s also well balanced. I really enjoy my lifestyle here.” The growth that Chandler predicts includes a lot of restaurant competition coming his way. “Restaurateurs who have talent but are disenchanted with California and Nevada will be coming here. They will be bringing new, creative ideas and setting new standards, that’s the nature of our business. It’s not new to me, I grew up with competition. Restaurateurs have a responsibility to stay ahead of the game; if you’re not moving forward, then you’re falling behind.” It’s a challenge that Chandler is up for, and one in which he sees Boise as remaining his home. He’s been approached with the idea of franchising Chandlers in other cities, but that’s not his style. “I would rather be here, creating and operating different great concepts, so that I can be part of the community. I don’t plan on going anywhere other than vacations. Boise’s my home. I love it and I plan on sticking around a long time.” Those with an appreciation for both the restaurant and the man behind it are glad to hear it.







In my attempts to find “the one” in my life, I have spent my fair share of time buying jewelry, and have discovered there are typically a few sales techniques to expect:

In the end, jewelry is a business and there is a necessary bottom line to be met. Gems have to be sold. But does selling jewelry always have to make buyers completely uncomfortable?

• A Frodo-ish elder who sits in a back office behind smoke and mirrors and sends out his beautiful sirens to lure in buyers of overpriced and undercut gemstones.

Natalie and Lisa have come to shake this one-sided relationship up a bit. Their answer is “no.” The two are known as the “Diamond Girls,” and for good reason. Like diamonds, they are resilient, transparent, tough, polished, hold many levels of depth in the industry, and ...yeah, they are beautiful. On top of that, they are successful business women who are proving it’s ok to care about the buyer—to make jewelry sales that are not only about profit margins, the amount of diamonds in the store, or the number of carats on a finger. Instead, Natalie and Lisa make sure customers feel comfortable, well informed, and satisfied with their purchase. They want to make sure people know they are being cared for— and if they happen to get a ring in the process, that is fine too. However, their approach to business hasn’t always meshed with traditional jewelry showrooms.

• The used car sales approach that creates a “buy now or lose out forever” pressure. • The multiple phases of employees who are ready to move in, one after another, if the first can’t make the sale. • And the barrage of auditory, visual, and emotional advertising that preps your wallet and “heart” for the purchase, making you feel no female will love you, ever, unless you buy them something really really expensive.




THEY KNOW THE SMALL THINGS CAN MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE. After years in the industry, feeling forced to push young couples in love toward a ring that was “gathering dust” in the showroom, Natalie and Lisa had enough. Through a few business ventures, some travel, and the recruitment of the best private jewelry creator on the west coast (a third generation jeweler who has made pieces for the likes of Jay-Z) was born. Yet, instead of trying to destroy the big blingers of the local diamond industry, Natalie and Lisa have created a totally new type of “no pressure” diamond sales environment, where people not only get the 4C’s of diamonds (cut, clarity, color, and carat) but also the 4C’s of ethical sales (compassion, confidence, conscience, and customer service). Typical diamond stores amass large amounts of loose diamonds, put them in stereotypical settings, and then invest a lot of money in marketing to convince you to buy them. Then there is, who have turned the process of purchasing a ring into more than just wandering into a store confused and walking out with a dreadful monthly payment. Natalie and Lisa hold a consultation with each buyer to carefully consider all the specifics, such as budget, stone type, customization, and timeline. Selling someone a diamond and sending them on their way is not their only goal. aims for much more. Their business is run much more like in the olden’ days, when a salesperson would take the time to have meaningful conversations

with their customers. They know the small things can make a big difference, like a phone call to make sure the proposal went as planned, or comforting those who bring back a ring after a failed attempt. They pride themselves on being the only jeweler that will sit down and show a customer the “true cost,” what Boisediamonds. com actually pays for their goods (as well as the competition). They also don’t cut corners on quality. Natalie or Lisa personally spend hours looking all over the U.S. for the perfect diamonds to fly in, recut, polish and/or reshape for their buyers. They ship diamonds in the next day and will tell customers (straight-up) if it is garbage or not. But they don’t stop there. The “Diamond Girls” also help patrons sell their stones. For them, it really boils down to a genuine love for the industry. They know that people are people and not just a sale. They know that the money from a diamond ring could go towards a tuition payment for a son or daughter. They help customers sell their diamonds on craigslist, find diamond buyers for used stones, and have their old stones put in new settings that will last forever. Natalie and Lisa will hold your hand the entire way and, if you are like me, that is a comfort gladly welcomed. The “Diamond Girls” may not have a giant showroom with acres of glass cases, but they are tough-nosed diamond bounty hunters who put their customers first and understand what an investment is. If you think that diamonds are a girl’s best friend, then make the “Diamond Girls” your best friends in the jewelry world.




Behind the Spray Paint Viewers of graffiti art ‘gallery’ Freak Alley can take in a painted portrait of a young daughter, Super Mario icons, a barber shop advertisement, and classic graffiti lettering. But the guys that by far have the biggest and loudest presence there are a group called Sector Seventeen—and, beyond the brick walls of Freak Alley, they have a big presence in the Boise community as well.





Behind the Spray Paint



I had the opportunity to walk through the alley with Sector Seventeen’s leaders, Collin Pfeifer and Solomon Hawk Sahlein. They showed me which pieces they and others had worked on, and explained the genius in businesses surrounding the alley giving artists permission to paint free of charge, and free of any police interaction. While they’re mainly self-taught, their colorful and precise graffiti lettering would tell the viewer otherwise. They use their diverse range of media including aerosol, digital tools, and silkscreen as skillfully as any art school trained professionals. Sahlein, or Hawk (his middle and preferred name), gave me some background as to how the group got started. Hawk and his late friend Jeff Patton, or BLANK one, created the group when they were just 17. They started painting around Boise for a couple of years wherever they found open space. Even at age 17 and despite run-ins with the law, the guys knew this was exactly what they wanted to do with their lives and careers. That explained the Seventeen reference in their group’s name. When I asked about the sector portion, Hawk explained, “Sector references the industry side of it and being that ‘creative sector’ of the economy.” As Sector Seventeen’s reputation started to grow around town, people began commissioning them for specific pieces. In their early years of professional painting, ’07 and ’08, they started with multiple murals and canvases. Local businesses like Graffiti Salon, The Board Room, and The Boise Bike Project reached out to them and offered paid work. During this time they also painted the YMCA’s youth room, creating a unique style for a safe place where teens can hangout after school. They hopped on some local events too, like BSU’s Spring Fling and the Women of Steel Gallery Block Party. These first couple of years helped the Treasure Valley see Sector Seventeen’s worth in the art community. A pinnacle breakthrough for the group was the summer of ’10 when they were accepted into the Artist in Residence program at the Fulton Street Gallery, or “The Underground”. Sector was in charge of putting up their original work in the gallery and hosting a few First Thursday events. The guys wanted to do something a little different than the normal First Thursday routine—“we painted the walls down in the basement, printed t-shirts, made canvases, and formed a huge party. We had kegs, DJs, break-dancers, all the elements of hip hop. We sold a lot of stuff too!” This event gave Sector the chance to invite the other people under their umbrella: Photographers Will Eichelberger and 208 Bench; DJs John Weighn, Ivory Viking, and 5th Empire; MCs- Zabian&Writechess;



“THERE’S A LOT OF PEOPLE THAT LIKE WHAT WE DO, AND THERE’S A LOT OF PEOPLE THAT DON’T.” and Boise Breakers and artists- MARLS One, SETON, ESKO, OPTRIK, Jeff Baker, Rick Walter, and Kelly Knopp. The guys stressed the importance of Sector only being one part of this hip-hop art community. “We really want to be involved in all aspects of this community, which is why Sector has a diverse artist base.” Sector loves helping out local businesses and projects. Their résumé is scattered with youth-based events like “Art Deck-O”, National Go-Skateboarding Day, and Boise’s Curb Cup, which appeal to their inner skateboarder—and even events for Boise Young Professionals and a piece for the Discovery Center. Citizens around Boise will see a little piece of Sector Seventeen wherever they go. Having their work posted up in businesses, at events, and even in homes began a transition in the general public’s opinion towards what graffiti art is, and it’s still shifting. Pfeifer commented, “There’s a lot of people that like what we do, and there’s a lot of people that don’t. I’ll be outside painting, and people will walk by and say things like, ‘that’s tight! Good work!’ Then, an hour later someone will ask me if I have permission to be out there.” Despite a few haters, Sector Seventeen continues spreading their art throughout the Treasure Valley. “I’ve been working on more realistic stuff with a spray can. Last summer this lady commissioned me to paint portraits of her dogs in her garage, and it turned out great! That’s what we have to show people, we can do a wide variety of things—because that’s when you get put in the category of artist,” Pfeifer explained. From kids on the street with spray cans breaking the law, to critic-praised artists in the city of Boise, it has taken these guys a lot of time and hard work to come full circle. Hawk emphasized that without BLANK, their group wouldn’t be as successful as they are today—“he knew the underlying meaning of our work” and they still push out that message today with everything they do. Learn more on


HOW TREEFORT MUSIC FEST IS PUTTING BOISE ON THE MAP Written By Ryan White  Illustrations by Julia Green Round one of tickets for the Treefort Launch Party sold out within the first two minutes. I’d heard from a friend that they logged in to buy a ticket, the moment the sale began, and were able to purchase one, but when they went to buy a second ticket, all of them were gone. That’s how excited Boise is about the Treefort Music Festival, the upcoming four-day, multi-venue concert extravaganza, featuring established and emerging artists from all over the country, including even a few international acts.



“The whole concept is to have all these bands come to Boise, a lot of them for the first time, and play to packed crowds. We want them to have an experience where they’ll hopefully want to come back and do it over and over again.”


I arrived at the Treefort Launch Party 15 minutes before it started. There was a line winding down the stairs and out the door of the Reef, and it was obvious that the evening would be standing room only. People were packed shoulder to shoulder in their flannel shirts, saggy beanies, and thick-framed glasses. Most were clutching a can of PBR and talking enthusiastically about the Treefort shows. I heard people asking others if they’d seen the most recent release of the lineup, as new artists were being added weekly. Everyone had a favorite they were rooting for, but I was lucky because my favorite band, Typhoon, had just been announced. I felt an undeniable excitement in the air. This must be the energy Eric Gilbert, Director of Treefort Music Fest and longtime pillar in the Boise music community, had been talking about. He told me that while he was growing up in Boise, the general attitude about the music scene was that Boise was a “dead end.” “But now,” he said, “more and more kids are enrolled in the fact that it’s almost cooler to be from here, that it’s possible to stay and make music here, and they are excited. They’re starting to work harder and we’re seeing results in the quality of music.”

earning it’s nickname as “the live music capitol of the world.”

There’s direct evidence of that tonight at the Reef. All the featured acts—Lerk, Mozam, and crowd favorite, Youth Lagoon— are Boise-bred musicians. Youth Lagoon, in particular, have gained national notoriety, recently named as the opening act for Death Cab for Cutie, and helping generate buzz about the booming Boise music scene in Pitchfork, Stereogum, and Nylon. Eric told me he’d had people say to him that, “Boise reminds them a lot of how Austin used to be, back in the day,” before it started hosting Austin City Limits and South by Southwest (SXSW),”

But why haven’t bands been coming to Boise all along? That’s a question I’ve been asking myself since I moved here five years ago. The Very Most’s Jeremy Jensen, even coined a term for it: “NoBo” or No Boise— meaning bands would play Salt Lake one night and then somewhere in the Portland/ Seattle area the next, but skip over our city. Eric told me he’s had some agents tell him they wrote off Boise as a good stop a long time ago, but with the shift in local support and talent brewing, many are willing to give it a second chance. Eric said he’s doing his best to reassure agents that things are dif-


But the Boise music scene hasn’t always been a topic of conversation. “When we first moved here,” said Eric, “there wasn’t a lot of media coverage and it was hard to tell that there was a music scene here at all. But now, with the development of blogs and other media and the addition of KRBX (89.9 FM), I feel like coverage is starting to churn more—and that not only helps locals get behind the music, but we’re also starting to see more coverage from out of state.” One of the more talked about music blogs in the country is Audiomilk, which is now transitioning to its new name, Deerlodge. Run by Boise native Matt Jones, it is credited for breaking Youth Lagoon to the country. According to him, “there’s been this rise and this hype about music in Boise--and in all different genres too, not necessarily a certain type of music.” Like many others, Matt thinks “Treefort is going to do a lot of good things for the Boise music scene and that it will definitely foster more of a music community.” He also believes that because of the fest, “more artists will tour through here more often and it will put Boise on a lot of tour maps.”

ferent now. “I’ll tell them I know your bands drive through here all the time and there’s a bunch of us trying to make this a viable stop for you.” Eric, who also does booking for multiple bands, including his own, Finn Riggins, understands better than anyone that touring artists would rather have more stops and less travel time. He, along with others behind Treefort, believe having a festival is the best way to show multiple bands at one time that Boise is worth playing on a regular basis. “The whole concept is to have all these bands come to Boise, a lot of them for the first time, and play to packed crowds. We want them to have an experience where they’ll hopefully want to come back and do it over and over again,” said Eric. Plus, Treefort attenders will be exposed to a lot of bands they wouldn’t have known otherwise, possibly become a fan of their music, and support them when they come back to town. Eric has wanted to do the festival for years, but it wasn’t until this past summer that things started to fall into place to make it a reality. First came Radio Boise (KRBX 89.9), Boise’s new community radio station. “One of the biggest gaps in Boise that I noticed was no free form college radio or anything similar,” said Eric. “In Moscow (where he lived before moving to back to Boise), there were two of them and we were exposed to all kinds of emerging artists and cutting edge music up there.” According to Eric, it wasn’t until Radio Boise started in Spring of 2010, that there was an outlet for local artists to be played regularly. “The Radio Boise model has been transforming,” said Eric, “Maybe on a relatively small scale, because I don’t think the masses are tuning in yet, but I really think it’s been helping the synergy of those that have been working hard to make the Boise scene happen.” Eric now hosts a Monday morning show on Radio


More and more kids are enrolled in the fact that it’s almost cooler to be from here, that it’s possible to stay and make music here, and they are excited. They’re starting to work harder and we’re seeing results in the quality of music.” Boise called Antler Crafts, largely featuring the music of local bands. The next Treefort roadblock to be hurdled was funding. “A lot of us had been talking about doing a festival for a while,” said Eric, “but it takes capital—and if there’s one thing us musicians don’t have, it’s capital.” However, in September of 2010, Lori Shandro, an avid listener of Eric’s radio show, helped solve that problem when she approached Eric with an idea. A few years ago, Lori’s husband had passed away unexpectedly in a plane crash, and since then she had been putting aside money to use in a way of remembrance for him. She and her husband were both huge music fans and spent a lot of their free time enjoying concerts. Lori described her husband to me as, “an amazing, passionate person.” Lori, who often envied his passion, said, “It wasn’t until last year that, for the first time, I felt like I could actually be one of those (passionate) people too… I found something that I really wanted to do.” She, like many others in Boise, had grown frustrated with the lack of bands coming to play, so she and her business partner, Drew Lorona, came up with a plan “to develop the independent music scene in Boise and hopefully give artists that would play to a smaller crowd (about 500-600) a market and a place to play.” Eric told them about his idea to do a multi-venue festival and they decided to join forces. Back at the Treefort Launch Party, Lori is greeting eager concert-goers and taking tickets. You’d never know behind her smile and humility that she was one of the main reasons why Treefort is happening. Lori told me that the festival is not only about bringing new artists to Boise, but it’s also a giant benefit for Radio Boise. Lori and Eric will be donating 100% of the proceeds to the station. Lori believes



WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT Treefort Music Fest takes place from March 22-25 in Boise and will host over 120 different bands from around the country, including nationally recognized acts like of Montreal, WHY?, and EMA, as well as home town favorites, Built to Spill, Finn Riggins, The Very Most, and Atomic Mama. The festival will be primarily centered around the Linen District—hosted by the Neurolux, Crux, Red Room, Reef, Linen Building, and Bouquet, making the shows “walkable” for concert goers. In addition to those venues, there will also be an outdoor main stage that will hold 1,000 people. The planning staff estimates a 2,000 wristband capacity for each night. Shows will range from 2pm to 2am, with after-parties lasting into the early morning. There will also be a food truck court and local beer tasting. The planning teams designed each show to have an intimate feel for festival-goers, yet give an opportunity for bands to “play to packed out crowds.”

that without Radio Boise, none of the scene would be where it is today. I asked her what her ultimate goal is in all of this is and she said, “I really want to raise awareness of the radio station, for people to start listening, to be more educated as independent listeners.” She also wants to “develop Boise amongst the artists,” by making sure they have a good time here and hopefully spread the word to others; and she wants “to create intimate personal experiences with these artists” for music lovers. Eric has been working to make sure that happens. “There’s one thing that’s really cool about how we’re More information on bands playing and ticket doing this festival, as opposed to availability can be found at: a Coachella,” said Eric. “Some of or search Treefort Music the same artists that are playing Fest on Facebook. Treefort will also be there, but at Interested in volunteering? a place like Coachella, they’ll just be specs in the distance. Yet, here, they’ll be playing intimate the music industry. It’s going to bring more venues.” The number and variety of smaller-audience venues is unique to awareness to agents and artists that there is a market and demand for live music here, Boise and helping drive its music scene. and that overall, it will make the Boise live Eric said he’s been to a lot of large music music scene much stronger and noticeable festivals and many are identical—some- on a national level.” thing like a “band camp” or a music industry party. “It’s where people go to find new Jeni’s predictions ring true, as I look bands—and labels are scouting, but it’s also around the room on the night of the a good way for bands to see lots of other launch party at the packed crowd of exbands and see their friends and all that sort cited music enthusiasts. As the band Moof stuff,” said Eric. But “what I dig is that a zam fires up their instruments, the crowd festival like Treefort gives Boise an opportu- bellows in joy. They begin to sway back nity to play host to the macro music scene.” in forth with the pulse of the music and I The festival will be a good opportunity for can see Eric out of the corner of my eye. local groups to rub elbows with some of the He is shaking his head to the rhythm and music industry elite. Jeni Rose Larsen, Tree- tapping his foot, totally enveloped in this fort’s Artist Liaison and longtime organizer sweet moment of success, a small taste of music festivals, believes that “Treefort of what’s sure to come when Treefort Muis definitely putting Boise on the map in sic Festival is in full swing.



EVERY THURSDAY, FINN GETS OFF WORK ABOUT 7:30 & JOINS ME IN A CORNER BOOTH WHERE IT’S A LITTLE EASIER TO HEAR OVER THE CROWD’S CHATTER AND THE NOISE OF THE BASKETBALL GAME ON TV. I DON’T DRINK, BUT I USUALLY WATCH HIM DRAIN A FEW DARK BELGIANS AS WE TALK ABOUT WHAT WE’D READ IN THE NEW YORKER THAT WEEK, MAYBE TRADE FRESHLY EDITED VERSIONS OF SOMETHING WE’D BEEN WORKING ON. This Thursday night, the first in August, he tells me his girlfriend, Amy, broke up with him. She left him for the guy who works the cheese counter at the organic grocery store. They’ve been together four years, and he’d been meaning to marry her just as soon as he got something decent written and put a little money away. Now, he says, he knows better. He drinks a lot tonight. Seven thick rimmed glasses, empty except for the etching of foam inside, are pushed to one corner of our table. Maybe he isn’t drunk exactly, but drunker than I’ve seen him before. In the middle of discussing Roddy Doyle, he reaches across the table and places his hand over mine. I pause mid-sentence and meet his gaze. “Just keep talking,” he says. I finish what I’m saying and struggle to form my next sentence. His fingers trace little circles on the back of my hand. We’ve been friends for two years now, and it wasn’t that I hadn’t



thought about us--together--I just felt safest putting my energy into not doing anything about those thoughts, into limiting our physical contact to standing shoulder to shoulder in a crowded elevator, or that occasional hug I would count to three during, so as not too linger too long in. I had had a dozen boyfriends, but only one boy friend. Only one Finn. The circles Finn makes on my hand become distracting. Purposeful. Hard to let not feel good. “I better go,” I say. “Did you ride your bike? I don’t want you driving.” “Yeah, I have my bike.” I pull my hand from beneath his and slide out of the booth. Finn follows me. “I’m gonna leave now, too” he says. He downs the last of his drink as he scoots along the length of seat then stands, tossing a folded twenty on the table.

SOMETIMES THERE ARE SUCH. GREAT BEGINNINGS Outside, with his steps behind me, I am suddenly afraid to know he is there, afraid of what seems certain to happen. I quicken my pace to keep ahead of him, but as I enter the alley that leads to the parking lot, I feel his hands catch me at my hips. “Charlotte, wait.” He turns me to face him, sounding suddenly sober. “Please don’t leave me tonight. I don’t want to be alone. And I’ve always liked you.” I can smell the wet bread smell of beer on his breath, and then it’s just his mouth on mine, like something sweet melting. And I don’t want to kiss him back, but I don’t know how to stop it either. I slip my fingers into the blonde gray hair at his temples and pull us both backwards until I bump up against the brick wall of the restaurant. A sensation, something like wrapping up in a towel fresh from the dryer, spreads through me. He presses closer until we are a tangled mess of arms and legs and grief and distraction and heat.

HIS APARTMENT IS MORE BOOKS THAN FURNITURE. The ones uncontained in the assorted bookshelves and window ledges stack hip-high along the walls—mostly collections of short stories--George Saunders, William Gay, Flannery O’Conner, Joyce Carol Oats. Several miniature statues of the Space Needle line up along the back of a wood-laminate desk in the corner, his laptop open on it. There’s only enough floor left over for one wing chair and the long, plaid sofa he found sitting on a curb with a FREE sign on it last June. The one I made him rent a carpet cleaner for and clean at least six times.

“Why?” He leans his face towards mine again.

Finn makes for the sofa and flops down, closing his eyes and patting the empty space above his head. “Sit” he says. I grab the blanket thrown over the chair back and spread it across Finn’s length, then pull off his Converse before sitting down. He scoots his body forward enough to lift his head and set it in my lap. I let my fingers wind and unwind through his hair. It feels like what I should be doing. Like what I would be doing if we were in this situation under different conditions not involving him being drunk and heartbroken. He draws in a deep breath and lets it out in one long sigh. I want to say it sounds content, but there is a defined sadness mixed into it, too. The pace of his breathing stretches and steadies as he falls asleep.

I take his hands, which continue to rub at the length of my back, and hold them between us for a moment before letting them drop. “Let’s get your bike and put it in my trunk. I’ll drive you home and stay with you for a little while longer if you want, but nothing more, ok?

I pick up the remote control next to me and press the ‘on’ button. The TV is tuned to some obscure sports channel airing a mountain bike race. I watch, indifferent, the volume low, till I can’t hold my eyes open anymore. It has to be after midnight. I consider just leaning over onto the arm of the sofa and going to sleep, but I know that will only lead to

I hold his shoulders and push him softly away. “I...I can’t.”



something awkward in the morning. I imagine him waking, neck stiff from the odd position my lap held it at all night, wondering if he should wake me, too--if, perhaps, I am late for work. He might offer me a cup of coffee, notice but not mention the imprint of sofa fabric on my cheek or the strange angle my hair is sticking out at. The whole room would be filled with strained conversation and the faucet water-gray light of morning. He’d want aspirin and a shower, anxious for me to leave so he could have them. Finn shifts in his sleep, brings his hand up and tucks it beneath my leg. Then again, maybe none of those things would be true. Maybe we would walk a block over to the pastry shop for chocolate croissants. At some point, one of us would comment on the boundaries our sadness can push us toward. How grateful we were that we’d only put our toes over the line, instead of our entire bodies. Under the table, our knees would touch. I would dust a buttery crumb off his chin. He would lick his thumb and wipe a smear of chocolate from the corner of my mouth; suggest maybe we spend a little more serious time together, when we felt ready.


the short hall into his bedroom. I’ve never been in here before. The bed is unmade and crumpled on one side, smooth and untouched on the other. I wonder if this is a reflection of the now absent girlfriend, or if it is just the way he always sleeps. I reach for a pillow then stop when I notice what is sitting on his nightstand. A copy of my manuscript. Not the heavily marked one he had given back months ago. It didn’t look worn in any way, really. It was just… there. Something read for pleasure, not necessity. Like a reminder of me. Like I had earned some kind of place among his other books. He must have made a copy of the manuscript when he had it. Or maybe I had given him two. I don’t remember. I feel girlishly silly that seeing it makes me so bite-my-lip happy. I go back to the living room carrying the pillow. Rather than disturb Finn again, I just sit it down above his head, figuring he’ll find it somewhere in the course of the night. For another minute, I watch him sleep. The shifting pictures on the television turn his face yellow, then green, then dark gray; colors highlighting or diminishing the little laugh lines at the corners of his eyes. He really is gorgeous.

That scenario was harder to see. I guess I could only picture the worst because I wasn’t really sure what had gone on tonight, or what Finn and I were to each other. A few hours ago, he had been my friend, someone whose talent I admired. Now, he had wedged open some part of me I had kept so diligently sealed. And chances are he wouldn’t even remember this tomorrow.

How unfair it is, I think, that sometimes there are such great beginnings–when you see things you think should mean something, or start into situations you think should go somewhere--but they don’t. And you just have to be okay with it. I lean down and kiss the top of his head. He says, “Amy?”

I wiggle out from beneath the soft weight of his head. He mumbles something and rolls onto his side. Looking for a pillow, I walk down

“Charlotte,” I whisper into his ear. “I’m Charlotte.” Then I walk out and forget to lock the door behind me.


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FOUR RISING DESIGN STARS TO KEEP YOUR EYES ON By Vanessa Aileene Smith and Rebecca Punches Photography by Levi Bettwiser


Elise Vaughn Designs An aha! moment leads to a blossoming boutique and national recognition for Australian-born designer, and current Idaho resident, Elise Vaughn.

in the nation. “When Brass Razoo was named by Lucky-- that has to be my favorite moment in my career thus far. That really solidified me as a designer,” says Vaughn.

“My husband was looking up vintage slang-words for a project he was working on with my dad,” Vaughn recalls. “He stumbled across the word Brass-Razoo. We looked up the definition, and that’s when I knew.”

Her inspiration comes from a variety of places, “There are so many beautiful things in the world; clothing is an expression of art to me.” The women’s clothing line is particularly moving. The pieces are vintage with a modern twist. They are soft, feminine, versatile, and really wearable for any age group. The modern cut that Vaughn favors in her designs is universally flattering for all body types.

Vaughn knew she would call the place that housed her collection, Elise Vaughn Designs, the Brass Razoo Boutique. BrassRazoo is an Australian phrase, meaning a non-existent coin of trivial value. Knowing this, Elise was inspired to start using reclaimed materials in her highly valued designs that would have otherwise been discarded. This resulted in a unique, sustainable, one-of-a-kind design collection, encompassing everything from home décor and furniture to clothing and fashion accessories. In August 2010, the Brass Razoo Boutique gained national recognition in Lucky Magazine as one of the Top 10 Places to shop

The Spring Collection includes “bright colors, prints, and capelets,” says Vaughn. “I really took all the trends that I’m currently in love with and represented them. Her choices of fabrics are feminine, yet still playful. Expect to see a lot of lace. I really love lace with a more modern, urban twist.” Elise Vaughn Designs can be found at or at local retailers Bricolage and The White Pine.


Flawless Designs Chris Bailey and Stephen Dickens, founders of Flawless Outerwear, crossed paths while attending classes together at Boise State, in 2009. Neither Bailey nor Dickens knew at the time that their chance meeting would result in a clothing line. They quickly discovered they had more than just academics in common. Both men had been skiing and snowboarding from an early age, and both shared a desire to design and create clothing, geared toward active lifestyles on the snow slopes. “It’s every kid’s dream to start their own brand,” says Chris Bailey, President of Flawless Outerwear.



“Flawless is a clothing line designed for the riders, by the riders,” says Stephen Dickens, Vice- President of Flawless. Their tag line, “on the rise,” represents the Flawless culture to a tee (no pun intended). “Since we are a company that has truly been built from the ground up, there is no better way to describe us than being ‘on the rise,’” says Baily. “We want to stay continually evolving in the snow industry, while keeping true to who we are.” During Spring/Summer of 2010, Bailey and Dickens embarked on an eight-state tour to spread the word about Flawless clothing. Baily describes it as less of a tour and

more of a “two-week celebration.” They traveled from Idaho to surrounding states, stopping often to immerse themselves in the local riding culture. The men ended their tour in Breckenridege, Colorado, a town that Bailey has spent a lot of time in. That two-week celebration was a success. Flawless sparked the interest of Markus Eders, a professional rider for Smith Optics. Eders wore the signature Flawless Tall Hoody during a major competition, which he won. The brand also landed several private filming shoots with their ski and snowboard team—one of which was shot locally at Dollar Mountain in Sun Valley, Idaho.

There is a tremendous amount of respect both men from Flawless show for the riding culture and the people and businesses within it. It’s obvious that it’s not just a clothing line for them, but a representation of a lifestyle embraced by themselves and thousands like them. With the sounds of Skrillex and Lil’ Wayne thumping from their speakers, Dickens and Bailey stay hard at work—ensuring they remain kings of the boardroom.


Kristen Morton, Mesela Designs Kristen Morton’s career started in the most unusual way. It all began with a trip to purchase a feather tutu for her daughter. When Kristen couldn’t find the quality of tutu she was looking for, the self-proclaimed “natural-born artist” decided to try her hand at making her own. That was the beginning of an exotic featherinspired accessory line and the evolution of Mesela Studios. “I’ve been an artist all my life—painting, sketching… fashion was just something new to try,” says Morton.



All of the work produced by Mesela Studios is either embellished with, or made entirely of, feathers. “Some of my favorite pieces from the line are these massive, avant-garde pieces, designed to take people’s breath away.” And take people’s breath away is exactly what Morton did at Midwest Fashion Week. In a mere six weeks, Morton and her team worked to design, create, and successfully show sixteen pieces at the show in Indianapolis, Indiana. “There is absolutely no other feeling like having pieces from your collection go down the runway,” the artist humbly shares. “Seeing all the girls lined up backstage, seeing every single piece from beginning to end,

saying to myself, ‘How did I do that? I don’t know, but it’s awesome!’—that’s my favorite moment in my career so far.” Having taken the last two years to ”play,” travel, and appreciate all of her recent accomplishments, Morton and her Mesela design team have recently returned to the studio to focus on creating pieces suitable for both men and women. “I love that I get to call Boise my home base—to be close to my girls, my family, and still be able to create and design.” With an intense focus on mass marketing, Mesela Studios has a fresh new Spring collection, a swimwear line, and a men’s collection in the works. Custom-pieces are available online at

Plum: Organic & Modified Metals Accessories Intentionally veering from perfection, Amber Lawless, owner and designer of Plum - organic and modern metals, creates her line by intentionally leaving pieces perfectly imperfect. “I want it to be obvious that my hand has touched every piece,” Lawless says about her line, whose name, Plum, means “highly desirable.” Originally a project manager in construction, Lawless grew weary of the inability to learn and make change within her work boundaries. With a vision in mind, she began to train herself in molding and modifying metals, allowing her creativity to guide a final design. Each and every piece of the Plum line has its own story, making it more than just jewelry, but art. “The beauty of being self-taught is that no one ever told me there’s a ‘right way.’ I arrive at every finished product by a different path.” Her jewelry, which appeals to both men and women of all ages, is surprisingly affordable. Most pieces are around $25 and higher end pieces start at $150. “I am genuinely honored when people spend



their hard-earned dollars on my work,” says Lawless. Many of the pieces, including the soon-to-launch belt buckles, are unisex. But it’s more than the affordability and look of the line that draws people to Lawless. She is a warm person who breathes art in her everyday life. She speaks proudly of her children and boyfriend who is “...pretty much the most fabulous jewelrywearing man.” Lawless uses pieces from her line to compliment her and her boyfriend’s casual, yet modern, style. Even her children wear her designs with pride. Lawless creates the pieces for Plum at her in-home studio, accompanied by a musical mix of the Blues, Van Morrison, and Keb Mo, playing in the background. Her aim is to create pieces of unique beauty every time. For this artist, family, nature, and genuinely loving what she does keeps her inspired to design. For Lawless, “It’s a Plum life.” Plum - organic and modern metal can be found at Green Chutes on State Street and online at


While I’m glad that social conventions have loosened up over the years, I do have a vague longing for past eras when everyone seemed to be following the same fashion rules governing how to dress for an event. But decade-by-decade, the black and white laws of what to wear when and where have been smudged to uncertain greys. First, women started wearing pants. Next, men stopped wearing hats. Then, jeans started getting dressed up. The Beatles showed up in marching band uniforms. Before we knew it, even a meat dress became acceptable attire to wear in public. So, there is a dilemma in knowing what to wear when dressing for anything—black tie, black tie optional, formal, semiformal, business wear, business casual, cocktail, beach formal?! It’s enough to make any person lose touch with sanity! So, here’s to sorting out the mess of modern dress codes and cutting to the chase, so you don’t waste your time dreading a misstep (or wearing a meat dress) and instead rock your style with confidence. Guys Formal: Originally, a trend for those with a rebellious streak because it was a tail-less jacket (Gasp!), the tuxedo is now a classic and a must wear for a black tie event. And, if you’re planning on going to at least three events in your lifetime where a tuxedo would be a good idea, buying one is way cheaper than renting, in the long run. (Implying, of course, that you make an effort to not put on ten pounds between each party.) The rules for wearing a tuxedo are rather restrictive,



PHOTOGRAPHY BY ROB AYRES but if the thought of looking exactly like every other man in the room gets on your nerves, feel free to go less mainstream with a midnight blue tux instead of black; and if you have a leaner body type, get a double breasted tux, as opposed to the more common single. Guys Semiformal: Semiformal is one of the foggiest areas of dress codes (along with the hopelessly vague “business casual”). A sharp suit and tie are always a good idea, but you can often get away with a pair of jeans. However, I am talking about a pristinely perfect dark wash pair with no distressing, whatsoever. If you want to shake up the system a bit, replace the blazer with a black leather bomber jacket. Guys Casual: Long afternoons, when you’re free to do whatever you want, deserve dressing just as comfortably. Throw on a tshirt, top it off with a casual plaid button up, grab your favorite pair of jeans, and finish it off with some Converse to look just undone. Guys Ultra Casual: Some days you just want to lounge around and your t-shirt of choice can’t be beat to do that in. And, I’m not talking about some freebie you got at a conference or from a vendor at work. If you do wear shirts like that, you must swear to me that you’ll get rid of them immediately or, at the very least, wear them only for paint clothes. Instead, you can buy some t-shirts with unique graphic designs, artistic typography, or some with logos of your favorite team. It’s an easy way for

you to look cool, so don’t pass it up. Once you’ve got that graphic t-shirt, throw on a pair of relaxed fit jeans and roll up the pant legs part way to reinforce the causal vibe. Girls Formal: Ah, the little black dress! Once a revolutionary concept, it has now mutated into a brainless standby that far too many women use to hide at formal events. So, for your next black tie event, why don’t you break away from tradition and become your own interpretation of classic beauty? Full length dresses and darker color palettes are general parameters to stick to, and that’s plenty of room to work with. Try a dress that uses asymmetry in its design, with sleeves that are different lengths or uneven hemlines or necklines. Asymmetry is one of the most underestimated statements you can make these days. Perfect visual alignment is easy to pass over, but setting things just a little off catches attention. Pick an item with sequins for glam (or intricate beading for a vintage flair). Finally, top it off with statement jewelry, because there is nothing so wonderful as a huge cocktail ring, and you’ll never blend into the sea of little black dresses again. Girls Semiformal: In the world of semiformal, rules fade and creativity can have its way, so long as you keep it looking timelessly classy and chic. Nearly any and every party or cocktail dress will work, from the full skirted and twirly to the pencil skirt inspired. Pair the dress with your favorite mile high heels, fishnet tights (if the weather’s still a bit cold), and—if you want to ditch the dress altogether and be fashion fearless—opt for a jump suit

in a flowy and feminine fabric, preferably in a solid color (so you don’t push this trend further than it’s ready to go…yet.) Girls Casual: Denim is the ultimate casual fall back, so reinterpret the piece by wearing it in color, be it a crazy primary color or a springy pastel hue. Pair the jeans with a neutral top to prevent color overload and to keep denim the focal point. Loose, sheer, and chiffony tops are lady like, yet completely relaxed for casual wear. Girls Ultra Casual: Spend a lazy day in in your comfiest (and potentially cutest) clothes. Throw on a tank or cami and top it with a cropped sweatshirt. Layer up with a handful of your favorite necklaces (make sure they’re all of different lengths to get the layer effect right,) slip into your favorite broken-in boyfriend style jeans, and you’re ready for a relaxed Saturday. Keep these basic outfit ideas in mind when creating your wardrobe and you’ll be set for any demand, from the Academy Awards (hope to see you on the red carpet) to a lazy weekend doing plenty of nothing. Because, while the old era of black and white rules fashion might have made things more simplistic, the sky is now the limit in expressing your fashion individuality. So, enjoy experimenting with a few new looks, live and dress for each day fearlessly, and make this Spring a season of your very own style statements



Photo courtesy of J. Alan Photography



UNREPENTANT ROAD RYAN BAYNE’S JOURNEY FROM ‘HACK MUSICIAN’ TO FORCE TO BE RECKONED WITH WRITTEN BY JENNIFER SANDERS PETERSON 2009: It has been nearly sixteen years since I last saw my friend, Ryan Bayne; my lingering image of him, one of a flannel-clad drummer in the band ‘Storm Child,’ playing our Nampa High School lunch room. Our paths have crossed again (thank you, Facebook). We meet at a Moxie Java, discover we’re both single parents, mellowed by the years. He asks if I still play music. I laugh; mention I sold off the last of my synthesizers in 2000. I return the question, and he says he picks up the guitar from time to time, says he has a handful of songs he’s written and some big plans for them 2012: With most of the material a decade in the making, Ryan Bayne’s first full-length CD, Saints and Strangers, is finally a reality, an accomplished first step in those “big plans.” “I always stayed true to the kind of music I wanted to make,” says Bayne, “Music about love, life, redemption--I just wondered if there would ever be an audience for it.” Much of this doubt stemmed from a brief stint he did as a songwriter in Nashville, where he was told by one record label executive after another that he was definitely “not country.” Not the glammed-up pop country that was ruling the genre at the time, anyway. Now, already sold out of his initial run of hard copy CD’s, there’s no doubt a willing and eager audience for Ryan Bayne’s music exists. So, if not country, what is his style? Bayne says, “What I play is hard to categorize. It’s a little off kilter, a little dirtied-up, a little poetic. I always have three individuals I’m channeling when I write and sing: Jeff Tweedy [of Wilco], Tom Waits and Johnny Cash.” It’s the Johnny Cash reference that most listeners nod their heads in agreement with. The similarity is almost eerie, both Cash an Bayne possessing a deep, raw, gravelly truthfulness to their vocals. Both telling a story as much as singing a song, mixing in soulful harmonica solos amidst their straightforward guitar chords. One of the memorable stops along Ryan Bayne’s path towards local notoriety was his top placement in the 2010 Boise’s Got Talent

competition, where he garnished judges’ praise for his risky version of Dolly Parton’s classic, “Jolene”-- sung not in the sweet, simple way Parton did it, but with a passion like that of a man with fire in his belly and whisky in his throat. Steve Fulton, owner of the Audio Lab, and one of the judges that night, knew right away he needed to get Bayne’s voice recorded. And Ryan Bayne wanted to get recorded, too. But, “Recording music is an expensive endeavor if you want to do it right,” Bayne says. So, he kept polishing his material while he sold Harley Davidson’s at High Desert Harley (a job he still works), saving up the necessary cash to start work on his CD in June of 2011. Of his recording experience, Bayne notes, “Steve (Fulton) was completely indispensable in the process. I played most of the instruments, but there were songs that needed more texture than what I could give, and that’s when Steve became my back up band.” One of the tracks called “Not My Father’s Son,” features a hauntingly sad piano solo that wouldn’t have existed without Fulton’s direction. “Not My Father’s Son,” in fact, was one of the only new pieces on the CD, a song composed especially for the film, Driven: The Jens Pulver Story, an acclaimed documentary by Ryan’s brother, Boise filmmaker Gregory Bayne. “Greg has always been a huge supporter of mine. He calls me out, expects great things of me. If he hadn’t given me the opportunity to work on Driven, I may have just kept re-imagining my old stuff, and that song would never have come to be.” He adds with a laugh, “And it’s a good song, man.” Indeed, it is. Ryan will also be writing music for his brother’s next film Bloodsworth, the story of the first man exonerated from death row by DNA evidence. What else is in Ryan Bayne’s future? Look for him behind his trademark, hollow-bodied Gretsch guitar, playing regularly at The Press downtown. Also watch for an expansion into iTunes and YouTube, and more new music in the future. “Definitely more music,” he says. “I’m not afraid of the risk anymore. And my best stuff isn’t even written yet.”

Ryan Bayne’s CD Saints and Strangers is available for download or purchase on CD Release Party will be April 7 at the Visual Arts Collective. Keep up with Ryan’s appearances around the valley:









While much of the attention paid to the Boise music scene is focused around hipster favorites, like Youth Lagoon and peerless stalwarts Built to Spill, new artists with a different sound are also making themselves known. Catch Me Killers is exemplary of these. The current four-piece ensemble, consisting of vocalist Kaleb Hundersmark, guitarist and vocalist Justin Allison, bassist Mike Leavitt, and drummer Ian Mahaffey, took their name from a time Allison was walking out the door to band practice and overheard one of his mother’s favorite crime-and-drama television shows, “I just caught the phrase ‘the Catch Me Killer’ and decided it was worth being late to band practice to watch about this guy who claimed up to sixteen murders in his name as just some hoax.” However, one thing for sure when listening to and talking with this band; these guys are no hoax. The band has been pulling in packed crowds and won the 2011 “Bring It To the Stage” contest at the Linen Building. Though all members of the band are in their early 20’s, their sound is finely honed—a mixture of extreme metal and acoustic sound configured their current alternative approach to pop-punk. This evolving sound is intrinsic to the band’s drive and recent success. “We never want to feel stuck in a genre or that we owe anyone a particular sound,” says Allison. The band believes their newest recordings typify growth as songwriters and musicians. “Working with Dave at the Mix House has helped us out greatly with developing song length

and layout, and, also, our learning to write songs aside from playing them,” says Allison. A major reason for the band’s continuing shift in recording is their desire to appeal to a wider audience, “We feel our current sound is much more applicative than many hardcore and other alternative groups,” says Leavitt. That isn’t to say the band has lost touch with the aggression of their metal and hardcore roots, evident in their sharp chord progressions and heightened vocals on the tune “Skin Deep.” On the new songs, influence from bands like All-Time Low and Thrice are evident—a comparison the band appreciates, “You can hear how both of those bands have continually progressed and expanded their sound on each subsequent album, and that’s what we also want to do,” says Mahaffey. Listeners can catch said influences in the song “Platonic,” available on their ReverbNation page. The band has received great acclaim for their shows at The Venue, in Boise, playing to a consistently full house and developing a loyal fan base. Still, the band, while wanting to maintain ties to their humble beginnings in Meridian and Parma, seeks to branch outside of Idaho. “We’re looking forward to getting out of state for shows, exposing our music to different scenes, as well as exposing ourselves to different sounds and whatnot,” says Hundersmark. “Boise has treated us well,” says Allison, “and I think we’ve treated it well by playing our music. We just hope it continues.”

Catch Me Killer’s self-titled E.P. is available at the Record Exchange. You can also listen to their music at





FORK WRITTEN BY ALANNA LOVE PHOTOGRAPHY BY PETE GRADY I paused at the foot of the concrete steps leading up to the double door entrance of Fork, savoring the thought of the culinary adventure I was about to embark on. Because, you see, all great things begin with great ideas and Fork is no exception. “Farm to fork” is the ideal, the inspiration behind the name, as well as the vision that is brought to you on a plate every time you eat there. Natural and organic food created from Idaho and Northwest products is the heart and soul of the menu. “Loyal to local” and concern for the environment is seen in nearly every dish, and not just in the actual food, but also in the restaurant itself. The drinking glasses are made from recycled bottles, some of the tables are made from wood salvaged from old Idaho barns, and the menus are made from crushed rocks (I didn’t know they could do that either!) That night, I made my way up the steps, through the doors, and walked into the restaurant, which was humming with the sounds of friends laughing and utensils clinking against dishes. I was soon seated at one of the tables that had been in a barn in a former life and then the plates of food to sample began to pile up around me. For appetizers, I got to try The New Orleans Style BBQ Shrimp and The Sliders. The shrimp were served in a small cast iron skillet, which also contained a thin, and yet vibrantly colored, spicy buttery sauce, along with a few slices of a toasted baguette style bread, a lemon wedge, and a sprig of fresh rosemary. Next, The Sliders were served, which were tender and saucy bits of rib meat, tucked into soft mini-hamburger buns, served with petite and crispy onion rings. Then, I enjoyed The ‘B. C. S.’—a salad made of arugula greenery, smoked Alaskan salmon, Lebanese cuscus, and air dried fruit, all of it tossed in a buttermilk basil-pesto dressing, creating an earthy, smoky, nutty, and creamy mix of flavors. Afterwards, two different entrees arrived to nibble on, starting with the Northwest Short Ribs. The meat was so tender that it nearly melted in my mouth, served with mashed potatoes and crispy potatoes that might be best described as the angle hair version of French fries.

COMFY LIKE YOUR FAVORITE PAIR OF JEANS So, dish-by-dish and bite-by-bite, I began to understand the food aesthetics of Fork—the key word being texture. It shows itself in subtle and unique pairings of items that I would have never thought of, but felt like they were meant to be, once I took a taste. I happened to be there on a Tuesday evening – the one day of the week when Cast Iron Buttermilk Fried Chicken and Cheddar Waffles reign. The Fried Chicken is soaked in buttermilk for 24 hours and laid on a cheddar laced waffle, all served with balsamic tinged maple syrup and orange and honey infused butter on the side. As the dish was placed in front of me, I was told by my waitress, with an emphatic chuckle, that I needed to try all four of the components in one bite to get the full effect. So, I decided to take her word for it. I had a nibble, then quickly felt despair at the limiting word count of this article, my mind scrambling to find words to describe all the flavors, that quite literally seemed to explode in my mouth, leaving my taste buds happily stunned. Don’t ask me for details, I just dare you to show up next Tuesday night, try it, and write about it yourself. But dare aside, my table was soon cleared of extra dishes and my evening began to draw to a delicious close with Fork’s Signature Warm Butter Cake. I sank my spoon through the rich red berry sauce, into the vanilla bean flecked scoop of ice cream, and down into the warm dense yellow cake. I took a bite and my heart melted along with the ice cream on my tongue. It was pure confectionary poetry. Stuffed to the brim and with a smile on my face, I walked out the doors and down the stairs into the nippy night and breathed a contented sigh. Fork just feels so...comfy. Comfy like your favorite broken in pair of jeans, or comfy like a cozy sweater. One can slip in and everything feels just as it ought to be. And that is exactly what Fork is —just what food ought to be.

Fork is located at 199 N 8th St Boise, ID For questions or reservations: (208) 287-1700








Talk about limited options! No pasta, kiss your pastries goodbye, and forget your morning toast. You may know the term “gluten free” as the new eating trend, the revised Atkins or Celiac Disease – an autoimmune disorder of the small intestine; having an intolerance to gluten. There has been an increase in awareness leading people to seek out foods that are permitted and omit the foods that aren’t. When going gluten free, one must find more nutrient dense alternatives to replenish lost nutrients. Gluten Free grains, such as brown rice and quinoa (pronounced keen-wah). can provide more fiber and improve values of thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, and folate. There are so many alternative flours that are not only gluten free, but open a door to a new world of flavor – one in which bland, all-purpose enriched flour seems comparatively bland. Chickpea, almond meal, coconut, tapioca, rice, hazelnut meal, and buckwheat (yes, it’s gluten free), make for tasty replacements. Options to fuel your body have become extensive rather than restrictive. Athletic and active lifestyles won’t have to compromise on carbohydrates. As a vegan runner, I can say a gluten free diet hasn’t slowed me down. I’ve explored the gluten and grain free realm, since living with a roommate who eats a gluten free diet. It’s exciting to switch it up, learn about alternative flours, and create gluten free dishes for everyone to enjoy. I’ve tackled a standard brunch dish, Eggs Benedict, and turned it into a vegan and gluten free breakfast favorite. The “veganized” version of a poached egg was the challenging part, but switching the English muffin out for a fresh,

dry pan-seared eggplant slice was a delicious no-brainer. Quinoa, with a look similar to couscous, and spaghetti squash’s noodlelike strands have both proven to be quite the satisfying pasta substitutions. My vegan and gluten free revision of Bar Gernika’s croquetas have gotten the thumbs up from those who crave the popular tempting tapas. Beyond my kitchen, Boise restaurants seem to be paying attention to the growing requests for gluten free options for dining. Options for those seeking food free of gluten, meat, and animal by-products are showing up on many menus. Local staple eatery Bittercreek has an amazing quinoa and black bean salad. It’s easy to order for any alternative diet from Cosmic Pizza, with their vegan cheese and gluten free crusts on hand. Everyday health and beauty products for allergen sensitive consumers are also making their way onto store shelves—I even discovered gluten free toothpaste in the health section of my neighborhood Albertson’s. Although I mainly shop at the Boise Co-op for my specialty needs, I’m eager to see what changes the new Whole Foods will have on the eating and lifestyle of regular and special diets in the Treasure Valley. As people are more informed and become more aware of these needs, choices will become available. When you voice a desire to have more options, whether it be more organic, local, vegan, or gluten-free, you can inspire change. Now, let’s talk about options! Recipe on next page.



+ FuSeD for FuN!

$3 Drinks Special


LaDieS’ NevierTye ThuRsDaY 7

to Lady Moji • Dragon ipple • Pink Wh asm • Orangeg

NiTe frtomo close Check out the video!

CROQUETAS As a nod to the Basque favorite Bar Gernika, I will be making gluten free and vegan (optional and still gluten free) croquetas. Cheers! Ingredients Cooked, chilled quinoa Quinoa flour 1 egg (I used a flax “egg” replacement) Cheddar cheese (I used vegan Daiya cheese) ½ cup finely diced onions 1 Tbsp oil of your choice Gluten Free Breadcrumbs (I added nutritional yeast to this mix, optional) Oil for frying DIRECTIONS ➊ Mix the egg or egg substitute with the quinoa and let sit in the refrigerator until bonded (30 minutes tops). ➋ Warm the oil on medium heat in a pan. ➌ Quinoa should be sticky and a bit firm. If too sticky, add flour. Cup and lightly flour your hand and add about 1/4 cup quinoa to your hand. Use your thumb to form the quinoa to a round shape, working your way up. ➍ F or the inside cheese mixture, I caramelized the onions with oil in a small sautee pan. When the onions were tender, I added just enough flour to make the consistency paste-like. ➎ A dd vegetable broth (or chicken broth) + milk (regular or an unsweetened alternative) to create a roux and then add cheese. Fill the open ball with cheese filling.

3210 E Louise Drive, Meridian



➏ Close the ball and smooth over the rice to form a sphere. ➐R  oll the croquetas in the gluten free breadcrumbs very gently. ➑ Cook in oil until all sides are golden. ➒ Dip in Dijon!


TAKE THE TOUR: HOT SPRINGS FOR BEGINNERS WRITTEN BY APRIL WATTS Once believed to be gifts from the gods, the supposed healing powers of hot springs were reserved for the wealthy and important. Now, they offer their tempting combination of relaxation and adventure to all willing to make the journey; and Idaho has more natural hot springs than any other state—a handful are less than a two hour drive from Boise Perhaps the most well-known local spring, Skinny Dipper (AKA MileMarker Four), sits four miles northeast of Banks. Take Highway 55 twelve miles past Horseshoe Bend, turn right on Highway 21 (BanksLowman Highway) and drive four miles. Park on the right, along the river, then look for the spring’s trail entrance on the left of the highway. It’s a half-mile, steep hike amidst the Ponderosa and Lodge Pole Pines, but I’ve made this trek in the snow, rain, and cool summer evenings, and it’s always been worth it. Due to heavy use, the trail is useable with some good hiking boots, even when the snow is deep. It is often crowded, so mornings and weekdays are best if you seek a more spacious experience. Because the Skinny Dipper pools emerge from a mountainside, the views are truly breathtaking. While soaking, you can look down the ravine into the Payette River Canyon. True to its nickname, you may see some nudity, especially at popular times on weekends and weeknights. (Tip from personal experience: Take pictures cautiously!) Unfortunately, Skinny Dipper is often riddled with trash. A group of “keepers” exists to combat this, but they’re outnumbered. If you go, do your part: Pack out trash and don’t bring glass. IF YOU’RE WILLING TO DRIVE A LITTLE FURTHER, take Highway 21 to Crouch, where you’ll find several hot spring options. For Fire Crew hot springs, stay on Forest Road 698 for 15 miles until you reach the campground junction. Continue for less than half a mile, staying left until you reach the river. The hot springs are tucked down alongside the river and easily accessed. Also off Crouch’s Forest Road 698 is Boiling Springs. Take the Forest Road 24 miles to the Boiling Springs Guard Station, near the


springs. The guard station can be reserved online at recreation. gov. Most of the hot springs near Crouch are on forest roads that might be inaccessible during early spring, so wait until enough snow melts. These springs are family-friendly, so nudity is not allowed. Another spring near Crouch, Pine Burl, requires a two-mile hike. You’ll hike past Moondipper and Lil Dipper hot springs on the way. To reach the trailhead, follow directions to Fire Crew and Boiling Springs. There are two trails going upstream that will take you to all three springs. Lil Dipper is very small, so group soaking in this one will be a challenge. However, Moondipper has a single pool large enough for several people, and Pine Burl is even bigger, with deeper, sandy pools inviting long stays. If you continue on this trail for another 1.3 miles, you’ll reach Groundhog Hot Springs-- the extra effort in the longer hike paying off in that you’ll likely have more privacy. Again, check road conditions before venturing out to these, as winter snowmelt takes longer to disappear here. BEYOND CROUCH, GARDEN VALLEY also has several natural hot springs to enjoy at Hot Springs Campground. These springs should be accessible year-round because they are along the road—as long as Highway 21 is open and safe. Take Highway 21 about 17 miles past Banks. The main pool is big enough for a large group of people, and there’s even a pipe designed to be a stand up shower. KIRKHAM HOT SPRINGS, close to Lowman along Highway 21, is a collection of shallow pools along the river located in the Kirkham National Forest Campground. The water trickles over rustcolored boulders and falls several feet into the pools. Drive 4.3 miles east of Lowman. The hot springs are across the bridge from the highway. There is a $5 parking fee, swimwear is required, and this area is closed from 10pm to 6am. The neighboring



campsites can also be reserved during the summer online at FOR A PRIVATE (AND CLEAN!) OPTION head west, 10 miles from Horseshoe Bend on Highway 52. Turn right at Roystone Hot Springs, at the foot of Squaw Butte, across the road from Squaw Creek. These springs are covered and maintained by a hospitable, multi-generation family. Many of the decorations are original metal works created by one of the owners, Ward Johns. This is a great idea for birthdays, celebrations, and other gatherings. An octagonal lodge, private hot tubs, and a large pool are among the options. They’re closed on Sundays, but for as little as $12 on weekdays, up to six people are welcome. For information on other pricing information, visit Roystone can accommodate more than thirty people with advance notice.

Before you head out to any hot springs, make sure you know the “unwritten laws” of hot springing: Nobody wants to soak in trash or find broken glass with their bare feet, so take it away, if you bring it in. It’s also important to leave pipes and other structures as you find them. If you choose to bring a dog, keep them away from the water to avoid burning their paws. When you get home, take a shower to avoid any skin irritation from natural chemicals in the water. As with anything in nature, extra care will ensure the livelihood and accessibility of these wonders for decades to come. Whether you seek an easy day at a reserved pool or a more adventurous trip with hiking and wildlife, Idaho presents us with a unique opportunity to enjoy a collection of natural hot springs, all an easy drive from the Boise area. Go take the tour!




SOCIALIZE WITH SOCIAL EYES WRITTEN BY LIZZ ANNE NAUGHTON  PHOTOGRAPHY BY AMANDA MORGAN In an increasingly globalized world where consumers are connecting, learning, and buying online, anyone who wants to sell or promote a brand or product in a competitive market place must be engaging with their customers on the Internet. Enter, Social Eyes: a full-service, interactive media and creative solutions firm dedicated to helping businesses harness the power of social media marketing. Partaking in social media, rather than solely relying on traditional forms of advertising, has become one of the best ways to promote your business name while connecting with your current and potential clientele directly. The people at Social Eyes Marketing have been able to master this kind of customer connection. Social Eyes educates businesses on how to utilize social media for marketing and branding purposes, and works together with those businesses to maintain a successful Internet presence. Their mission statement says it all: Social Eyes Marketing is a strategic and innovative Online & Social Media Marketing Agency aimed at offering affordable, effective solutions to small and medium size businesses and public figures. We don’t just deliver one off solutions; we develop relationships with our clients because we believe their success is integral to our success. We aim to educate our clients and the community about the benefits and best practices of Social Media. This can include anything from developing a business’s website to creating and managing Facebook pages and ad campaigns, as

well as Twitter accounts. However, the work is not as simple as promoting the “like” button—Social Eyes has broken the process down into four steps: 1) Identifying the proper social networks for each specific business; 2) Developing a strategy by researching and evaluating the business’s industry, audience and competition; 3) Building a community of fans, followers, and connections by managing a brand’s online presence, through sharing value-driven content and building meaningful relationships; and 4) Testing, monitoring, and adjusting to ensure progress. NETWORKS Since there are a wide variety of social networks and websites to choose from, it’s important to choose creatively and wisely. The first step Social Eyes takes in their plan of action is getting to know the company they will be representing, while educating the clients about the various social media platforms. As president of Social Eyes, Blane Russell is responsible for business development and relationship management. He helps businesses—both locally and nationally—understand the importance of social media, by offering free social media training and consultations. In doing so, Russell assists businesses to identify which social media platforms will be the most valuable for their brand. “LinkedIn, for example, is very powerful for business-to-business networking, while Facebook is great for brand exposure and promotion,” explains Russell. He goes over the successful usage of each platform during an initial consultation with a new client, in which they decide together the social media sites that would be most beneficial for that particular business. It is his job to sit down with company stakeholders in a consultation to decide where they need to be present, when it comes to online marketing options.


TECH CONT. being represented. “Aside from looking at the company’s current social media, I look at sites such as the Better Business Bureau because they are the most well-known and accredited when it comes to a business’s public image.” From there, she begins to find other sites mentioning or reviewing the company in question. Depending on the type of company—i.e. restaurant, magazine, business—different review sites will prove more useful.

Social media is a powerful networking tool that many businesses have taken advantage of. However, businesses are also finding other creative, beneficial ways of using social media. For example, an increasing number of property management companies and real estate firms are now using YouTube, for instance, to showcase properties and give virtual house tours. Russell says that using this video-blogging technique can save firms time and resources, while demonstrating personality and individuality. Russell explains that social media is not marketing, but “unmarketing.” Using social media as an active member, instead of a pop-up advertisement, develops real relationships with an online community. “It’s all about engaging. You want to talk with your audience – not at them.” Russell maintains that he is not a “social network guru.” He and his team are constantly learning and making an effort to keep up with the constantly evolving social sphere. “We are always coming up with new ideas that we can incorporate into our clients’ social media plans,” says Russell. There is always something new buzzing around the internet, with a niche that suits every business. This is a concept that Social Eyes knows well, as their clientele includes non-profits, individual real estate agents, and businesses of all sizes. They have even held consultations for political figures running for office. Once Social Eyes determines where an online presence for a given brand would be most beneficial, they then formulate a strategy outlining the proper usage of each network. STRATEGY The social media strategy is the backbone of the Social Eyes operation. It outlines everything from competitor analysis to the number of times a day businesses should post on each network. Jessica McAnally, who has been writing strategies for Social Eyes for over 6 months, says that she always starts each strategy by conducting research. First and foremost, McAnally takes a look at a company’s current online setiment and how it is



In addition to collecting information from review sites, it is also beneficial to research how other businesses in the same industry have used or are using social media—which supplies strategists with a better understanding of what does and doesn’t work. “Before I begin writing strategies, I familiarize myself with a given industry by browsing industry-specific case studies, successful campaigns, and social media best practices,” says Social Eyes employee, Brianne Limani. “Each strategy is tailored to a specific client and industry; so it’s important that the recommendations we make in the strategy are based on a solid understanding of that industry and its current social media climate.” By conducting research and using online monitoring tools, Social Eyes can find and monitor conversations surrounding their clients’ business and observe where a client’s name pops up. “If a business has a Facebook page, you can’t just click on it and see everything that is happening. You have to see what people are saying about them everywhere on that platform. There may be groups created for or against their company. It’s important to find this out and track it,” said McAnally. “It’s a reputation that’s being spread, not just a name.” Once the analysis of these findings is complete, it is time to begin transforming clients from faceless companies to engaging social media profiles. Having a personable voice, instead of a promotional megaphone, encourages genuine connections and builds relationships that can result in brand ambassadors. Simply responding to tweets is one way of making a real connection with people, instead of only broadcasting updates. Setting goals to reply and communicate with people is a good step in the relationship direction. COMMUNITY BUILDING After collecting data and making a plan of action, continuing the pursuit of an online presence is pivotal. Maintaining a “dialogue, not a monologue,” in an on-going manner, as Russell says, will help excel the customer’s experience. However, keeping on top of all the different media accounts is no easy task. In fact, it is a full-time job in itself, and that is why Social Eyes has Aaron Allstott. His job is to maintain the client’s online presence, on their behalf, by consistently posting new information, replying to anything people say, and staying on top of the competition. “Most companies think they can post once a week or once a

month on Facebook or Twitter, but there are some people out there who are posting hundreds of times a day on Twitter; if you are not actively engaged, your tweets and Facebook posts will be overlooked.” How many times has someone said, “Did you see my status?” and you somehow missed it. Allstott’s job is to make sure new material and information is updated as often as necessary for businesses, so that nothing goes unnoticed. Building a daily presence online will help build a community of followers around a specific brand. “You shouldn’t post strictly about your business; you don’t want to sell.” says Allstott, “People don’t want to be ‘sold to.’ They want to have conversations, learn something, and have fun!” As content generator, it is Allstott’s job to find and post content that people will share, like, comment on, and engage with. The most important part of using social media is utilizing it as a means for dialogue. On top of regular posting, a strong community is well designed. In order to optimize the first impression for potential fans, Social Eyes recommends a Facebook microsite or landing page, as well as YouTube and Twitter backgrounds. Jen Hill, who is primarily responsible for Account and Project Management at Social Eyes, designs these pages, which provide optimal branding for the companies they represent. “Customized social media solutions, like Facebook microsites or YouTube and Twitter background skins, help a company carry their brand image across all channels. An important aspect of having a successful brand is consistency. Making sure all your advertising and marketing matches across all avenues provides for the best impression on your consumer,” Hill explains. Microsites are essentially smaller versions of websites designed to captivate audiences with the most important information a business has to offer. The microsite serves as a conduit for building a brand, as well as providing clients the convenience of being able to review products and services without having to leave Facebook. “Microsites and landing pages make it easier to provide your customers with the information they are looking for when they first arrive at your page. They can detail pretty much anything a full website can and they allow page visitors the opportunity to view directions to your location, the option to buy your car wash packages, or even listen to your most recent album.” Consistency across all platforms is what makes customization a critical element in social media implementation and community management. “In a world where anyone can create a Facebook Page and act as whoever they want, providing a branded first impression is much more powerful to a potential fan,” says Hill. “It provides credibility and authenticity to a business.”

TESTING AND EVALUATING After utilizing every online society suitable, it is essential to monitor what is and isn’t working. Although Facebook has an “insights” feature to help track fan engagement and social reach, it takes a lot of additional tools and time to ensure a brand’s message is reaching the right audiences. Social Eyes stays on top of this by utilizing dashboards and other online monitoring tools to listen, examine, and collect conversations involving a company’s name, product, or service. It is an important part of online reputation management to know where people are using the company’s name (along with competitor’s names) and exactly what is being said by utilizing industry specific keywords. In addition to measuring brand sentiment, this shows where a company should be engaging with customers. “Conversation monitoring is a really good way of discovering new audiences and identifying stakeholders,” says Limani. “Using dashboards to search the name of your company will tell you who is talking about your business, but getting creative and searching words or phrases about issues relating to your product or service will lead you to a whole different group of useful conversations.”People are talking openly online and businesses need to be listening to and learning from these conversations. These exchanges can supply information that gives you the intelligence necessary to make sound business decisions. They also allow you to intelligently reach out to specific customer demographics. There are also certain tools that can help locate customer bases you might not have known existed. “We use these tools throughout the entire process—from research to implementation,” says Hill. “It is important to stay on top of those conversations and continually find new places online where the product or company is being talked about.” McAnally then asked, “On your way here did you listen to the radio? …and what happened when a commercial came on? You changed the station. Did you see any billboards? Do you recall what they said? No, because loud-speaker marketing isn’t working anymore.” Businesses need to remember what is relevant to their brand by listening to actual conversations people are having; this way, they know how, where, when, and to whom to present their information. Maintaining a positive online presence and reputation is crucial in today’s fast-paced, electronic world. In other words, having a professional assist in strengthening your online presence through social media may be pivotal to your company’s success. The Internet is a big, crazy place, but you don’t have to go at it alone—let the people at Social Eyes assist you with your social media presence. They can make your website richer, post on your Facebook, design an impressive YouTube skin, and provide education on new strategies all in one place. Check out their website at www.getsocialeyes. com or give them a call at 208-955-6679 to talk about setting up a consultation for your business today. Blane Russell and the rest of the Social Eyes team will be thrilled to help you succeed.





I don’t know if you know this, but I am able to time travel. I just got back from 2029 and let me say, we look stuuuuupid! No, seriously, we do. In fact, you and I were just sitting in our hoverchairs having a good laugh at ourselves. Let’s start with the hair. To think we actually put gels, sprays and pastes in our hair to get it to look like that! Not to mention those jeans—WOW! Who wears dark blue denim with white stitching that looks like a map of a L.A. Freeway interchange? And, how much did we pay for those, really? I had to go to the holograph and look at pictures of us wearing those ridiculous skinny jeans (which, in fact, proved that we were not skinny). Maybe, back then, it was hard for us to tell because we were looking through a preposterous pair of dark framed, nonprescription glasses. Oh, but we had to look good, right? And, don’t let me forget the Bluetooth. C’mon, how did we ever think it was ok to walk around with an earpiece that big? It looked like we glued a hot wheel car to the side of our face, walking around talking to ourselves, barely distinguishable from the mentally insane. Man oh man, did we look absurd—so proud of ourselves, sitting in that coffee shop with our laptop (that had to have a backlit apple logo), all the while drinking a 1200 calorie cup of espresso. That was the having your SWAG on! Yes, I said it. Or at least used to say it. In 2029, I just look back and laugh. But, that’s status man—gotta have it to fit in. And, if you don’t have it, you aren’t up to date, up to speed, or ready to go out with your besties for Sunday Funday! If you’re not laughing yet, let’s time travel back through the 80’s & 90’s to illustrate my point. See us there? Oh my goodness it’s the jeans again? Nice! What is that process called?? Oh that’s right ACID WASH! Ok, I was having a hard time focusing because



NEEDED... Yellow Sony Sports WALKMAN British Knights Hi-tops Ray Ban or Gargoyle sunglasses Von Dutch hat or Buckle Leather bomber jacket with several colors and an 8ball on it Leg warmers Swatch Pager, oops, sorry I meant BEEPER Sperry Top Sider Boat shoes B.U.M. clothing Multi colored Converse Hi-tops Doc Martens Gucci Tee shirt Suspenders with one strap undone Jamz (shorts or baggy pants version)

your hair is so freaking huge. In fact let me just save you the pain and let’s go down the list together. We used to have, no wait, Now, if you think I’m just laughing at you, oh trust me—I can see myself, and I’m laughing just the same. I like my cool Nike kicks, iPhone, Powerbook, Bluetooth, and skinny jeans of a republic (or religion, or something). I’m fine with laughing at it because defining our place in society is what we humans do. It’s unique to our species. You don’t really ever see a beaver build a dam with a home theater or birds saving up to put a new addition on their nest. Do orangutans take beeswax to style their hair in fanciful ways? Nope. Only we humans use external expression, through style and material possessions, to situate ourselves within our social system. That’s a defining characteristic of an intelligent society. (Well, intelligent is stretching it, but you know what I mean.) I imagine it probably started when caveman Dook was over for dinner at caveman OG’s house and saw the beautiful sofa OG had made out of bison bones and ostrich feathers. Since then, it’s been game on. I’m sure the rat-race for status has ranged from jealousy over a ruby crusted spear to hieroglyphs

detailing the early versions of “Pimp My Cave.” Without obsession over status, I don’t think we’d have ever been blessed with the Great Pyramids or The Parthenon in Greece. I’ll even bet there was a time when you would hear women gossip, “Martha, look at Ruthy showing off with her fancy new wooden teeth! Oh you know, she had them carved so she could smile and get all the men to stare.” You gotta have your bling, so that—without saying it out loud—you can shout, ”I BELONG! In fact, I’M SOMEBODY! Look at all my cool stuff!” So, what does it all mean? I don’t know. Some psycho-theraecono-somebody will analyze us to say it’s all shallow and superficial, that over-consuming could lead to the eventual collapse of our civilization. So, while we can, let’s just sit back and have a good belly laugh at ourselves, back then and right now. Besides, civilization hasn’t collapsed yet. Remember? I’ve time traveled here from the future In fact, I have to get back to 2029. The virtual store is having a huge sale on the newest Titanium fiber-optic pants. And, though I don’t really have the money, EVERYBODY has them. So, you know...

RICK MOORTEN is a Radio Host on WILD 101.1 FM. Check his show out MondayFriday, from 6-10AM. Connect with him on facebook/rickmoorten.





Joe Gallegos may be crunching numbers by day at the Banner Bank Building, but once the grind of nine-to-five comes to an end, his mind turns to lightweight bike frames, negative drag disk wheels, and the start of Boise’s Volkswagen-sponsored race team. When Joe headed to Volkswagen Boise, he expected to buy a car. He didn’t expect them to say ‘yes’ to sponsoring a cycling team. Boise now has 13 riders on its VW-sponsored bike team. Cycling enthusiasts agree that it’s about time. If you’ve ever been in Boise on a summer day, you’d have to be Alec Baldwin immersed in Words with Friends to miss the plethora of bikes rolling about town. There are girls rocking cruisers around Ann Morrison, fixies balancing at downtown stop lights, speed demons carving up the asphalt along Black Cliff Canyon, and adrenaline addicts shredding earth on the Valley’s surrounding mountain sides. Bikes are a sweet way to get around town, without pumping so much crap into the air; and with so many people going green and buying local, it’s no shock to see so many of them around.



Recreation is fantastic, but where are the cyclists who want to take it to the next level supposed to turn—pro teams in California, development leagues in Florida? Sure, there are a lot of programs for young riders like BYRDS (Boise Young Riders Development Squad), but then what? With the Valley in a buy local mindset, why should we export all of our best biking talent to other states? That’s the question Joe Gallegos asked Volkswagen, and their answer—“We shouldn’t.” After two deployments to Iraq, Joe’s spent the last several months settling back into Boise and working all the right cogs and sprockets into place for the start of the inaugural 2012 season. He focused on creating a mentor-mentee squad with about half the riders on either side of the dash. This model gives the young riders entering the talent packed U-23 riding class an edge of training under the tutelage of experienced riders like Shawn Mitchell and Brent Gorman. I asked Joe if taking young riders that are used to standing on the

podium and ushering them into support roles would be difficult. “It shouldn’t be,” he said. “Attitude comes first and then performance.” 18 year-old Kirsto Jorgenson, an up-and-coming time trial stud on the VW team, agreed. “It just takes one bad attitude [to ruin the team,] but luckily for us, we’re rock solid.” Most sporting teams run off spectator revenue, so I asked Joe how the cycling squad will survive in a sport where million dollar sponsorships are the bottom end of the spectrum. “We don’t have anything close to a million dollar sponsorship,” he said. “It’s going to be up to us to get good results and to get support from the community.” Eagle Bike Park may be the keystone to this spectator/support conundrum. This 80-acre cyclist oasis, entirely run on volunteer power, offers a great vantage point for viewing events like cyclocross, BMX, and the downhill slalom—which I was tempted to try, but I value my two front teeth too much. Unfortunately, the bike park is all too reminiscent of Boise’s

downtown ‘Hole,’ where a financial coup de grâce killed the crown jewel. In the case of the bike park, that’s the velodrome in Eagle. Raising $1.5 million for the world-class oval track has fallen short over the last few years, which is a shame, because the velodrome would have attracted national and possibly even world-class competition, adding much needed out-of-state revenue to Idaho’s economy. Unfortunately, a baseball field may be the new future of the velodrome location. I’ve got nothing against baseball—I loved Moneyball as much as the next guy, but the key here is money, and Idaho loses out on a lot of the aforementioned revenue if the velodrome concept meets its maker. Joe’s built the team, and Volkswagen Boise’s helped pay for it, but they are still missing the most important component of all—Treasure Valley support. Nothing gets done in this town without the support of the community, and this project is no exception. So, do what you can, cheer ‘em on, and most importantly, get on a bike and ride. It’s good for your health... I swear, they’ve done studies.





If you are like me, you probably don’t know much about Vodka, except that it is flavored or plain, expensive or cheap, and probably Polish or Russian. But, what if there’s more? What if there is vodka being distilled and bottled right here in Idaho? Better yet, what if it’s made by veterans, who are competing on the international market. What if we hold, in our community, an American gem that’s ready to revolutionize the way we perceive how vodka should taste and be produced? Would you rep it, defend it, drink it? At a Slightly Stoopid concert, this last summer, a large banner took me aback that had REVOLUTION printed on it. I knew that Slightly Stoopid was notorious for wanting to start a gonja revolution, but why make a sign for it when the smoke haze already said enough? As I continued to look around, I noticed liquor tents holding snake-lined bottles of vodka with the words AMERICAN REVOLUTION on them. I remember thinking that is a clever logo, but how is vodka going to revolutionize America? Time went by and I was presented with an opportunity to write for Fusion Magazine. It was then that the owner of Fusion told me about American Revolution Vodka (ARV). He said it’s a legit local brand that I should research and possibly write about. That night, I went to Piper Pub and saw a clean American Revolution Vodka



advertisement, and shortly afterwards, I saw two bartenders pouring shots of ARV by the dozen. I hadn’t even spent one day thinking about the writing task before my senses started picking up on something…something that I hadn’t noticed before. It was so obvious—American Revolution Vodka is everywhere. So, before I go any further, let’s do a little test. Name three vodkas you know off the top of your head. Are any of them American? Are any of them made (including packaging) here, in Boise? Your answer is probably not. Most of the vodkas you are familiar with are probably not created from pure artesian well water that comes from the beautiful Boise Mountains. Instead, they most likely derive from overseas, where foreigners clean brown water to make it clean. So, instead of investing in a “fine” product, a lot of overseas vodka companies spend their money on marketing to you and me. And they do spend a lot of money on marketing, so it’s not easy to compete with them, but that is what RV is doing. It’s basically like creating your own shoes, here in Boise, and putting them on the shelf, next to a pair of Nike’s. American Revolution Vodka is going against the heavy weights, but they are not just in it to make money. Their goal is to instill values by distilling with American corn from the heartland, and,

to put the red, white, and blue icing on the cake, proceeds from the sale of ARV help veterans, here in the states. I met with one of the owners of American Revolution Vodka and he presented me with the holistic idea behind the company: everything is made in Idaho, gluten free, and sold to Americans, promoting the goal of making our nation more self-reliant. So tell me, you have a Chinese wallet, European shoes, and a German car, but how are you helping to stimulate the local economy? Why are you drinking vodka that not only tastes subpar, but also isn’t even made in America? It’s nonsense. Yet, despite it’s superior quality, many have told ARV that it will not survive the fight overseas with the big boys for shelf space. Some have said that won’t even survive in America. Others have even gone so far to say that ARV won’t make it in Boise! But, I disagree. I disagree because I’m an American and I love an underdog. I love Rocky. I hate the BCS system and want the Boise State football team to play for a national championship. I prefer the Saturday market on 8th Street over Wal-Mart. And, I am tired of just buying “Douche Duck” vodka because the guy in the suit next to me is buying it.

up to our eyeballs and we are not buying American goods when we have the opportunity to do so—especially when it saves us money (ARV costs less than foreign vodka on the shelf). I want to see a victory for vodka that is made here in Boise. I want vodka that will go down smooth and not remind me of finger nail polish remover. I want vodka that is filtered through multiple carbon layers, so it has both qualities of character and purity. I want to be able to brag about American made products; and I want to see French men drinking a Boise beverage in their chateaus. I want a Revolution!

I love Idaho and I love the idea of supporting a local and national product made by vets. I hate that we, as a nation, are in debt








Sitting in a garage in the middle of a rural Idaho town is a car; no, not just a car, but a car with a truly inspiring story. This is a story about a man, his car, and the father he loves, who is no longer with him. Brett Harshman is unable to speak of his father without exuding pride. When I sat down and spoke with him about the 2008 Bentley Red Arnage Concourse Limited Edition that sits in his mother’s garage, he spoke with tears welling in his eyes and pure love. “My father was a great man! He was a hardworking, loving, giving, sharing, happy man that put his family first.” These are the reasons why Brett loves the Bentley so much, not because it is a sleek car with a limited edition number on it, but because it belonged to his father. Brett’s father, Al Harshman, was a kind man. An extraordinary man who gave selflessly to the people who needed him, and to some that didn’t even know he was behind the help that they received. What made him even more extraordinary was that in the midst of his philanthropic work with the community, Al was diagnosed with one of the worst cases of Rheumatoid Arthritis in the world, breaking the world record for most major surgeries on a man, and long surpassing the years doctors had projected him to live. “Yet, with all of this,” says his son, “he had one of the greatest attitudes and was always smiling.” His will to live and love of people is what made Al such an astonishing human being. He wasn’t going to give up his life, the love he had for his family was too great. Through the pain he endured, Al Harshman always made it a point to make sure that everyone around him was happy.

Giving abundantly to the community that he so loved much, in 2006, Al funded the Harshman Skate Park in McCall—a 14,700 square foot, rated skate park. Designed by Tony Hawk, The Harshman Skate Park is the largest skate park in Idaho, surrounded by the gorgeous mountain views of McCall, with three bowls, including one in the shape of the state of Idaho. The skate park has received rave reviews by skaters everywhere. Why, among all the other philanthropic work he had been involved in, was he interested in creating a skate park? Because he heard they wanted one. This skate park was just a part of the bigger picture that Al and his wife gave to their community, but the skate park project was the one that was closest to his heart. Through the years, Al had a propensity to always help the children in the area; he put numerous braces on children and gave scholarships to many. He also would help families with purchasing a home. Al touched numerous lives with his generosity. During his treatment at the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Al got news that property he was selling was going through closing. It was then that he announced, “My ship has come in.” This selfless man could now buy the two things he had always wanted for himself, a Rolls Royce and a Rolex watch. Taking a suggestion from his wife that a Rolls Royce may look a little out of place in the Treasure Valley, he decided a Bentley was the next best thing. After purchasing a used 2003 Bentley in Scottsdale, Al drove the car for a few years, but had his eye on a new Bentley. It took six months of searching to find the right one, but eventually he had his eyes set on the 2008 Bentley Red Arnage Concourse Limited Edition. He knew that his new Bentley


RIDES CONT. was a limited edition, but he had no idea that it was going to be number one of forty in Bentleyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s manufacturing run of limited edition. Of course, he was pleasantly surprised and very proud of this particular Bentley. This stunning car boasts a 6.75L, 90-Degree V8 transmission, with a top speed of 180 mph. The beautiful cream-colored coat and cream embroidered interior displays a plaque noting the limited edition number. In the hierarchy of Bentleys, the Red Arnage Concourse is the top of the Mulliner models. In 2008, the Bentley Red Arnage Concourse Limited Edition was the fastest production sedan in the world. Sadly, on June 5th, 2008 Al Harshman passed away at the age of 77 (just two weeks after purchasing his prized Bentley) from complications of Rheumatoid Arthritis. Al was never able to completely enjoy one of the only things he had ever asked for himself. Though the Bentley is rarely driven, except for the round trip to church and back on Sunday, it is well cared for and loved. Brett Harshman will always have the memories of the man he is so proud to call his father. He will never forget the smile that his father kept on his face, through all of his pain and treatments. Al was an amazing man, who in the face of everything going on in his life, made time for the children of Idaho and made sure everyone around him was happy.


Twin-Turbocharged 6.75-Liter, 90-Degree V8, 16-Valve, OHV, EFI Engine; Front Mounted With Horsepower Of 500@4100, Torque Of 645@1800, Alloy Block and Alloy Cylinder Heads










WHO: Steve Fulton, Founder of and engineer at Audio Lab recording studios—recording everyone who’s anyone in the Boise music scene for the last 20 years.

BEST: So many, but I’d have to say recording ‘Rotating Tongues

WHAT ELSE HE DOES: Partner at Visual Arts Collective, board member at Radio Boise, supporter of Boise Rock School, and longtime Boise musician performing with House of Hoi-Polloi and the Hi-Tops.


WHY HE LOVES BOISE: “After a few years living in Southern California and traveling extensively, I’ve come to find there is no other place quite like Boise. I started everything I own here from the ground up. I think Boise allows for that kind of start up from creative minds--and more particularly its music scene and incredible musicians. We have music, art, culture, nature, and compact urban living--all in a manageable sized community!” MOST MEMORABLE RECORDING EXPERIENCE: “Worst: A punk band,

who shall remain unnamed, came in with $200 and wanted to record a full record. I said that may be tough but that I would do what I could. They tracked and mixed 22 songs in 7 hours. The most memorable one was seven seconds long, called ‘@%*+^$!!’ It started with a count in...1,2,3, a big chord, then they all screamed ‘ @%*+^$ !!’—pretty funny! They scared me... or is it scarred?

II - Live at VaC’—26 bands in 2 days, all live, and then mixing and making a 2-CD compilation of the event.”

Boise, 89.9FM. This will, and has already, profoundly change options musicians have as available platforms for their music, as well as giving listeners a way to discover this music. Also, the rapidly multiplying live performance spaces, such as Pengilly’s, The Modern, Chandler’s, The Bouquet, Reef, Tom Grainy’s, Hannah’s, Neurolux, The Linen Building, and The Knitting Factory (just to name a few); and outdoor venues like Alive After Five, Hyde Park Street Fair, Treefort Music Fest, and Eagle River Pavilion.” PERFECT DAY IN BOISE: “I get up, head out my front door, go two

blocks to the Greenbelt, run one of several loops (3, 4, 5 miles), go back home, have a nice breakfast/coffee at Java in Hyde Park, come to the studio to work on one of the projects I loved this last year (New Transit, AKA Belle, Randy Meenach, Ryan Bayne, Thomas Paul, Sherpa, Beltane, Soda Springs the Movie), get off work and meet at Red Feather for a ‘Rye Not’, go across the street to Fork and have their Braised Ribs (oh my!!), then got to the VaC to see someone, like Built to Spill or Finn Riggins. Yeah...that’s a pretty good day!”

Catch up with Steve at and



TARA HEINZ INTERVIEWED BY: TJ ADAMS PHOTOS BY LEVI BETTWISER Did you start 2012 off with a nice, seemingly attainable New Year’s resolution to lose weight? Eat healthier? Go to the gym more often?... And how’s that going for you? Yeah. That’s what I thought. If you’re like most (me included!), then you’re probably already struggling to keep that onemonth-old resolution. Making a massive life change, or even just tweaking daily habits enough to get a healthier you, will always be a challenge. But take heart. It’s not too late to turn the ship around. Sometimes, just continuing to make small changes and find sources of inspiration will keep you (or get you back) on track.



MY TRAINER HELPED ME REALIZE HOW MUCH THE DIET PLAYED INTO ANY TRANSFORMATION HE TAUGHT ME THAT ABS ARE MADE IN THE KITCHEN NOT THE GYM! That is why, this issue, I caught up with Tara Heinz and Mitchell Boehlke, two people from the Treasure Valley who have taken fitness from a hobby to a way of life. I asked them what they’ve found to be successful and how they’ve overcome the small obstacles we all face when trying to reach our fitness goals. Tara, a full time real estate agent with Keller Williams, and Mitch, who works construction-- spending most of his summer months out of town, were both active and took part in sports throughout high school, developing a love for exercise at an early age. Here’s what they had to say: FUSION: Go ahead and tell us a little bit about how you got started working out… MITCH: I was always an active kid growing up and throughout

school, playing sports, riding dirt bikes, or just messing around with friends, but I was always super skinny. We lifted in high school for gym class or sports, but after high school, I wanted to “bulk up” and gain some weight. I got a membership and started lifting with a few friends. I learned the importance of proper form and what workouts targeted which muscle, and, once I could put together my own workouts and started seeing noticeable changes, I was hooked. It became my obsession. Now, working out is no longer an obsession for me; it has become part of my lifestyle. TARA: I played sports in school and wasn’t shy of running around. I grew up with four older brothers, so I was always trying to keep up. After graduating high school, I had a lot of free time and decided to get a gym membership. I was about 17 when I started really thinking about fitness. I went to the gym every day after work, but never really noticed any huge changes. I saw pictures of a show my friend, Sundae Marshall, competed in and it inspired me. Soon



after I met Shelly Madarieta, who was about to start training for a show. I’d also seen pictures from past shows Shelly did and knew I wanted to get into that kind of shape. After waiting almost two months, I finally called Shelly’s trainer, Jeremiah Glasneapp. I trained hard for a good four weeks and, even after taking last place in my first show, I was hooked. FUSION: What is your biggest motivation for exercising? MITCH: Reaching goals that I have set for myself. I know that nothing in the fitness world happens overnight, so every time I work out, it puts me that much closer to conquering that goal. TARA: My biggest motivation to workout is how good I know it feels to be fit. I always enjoyed working out, but it became even more rewarding when I understood how to feed my body to make the workouts I was doing more productive. (Because of my diet and exercise) I notice I never get headaches, my joints never hurt, my skin is clear, nails are stronger, and everything about my body just feels like it’s working the way it should. When you feel good, you do better in all areas of life. FUSION: Who do you look up to or find inspirational? MITCH: Arnold (Schwarzenegger) for giving body builders a name, Kai Greene for his determination and pure love and passion for this sport, and Zyzz (Az Shavershian) for his outlook on life, the amount of people he has inspired to get into lifting, and his belief in proper aesthetics. RIP Zyzz! TARA: I always have and always will look up to Jamie Eason. She is so approachable and full of knowledge, truly inspirational. Lately, I’ve had my eye on Erin Stern. Her body is AMAZING! FUSION: Who in your life has encouraged you to reach your goals? MITCH: My amazing wife, Ashley, followed closely by my family, friends, and my gym family! TARA: My trainer Jeremiah Glas helped me realize how much the diet played into any transformation or healthy lifestyle. He taught me that abs are made in the kitchen not the gym! FUSION: What are some of your goals for 2012? MITCH: Finally break 200lbs and get on stage (in a competition). TARA: I would love to compete at the Emerald Cup, this April in Seattle.



DON’T BE -AFRAID TO CHANGE-THINGS UP & ASK FOR HELP. FUSION: What type of workout program have you found the most successful?

seeing the results they want to? MITCH: Don’t be afraid to change things up and ask for help.

MITCH: I’m constantly changing up my routine, trying to keep

my body guessing, but I usually focus on one main body part per workout with 8-12 rep range, and a 4 days on/1 day off schedule. I have recently started throwing in a few DTP (Dramatic Transformation Principle) workouts here and there on body parts that I feel are lacking, courtesy of Kris Gethin.

TARA: If you aren’t seeing the results you want to, you need to

TARA: The workout routine that I have found reliable is a pretty simple rotation. I have to make sure I split my cardio between the morning and evening. I do about 30 minutes of weights, rotating lower body, upper body, and abs/odd ends.

FUSION: What kinds of things do you like to do for fun outside of

FUSION: What type of diet do you stick to? MITCH: I’m lucky, in a sense, not to have to stick to a super strict diet to stay fairly lean, but I do try to; I eat a meal every 2-3 hours, totaling 6-8 meals a day. I eat a lot of eggs, oatmeal, chicken, steak, and rice. I’m not a huge fan of vegetables, but I eat what I need to. I also eat some fruits and drink 1-1.5 gallons of water a day. TARA: I stick to clean carbs, proteins, and fats, throughout 5 meals

a day. I’ll have meals that consist of chicken, rice, and some veggies with a protein shake. I also eat filler meals with an apple and some natural peanut butter. You can never go wrong with eggs; and drinking as much water as possible is a must!

really evaluate what you’re doing and make sure you are being honest. You might have a great diet/workout plan sitting in front of you, but if you’re sneaking off to the vending machine on break, your body will not lie for you!

working out? MITCH: I’m a huge motor head! I love building, racing, and

playing with almost anything that has a motor—pickups, cars, motorcycles, snowmobiles, and boats; you name it! I work a lot during the summer, but I boat and camp as much as I have time for; and my winter sport is snowmobiling, I also love road trips. TARA: Outside of the gym, I have been focusing on my real estate

career and really digging deep to find out what I want from life. I have had some great things take place and I credit it all to being grateful for what I have right now. I’ve also been skydiving, ziplining, and bungee jumping. FUSION: Any weaknesses you care to admit? You know, so we

know you’re still human? MITCH: I have a definite weakness for pizza. Anybody that knows

FUSION: What advice would you give to people who are just

starting to exercise? MITCH: Consistency is the key! TARA: Have PATIENCE! You have to let your body respond before

you give up on it. Change takes time. As they say, you don’t gain weight over night, so don’t expect to lose it over night either. FUSION: What advice would you give to people who might not be



me well, knows that seeing me eat a large pizza by myself is nothing out of the ordinary. TARA: Candy. I have a huge sweet tooth, so it’s pretty hard for me to avoid. Apples and sugar free gum help, but any sugary treat remains a huge temptation for me!

Hopefully, you’ll find the motivation you need from Mitch’s and Tara’s stories to stay the course on your fitness goals, so that 2013’s resolution can get used on something different.




So let’s be honest here ... when asked to write this article I knew I had been ratted out. While I can explain the biochemistry of adequate sleep with the best of them, it remains my “holy grail” of attainable health habits.  With the benefits of sleep so well researched and available, popular culture still seems torn between embracing sleep and scorning it for only the boring or nonambitious. Our music, movies, and literature glamorize a high rolling 24/7 life; work environments value the driver, 18+ hour work days and paying your dues; education systems such as medical residencies deliberately throw residents into sleep deprivation. We have legalized drugs to make us sleep and stimulants, both over the counter and prescribed, to let us power through just a little bit longer. The internet provides endless information and we all know the best television is late at night, when we should be in bed. We work, study, parent, and play while exhausted. Beside the fact of living longer, healthier, happier lives, a good night of sleep will improve heart health, memory and learning, metabolism and weight issues, mood disorders and chronic disease, and reduce stress and promote repair. Our refusal to admit that our evolutionary systems have poorly equipped us to keep up with the desires and appetites of our current society put us at risk



CONSIDER THIS: SLEEPING STATISTICS 100 million Americans are chronically sleep deprived.

56% of all adults report daytime drowsiness as a problem. 49% of all adults suffer from insomnia or other sleep disorders. Teenagers and college students are among the most sleep deprived and 30% report falling asleep in class at least once a week. 31% of American drivers have fallen asleep at the wheel at least once. And, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, more than half the car crashes caused by drivers under the age of 25 resulted from drowsiness and fatigue. That’s far more accidents than were caused by drunk driving!

So how much sleep do we really need? The National Institute of Neurological Disorders says adults need between 7 and 9 hours each night. But the quality of our sleep is just as important. Sleep is constantly interrupted by computers, cell phones, video games, television, or other lights and noises, interfering with our required sleep stages and reducing the value and effectiveness of the time we actually do spend in bed. There is even a term for it—“Junk Sleep” (or semi-somnia), and it is hitting the 13-35 age groups (and me) like a plague. Why? Social media and automatic text alerts are major players. Seems we just can’t shut those cell phones off and many of us leave them right next to the bed (of course, my excuse is that it doubles as my alarm clock). Even if the noise, light, or vibrations don’t wake you, research has shown that exposure to noise at night can suppress the immune system and that the first and last two hours of sleep have the greatest disruptive effect on the sleep. When you sleep is important as

SLEEP IS CONSTANTLY INTERRUPTED BY COMPUTERS, CELL PHONES, VIDEO GAMES, TELEVISION, OR OTHER LIGHTS AND NOISES, INTERFERING WITH OUR REQUIRED SLEEP STAGES . well, each hour of sleep prior to midnight is worth two hours after midnight. Sleeping in late Sunday after rolling in at 4 am just isn’t going to cut it. Even if you haven’t been drinking, you will still feel hung over with yesterday’s half repaired cellular damage. So here are a few basic good practices to get you started on improving the quality of your sleep, which the National Sleep Foundation has now coined…ready for this—Sleep Hygiene. • Dim the lights in the house by 8:00 pm and make a goal to be in bed by 9:30 pm, and don’t be afraid to switch it up now and then and just go to bed early. It can help decrease your sleep debt. • Remove or turn off all distractions from the bedroom and make sure the environment is quiet and dark; light from and LED display on your alarm clock is enough to disrupt the sleep cycle. • Cool the sleeping environment down to no higher than 70 degrees. Body temperature and brain wave patterns are closely linked. That’s why hot summer nights can cause restless sleep. • Eat a high protein snack several hours before going to bed to increase L-tryphophan, a precursor to melatonin and serotonin. Also, if you have to get up in the middle of the night, try to avoid turning on lights. Any bright light will shut off melatonin. • If you chronically get bad sleep, make sure to be seen by a reputable health or wellness provider.

Tawni Weaver is the owner and director of services at Renu Medispa, located in Eagle, Idaho. For a complimentary consultation, call (208) 939-4456.





Oliver Finley is the perfect testament to those famous words. Seven years ago, they began with six employees and an enrollment of 15 students. Fast-forward to 2012 where they now have 30 on staff, a current enrollment of over 100 students and are preparing to move to a larger location this summer. . The formula behind the school’s success lies in the old fashioned principles of hard work, expertise in their craft, and treating people with respect. Egos- usually associated at any level of the beauty industry- are missing at Oliver Finley. From the contemporary décor and high energy of the school, it’s clearly evident that the focus of Oliver Finley is to give the students all the tools they need to succeed in the beauty industry, while providing quality services to their clients. As with any business, success starts with a vision and the right people. It’s from the combined skills of Oliver Finley’s two owners that the Idaho based school has been able to succeed over its corporate counter parts. Kurt Foote is the director of education. He’s been in the cosmetology field for over two decades and his extensive training and experience give his students a leg up on their peers. “This is an artistic industry; there is a lot of individuality and that’s what drives the industry. We try to embrace that and let our students maintain their individuality, while teaching them a good foundational approach to the industry. So, as their artistic side starts to blossom they have a good foundation to build on.”



Eric Holley & Kurt Foote


Kurt’s passion for cosmetology runs so deep that he still takes time out of his busy schedule to service his loyal clients at a downtown salon. Eric Holley is the director of corporate affairs. He enjoyed a highly successful career in the healthcare industry, serving as the General Manager for a Fortune 100 company, Sr. Client Executive for a hospital information technology company, and as the President of a consulting firm. Eric handles admissions, enrollment, and general operations for Oliver Finley. Eric even lends a hand in the classroom as he teaches students money management and business start-up skills. In addition to the financial instruction received by Oliver Finley students, students graduate with the advantage of having used several product lines combined with multiple teaching styles. Oliver Finley does not buy into the common practice of using only one line of product. Instead, they believe that their students will be more well rounded if they have experience with multiple lines, accompanied by a firm understanding of the different results associated with each brand. “We are not a cookie cutter school. We feel that Oliver Finley has its niche and has an advantage because we are not tied to one product line or one way of doing hair,” explains Holley. “We hire the best and brightest instructors we



possibly can and allow our students to pull from the knowledge of all of the instructors.” Oliver Finley has expanded twice since it opened its doors seven years ago. And, after searching for two and a half years, they are preparing for the opening of a new 25,000 square foot facility located on the corners of Glenwood and State. The move will allow the school to enhance the salon experience of its customers, while giving it the space to add more technological teaching aids for its students. As Oliver Finley grows, the company still holds firm to the same old fashioned Idaho values that have allowed it to enjoy success since its humble beginnings. This inventive school is a unique part of the progressive breeze currently blowing over the Valley. Oliver Finley Academy of Cosmetology 10222 West Fairview Avenue Boise, Idaho, 83704 208.658.1115 Email:


WRITTEN BY ASHLEY RUNION SPRING IS A TIME FOR FRESH NEW LOOKS, but changing those dark cold winter colors and tired cuts can be tricky. Luckily, we’ve found just the tricks to help you out. New color ideas combined with sassy accessories can complete someone’s style if done right, but gone wrong they can be a nightmare. That’s why we’ve consulted with the instructionalstaffatOliverFinleyAcademy,whoareexpertsinthefield and have the perfect insight to all this and more. HAIR IS A NEVER-ENDING WORRY with the approach of each new season. Accents, such as side parts and parting down the middle with longer hair, have become increasingly more popular. Pair this look with some shorter (think Betty Page) style bangs with fringe and your hair will be set for spring. This season, short hair with framing around the face is a great way to soften a look. A bob is a chic way to achieve this. If that look’s not for you, another popular trend for hair that’s fun and very easy is wearing beachy soft curls, rather than waves that frame the face. This up and coming beach look is commonly called the

“Wet Look”. Yes, it actually looks like you just stepped out of the shower. It’s a look that’s perfect for accessorizing—especially with scarves, head wraps, or anything you want to create a no effort style. COLOR IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS A CUT, when defining your style. Celebrities such as Jessica Biel, Hilary Duff, and countless others have found the secret to no fuss color and make it look very hot. Their secret is called the Ombre. This is a color melting technique that differs from traditional color because it maintains a darker root (masking regrowth) while introducing lighter dimensional color through the midshaft and ends. This modern form of hair coloring lends a bit of edge to a variety of hairstyles. It is an easy way to change a look without getting dramatic bangs or a new cut. Lifestyle plays a huge role in the color you pick, so just remember that anything goes when it comes to color in today’s hair fashion. No longer do you need to go lighter in the spring and summer, then darker in the fall and winter. Be yourself while being stylish.



THE FINALE: A NEW YEARS EVE CELEBRATION LOCATION Beside Bardenay DATE December 31st, 2011 PHOTOS Earl Martin & David Buetow

AUDI BOISE AND FUSION Magazine teamed up create a New Years Eve event to remember. The Audi RS 6 display car and red carpet outside the doors set the stage for the sophisticated scene inside. The crowd was dressed to impress and DJ K-Sean and DJ Scan made the dance floor the place to be all night.



FUSION MAGAZINE PRESENTS BARBACOA CHRISTMAS PARTY January 8th , 2012 LOCATION Barbacoa PHOTOS Brian Shields Barbacoa owner, Robert Castoro, is known for the exceptional treatment of his employees, so we were not the least bit surprised to see him pull out all the stops for the staff Christmas party. A full buffet of delicacies and Revolution Vodka drinks were served as the Barbacoa Family celebrated the holidays and a successful year.



LADIES’ NIGHT AT LING AND LOUIE’S WHEN Every Thursday night from 7-Close LOCATION Ling and Louie’s PHOTOS Earl Martin

Every Friday night, Ling and Louie’s Asian Bar and Grill team up with Fusion Magazine for Ladies’ Night. The event is growing in popularity, as regulars keep coming back and first-timers are getting hooked on the tasty appetizers and $3 signature cocktails. The laid back atmosphere is perfect for groups looking for a relaxed environment who want to get an early jump on the weekend.



Revolution Vodka kicked off their Friday Night Live concert with show from local artist Nick Ingram. The sold-out crowed watched as Ingram preformed a mix of songs from his latest project and even debuted two new songs. Look out for Volume two of the Friday Night Live Series, April 13th at the Reef.



The first installment of the Sun Valley Film Festival will take place March 15th-18th. Organizers held a private kick-off party at the Modern, in order to raise local awareness of the event. The event brought out the “who’s who” of local film producers and entrepreneurs.



SUN VALLEY FILM FESTIVAL March 15th-18th Sun Valley TREEFORT MUSIC FESTIVAL March 22-25 Various Venues KELLY CLARKSON STRONGER TOUR March 24th Taco Bell Arena 8 p.m. MUSIC FOR THE CURE BENEFIT CONCERT March 27th Knitting Factory AXIOM TREASURE VALLEY FITNESS COMPETITION March 31st Boise State Special Events Center Pre Judging 10 a.m. Finals 6 p.m. FUSION MAGAZINE PRIVATE LAUNCH PARTY March 31ST Secret Location 9 p.m. BEAT PETE SCHOLARSHIP RUN April 14th Boise State Boise State University Rec Center 9:30 a.m.


REVOLUTION VODKA PRESENTS FRIDAY NIGHT LIVE VOLUME 2 April 13th The Reef 9:00 p.m. RISE AGAINST CONCERT April 20th Century Link Arena ANDRE NICKATINA April 25th Knitting Factory 8:30 p.m. 5TH ANNUAL MODERN ART EVENT May 3rd Modern Hotel 5 p.m. – 9 p.m. TECH N9NE HOSTILE TAKEOVER TOUR May 9TH Knitting Factory 7:30 p.m. RODNEY CARRINGTON May 10th Taco Bell Arena 7 p.m. P.B.R. May 12th and 13th Idaho Center

Fusion Spring 2012  

Fusion Spring 2012