INSIDE: sandpoint Visitor Guide Summer 2023 SUMMER 2023 Ode to our favorite wild fruit The Magnificent HUCKLEbearY RACING FOR SPACE From Sandpoint to ... the stars A FAMILY AFFAIR County fair inTENTS for some I’M SEXY & I THROW IT Disc golf growing phenomenon
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Arguably one of the best locations in the Selle Valley! This wide open 10 acre parcel is minutes to the Idaho Club, LPO, and downtown Sandpoint. Excellent soils and in an area of good wells. Ready for your private estate plans.
Nothing Compares. Nothing Compares. Dedicated To The Extraordinary The Exceptional And The Unique. Chris Chambers www.ExtraordinaryIdaho.com 208-290-2500 firstname.lastname@example.org 200 Main, Sandpoint, Idaho Jeff Hurst 208-304-4043 email@example.com Jill Rush 425-422-7447 firstname.lastname@example.org © MMVII Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Claude Monet’s “Marine View With a Sunset,” used with permission. Sotheby’s International Realty® is a licensed trademark to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates, Inc. An Equal Opportunity Company. Equal Housing Opportunity. Each Office Is Independently Owned And Operated, Except Offices Owned And Operated By NRT Incorporated. Sandpoint office: 208-263-5101, 200 Main Street, Sandpoint, ID 83864. 25 Red Fir Trail A stunning execution of a masterplan that was laid out to create a family home that offers ample room for the many activities that come with lakefront living. Spectacular views from the home allow your family and guests to enjoy this estate regardless of the weather. Accommodations include 6 bedroom and 7 baths are spread out through 3 buildings, two homes that are fully amenitized. Lighted Pickleball Court, motorized Float Plane lift,
Regionally iconic, the Cedar Street Bridge is a fee simple commercial opportunity for an owner occupied or leasehold operation. More details with NDA.
Serving North Idaho For Over 50 Years! LOCAL EXPERTS WITH GLOBAL REACH 202 South First Ave Downtown Sandpoint 208-263-6802 cbsandpoint.com 166 Village Ln #201A Schweitzer Mountain 208-265-1649 WATERFRONT | SCHWEITZER PROPERTIES | RANCHES | CONDOS | VACANT LAND
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Don’t go to just anyone... Connect with one of our local realtors today. Whether buying or selling, we’ve got the right agent for you!
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MillerRachel NordgaardenCiara Normandeau Randy & Darla Jean TillotsonBob LesniewskiDarla Sherwin
LIVE IN IDAHO’S PLAYGROUND Endless NOW SELLING IN SANDPOINT! *Brokers/Realtors please register your clients prior to their first visit to the community in order to be eligible for a cooperation fee. Please see Community Manager for specific details. All information provided herein, including pricing, square footages, home features, and community amenities, is Preliminary and subject to change without prior notice or obligation. Photo is of builder’s professionally decorated model home. Models do not reflect racial preference. Copyright © 2023 Williams Homes. All rights reserved. Equal housing opportunity. Exceptionally Appointed Single Family Homes 3 & 4 Bedrooms 1,917 to 2,561 Sq Ft From the mid $700,000s 208.494.2266 641 University Parkway Sandpoint, Idaho Big time adventure abounds just outside your front door at Base Camp. Schweitzer Mountain Resort, Lake Pend Oreille, Popsicle Bridge Scenic Trail, the shops and eateries of Downtown Sandpoint are all within easy reach. Come tour the model homes and find your own piece of Idaho right here at Base Camp. WILLIAMSHOMES.com BROKERS WELCOME* MODEL OPEN WEDS – SUN 12 to 5PM Exclusively Represented by Gretchen Vedel, Realtor COLDWELL BANKER SCHNEIDMILLER REALTY 208.494.2266 | email@example.com N Not to scale. N Boyer Ave Airport Way Sandpoint Airport Schweitzer Mountain Resort Base Camp Baldy Mountain Rd Moscow St 95 95 2 Lake Pend Oreille
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www.Evergreen-Realty.com // www.SchweitzerMountain.com 321 North First Avenue, Sandpoint, ID Toll Free 800.829.6370 // Office 208.263.6370 // Fax 208.263.3959 Evergreen Realty is pleased to sponsor our local Habitat for Humanity “Top producing Independent Real Estate firm for the past 37 years!” Kathy Robinson 208-255-9690 William Mitchell 206-390-2751 Becky Freeland 208-290-5628 Charlie Parrish 208-290-1501 John Dibble 208-290-1101 Charesse Moore 208-255-6060 Courtney Nova 208-290-7264 Brian Jacobs 208-610-3188 Chelsea Nova 208-304-8979 Danny Strauss 208-290-2946 Kris Kingsland 208-290-1509 Luke Webster 208-255-8597
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 7 80 I’m sexy and I throw it Disc golf a ‘hole’ better way to throw 84 a wild passion Huckleberries are North Idaho’s truest gem 90 meeting the goal A 50-year quest into Boundary County’s named lakes 94 a family affair County fair as a 24/7 experience 40 a new kind of pow Sandpoint’s the next great trail town 44 It’s All About the Journey Overland rally brings offroaders to town 52 tour the loops Discoveries on the backroads 59 one piece at a time Unsung heroes keep trash in its place 63 land of generosity Foundations guide the giving journey 67 playing it forward Parks to see massive makeovers Features SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023, VOL. 34, NO. 2 It’s not unusual to have company when picking huckleberries, but it’s best to leave the area if the company is a bear. This shot was taken with a drone camera. Photo by Erik Stensland 84 152 44 90 94 Main features On the cover: SandpointMagazine.com MAGAZINE | 7
FROM TOP: EXPLORING PYRAMID LAKE IN BOUNDARY COUNTY.
PHOTO BY FIONA HICKS. GETTING OFF ROAD. COURTESY PHOTO. BABIES LOVE HUCKLEBERRIES. PHOTO BY KARA BERLIN. A MOUTHWATERING BURGER. COURTESY PHOTO. NAPS ARE NECESSARY.
PHOTO BY AMY PETERSON
Today I shall extoll the benefits of babyholding. It’s something that comes to mind in part due to our delightful photo essay, “Growing Up Wild Here,” and musings about the abundant wild adventures my own son and his cohort enjoyed growing up here in the 1990s–2000s. It’s hard to imagine a better place to be a kid.
Of course these are times of change and challenge. We’re in one of the fastest-growing counties in the fastest-growing state in the country. The growth creates stresses for housing, cost of living, employment, traffic. Global trends—political disunity, climate change and now, AI—could transform the way we live.
Which brings us back to baby-holding. A few days ago said son Nate and wife Brooke produced grandgirl No. 2, Pepper Rion. Want to get a good dose of hope and optimism? Hold a brand-new baby, that amazing act of creation, and just imagine the places she’ll go and the things she’ll do. The future may be unknowable but holding new baby Pepper with all her unguessable potential is a tonic. Babies inspire hope for our future.
In case you don’t have a new baby handy, there are a bunch of stories in this issue that also inspire hope and optimism, and a dose of wild adventure. From the philanthropic organizations doing good to people reaching for the stars to outdoor pursuits of all types, there is a lot of good to seize here.
Pepper Bessler is about to have the best summer of her life. Here’s hoping all the rest of us do, too.
Eats & Drinks
Publisher Chris Bessler
COO Jeff Lagges
Editor Trish Gannon
Events Editor Misty Grage
Advertising Director Clint Nicholson
Art Director Pamela Larson
Design Team Robin Levy, Dan Seward
Digital Marketing Laura Walsh, Jenifer
Rowan, Erica Larson
Office Manager Susan Otis
IT Manager Ethan Roberts
Sales Mitchell Fullerton
Distribution Panhandle Special Needs, Inc.
Desi Aguirre, Maddie Albertson, Cameron Barnes, Caren Bays, Kara Berlin, Sandy Bessler, Bonner County History Museum, Scott Bourassa, City of Sandpoint, Hannah Combs, Sandy Compton, Rich del Carlo, Susan Drinkard, Patty Ericsson, Dan Eskelson, Joe Foster, Beth Hawkins, Zach Hagadone, Fiona Hicks, Cate Huisman, Lindsey Kiebert-Carey, Korinne Koszarek, Jenny Leo, Annie Love, Marianne Love, Mansfield Library Archives & Special Collections, Kirk Miller, Ben Olson, Amy Peterson, Tamara Porath, Renee Sande, Spokane Historical Society, Cameron Rasmusson, MarieDominique Verdier, Corey Vogel, Pam Webb, Jason Welker, Woods Wheatcroft
Sandpoint Magazine is published twice yearly, in May and November, by: Keokee Co. Publishing, Inc. 405 Church St., Sandpoint, ID 83864 208-263-3573 • www.keokee.com
Printed in USA by Century Publishing, Post Falls, Idaho.
©2023 by Keokee Co. Publishing Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is prohibited. Subscriptions: $12 per year, payable in advance. Subscribe at www. SandpointMagazine.com.
contents 8 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
10 almanac 27 calendar 31 interview: barry stoddard 47 history mystery: e.l. bonner 50 Pictured in History: County Fair 96 Photo Essay: growing up wild 133 natives and newcomers 160 milestones
Estate/Business 102 Sandpoint has style Several styles, in fact 109 A multi-modal curve Dub’s sale brings focus to street plan 117 surrounded by stuff New residents bring lots of new things to store 123 homes as habitats Opening spaces to other species 127 happy plants, happy Gardeners Going native with your landscape
NATE, BROOKE AND BIG SIS WREN PRACTICE BABYHOLDING NEW ARRIVAL PEPPER, AGE ABOUT 10 HOURS.
140 mountain bounty Idaho’s huckleberry adds local flavor 145 doin’ the q Barbecue is a summer favorite 148 The hive is alive Venue reopens to rave reviews 150 classic combination Alehouse now serves up pizza 151 113 Main Launch yourself into Sandpoint’s nightlife 152 special food at a special place District offers fine dining/cozy atmosphere Departments
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BELOW THE RADAR BEYOND YOUR EXPECTATIONS
BUFFY ENJOYS HER NEW HOME AT SURVIVORS RESCUE INC. STAFF PHOTO
A Local Road to the Buffalo
Just past the Kootenai city limits, daily commuters sometimes catch a glimpse of Buffy the buffalo resting in her outside pen along Highway 200. If not seen for a few days, local Facebook pages become peppered with questions: “Where’s Buffy?” or “Anyone seen the buffalo lately?” Who is this shaggy beast who has become a treasured highlight of drives on our eastern side?
Buffy’s story is a happy one, thanks to the care and love she’s been given by her owner, Dawn Dempsey. Dempsey operates Survivors Rescue Inc., a rehabilitative sanctuary for abandoned, neglected, and abused horses. The nonprofit was born from Dempsey’s passion for saving horses and other animals after growing up next door to a horse slaughter ranch.
Dempsey met Buffy after she was contacted by the Bird Museum, which at the time was located in Sagle. Pamela Bird died tragically in a plane crash in 2015. Her husband, Dr. Forrest Bird, had passed away previously, and Buffy had been a Valentine’s Day gift from Dr. Bird to his wife. Now, with them both gone, Buffy was lonely. The museum hoped that Dempsey could take Buffy in. “They just wanted her loved and cared for,” said Dempsey.
Dempsey and Buffy became fast friends. “I wasn’t sure how I was going to do it. I’ve never dealt with a wild buffalo before. I would sit with her and eat my lunch, and she would come eat with me.” Finally, the day came to bring Buffy home to the farm on Highway 200. “When she came to the
rescue, she acted like a brand new calf,” Dempsey recalled. “She was bucking and kicking; she was so happy.”
Life is good for Buffy, now in her retirement years (she’s 17 years old). She enjoys the apples that passersby sometimes leave hanging on the gate, and (like many people when they age) prefers spending time in her pen rather than roaming in the open pasture.
Dempsey fields comments from well-meaning observers about Buffy’s welfare. “A lot of people go by and then question it. ‘Why is there one buffalo? Why is it in a little pen?’ I had to make the transition that was comfortable to Buffy, not what everyone else thinks.”
She explained that Buffy has cataracts and is slowly going blind. “She’s in the pen because she wants to be there, but she has friends inside. When the chickens hatch their babies, they’re around her feet. She doesn’t hurt one little feather!”
Historically, Highway 200 was known as “the road to the buffalo” as it marked the trek to favored buffalo hunting fields near Ravalli, Montana where today the Bison Range (open to the public) on the Flathead Indian Reservation is home to around 400 adult bison. With Buffy, this western end of Highway 200 is now a literal “road to the buffalo” as well.
The Survivors Rescue operates 100 percent on donations. To give the nonprofit a boost, visit www.survivorsrescue. com. To learn more about the Bison Range, visit www.bisonrange.org.
– Beth Hawkins
Buffy has found her happy place
12 | www.beyondhoperesort.com 1267 PENINSULA ROAD, HOPE ID 83836 208-264-5251 WWW.BEYONDHOPERESORT.COM
that again. Someone with the passion and money to bring the Sunnyside Queen back to her glory days, so future generations can enjoy her like we did.
“The boat is aging and needs some love,” she added. If you’re interested in continuing this boating dream, contact the Larsons at 208-264-0444 or email at artnjaz@ gmail.com. Moorage and storage is available along with the boat.
– Trish Gannon
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 13 boats making history on the lake We hope you won’t need us... (but we‘ll be here if you do). 520 N. Third Avenue | Sandpoint, ID 83864 Adventure is out there. Emergency • Immediate Care • Orthopedics www.BonnerGeneral.org
TOP LEFT: RON RAIHA WITH KALASTAJA, BUILT BY SWEDE HEITMAN, AS RAIHA READIES HER FOR ANOTHER SEASON ON THE LAKE. STAFF PHOTO. ABOVE: THE SUNNYSIDE QUEEN, CAPTURED AT SUNSET BY KIRK MILLER
A RETROSPECTIVE ON ART OF THE LATE STEPHEN LYMAN
Ryan Fiske and his wife collected many pieces of Sandpoint artist Stephen Lyman’s “firelight” work, so much so they called their cabin, where the art was hung, their Lyman cabin. But Lyman’s work covered much more than firelight, and the couple added some of his Christmas pictures to their collection after a chance meeting with a gallery owner from Pullman, and were pulled to learn more.
“[Stephen Lyman] published 60 works before his death, and his wife Andrea published 17 more of his works afterward,” said Fiske, a civil engineer when not collecting art, “and I started thinking, ‘Wouldn’t it be really neat to see it all in one place?’ That’s where it started.”
“It” is the upcoming presentation of all 60 of Lyman’s published pieces at an event to be held June 2nd and 3rd, from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m., at the University of Idaho Organic Agriculture Center at 10881 N. Boyer in Sandpoint. The presentation is free to the public, but donations to offset costs are gladly accepted.
Lyman was well known for his limited-edition, fine art prints on nature and wildlife themes based on original works that were often enormous in size.
In 1996, about a month before Lyman died, Sandpoint Magazine publisher Chris Bessler interviewed him about a book Lyman had published on his work, “Into the Wilderness: An Artist’s Journey.” During that interview, Bessler asked Lyman why he was drawn to wilderness. “Ah, well, it’s hard to put into
14 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 Almanac reserve a private balcony for your group Sandpoints only retailer WILDFLOWER SPA AND SALON AT SEASONS 424 SANDPOINT AVE., SUITE 300 Located on the top floor of Season’s Retreat building firstname.lastname@example.org www.thewildflowerdayspa.com 208-263-1103 Breathe. Relax. Release. Same Day Bookings | Book Online at www.thewildflowerdayspa.com
ABOVE: IT WAS PRINTS LIKE LYMAN’S “SUNSET FIRE” THAT FIRST DREW FISKE TO LYMAN’S WORK, AND EVENTUALLY INSPIRED THIS NEW SHOW. COURTESY PHOTO.
PREVIOUS PAGE: LYMAN EARNED RENOWN BEFORE HIS DEATH FOR HIS ARTWORK OF THE NATURAL WORLD. COURTESY PHOTO.
words. That’s why I put it into paintings,” Lyman told him. “Well, it’s something, I think, that inspires nearly everybody on some level. That’s why we have national parks. That’s why we have city parks. That’s why people like to be outdoors.” It was to be Lyman’s last interview. Lyman died just a few weeks later after falling into a steep gully at Yosemite National Park. (Read the interview at www.sptmag.com/lymaninterview.)
Now, Lyman’s body of work returns to Sandpoint as the first of what is planned to be five annual presentations; in 2024, the 17 prints published after his death will be included in the show. It is a chance for area residents to remember–to rediscover—a local artist named by U.S. Art magazine as the fourth most popular limited-edition print artist in the country.
– Trish Gannon
Historical Boat for Sale
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 15
Experience North Idaho the old-fashioned way, by steam and water. This 35 foot steam-powered boat has a 7 ton handmade hull. The 2 cylinder, twin engines are powered by a wood burning boiler. She could be converted to gas or electric. The overall condition of the boat is good, but will take a special captain to keep maintenance on her. There is mooring on Lake Pend Oreille that can be negotiated. The Sunnyside Queen is in Need of a new Captain
you are interested in obtaining the rights of ownership of the Sunnyside Queen, please email: email@example.com or call 208-255-9000
Lake Pend Oreille
stephen lyman art
SHS GRAD LAUNCHES CLOTHING LINE FOR ‘BRAINS’
Bigger Brain, LLC, a new line of savvy street clothing, celebrates intelligence and education. The brain child of Sage Saccomanno, who graduated from Sandpoint High School in 2020 and is now a chemistry major at Bard College, Bigger Brain LLC is a chic clothing line that aims to educate, empower, and encourage youth to pursue a higher education.
As a student at Sandpoint High School, Saccomanno said that she often felt like she needed to camouflage the fact that she was smart and enjoyed learning. “I felt a huge pressure to hide how much I liked education and school in order to be deemed as cool by my peers. After coming to college and being in an environment that allowed my academics to thrive, I realized just how much of a mistake that high school thought of mine was,” she said.
Surrounded by creative students at Bard College, Saccomanno decided to make a difference by developing a clothing line that unapologetically applauds intelligence. “The inspiration for this brand came from my current self realizing how much I loved education and how much my younger self would have benefited from a cool brand encouraging youth to be confident and passionate about their studies,” Saccomanno said.
A successful Kickstarter campaign made it possible for Bigger Brain, LLC to donate Smart in Style shirts to schools in the Lake Pend Oreille School District, and the first line of clothing will hit the website soon.
Learn more at www.mybiggerbrain.com
16 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 Almanac LOVE
SMILE phone 208.265.4558 fax 208.263.5721 2025 West Pine Street Sandpoint, ID www.SandpointDentists.com Same Day Crowns • No Temporaries Implants • Invisalign Smile Makeovers • Veneers TMJ • Headache Treatments Sleep Apnea • Snoring Therapies
– Desi Aguirre
SAGE SACCOMANNO SHOWS OFF SOME OF THE FIRST OFFERINGS IN HER NEW LINE OF CLOTHING THAT CELEBRATES EDUCATION. COURTESY PHOTO
AN ALLIANCE FOR SCIENCE IS LOOKING FOR YOU
Ed and Elly Styskel retired to Newport, Washington, after long careers in science and the outdoors: Ed was a wildlife biologist, and Elly had been at the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. But they found they couldn’t quite leave their scientific work behind.
So they gathered a couple dozen like-minded individuals in their community and formed the Selkirk Alliance for Science in 2018. The organization has conducted events and presentations on everything from water quality, soils, wildlife, and snow water forecasting to the more esoteric aspects of human memory and nature as healer.
The SAS aims to help citizens use science to make informed decisions, and be able to recognize misinformation and pseudoscience. It collaborates with a variety of other organizations, including the Kalispel Tribe, whose Indian Creek Community Forest in Newport has been the setting for several of their events.
An annual science trivia contest, held online over several weeks in the dead of winter, includes scientific subjects from the local (How much of the Pend Oreille River is actually in Pend Oreille County?) to the cosmic (Where is the Crab Nebula?). Hyperlinks from the questions lead to other websites where the answers can be found—and to a bottomless trove of explorable data.
You can join the Alliance, sign up for the newsletter, participate in the annual quiz (next winter), and explore the website to find local opportunities to become involved in citizen science.
Learn more at www.selkirkscience.org
– Cate Huisman
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 17 Downtown Sandpoint 213 Church St 208.263.5157 WWW.ALPINESHOPSANDPOINT.COM bigger brain clothing + alliance for science
STREAM HEALTH AND WATER QUALITY ARE JUST SOME OF THE SUBJECTS TACKLED BY THE SELKIRK ALLIANCE FOR SCIENCE. COURTESY PHOTO.
Reflections from the Feminine Side
WOMEN WRITERS DISCUSS LOCAL LIFE
It’s recognized that Sandpoint is rich in both its natural beauty and in its creative talent. Two recent publications showcase the distinctive talents of local writers. Both books provide thoughtful contemplations on responding to life with all its various offerings.
“Sandpointed: Collected Works Sandpoint Monday Writers” is the collaborative effort of a local writing group: the Monday Writers. The six members, Desiree Aguirre, Jackie Henrion, Sandy Lamson, Robens Napolitan, Sandra Rasor, and Rhoda Sanford, meet every Monday at Monarch Mountain Coffee. The book is a gathering of poems and prose that reflect “life here in this place, time, lives, and cultural spaces,” said Jackie Henrion in the introduction.
The book swings the pendulum of subjects from grief and frustration to joy and peaceful meditations.
The Sandpoint Monday Writers, meeting since the 1990s, is a diverse group of women who explore their experiences through their writing, referring to themselves as “word workers” who use language to help shape the landscape of their lives. Robens Napolitan describes them as having a “progressive, left-leaning lens” and adds that sharing laughter is also an agenda item. “Sandpointed” is for readers who are looking to explore life’s landscape through the beauty of language. It is also for those curious about why that group of women are hav-
ing such a great time in the back corner of the local coffee shop.
Ammi Midstokke’s “All the Things” is a collection of essays concerning her journey as a trial-by-error homeowner of an off-grid cabin. “My writing tries to find the humor in humanity and those threads that connect us all,’’ Midstokke commented in response to the book’s appeal.
The book is the result of receiving positive feedback from a story she wrote for the Spokesman Review newspaper Midstokke and her publisher selected the essays which, as she puts it, “tell a rather lovely story of a woman grappling at transitions in life.” Midstokke admits she has made a lifestyle choice that many people would be leery of selecting, yet she believes her book will appeal to anyone who has ever made the best out of a bad decision, or, she added, “anyone who needs to laugh at their own failures or neuroses from time to time.” Her wry observations and understated wit cover the gamut from dealing with smoking stovepipes to encouraging her offspring to embrace hiking. Midstokke manages to relate even the most dire circumstances, such as being trapped under a boulder, with a positive outcome, leaving the reader with a thoughtful takeaway.
The books can be found in Sandpoint bookstores and through online venues.
‘Sandpointed’ offers writings from six local women. Ammi Midstokke’s ‘All the Things’ collects columns she wrote on her life in rural Bonner County
The mountain goat is one of this area’s favorite symbols of life in the wild, and an orphaned goat kid named Buddy is the main player in Montana writer (and wildlife biologist) Bruce Smith’s series “The Legend Keepers,” with book two of the series, “The Partnership,” now available for sale.
“The Chosen One,” the first book of the series, introduces us to Buddy, an orphaned mountain goat whose life is saved by a raven, and her perceptions of a changing world. Written for middle-graders, the reader is treated to an engaging lesson in wildlife and their habitats and the importance of conservation. One review of the book, by a sixth grade, stated it’s “the best book about a mountain goat ever. I recommend this book to whoever likes talking animals, adventure, and some sadness.”
In “The Partnership,” Buddy’s story continues when she meets Garson Strangewalker, a sixth grader with a missing father, who is drawn into studying glaciers at a spring science fair.
The books are available at local bookstores, or online. Visit www. brucesmithwildlife.com to learn more.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 19 local writers & books
MURAL TO HIGHLIGHT THE ‘BRIDGE TO NOWHERE’
Driving into Hope from Sandpoint across the so-called Bridge to Nowhere, the eye is riveted by the calm blue expanse of Lake Pend Oreille spreading out to the south and west and even underneath the road. Look the other way, however, and the view is of a large, flat, concrete retaining wall that helps prevent the steep hillside from collapsing down into the water.
Some might consider it an eyesore, but that will change as a new art project gets underway. Under the vanguard of retired teacher Kathie Huntley (who has taught students from Hope to Noxon), a colorful new mural will soon grace the bland concrete.
“So many people have enthusiastically joined in,” said Huntley, adding, “the Sam Owen Fire Department has even volunteered flaggers” [for when the painting begins].
With a committee of art teachers, submissions were requested, but the teachers were unable to choose just one as the best. So they combined four into one long mural. The final work incorporates the syringa (the state flower); osprey (so familiar to the waterside); a native canoe (“to represent the people who came before,” Huntley said), and a big, orange fish that was a submission from last year’s fifth grade class at Hope Elementary School. The resulting mural will be 9.5 feet high by 184 feet long. “An entire mock-up is currently on display at Hope’s Old Ice House Pizzeria,” said Huntley.
The Hope Scenic Mural Committee, a nonprofit, has received state approval for the work, which will begin “as soon as we have a few more funds,” Huntley explained.
Those interested in donating to the project can send a check to the committee at P.O. Box 316, Hope, ID 83836.
– Trish Gannon
20 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 Almanac
New faces at Old places
A PAIR WITH A HEART FOR HISTORY
Growing up, Hannah Combs envisioned a life in the creative realm, like Julia Morgan, the pioneering designer of Hearst Castle in the early 1900s. After completing her bachelors degree in theatrical design from Indiana’s Ball State University, Combs realized that what she did was only as important as where she did it.
Cosmopolitan life, said Combs, “wasn’t for me and my heart would always feel freest in a small town.”
Sandpoint has fit the bill since 2015, when Combs began volunteering with the local library, theater groups, and schools. Arts lovers know Combs from her work with the Pend Oreille Arts Council, first as a program administrator, then as its executive director from 2019–2020.
Since 2020, Combs has been at the Bonner County Historical Society Museum, initially serving as program administrator and more recently as its executive director.
The job is a perfect fit, she said.
“The constant sharing of knowledge and stories always leaves my brain and heart full at the end of the day,” Combs said.
“Every day, I witness how experiences at the museum add meaning to visitors’ lives. Accessibility to this opportunity is one of my perpetual goals; history is made from us—all of us—and is for all of us too,” said Combs of the museum, which was incorporated in 1972.
Another historic Sandpoint venue has new leadership who shares Combs’ passion for community. The Panida Theater welcomes Lauren Sanders as its new managing director, who will be integral to the organization’s ongoing preparations for an impressive 100-year anniversary in 2027.
Sanders is a seventh generation Idahoan with a public relations degree from University of Idaho and more than 30 years visiting the Sandpoint area with her husband’s family. Sanders relocated to Sandpoint in 2021 as marketing manager for Kaniksu Community Health and joined Panida in February 2023.
Like Combs, Sanders is over the moon about her new job.
“I’m excited about building upon what the Panida stands for, a place for our community to come together in shared experiences,” she said.
“I’m looking forward to curating programs that are unique and captivating so our community members and other people in our region are drawn to visit the Panida,” she added.
Her immediate goals include learning from people and organizations like Friends of the Panida, growing the volunteer base, resurrecting the Little Theater, and continuing to lay the foundation for “community support and involvement so we can all be involved in stepping forward together.”
– Carrie Scozzaro
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 21 colorful artpiece + new faces
Every day, I witness how experiences at the museum add meaning to visitors’ lives. Accessibility to this opportunity is one of my perpetual goals; history is made from us—all of us— and is for all of us too
A Trail to Healing
Ethan Murray Fund supports more mental health resources
It isn’t the destination that makes the hike worthwhile, but everything that can be seen and learned along the way.
The same can be said for running a nonprofit.
The Ethan Murray Fund, which launched in 2021, is one example of such a worthwhile journey.
Started in honor of the late Ethan Murray—who was shot and killed by law enforcement in Spokane Valley in May 2019—the fund is one way that Ethan’s mother, Sandpoint’s Justine Murray, has been able to take action against the legal and societal system that failed her son. Ethan struggled with mental illness, addiction, and homelessness before his death—challenges that Murray aims to combat by raising funds through several means, including pledges made toward thru-hikes she undertakes with her partner, Matt Connery.
The pair tackled the 850-mile Idaho Centennial Trail in 2021, amassing more than $60,000 for their efforts and subsequently donating a third of those funds to transitional housing non-
profit Bonner Homeless Transitions. Those funds have also provided financial support for people accessing counseling, and the nonprofit is currently in the process of partnering with other local groups to fill in financial gaps to support individuals in need of mental health services.
“We’re getting back on board with lots of ideas,” Murray said, noting that EMF is working to find its “niche” in the community and is open to suggestions from other groups with similar goals.
The next big thing for the fund will be a second thru-hike— this time on the Pacific Northwest Trail, which covers about 1,200 miles across the northern borders of Montana, Idaho, and Washington. Murray and Connery are set to embark on the journey in June. Pledge sheets, along with a map, are now available at Murray’s business, La Chic Boutique, in downtown Sandpoint at 107 Main St.
Learn more at www.ethanmurrayfund.org
– Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey
22 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
LEFT TO RIGHT: JUSTINE WITH HER SON ETHAN, IN A HAPPIER TIME; ETHAN AS A YOUNG CHILD; JUSTINE AND PARTNER MATT CONNERY UNDERTAKE THRU-HIKES AS ONE PART OF THEIR FUNDRAISING JOURNEY. COURTESY PHOTOS
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no ‘dogs’ on deck
It’s not uncustomary for wildlife to be spotted downtown, but it was a little out of the ordinary in January when the owners of the 219 on First Avenue found a young coyote pup hiding on their outside bar deck. The pup was dispatched, and Fish and Game asks that any uncommon wildlife behavior be reported.
crossing the finish line
Jed Stephensen (see our story in the Winter 2022 issue at www.sandpointmagazine.com) achieved his goal of competing in the Iditarod this spring, completing in a time of 12 days, zero hours, 44 minutes, and 24 seconds. Stephensen was met by wife Amy and their twins as he crossed the finish line after 1,000 miles.
catching a win
Locals Tara White and Kara Berlin head to Bristol Bay, Alaska, every summer, where they commercially fish for wild salmon... and then bring it home. Their business, Thunder’s Catch, recently was awarded best new retail product at the Seafood Expo North America with their Wild Salmon Chowder. Their wild salmon and salmon products can be purchased at local stores, at the Sandpoint Farmers’ Market, or online at www.thunderscatch.com
we are the champions
Sandpoint’s Lady Bulldogs made history for the high school when they brought home the first state basketball
state championship —for girls or boys—, after a 69-65 victory over favored Shelley down in Nampa this spring.
Idaho Mythweaver, as part of Voices of the Wild Earth, has created an archive of native voices from their decades of work preserving the oral history of the tribes of the Columbia Plateau region. In order to create new media projects highlighting those recordings, supporters had a chance to win a Nez Perce blanket from the Wallowa Lake Lodge. Learn more at www.mythweaver.org.
A Diamond anniversary
One of Sandpoint’s reigning couples, Jim and Virginia Woods, recently celebrated their 75th anniversary. The Woods family came to the area in the 1940s, settling in the Selle Valley. Descendents operate many local businesses such as Wood’s Meat Processing, the Woods Family Tree Farm, Wood’s Crushing and Hauling, the Woods V Bar X Ranch, and Western Pleasure Guest Ranch... to name a few.
Badger Building Center appeared on the Discovery network’s television show “Homestead Rescue.” The company donated building materials to a local family in need while the show was filming in North Idaho last fall. The full episode, “By a Landslide,” can be seen at www.sptmag. com/byalandslide.
TOP TO BOTTOM: A COYOTE PUP HIDES ON THE PATIO OF A DOWNTOWN BAR; JED STEPHENSEN CROSSES THE FINISH LINE OF THE IDITAROD; THUNDER’S CATCH WINS MAJOR AWARD; LADY BULLDOGS FOR THE WIN; A DETAIL OF THE NEZ PERCE BLANKET.
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EVENTS calendar of summer 2023
FOR AN UPDATED CALENDAR
SOME PLANNED EVENTS WERE NOT FULLY SCHEDULED BY PRESS TIME. CHECK SANDPOINT ONLINE’S EVENTS CALENDAR (UPDATED WEEKLY) FOR THE MOST CURRENT INFORMATION.
2 Kids Fair. Annual kids fair with games, prizes, free BBQ, and ice cream. www. lillybrookefamilyjusticecenter, 227 S. 1st Ave. 2-6 p.m.
2–3 Stephen Lyman “Rediscovered.” Art exhibition, free admission. 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. both days. U of I Sandpoint Organic Agriculture Center, 10881 N. Boyer Rd.
8 Comedy Central Comedian Paul Virzi at the Panida Theater, starting at 8 p.m. 300 N. First Ave. 208-263-9191, www. panida.org
16 Schweitzer Opening Day. Village activities and scenic chairlifts. Come up for hiking, biking, and exploring! 208-2639555, www.schweitzer.com
16–Sept. 5 ArtWalk. POAC’s 46th annual Art Walk showcases unique art . Opening receptions at 20+ locations June 16, 5–8 p.m. 110 E. Main St. 208-263-6169 www. artinsandpoint.org
10–11 Sandpoint Renaissance Faire. Costumes are encouraged and admired! At the Bonner County Fairgrounds, 4203 N. Boyer Rd., 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. More info at www.sandpointrenfaire.com
17 CHAFE 150. Sandpoint Rotary hosts 150-mile/80-mile/ Family Fun Ride. New this year is a “Gravel Route.” More info at
24–25 Race the Wolf. Ultra-marathon and trail race series at Schweitzer. 208263-9555, www.RaceTheWolf.com
29 Summer Sampler. Serving up samples from some of Sandpoint’s best restaurants in beautiful Farmin Park. www. sandpointchamber.org
3 Sand Creek Paddlers Challenge. 15th annual event for families and serious racers alike. Sponsored by Sandpoint Parks & Rec., 208-263-3613. www.sandpointidaho.gov.
4 Independence Day. Sandpoint Lions host downtown children’s and grand parades beginning 9 a.m. Fireworks at City Beach at dusk.
6 Pairings in the Pines. Progressive tasting event through Pine Street Woods. 208-263-9471. www. kaniksulandtrust.org
8 Beerfest. Sample local and regional brews and enjoy a festive beach party from noon to 5 p.m., sponsored by the Sandpoint Chamber. www.sandpointchamber.com. 208-263-2161
14–15 Sandpoint Pride Festival. Join PFLAG Sandpoint at the Granary Arts
District, 513 Oak St. www.sandpointpride. com
14–15 Sandpoint Antique & Classic Boat Show. Free, kids activities available. Sandpoint City Boardwalk from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sand Creek boat parade at 3 p.m. on the 15th www.inlandempireacbs.com
15–16 Northwest Wine Fest. Wine tasting with music, food, and fun at Schweitzer. 208-263-9555, www.schweitzer.com
21–22 Spokane to Sandpoint Relay. Two day, 200-mile relay adventure. www.spokanetosandpoint.com
26 Jeff Tweedy with special guest Le Ren performs at the Panida Theater at 7:30 p.m. 300 N. First Ave. 208-263-9191, www.panida.org
27-30 Festival at Sandpoint: Week one of this popular music event. See full calendar on p. 29.
29 Crazy Days. Downtown merchants offer big deals in annual sidewalk sale, sponsored by the Sandpoint Shopping District, www.downtownsandpoint.com
3-6 Festival at Sandpoint: Week two ends with wine tasting and fireworks.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 27
WOODEN BOAT SHOW JULY 14-15 THE LONG BRIDGE SWIM AUG 5 POAC’S ARTS & CRAFTS FAIR AUG 12-13
Tune in to Sandpoint
See full calendar on p. 29.
4-5 Bonner County Rodeo. PRCA/WPRA rodeo at Bonner County Fairgrounds, 4203 N. Boyer Rd. 208-263-8414, www. sandpointbonnercountyrodeo.com.
5 Long Bridge Swim. 1.5 mile swim along Sandpoint’s Long Bridge. www.longbridgeswim.org
11–12 Aug Festival of Quilts Show. At the Heartwood Center, 615 Oak St. Open 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.
12–13: 51st Annual Arts and Crafts Fair in downtown Sandpoint. Free admission; 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 12, and 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Aug. 13. 208-263-6169 www.artinsandpoint.org
12 Priest River Sprints: Non-motorized races on the Priest River from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m., hosted by the Pend Oreille Rowing and Paddling Association, in partnership with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. www.porpa.org
16–19 Bonner County Fair. Traditional county fair plus Concert in the dirt on Thursday, Challenge of Champions bull riding on Friday, and Demolition Derby on Saturday. 208-263-8414 www.bonnercountyfair.com
19 Montana Shakespeare in the Parks. Check out this free performance of William Shakespeare’s ‘Measure for Measure’ at Lakeview Park, 901 Ontario St., from 5-7 p.m. www.shakespeareintheparks.org
19 Annual Wings Over Sandpoint Fly-in breakfast and aircraft display. Gates open at 8 a.m to 1:30 p.m. Sponsored by the Sandpoint EAA Chapter 1441. 208-2559954
26 Kids’ Day at Sandpoint Farmers’ Market, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kids selling art, crafts, and produce. 208-597-3355 www. sandpointfarmersmarket.com
26 Sled-Fest, a music festival fundraiser for Save the Sled Hill at the Pine Street Sled Hill property. 208-263-9471 www. kaniksu.org
2–3 Artists’ Studio Tour. Annual selfguided driving tour of working studios through North Idaho 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The tour is free and new this year is hosted by POAC. www.artinsandpoint.org
2–3 Coaster Classic Car Show at Silverwood Theme Park during Labor Day Weekend. Participant discounts and more. 208-683-3400, www.silverwoodthemepark.com
9 Ponderay Neighbor Day. Familyfriendly community carnival at Harbison Field (behind the Hoot Owl restaurant). Free. 208-265-5468.
11–16 WaCanId Ride. Annual 6–day bicycle tour supported by Rotary. www. wacanid.org.
16 Farmers’ Market 36th Anniversary. 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. 208-597-3355 www.sandpointfarmersmarket.com
28–Oct. 28 Scarywood at Silverwood Theme Park. Featured on Travel Channel’s “Halloween’s Scariest Thrills,” 208-683-3400, www.scarywoodhaunt.com
30–Oct. 1 Panhandle Preparedness Expo. Bonner County Fairgrounds, 4203 N. Boyer Rd., www.panhandleprep.org
28 Crosstoberfest. Cyclo-cross race and beer fest sponsored by Syringa Cyclery, Hickey Farms, and Pend Oreille Pedalers. www.pendoreillepedalers.org
14 Harvest Fest. Sandpoint Farmers Market closes out the season with entertainment, food booths, activities, displays at Farmin Park. 208-597-3355 www.sandpointfarmersmarket.com
1–4 Fall Fest. It’s back! Enjoy four days of beer tasting and fun at Schweitzer. 208263-9555, www.schweitzer.com
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PONDERAY NEIGHBOR DAY ON SEPT. 9.
The Festival at Sandpoint’s 40th annual summer concert series at Memorial Field features great music under the stars! Gates open for the Family Show at 11 a.m. with music at noon. Gates for evening shows open at 6 p.m., and concerts begin at 7:30 p.m (7 p.m. for String Cheese Incident). Get tickets, maps and info online at www.FestivalatSandpoint.com.
Thursday, July 27 - brit floyd
The Festival at Sandpoint welcomes Brit Floyd to the Festival Stage at War Memorial Field complete with a stunning light show, iconic circular screen, lasers, inflatables, and theatrics. This brand new production celebrates 50 years of the ground-breaking and iconic musical masterpiece “The Dark Side of the Moon.” Gates open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30 p.m.
Friday, July 28 – gary clark, jr
a 21st century rock ‘n’ roll messiah and blues virtuoso blends in reggae, punk, R&B, hip hop and soul in his show. The Grammy-award winner is known for songs like “This Land” (named Best Rock Song), and his debut hit, “Please Come Home.”Gates open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30 p.m.
Saturday, July 29 - train with better than ezra
Multi-award winning band Train has sold more than 10 million albums and 30 million tracks, and will bring an epic night of music filled with the band’s most iconic hits, like “Meet Virginia,” and “Hey, Soul Sister.” They’ll be joined by Better Than Ezra, a New Orleans quartet known for anthems such as “Desperately Wanting,” and “Closer.” Gates open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 7:30 p.m.
Sunday, july, 30 – The string
Recognized for their commitment to musical creativity and integrity, The String Cheese Incident brings their rock-oriented Jam band style, to Sandpoint audiences with gates at 6 p.m. and the show at 7 p.m. Hard to characterize, their music has hints of progressive bluegrass, neo-psychedelia, jazz, calypso, Afro-pop and more. The band is known for creating a fun and positive experience at their concerts, along with their long, jam improvisations.
wednesday, Aug. 3 – Family show w/ Michael Franti
Special noon show where MichaelFranti will perform for around 60 minutes, with gates at 11 a.m. and the show starting at noon. Gates open at 11 a.m. and the show begins at 12:00 p.m.
wednesday, Aug. 3 – Michael Franti & Soja
return to the Festival Stage for the fourth time with their high-performance tunes. Franti is known for his optimistic reggae style, showcased in tunes like “Say Hey (I Love You),” “Good Day for a Good Day,” and “The Sound of Sunshine. They’ll be joined by SOJA, who provides a fresh yet soulful take on roots reggae, a blend awarded with a Grammy for their album “Beauty in the Silence.” Gates open at 6 p.m. and the show begins at 7:15 p.m. .
friday, Aug. 4 - REO Speedwagon
Making hit music since 1967, REO Speedwagon is known for its soulful rock sound in songs like “Keep On Loving You” and “Take it on the Run,” making their Americana rock a staple addition to the airwaves for decades. They have sold more than 40 million albums over the years and, between 1977 and 1989, saw nine consecutive albums reach Platinum or higher. Gates open at 6 p.m. with the music beginning at 7:30.
saturday, Aug. 5 – Ashley mcbryde
Ashley McBryde, whose latest hit “Girl Goin’ Nowhere” earned Grammy nominations for best country song and best country solo performance, is described by Apple Music as having “gone to school on loud guitars and did her graduate studies in biker and trucker bars way off the beaten path.”
sunday, Aug. 6 – The Princess Bride in Concert
The Festival finale brings something new: A cinematic concert, as Conductor Morihiko Nakahara leads the Festival at Sandpoint Orchestra in providing the live-to-picture musical score of the classic film, “The Princess Bride.” The traditional Taste of the Stars wine and beer tasting is available as a buy-up option at $9.95.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 29
string cheese incident
gary clark, jr
train + better than ezra
How Barry Stoddard’s career took him from Sandpoint to the USSR and (kind of) to space
by Zach Hagadone
In his recently published book “Baikonur Man,” Dr. Barry Stoddard tells a story of how, as a kid growing up in Sandpoint, his father taught him a lesson about the value of hard work by building fences. Stoddard’s work ethic carried him through a successful academic career at Whitman College in Walla Walla, Washington, followed by graduate school at the vaunted Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston in the early 1990s.
It was there, as a 20-something working on a process to crystallize proteins in order to better visualize—and therefore understand—them, that he “stumbled,” in his words, into a wild adventure leading him to join a startup called Payload Systems that would send those crystallized proteins into space aboard Soviet rockets for further experimentation, with the goal of putting potential discoveries to use in the medical field.
Along the way, he made two trips to Kazakhstan, the first in the waning days of the Soviet political system, and the second just after the collapse of communism across Europe. There, he and his team worked closely with their Russian counterparts through conditions that, at times, proved more than a little challenging.
Today, Stoddard is a professor in the Division of Basic Sciences at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle—a world-class nonprofit organization boasting three No-
bel laureates and serving as the cancer program for University of Washington Medicine.
During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, he decided to put pen to paper and record the epic five years he spent sending crystals to space in an unlikely partnership with the Soviets, resulting in “Baikonur Man,” which provides a glimpse not only into the science behind the project, but the people and places he encountered while having a front-row seat to some of the most pivotal political events of the late-20th century.
He spoke with Sandpoint Magazine about his early life, as well as the central themes of his book and how he hopes it might inspire future scientists—including in his former hometown of Sandpoint. This conversation has been edited for length.
Sandpoint Magazine: Tell me a little about how the events of your early life have shaped where you are and what you’re doing today. Was there a specific experience that got you so interested in science?
Barry Stoddard: I was just the biggest science nerd you can imagine from a very young age. I just always was into it and got the necessary encouragement I needed from family and teachers and never strayed from it. I had every opportunity to find some other path, but I was always fascinated by science in
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 31
general and stuck with it through high school. It always sort of spoke to me.
My dad—even though he was a straight-up forest products, treated-telephone-poles-and-railroad-ties guy—a lot of what he did had a lot of chemistry behind it. He and my mom were very insistent that I take every hard class that I possibly could, and so that was a lot of science. It was a combination of my dad, just sort of an in-born interest in how the world works, and really good teachers in Sandpoint.
I can’t stress that enough. I can remember a guy named Mr. Collins that I had for seventh-grade biology. I thought he was the best teacher; I just loved his class. Then I hit high school and I had Mr. Parker for physics and I had Mr. Bauer for chemistry, and it was one teacher after another that just kept doing a fantastic job of teaching their classes and were really into it.
The pathway never got boring for me, but it was really teachers and my parents and then just my own sort of geeky interest in stuff about how the world works—how the universe works—that kept me going.
How would you describe your book?
The genesis of this is I’ve been telling these stories in the book to friends and family for years and years, and they’re highly entertaining—just telling people what it’s like to go into zero gravity on the bounce flight or the escape from Moscow, getting stuck in that airport and having this moment of, “I’m
32 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
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A YOUNGER BARRY STODDARD, FLOATING WEIGHTLESS, ABOARD THE “VOMIT COMET” BOUNCE FLIGHT. COURTESY PHOTO
Interview Barry Stoddard
“You should write a book. These are great stories.” So I finally did.
There’s definitely an aspect of memoir to it, but it’s a really focused memoir. Nobody wants to know how Barry Stoddard eventually became a professor, but I think that the story of how a person like me stumbled into this adventure for five years that put me right in the middle of amazing political events, plus this really interesting scientific odyssey, is an interesting story. And I think the thing that makes it a more interesting story than many is that it all happened under such challenging circumstances in many cases.
I always said it’s a first-person historical narrative.
It had to kind of spin your head around to be such a young kid and suddenly find yourself dealing with these high political issues and big economics. Was there an element of intimidation?
Fortunately we had this guy, Anthony Arrott, sort of blazing the trail and we just followed in his wake and did the project. It would have never happened without the founder of that company [Payload Systems] and his father, who had the connections with the Soviet Union that helped put it all together.
I didn’t fully appreciate at the moment how significant those times were and what was going on until that moment on the edge of Red Square. That was really when it all suddenly crystallized for me that, “Oh, holy cow, this is happening. This is the beginning of the end.”
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 33 PEDIATRICS DENTAL FAMILY MEDICINE BEHAVIORAL HEALTH kchnorthidaho.org WE'RE HERE TO HELP YOU THROUGH IT ALL LIFE IS: Priest River 208.448.2321 Bonners Ferry 208.267.1718 Sandpoint 208.263.7101
BARRY STODDARD NOW WORKS AT SEATTLE’S FRED HUTCHINSON CANCER RESEARCH CENTER, IN A LAB HE DESIGNED HIMSELF.
PHOTO BY ANNIE LOVE
Clearly things were changing—the Berlin Wall had just come down right before we left and then the Romanian revolution broke out while we were there, and you had this sense that things were changing but you just didn’t have a realization that this is it—this is it for the power structure that currently exists.
And for me it just crystallized in that moment when I was staring at Red Square and I suddenly realized that the people in the leadership here are flat-out terrified, and that’s really what it amounted to. They could see the writing on the wall.
When I went back for the second visit, right after everything had fully collapsed and all of a sudden you had brand new countries that were rising out of ashes, I was much more aware of what I was looking at. It was so obvious that an entire dynasty had fallen and something else that was really undefined at the time was rising out of it.
Looking at how politics have played out since the fall of the USSR (and especially in the very recent past) do you think a project like this would have been possible at any other time? Was this sort of a magic moment?
Isn’t that an interesting question. I would argue that it was kind of the perfect moment—this all started out at the very end of the Reagan administration. The political speak at the time that dominated was the “Evil Empire” and “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,” and that was really reflected in Congress across the aisle.
But right under the surface you had a new doctrine in the
Reagan administration of getting away from red tape and governmental bureaucracy and encouraging companies—particularly with regard to space exploration—to sort of break free a little bit of NASA and really act independently.
And then you had the Soviet Union at exactly the same moment under Gorbachev trying to restructure the way they did business and create commercial opportunities for the first time. They needed cash as much as anything else at that time.
So you had policy changes that were pointing toward the ability of a company to create a deal with the Soviet space agency going on right underneath otherwise really hostile political talk. And then the key was the [U.S.] shuttle program came to a grinding halt.
That was really the catalyst. For a company like Payload Systems, when Challenger blew up, that was basically the equivalent of 9/11 or COVID to a lot of industries. It was like their whole business model suddenly just collapsed. It ended in a split second. There is no shuttle program all of a sudden to fly our experiments on.
So you had, I think, a lot of push from both sides—from the governments, at the bureaucratic level—to create commercial opportunities and encourage companies to push away from government and then, with regard to space, this sudden change to what was available. It all happened at that time, even though at a political level everybody was really opposed to this.
Would that happen today? We still collaborate with the
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Russians with regard to the International Space Station, even though we’re sort of in the middle of a proxy war against one another—we were in a Cold War back in the late ’80s and it happened. I think it could still happen, honestly.
In the end, cash is cash and science is science. I think it would be a lot more challenging today. It probably couldn’t happen at the nuts-and-bolts level of American scientists traveling to the Soviet Union. It would be much more “send us your money and send us your hardware,” whereas back then it was very collaborative.
When I think about space science, I envision these hermetically sealed labs in inaccessible places in humorless environments, with the top minds cranking out things no one else could ever understand. And then you look at the portrait painted in your book, and it’s a very human thing that you were doing.
The fact of the matter with regard to science at any level is that it’s the most social of enterprises, and it’s totally done by human beings—just like anything else—working with the resources that they have at hand. And more often than not, science even at the highest level comes down to people who really aren’t sure what they’re doing bootstrapping their way into ideas and experiments, and then pushing forward.
I think what we describe in the book is a more accurate depiction of science at all levels than you might imagine. I’ve got a lot of experience working with companies of all different sizes that do biotech and pharmaceutical development, and it’s
still just people cloodging things together until they figure out what works.
I thought that was a really important thing that was conveyed in the book—these are normal people who are doing these things and it makes it more accessible, I think, for a young person. What would you hope a young person thinking about or just starting a career in science might get out of your book?
That was the intent of the book. I didn’t want to write a science book, I wanted to write a story. I wanted to explain as clearly as possible what the origin story was. There was a scientific purpose behind it, but I really wanted to steer away from going down rabbit holes of science and technology. It’s supposed to be a human story, more than anything else.
What I would hope they would get out of it is do what you love. Do what people will pay you for and what society needs, but do what you love. And there are adventures out there to be had in many different areas of life—science has brought me extraordinary adventures that I would have never imagined.
I got into science because I thought it would be really cool to do experiments. But really the reason I love science is because I’ve had so much fun working with people. It was true then and it’s true today, and they are unusual people in that they are inherently curious. I get to work with people who are just innately curious, really driven, really smart, very imaginative, and very social.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 35
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You just don’t last long in science if you aren’t an inherently curious and social creature, because it’s the most social of enterprises—everything is collaborative, everything involves hearing “no” frequently from your experiments and your molecules and your potential collaborators, and readers of your papers, reviewers of your papers, editors, funding agencies—it’s kind of like baseball, it’s a failure-driven business that we’re in. Most of what we do fails, so you gain an enormous appreciation for the people who surround you who are working in that sort of situation.
If I were to tell young people a piece of advice, it’s just find the thing that you love doing, figure out how to make a living at it, and find your tribe. Find your people who feel like you do and really enjoy the same sort of thing. Then enjoy the ride with them. That would be my point that I’d hope some 16-year-old who read the book would get out of it.
I love that idea of “find your tribe” and “do what you love,” but I also got the
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sense that there’s a message in here of “you can do this, too.”
Absolutely. I work with a lot of kids at the high-school level over here in Seattle—particularly some in the city and the central district, who couldn’t imagine that they could do this sort of thing. It’s so intimidating from the outside, because you’re only seeing the highest level of the output.
I always tell them, 90 percent of science is just learning the language. There’s not a single concept that I work on that I can’t explain to anybody pretty quickly—even the really detailed stuff. It’s just that there’s a lot of words that you haven’t heard before. It’s a language unique to itself that’s really the big barrier. And, of course, well-taught science should work you through that.
Almost everything I’ve learned I can explain in terms of analogies with everyday things. There’s no concept with regards to protein structure, function, or mechanism that’s really all that complicated.
The basic rules of chemistry that a kid hopefully learns when they take sophomore chemistry apply to these really complicated molecules that I study. They’re exactly the same rules. It’s just the language is complicated, and if you don’t know the language then of course when you hear people using it, it just sounds like gibberish. But actually what we do is simple. Most science at its core isn’t as complicated as it sounds.
If I could end up doing this, anyone can, if that’s what they’re interested in.
The book “Baikonour Man” is available through local bookstores or online.
Interview Barry Stoddard 36 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
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89 Lower Wyvern Way
Schweitzer Mountain Resort provides the stunning scenic background for this exquisite, custom-built 4 bed, 4 bath luxury home in The Spires. There’s also the ultimate convenience of true ski-in, ski-out living in this gated and desirable mountain neighborhood. But more than that…this striking residence is being sold completely furnished, turn-key and ready for immediate occupancy. This approach has never been offered at Schweitzer Mountain Resort, and will allow you to step into a professionally curated home, ready for immediate enjoyment. $4,625,000
A rare opportunity to get into a brand-new, 2-story, top floor 3/3 lake view condo! 5 Needles at White Pine is Schweitzer’s first new residential offering in nearly 20 years. This condo is located in the heart of Schweitzer’s main village with the best ski-in, ski-out available. $2,299,000
Up near the top of The Spires at Schweitzer Mountain Resort, you will find two uphill building lots situated amidst tall trees with beautiful mountain views. This truly is living “Above it All.” These lots have underground power and each come with a paid sewer and water connection. There’s also great ski access. $360,000-$390,000.
Lake Pend Oreille provides the stunning scenic vista for this large and private building lot in The Spires. There’s also true ski-in, ski-out living. Sold with completed Geotech and preliminary plans. Also comes with paid water and sewer. Get ahead of the building game! $499,000
An affordable top floor studio condo with a private deck overlooking the creek. This condo is offered furnished. There’s natural light coming in from both the front and the back giving the living area an open and comfortable feel. Use, rent or a little of both…The best deal on the mountain! $299,000
A large building lot with over half an acre at Schweitzer with the potential for multiple density or just build a spacious single-family home amidst old growth timber. This lot is located at the end of Snowplow, in a quiet location with mountain views. $350,000
Schweitzer Mountain Resort
not enough to have the dream Live
140 Alpine Lane
Charm, style and elegance wrapped in sparkling water views. Ever heard the term, Window of Opportunity?! Well, this is the view. A custom home offering over 5000SF of living space with views from almost every window. If not the lake, the islands or the mountains, you’re overlooking the gardens which have been lovingly tended for years to provide tranquil spaces. There’s also a separate 1/1 lake view Cottage AND a separate 1-acre lake view building lot. This property has been cultivated for the discerning buyer blurring the distinction between necessity and luxury $1,900,000
This South Sandpoint Charmer has been completely remodeled both inside and out and is ready for immediate occupancy. As you enter through the front door, you’ll notice how light and bright the remodel is. Everything is new! This is a great home, located near to area parks, lake access, marinas, restaurants, schools and everything that Downtown Sandpoint has to offer! $499,000
Just past Emerald Beach, you’ll find a fantastic, freshly remodeled two-bedroom DRY cabin in the woods on 1.1 acres. This cabin has access to one of the prettiest community beaches in the area. There’s also a recent septic approval for 5 bedrooms, so LOTS of options! $349,000
A rare opportunity to own a large 1.84 acre building lot in beautiful Dover Bay! This lot boasts privacy, water access to Browns Inlet, open pasture land where the deer bed down, and a mature grove of Cedar trees. $399,000
On Hwy 95 between Sandpoint and CDA, you’ll find a property with 3 bedrooms, 1.5 bathrooms, a full kitchen as well as flex space rooms. There’s also rental potential from the separate 1/1 apartment and access to beautiful Lake Cocolalla nearby. Two separate lots offering a total of .62 acres. $280,000
This low angle building lot at Schweitzer Mountain Ski Resort is a rare opportunity, as it’s sold with preliminary plans for a stunning custom home and has a lot of the heavy lifting completed for a future build. Or you could explore a Bonner County Conditional Use Permit, which could allow for up to 7 units. $549,000
Alison Murphy, Associate Broker, GRI, Realtor
a new kind of
for mountain bike enthusiasts, Sandpoint’s the next great trail town
Approach Sandpoint from any direction and see the beauty of the surrounding hills, and you might realize you’ve stumbled upon a ski town.
But for a growing group of outdoor enthusiasts, those hills hint at something else because, with the efforts of Sandpoint’s local cycling club and trails organization, Pend Oreille Pedalers, there are more and more opportunities each year for experiences that rival an unbroken trail through deep powder.
In the mountain biking community, the perfect stretch of trail is described as “brown pow,” the terrestrial version of the powder skiing experience enjoyed on the slopes of Schweitzer
and in the extensive backcountry of the Idaho Panhandle. Since 2020, POP has opened miles of new trails offering that “brown pow” experience to local and visiting mountain bikers alike.
The single biggest project of the last three years, with a ribbon cutting in October 2022, was the new green trail in Sandpoint’s Lower Basin Trail Network, which lies east of Schweitzer Mountain Road in the Little Sand Creek Watershed. The 2.4-mile trail is the first new trail in the network since 2015, and the first trail built specifically with uphill riders in mind. It’s also just the first phase of what is shaping up to be a multi-year buildout of the Lower Basin trail network, a project for which POP and the city have hired the International Moun-
40 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
and photos by Jason Welker
tain Biking Association to develop a master plan.
POP is continuing work in the Lower Basin in the summer of 2023, rerouting and improving the existing “blue” downhill trail, while IMBA will continue with flagging and design of the next new trail, an expert-only downhill trail starting near the Schweitzer roundabout, set to be built in summer 2024.
If you’re new to riding in the Sandpoint area and long climbs and epic descents aren’t your thing, there are many mountain biking options that might tickle your fancy outside of the Lower Basin system. Just two miles west of downtown lies the 400-acre Syringa Trail System, a network that includes three
different private properties: Pine Street Woods (where there are almost six miles of beginner friendly trails), VTT (known for its technical, rocky, mountain bike-optimized descents and the long, flowy Rotarian green trail in its lower flanks), and Sherwood Forest, the “OG” trail network of Sandpoint, where POP started building trails over 15 years ago.
The Syringa System literally offers something for everyone, and with two primary access points—the Pine Street Woods parking lot and the VTT parking lot, each accessed from opposite ends of West Pine Street—mountain bikers can stay busy for days exploring over 16 miles of trails for riders of all abilities.
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10-YEAR OLD PAXTON KEE CROSSES THE BOARDWALK ON SOLAR ECSTASY AFTER A 2,000 FOOT CLIMB, NEARING POP POINT ON THE WATERSHED CREST TRAIL
If you’re the kind of rider who enjoys the solitude of the high country, and doesn’t mind “earning your turns,” the ultimate trail ride near Sandpoint has to be High Point Trail to Solar Ecstasy to “POP Point.” Beginning at the Schweitzer roundabout, this ride includes around 2,000 feet of elevation gain, and, if you choose to run a shuttle, up to 4,200 feet of descension. Built in 2020, POP’s Solar Ecstasy offers riders unparalleled views of the Little Sand Creek Watershed and Lake Pend Oreille. And if you are in town during Schweitzer’s summer season, the top of this trail can even be accessed via the resort’s high-speed chairlift, offering riders a 13-mile, 4,200 foot descent from the top of Schweitzer to the bottom of the Lower Basin. “Basin to Crest,” as the ride is known, offers a truly epic high-country mountain bike experience just three miles from Sandpoint.
With all these opportunities, Sandpoint is quickly becoming the West’s next great trail town. Combine your pedal with mettle, and enjoy the Pow!
For more information about local mountain bike trails, check out the POP website at www.pendoreillepedalers.org
new bike trails features 42 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
POP PRESIDENT TYLER KEE TESTING THE BERMS ON THE NEWLY OPENED LOWER BASIN GREEN XC TRAIL, WHICH POP COMPLETED IN OCTOBER 2022 AS PART OF A MULTI-YEAR BUILDOUT OF A CITY OF SANDPOINT TRAILS MASTER PLAN FOR THE LITTLE SAND CREEK WATERSHED.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 43 We’ve got you covered. Go play! Taylor Insurance, Inc. (208) 263-2708 1009 W. Superior Street Sandpoint, ID A LOCAL RIDER DESCENDS THE FINAL SLAB ON WABI SABI, A BLACK DIAMOND TRAIL IN VTT, A TRAIL NETWORK WITHIN THE LARGER SYRINGA TRAIL SYSTEM. BONNERS FERRY BRUSH LAKE 2 TO CDA FARRAGUT STATE PARK WESTERN PLEASURE GUEST RANCH PRIEST LAKE SCHWEITZER PINE STREET WOODS GOLD HILL SANDPOINT MINERAL PT SECTION 16 ENCHANTED FOREST 95 95 57 2 mountain biking trails GET RIDE DIRECTIONS AND MAPS AT: WWW.9BTRAILS.COM WWW.PENDOREILLEPEDALERS.ORG
journey It’s all about the
features 44 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
Panhandle Overland Rally brings offroaders to town
by Cameron Rasmusson
North Idaho autumns are a spectacle of natural splendor. And what better way to experience it than, well, in nature?
That’s the central appeal of the Panhandle Overland Rally. And when paired with music, food, friends, and off-road motor vehicles, it just gets better.
Taking place in mid-autumn each year, the Panhandle Overland Rally brings overland enthusiasts from all over the country to enjoy camping, community, education, and of course, plenty of off-roading. Now going into its fourth year, organizer Joe Muldoon anticipates as many as 500 off-roaders will show up for this year’s event. “We had 380 last year, and it’s grown every year we’ve done it,” he said. “There’s a lot of people who like doing this.”
Overlanding is, at its heart, the use of off-road vehicles to reach a remote destination, though on-road and not-so-remote also can play a part.
The rally, which takes place on 800 acres of private land on Baldy Mountain, overlooking Lake Pend Oreille, can accommodate both.
Each fall, participants enjoy live music, great food, hikes at stunning locations, can participate in training classes from winching to trail repair, and have the opportunity to meet with numerous vendors who sell everything from specialty overland products to off-road vehicles built from scratch. “We have all kinds of training and events during the weekend,” said Muldoon, topped off with “live music on Saturday night and a pancake breakfast Sunday morning. It’s a really fun—and really interesting—event.” The $120 cost for event tickets is allinclusive.
Overlanding is a growing trend that received a jumpstart when COVID-19 made camping and “staycations” more popular, which is when Muldoon started his rally. As the owner of Selkirk Off Road, which sells products for the overland life, and The Landcruiser Shop, which restores and services the Toyota
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 45
Land Cruiser, and also builds custom, off-road vehicles, Muldoon has been a fan of overland culture for decades. “We live in the perfect area for this,” he said, and the people who come for the rally agree, most staying in the area for more days than just the long weekend of the event.
While a date has not yet been set for the 2023 rally event, it’s always held on the last weekend of September or the first weekend in October. Learn more at www.panhandleoverlandrally. com or follow on Facebook or Instagram to keep up to date.
46 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 panhandle rally features
For tickets, schedule and contact info visit: www.panhandleoverlandrally.com Custom & Stock Installs --engine swaps --suspension --regearing axles --body & paint work COMPLETE OVERLAND ADVENTURE OUTFITTERS
PHOTOS CLOCKWISE FROM ABOVE LEFT: HUNDREDS OF PEOPLE IN ALL TYPES OF VEHICLES COME TO ENJOY THE RALLY; MANY ROADS WEND THEIR WAY THROUGH THE FORESTED AREAS THAT ARE HOME TO THE RALLY; CAMPERS ENJOY A QUIET FIRE WHEN THE SUN GOES DOWN. PHOTO, PREVIOUS PAGE: RALLY RIDERS ON BALDY MOUNTAIN. COURTESY PHOTOS
by Hannah Combs
It all started last summer, when a collector from Oregon contacted the museum trying to sell us a gold cane handle. As the museum relies solely on donations of artifacts and does not purchase items for the collection, I was quick to squash his illusions of finding a ready buyer. Yet he did make an intriguing presentation: the gold cane top was engraved with the name E.L. Bonner, the same name and initials of the gentleman after whom Bonner County and Bonners Ferry are named.
Finding it hard to believe a humble ferry operator could afford a gold cane, I did a quick search online and found a few references to an Edward L. Bonner from Montana, touted as a founding member of Missoula and general well-to-do citizen. I assumed the cane must have belonged to the wealthy Montanan, and left the matter at that. But a lingering nag recently resurfaced.
Could it really be that two men with the same name could have made distinct impressions on two communities a mere 200 miles apart? Or was it possible that the two E.L. Bonners of Idaho and Montana were one and the same? A deep dive into the archives was the only way to find out. And the answer?
They are the same man.
Edward L Bonner seemed to be a driven, enthusiastic entrepreneur from a young age. (Yes, Edward. Despite tons of information that will tell you the namesake for our county was Edwin, his name was Edward.) Before moving West, he showed such aptitude for business leadership that he became a department head for the original New York City Lord & Taylor store—as a teenager!
After a long journey through the Panama Canal, Edward arrived on the West Coast in 1857 and established a successful mercantile store in Walla Walla, Washington. Despite its commercial success, he continued to seek opportunities far and wide.
When the gold rush to the Wild Horse mines in British Columbia began in 1863, Bonner and two others “purchased the right to build and operate a ferry on the Kootenai river from old Chief Abraham of the Kootenai tribe,” providing a service that prospectors had little choice but to accept. His ferry and the accompanying trading post were the first business enterprise of the settler era in what is now Boundary County. During the gold rush years, it was a “remunerative investment”
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He’s the man a city and a county are named for ... but was he merely a ferryman, or much more?
The History Mystery is a recurring feature provided by the Bonner County Historical Society
48 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
for him. Although it’s his name that’s remembered, Bonner was just the moneyman for the venture, moving on within months and leaving John Walton to run the ferry.
In 1866, at age 32, he had moved on to Missoula and set down firmer roots. His Missoula Mercantile Company did so well he could build a family mansion that would be worth around $3 million today. He was instrumental in advocating for railroad development throughout Montana and was regularly pressured to run for Governor, though he never did.
Edward L Bonner was remembered as a loyal friend, “gentle in his manner and habits of speech.” At his death, which occurred in 1902 while driving one of Missoula’s first automobiles around town, the local newspaper called him one of the best known men in the state.
I had assumed he was a simple man of simple means, but the truth is, Bonner’s presence in North Idaho is barely a footnote in the biographies of his life.
The only mystery left is whether E.L. Bonner ever actually operated the “Bonner’s ferry” himself during the months he was here or, like most of his business investments, did he “entrust the execution of the plans and details to others?
The Bonner County History Museum at 611 S. Ella Ave., Sandpoint, welcomes visitors Tuesday-Friday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It’s also open the first Saturday each month from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with free admission. 208-263-2344, www.bonnercountyhistory.org
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 49
PHOTOS: PAGE 47: THE HOUSE THAT BONNER BUILT IS KNOWN AS THE SPOTSWOOD MANSION (AFTER HIS DAUGHTER).
PHOTO BY R.H. MCKAY, UNIVERSITY OF MONTANA, MISSOULA, MANSFIELD LIBRARY ARCHIVES AND SPECIAL COLLECTIONS. FAR LEFT: EDWARD L. BONNER, PUBLISHED CA 1902 IN “PROGRESSIVE MEN OF THE STATE OF MONTANA.” LEFT: THE CANE HANDLE,
PHOTO BY BONNER COUNTY HISTORY MUSEUM
Sweet as cotton Candy
THE STORY OF THE BONNER COUNTY FAIR
by Jenny Leo
Nineteen twenty-seven was a year of firsts. Charles Lindbergh completed the first transatlantic airplane flight. “The Jazz Singer” mesmerized moviegoers with the first “talkie.” In Sandpoint, a brand new Panida Theater opened. And Bonner County held its first fair.
To be clear, while 1927 marked the first “official” Bonner County Fair, it was not the earliest fair. In 1908, enterprising politician Paul Clagstone gained favor with the influential Sandpoint Commercial Club by proposing a fair be held to showcase local agriculture. Two upstairs rooms in the Whitaker Block (today’s Larson’s building) were commandeered for the event. Though the location necessarily excluded livestock, the two-day fair generated excitement with lavish displays of produce, flowers, even locally mined ore. The newspaper credited the “ladies” with making sure the rooms were “prettily decorated with needle and art work.”
Fairs appeared sporadically over the next two decades. In 1915 the Sagle Farmer’s Union held a one-day fair “for the purpose of giving the farmers in their district an opportunity to exhibit their products and ... afford them the benefit of seeing what their neighbors are doing in the farm line,” per the newspaper. But there was no consistency in when, where, and by whom fairs would be held until 4-H clubs entered the scene in the 1920s to encourage young people’s participation in agriculture.
In 1926, 4-H club participants eager to display the results of their hard work held fairs in Laclede and Sagle. Inspired by enthusiastic community response to these events, the county got into the act, sponsoring the first Bonner County Fair in 1927. The Methodist hall housed this fair, with livestock displayed in a nearby vacant lot. The event was a huge success. Large crowds quickly overwhelmed the space, even after some exhibits moved to neighboring buildings.
Needing more spacious quarters, the county acquired lakefront property on Ontario Street. Sandpoint architect Henry L. Mountjoy designed the first buildings, which sat approximately where the Bonner County Historical Society stands today.
By 1930, the fairgrounds included an agriculture hall, four cattle sheds, and a judging pavilion seating 700. “Since 1927, the fair has made rapid growth and is a credible institution with far-reaching influence,” bragged the newspaper that year. “It is a free fair, strictly educational, without games of chance, races, or other entertainment to detract from the educational exhibits and programs.” The fair remains carnival-free to this day.
In 1931 a women’s building was added to the ag hall (with a women’s department run by the Sandpoint Civic Club) that housed concessions provided by area churches, until a separate dining hall was built.
The fair thrived until 1942, when no fair took place due to wartime shortages of tires and gasoline. During the war years, 1943 to 1945, 4-H ran the fairs, and defense stamps were given as prizes.
After the war, Bonner County resumed sponsorship of the fair. More improvements were added, including an outside show ring in 1955. Needing room to grow, the county purchased 40 acres on North Boyer from Don Shaffer with an eye to building new fairgrounds.
Both the first Queen of the Fair (Karen Arndt) and a fire that gutted one of the barns occurred in 1967. The need for relocation grew pressing, and county levies accelerated construction at the Boyer property. Ground was broken in 1968, and the current fairgrounds opened in 1971.
Still going strong, the Bonner County Fair remains a much anticipated “summer reunion” for old-timers and newcomers alike. Get ready for plenty of fun, friendly competition, and food on a stick as the community once again celebrates its agricultural roots, August 16–19, 2023.
pictured in history
THE BOOTH FOR PEND OREILLE DAIRY FARM, OWNED BY OLE AND MARY PETERSON, AT THE 1927 COUNTY FAIR. BCHM PHOTO
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Tour the loops
For motorists with a yen for adventure—and the right vehicle— two loops offer back road discoveries
52 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
by Sandy Compton
If you wish to explore the east side of Bonner County, a number of looping, expeditionary routes begin at one of two landmark gas stations in Clark Fork, 25 miles east of Sandpoint on Highway 200. Turn north at the Chevron and follow Lightning Creek Road 419 to Trestle Creek Road 275 and exit ten miles west of Clark Fork on Highway 200. The trip is approximately 35 miles.
Or turn south past the Cenex, cross the Clark Fork River, and enter a world where roads run every which way. Depending on intent and navigational skills, you might come out at Bayview, Silverwood, or Kingston, Idaho; or you can even find yourself in Thompson Falls, Trout Creek or Noxon, Montana. The Clark Fork to Silverwood route, encompassing the aptlynamed “High Drive,” is approximately 50 miles, depending.
Some pro tips: 1.) Fuel up. 2.) Leave the Prius and bring the SUV. 3.) Assure your spare is good. 4.) A free current Forest Ser-
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 53
vice Motor Vehicle Use Map will save time, trouble and panic attacks. Google Maps won’t. (You can pick one up at any ranger station, or download one here: www.sptmag.com/fsmotormap)
Disclaimers made, there are many things to do along these routes, depending on your energy level and the time you have to invest, of which you might bring plenty. There are myriad opportunities for camping, hiking, fishing, huckleberry hunting, peak bagging, swimming, and plain old car-based sightseeing.
THE NORTHERN ROUTE
Beyond the private land signs on Road 419 are many semiprivate campsites near the stream. An SUV can get to most, but use caution. Walk in first. Pitching a tent near a creek is therapeutic. Getting stuck is not. Be bear aware. Keep a clean camp and release any bull trout caught.
Many trails begin on this loop. A sampling: Goat Mountain Trail is four miles north of Clark Fork. At Mile 7.5, turn right to East Fork Creek trailhead and hike to Lightning or East Fork Peak. At Mile 9.5 ±, a motorized trail to Porcupine Lake goes to the west, but Lightning Creek has to be forded. At Mile 17, 40-foot Char Falls is on the right, and well worth a visit. At
Mile 18, 419 intersects Trestle Creek Road 275, the route back to Highway 200. Beyond 275 are trails to Lake Darling and Moose Lake. Both are easy hikes to lovely destinations. If you wish to sweat, Trail 52 past Lake Darling climbs to Trail 67 and Pend Oreille Peak, with dazzling views of the Selkirks, Purcell Trench and the West Cabinets.
Road 275 climbs to the divide between Trestle and Lightning, where Trail 120 begins and runs south for several spectacular miles to a trailhead at the end of West Spring Creek Road. Just beyond Trail 120, Road 1091 turns north to Lunch Peak and a USFS rental lookout. Trail 67 begins here and follows the divide north to Calder Mountain and other trails that lead clear to the Kootenai River.
About 1.5 miles downhill from 1091, Trail 56 leads west to Trail 526 which leads to Trout Peak. Then, Road 275 continues in a long drop back to Highway 200.
THE SOUTHERN ROUTE(S)
Decisions, decisions. If you choose the southern route(s), turn right at the end of the river bridge to Johnson Creek and Road 278, the mother road east of Lake Pend Oreille. On its rise
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t h e
use the district map not google
Lakeview, Idaho was established after silver was discovered in the area in 1881 by William Bell. By 1890, there were 1,000 people living there, and by 1895 the town boasted a hotel, post office, schoolhouse, general store and 17 saloons. Today, it is home to around 20 families.
What’s so amazing about Panorama? For some it’s the incredible adventures. For others, it’s the solace. There are those who stay to experience Canada in all its splendor. And there are those who visit because everything’s here. It’s our honour to share the resort with those looking for ‘more.’
miles north of Sandpoint.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 55
Banff 2 hours Calgary International Airport 3 1/2 hours Invermere 20 min CANADA USA Sandpoint 3 1/2 hours Spokane International Airport 5 1/4 hours Coeur d’Alene 4 3/4 hours + T here’s mor e t o th e mo un tains.
PHOTOS P. 52–53 FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: VIEW TAKEN FROM ATOP SHAFFER PEAK.
PHOTO BY PAMELA LARSON. WILDFLOWERS ABOUND ALONG THE HIGH DRIVE. PHOTO BY SANDY COMPTON. CHAR FALLS. PHOTO BY COREY VOGEL. ABOVE: THIS HIGH DRIVE VIEW OF LAKE PEND OREILLE WAS TAKEN FROM BERNARD OVERLOOK ON 2707, WHICH IS AN OFFSHOOT ABOVE THE LAKE OF THE BUNCO/HIGH DRIVE MAIN ROAD. PHOTO BY COREY VOGEL. BELOW: THE ODDLY NAMED “HOTEL SWASTIKA,” OPERATED BY THE SWASTIKA MINING COMPANY. IT CLOSED AND LATER BURNED IN 1930. COURTESY SPOKANE HISTORICAL SOCIETY
to Monarch Ridge, 278 passes Road 2710, leading to Johnson Point Vista, where the lake can be seen from 1,500 feet above. Beyond where 278 crests, Road 1066 goes left to an intersection with Roads 306 and 332. Road 306 drops into the North Fork of the Coeur d’Alene River, eventually leading to Interstate 90 at Kingston. Eventually.
Road 332, AKA “The High Drive,” goes southeast toward Buckskin Saddle, Delyle Ridge, and routes back to Clark Fork via Twin Creek (Road 1031) and Dry Creek (Road 2038). It also leads the other way, southwest along the Monarch Divide, roughly parallel to 278 and several thousand feet above. Many trails, motorized and not, connect the two, including one that tops out on Packsaddle Mountain, the westernmost high point of the Coeur d’ Alene Range.
The High Drive is huckleberry heaven. On warm August days, the smell of ripe berries leads pickers to patches. It is also rife with dispersed camp sites, but water is scarce on the ridge, so bring plenty.
From its intersection with 1006, 278 falls down Granite Creek to follow the lake shore past Whiskey Rock Campground and Cedar Creek community to Lakeview, a ghost-ish town
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ABOVE: A SEEMINGLY ENDLESS VIEW OF THE COEUR D’ALENE MOUNTAINS VISIBLE JUST OFF OF 332/430-1 ON THE HIGH DRIVE.
PHOTO BY COREY VOGEL. LEFT: LAKE DARLING AND ITS OUTLET IS ONE OF THE ATTRACTIONS ALONG THE NORTHERN ROUTE. PHOTO BY SANDY COMPTON. RIGHT: AUTHOR COMPTON SHOWS OFF HIS HUCKLEBERRY HAUL FROM A HIGH DRIVE TRIP. COURTESY PHOTO
with mining roots at Gold Creek. After Lakeview, Road 278 meanders through a labyrinth of routes back to high ground, so watch the map. For another grand view of the lake, take Road 2707 to the Bernard Overlook. Road 2707 merges again with 278, which finally joins with 332, which leads to Bunco Road and US 95 at Silverwood.
You can find your way home from there. Admittedly, this is a bare bones primer, with missing details. That’s part of the fun of exploration—and that’s what the map’s for, right?
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SHINING A LIGHT ON THE UNSUNG HEROES WHO KEEP TRASH IN ITS RIGHT PLACE
by Ben Olson
We’ve all been there before. The sun is shining and you’re out hiking in the woods. The crisp morning air reminds you why you live in North Idaho. Then you see it: litter. Maybe it’s a little baggie filled with Fido’s droppings, or perhaps a discarded candy wrapper. Big or small, litter always has a way of bringing a scowl to one’s face.
Then there are the unsung heroes who, instead of walking by and leaving the problem for someone else, take matters into their own hands.
For Michael Darren, it was a mission with his kids to pull as many tires out of Pine Street Woods as possible.
“We frequent Pine Street Woods and one day noticed some tires on the side,” Darren said. “I told the kids we’ve got to get those out of there. Ask an adult to haul out a tire and they’re pre-wired to say, ‘Why would I do that?’ When they’re young, they know a tire doesn’t belong in the woods and if we don’t get it out, no one will.”
Darren’s three boys were soon joined by a family friend’s kids and the crew got to work.
“They thought it was fun,” Darren said. “It was a goofy mission, climbing down hillsides, pulling on sticks and finding tires.”
Working with his kids to clean up shared spaces became a
time to teach valuable habits.
“For me, it’s a bigger lesson to teach my kids about learning to step up when there’s a problem,” he said. “It’s not just about passing on the idea of being stewards over the land. It’s teaching them that if something needs to get addressed, you need to step up and take care of it instead of leaving it for someone else.”
Hope resident Cynthia Mason often cleans up high-traffic recreational sites. “Garbage accumulated on the sides of roads carries a message that people are careless about their environment,” Mason said. “I wonder if some people think it’s more acceptable to throw their trash out the window or dump it on the side of the road if there’s already trash there? Maybe it’s a trash-begets-trash kind of thing. I wonder if they’ll think twice if the space is clean or if they see someone cleaning it up.”
Every year, during that brief period of time between when the snow melts and the lake hasn’t come up to summer pool, a collection of people gather at Sandpoint City Beach to participate in the Sand Creek Clean Up day, a project started by the Lake Pend Oreille Waterkeeper organization, and now undertaken by Idaho Conservation League
Along with regular water quality testing in Lake Pend Oreille, ICL’s clean up day (held on Earth Day) is a prime example of what happens when a lot of people pitch in to help.
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The event is always a tremendous success and is responsible for eliminating hundreds of pounds of trash from our lake.
“No one wants to recreate in an area or spend time in an area that’s been trashed,” said ICL’s North Idaho Director Brad Smith. “We all enjoy going out to these places because they’re beautiful and have clean water and air, as well as open spaces to be had. We want to keep them that way.”
It’s not just about aesthetics; Smith said pulling trash out of the lake beds is also a great way to eliminate pollution.
“At last year’s cleanup, there was stuff that had fallen out of boats, like bottles of oil that can cause pollution to our lake,” Smith said. “The sooner we can get it cleaned up, the better.”
Each year the clean up produces about two dozen or more contractor bags full of trash, not including large items like tires or appliances.
“The best part about the program is that it’s self-serving and open to everyone,” Smith said. “Last year there were kids younger than five all the way up to retirees.”
For Sandpoint photographer Woods Wheatcroft, picking up litter isn’t just a habit, it’s part of his creative process. Having grown up in San Diego, California, Wheatcroft said beaches were notorious for the amount of trash left behind. He regularly dug through garbage cans and dumpsters, collecting cans to earn spare change and combing the beaches for interesting found objects—a habit that continued into his adulthood.
During an extended trip to Mexico, Wheatcroft said he began to walk the beaches with his children and collect trash . It was a free supply of materials for art.
“We started gluing stuff together and arranging things,” Wheatcroft said. “Next thing you knew, it was a treasure hunt and we were looking for the perfect color orange plastic cap to complete the piece. Everything is sun-bleached and cool-looking. It’s a great medium to work with. I actually have a fascination with the discarded items of humans.”
Wheatcroft has produced dozens of art pieces out of his found items, including a wall-sized map of his home state made completely out of found bottle caps and a display of an entire wall filled with flip-flops he’d found while wandering at the Clark Fork Driftyard with his kids.
“We used to go there and fill a canoe with trash,” he said. “That’s where we found all the sandals for that wall piece.”
It helps that several of his photographic clients, such as Patagonia, encourage Wheatcroft to continue picking up litter and creating art out of those found objects.
“Patagonia loved that series,” he said “When you find trash and turn it into art, you don’t have to pay for materials, you just have to be more creative with how you use those materials. It’s free, it’s everywhere, and it sure makes you look at things like plastic caps differently.”
Whether you’re taking the kiddos out for an adventure searching for discarded tires, creating art from bottle caps or filling bags on the shores of Sand Creek with ICL, it’s always a good time to pick up a piece of litter.
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PREVIOUS PAGE: THE DARREN KIDS “THOUGHT IT WAS FUN” TO PULL DISCARDED TIRES OUT OF PINE STREET WOODS; THIS PAGE TOP TO BOTTOM: CYNTHIA MASON PICKS UP GARBAGE SHE SEES BECAUSE “TRASH BEGETS TRASH.” WOODS WHEATCROFT TURNS HIS TRASH PICK UP WORK INTO ART. IDAHO CONSERVATION LEAGUE’S YOUNG VOLUNTEERS HELP TO CLEAN UP ALONG SAND CREEK. COURTESY PHOTOS
Land of Generosity
Foundations guide the giving journey
by Lyndsie Kiebert-Carey
Conversation surrounding the appeal of North Idaho usually centers on the area’s natural wonders: the crystal blue waters, towering green mountains, and plethora of incredible wildlife are often listed as the top attractions when people confess their love for Sandpoint and the surrounding countryside.
Still, beauty is but one facet of what makes North Idaho a place worth living. The second greatest factor is undoubtedly the feeling of community, and the people who make it so. Generosity is a cornerstone of that community, which boasts dozens upon dozens of nonprofits tackling local issues like land conservation, housing and food insecurity, educational funding, animal welfare, access to the humanities, and much, much more.
There’s no question that when North Idahoans see a need, someone is stepping up to fill it. That work takes charitable contributions, and for those wondering about a way to make the most difference with their dollars, there are organizations whose sole purpose is to guide givers on their generosity journey.
One of those organizations is the Innovia Foundation. Based in Spokane, Washington, but serving both eastern Washington and North Idaho, the Innovia Foundation has been a part of allocating more than $1.5 million in grants to benefit causes in Bon-
ner and Boundary counties over the past three years, according to North Region Rural Engagement Officer Dig Chrismer.
“Those grants are the result of scholarship awards, donoradvised funds, designated funds, and community grant programs—including our incredible partnership with the Equinox Foundation for its annual grants program,” Chrismer said, noting that Innovia relies on local community members to make grant decisions.
Among the groups supported with those efforts have been the Community Resource Envision Center, Better Together Animal Alliance, Priest River Ministries, Pend Oreille Arts Council, Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, 9B Trails, GROW!, and the Community Coalition for Families, “to name just a few,” Chrismer added.
She said several nonprofits have also established endowments with Innovia, including the Panida Theater and Panhandle Alliance for Education. Ultimately, she said understanding that donors give through—not to—Innovia is a vital key to understanding the power of charitable foundations.
“Our local expertise makes it easier to connect donors to the causes that matter most to them in the community, and since Innovia can also accept various types of assets, like real estate,
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PHOTO, PREVIOUS PAGE: PERSONNEL WITH THE IDAHO COMMUNITY FOUNDATION VISITED SANDPOINT IN APRIL TO MEET WITH FOLKS INVOLVED IN LOCAL NONPROFIT ORGANIZATIONS; THEY WERE, FROM LEFT IN FRONT ROW, PETER FAUCHER, NORTH ADVISOR; SARAH WISSENBACH, SERVICES ADMINISTRATOR; LISA BEARG, SENIOR ADVISOR; AND STEVE BURNS, PRESIDENT AND CEO. AMONG THE LOCAL PEOPLE AND GROUPS ON HAND WERE, MIDDLE ROW, DYNO WAHL OF POAC; MARY JO AMBROSIANI, PRESIDENT OF BONNER HOMELESS TRANSITIONS AND A DONOR THROUGH THE AMBROSIANI PASTORE FOUNDATION; AND ROSE OLSON AND PHIL HOUGH OF FRIENDS OF SCOTCHMAN PEAKS WILDERNESS. BACK ROW, TOM CHASSE AND ERIC PAULL WITH THE PANHANDLE ALLIANCE FOR EDUCATION. THIS PAGE, ABOVE: DIG CHRISMER WITH INNOVIA. STAFF PHOTO. BELOW: U-CAN IS ONE OF MANY AREA NONPROFITS THAT RECEIVE SUPPORT FROM PHILANTHROPICAL DONATIONS. COURTESY PHOTO
stock, IRAs, etc., we can help donors maximize their charitable giving opportunities,” Chrismer said. “Overall, our job is to educate nonprofits, donors, and professional advisors to understand these unique ways of giving that ultimately transform lives and communities.”
Another organization working to help North Idahoans make the most of their giving power is the Boise-based Idaho Community Foundation, which, over the past 35 years, has granted more than $165 million in all 44 Idaho counties. In 2022 alone, ICF helped distribute $611,000 in fundholder donations to causes in Bonner County, as well as $44,000 in Boundary.
Jennifer Kronberg, a spokesperson with ICF, said those interested can open a donor-advised fund or other charitable giving fund to support Idaho-based nonprofits, schools, and other groups, or have the option to give collectively, meaning your charitable gift “can be pooled with hundreds of others to make a much bigger impact than giving by yourself.”
“With our deep community knowledge, we’ll help you design a charitable giving plan that fits your needs and makes a meaningful difference for Idaho,” she said.
In North Idaho, the possibilities abound.
Learn more at www.innovia.org or www.idahocf.org.
features 64 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
Overall, our job is to educate nonprofits, donors, and professional advisors to understand these unique ways of giving that ultimately transform lives and communities
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Playing it Forward
Sandpoint’s parks to see massive makeovers
by Cameron Rasmusson
War Memorial Field has been the subject of major park improvements over the last several years. A new grandstand, fencing, and replacing the grass with artificial turf are some of the obvious changes, and this spring big improvements were made to the public boat launch below the field. But while all these improvements were ongoing, changes at other city parks, as well as the creation of a new one, have been moving right along.
Early this year the city of Sandpoint announced it was launching a design competition to redesign Sandpoint’s downtown waterfront along Sand Creek.
“We aren’t just looking to redesign the waterfront, we want to include the downtown as part of the process,” said Jennifer Stapleton, Sandpoint’s city administrator, of the proposal that initially focuses on Farmin’s Landing, reached via the alley next to the Panida Theater. “We want to protect and embrace our waterfront when development occurs downtown.”
There are three key pillars in the city’s vision: to celebrate and honor the past; to recognize the pressures, demands and needs of the present; and to define the future of downtown Sandpoint and its waterfront. Three designers were selected
from those who made proposals, who are expected to present design proposals this summer for the city to choose from.
For the Farmin’s Landing site, the city is looking for designs that include access improvements for pedestrians and bikers; an aesthetically pleasing layout conducive to outdoor events and gatherings; revised parking; and considerations for deliveries and direct Bridge Street access, while providing a plaza-type environment for enjoyment in the heart of downtown. The land was acquired by the city in 2015 specifically for stormwater and erosion management, but has become a favored public park due to its location next to the water.
A decision on design is expected this fall.
For many locals, a public indoor sports facility was a dream decades in the making. Thanks to a generous donation, that dream will soon be a reality. The family of the late James E. Russell donated $7.5 million for an indoor sport complex, with facilities for tennis, pickleball, basketball, volleyball, and potentially more, and is the centerpiece of planned updates to Travers Park. But that’s just the beginning. The Travers Park project will also include an all-wheeled skate park expansion, a rebuilt playground with splash pad, and improvements to the gateway and plaza.
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In addition, local group Pend Oreille Pedalers announced in April it received approval to fundraise, plan, design, and build a mountain bike skills park at Travers, providing the first such skills park within city limits. Budgeted at an estimated $65,000, the mountain bike park will be made possible through community donations—visit www.pendoreillepedalers.org to learn how to contribute.
In autumn 2022, city staff teamed up with Mike Terrell Landscape Architecture to assess park conditions. From there, they collected public opinion through open houses and city council meetings. Phase One of the project is targeted for completion in fall of this year, with a host of Phase Two improvements planned for construction in 2024.
The conceptual plan for Travers, developed prior to the surprise donation of an enclosed court facility, includes reducing the softball fields from three fields to two and replacing part of the grass with artificial turf, as well as relocating the baseball field to the northeast corner of the Centennial fields. The parking lot is to be expanded, and the playground moved, with all playground equipment and surface materials to be ADA accessible. New restrooms are also planned for the future.
A COMPREHENSIVE PLAN
There are few more important documents for Sandpoint officials than the comprehensive plan, which is often cited by council members as the basis for their votes. A plan outlining a vision for decades of growth within the city, the comprehensive plan was originally adopted in 2009 and is now due for a refresh, which was originally postponed in the fall of 2020 during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It’s a visionary document that lays out the goals and objectives, and what follows that project is really going through the codes section by section and revising [them,]” Mayor Shelby Rognstad told KRFY Morning Show.
As of spring 2023, the proposed comprehensive plan refresh is drafted and available for community review. The extensive document offers a grand, overarching vision for the next 20 years, outlining goals for community character preservation, land use, housing, multimodal transportation, parks and recreation, public services and utilities, economic development, airport expansion, natural resources, and more. All design and planning documents are available on the city’s website at www.sandpointid.gov, by choosing the tab “Master Plans.”
“Those changes today that are moving forward—developments that are occurring and projects that are happening—are moving forward because they’re in alignment with the vision of the comp plan,” said Stapleton.
The refreshed comprehensive plan is now undergoing public review, with the city inviting the public to offer their thoughts via workshops and public hearings. Should all go according to the project outline, the plan is cruising toward adoption in the summer of 2023.
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parks plan features
PHOTOS FROM TOP: A REFRESHED WAR MEMORIAL FIELD PRESENTS AN IMPOSING FACE TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD; THE BALL FIELDS AT TRAVERS PARK WILL SEE SOME ARTIFICIAL TURF IN THE FUTURE; TRAVERS PARK, WITH SO MANY DIFFERENT AMENITIES AVAILABLE, DRAWS CROWDS ON NICE DAYS. PREVIOUS PAGE: FARMIN’S LANDING OFFERS DOWNTOWN WATERFRONT ACCESS. CITY OF SANDPOINT PHOTOS
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Can we Paint?
Plein air artists capture mountain beauty
by Sandy Compton
The French have an expression—en plein air—that means just what it sounds like: “in the open air.” It’s used to refer to a painting style wherein painters capture their subject outdoors, in natural light.
In 2009, three painters and a “guide” entered the Scotchman Peaks on the first adventure to be known as “The Extreme Pleinair.” The artists followed the guide—however foolishly—into the high sources of Ross Creek and Blue Creek near the Idaho/Montana border. It was, to use an over-used word, “epic;” so epic that one artist swore off the Extreme forever. Painters Jared Shear and Aaron Johnson and the guide came back time and again.
Twelve more expeditions have entered into the wild country north of the Clark Fork River between Bull River and
Lightning Creek, all to benefit Friends of Scotchman Peaks Wilderness, which advocates for federal wilderness designation of the area. The route of march and cast of characters has varied over time, but the overall mission has remained the same: take artists into the wild and let them make art. And have fun.
There are three types of fun. Type one is fun now. Type two is fun to talk about later. Type three is not really fun. The Extreme always features types one and two, and sometimes type three. But after a few years, even type three can become type two.
“Capturing the beauty of the backcountry takes artists who are both talented and tough,” said FSPW Executive Director Phil Hough. It’s also good if they have a sense of humor.
If you want to paint outdoors, there is a lot of outdoors in the
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72 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 sandpoint Award Winning Floral Design Garden Supplies Landscape & Interior Plants Gift Shop Local Artisans Open Year-Around • 31831 Highway 200 E. • Sandpoint, ID • 208-265-2944 Order Online at AllSeasonsGardenAndFloral.com email@example.com 916.899.1346 www.jennybenoitfineart.com Lan dscapes | Portraits | Maps & Murals Sandpoint, Idaho 208.264.0444• ArtnJaz@gmail.com • 208.255.9000 ww w.MariaLarsonArt.com Maria Larson Art | | "Marsh Moose" detail; acrylic on board(36x48) Scherr Haven Studio Work can be viewed at the Schweitzer Art Gallery and the Chimney Rock at Schweitzer. Open May through September by calling for a appointment 208-290-7570 www.conniescherr.com Artfully Sandpoint is a treat for art lovers as artists—and their galleries—abound! Keep your eyes open in local businesss as many choose to grace their walls (inside and out) with art, and take a gander at our own ‘graffiti art gallery’ located in the alley between First and Second avenues, and Cedar and Main streets. And don’t miss the Arts & Crafts Fair, held every August in Sandpoint!
Scotchmans interior. Plus pure adventure. No roads. Few trails. Loads of vertical. Good opportunities to get kind of, but never totally, lost. Peaks to climb. Springs, streams, and waterfalls providing plenty of water for personal consumption, gouache, and watercolors. Critters to spot. Spectacular subjects and time to paint them. Alder and devil’s club to fight.
“I love everything about the Extreme,” said Johnson (who seemingly likes to suffer), “especially alder and devil’s club. Everything is hard, getting the gear in, choosing what to paint, having the energy to make art after a long hike. But the hike refills me. Days in the wilderness provide endless inspiration., and the Scotchmans and people I’ve hiked with are part of me wherever I am.”
Carol Maddux, who first joined in 2018, is in agreement. “My least favorite thing is alder,” she said, “but it is still my least favorite thing. I love all of it; particularly the good friends I would have never met and knowledge that there is still wilderness out there.”
“Can we paint?” is one motto of the Extreme, which the guide is always willing to answer in the affirmative. He needs the rest. Another might be, “This wasn’t in the brochure!” introduced when painter Ed Robinson joined in 2017.
This might be murmured while traversing a scree slope or thicket of alder, muttered trying to kill a dozen mosquitoes with one blow, or said right out loud while navigating a cliffy spot one Extreme regular insists we don’t tell their spouse about.
Robinson was joking—sort of—but also appreciative of other stuff not in the (non-existent) brochure. “My favorite thing about the Extreme,” he said, “is the multi-day, total immersion with good friends into two of my greatest interests—the backcountry and plein air painting.” He also admits that one of his favorite nights in wild country was an “extra” necessitated by a wonderfully miserable day—type two fun, for sure—crawling over, around, and through stacks of wind-thrown and floodtoppled trees in the West Fork of Blue Creek. That certainly wasn’t in the brochure.
The 13 Extremes have included painters, sculptors, mixed media and pencil artists, writers, photographers, and cinematographers, as well as observers (besides the guide). The list of artists includes those mentioned, plus Victor Vosen, Melissa Thompson, Deb Hunsicker, David Herbold, Lauren McCleary, Sam Olson, Aaron Theisen, and Marjolein Groot Nibbelink. The 2010 version of the hike was filmed by Wildman Pictures for
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“Capturing the beauty of the backcountry takes artists who are both talented and tough
PHOTOS: P. 71, TOP: AARON JOHNSON GETS HIS ART ON.
PHOTO BY JOE FOSTER. AT BOTTOM IS JOHNSON’S PAINTING OF SPAR PEAK, VIEWED FROM AMANDA CRAG. PHOTO BY SANDY COMPTON. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM UPPER LEFT: HIKERS DETERMINE THE BEST WAY TO GO; PLEIN AIR HIKERS PASS THROUGH MAGNIFICENT SCENERY; THE SKY CHALLENGES PAINTERS TO MATCH ITS BEAUTY. PHOTOS BY JOE FOSTER
“En Pleinair,” directed by Jake Glass, filmed and photographed by Glass and Matt Stauble and edited by Joe Foster. (Watch it at www.sptmag.com/pleinairmovie)
The Extreme grew out of the FSPW Pleinair Paintout, based for much of a decade at Kallie Thurman’s Outskirts Gallery in Hope, in which artists worked around the edges of the proposed wilderness. Johnson and Shear participated in this event in 2008. At the resulting art show in Sandpoint, they approached Paintout organizer and FSPW board member Neil Wimberly and said, “We want to go inside the wilderness and paint.” Wimberly pointed out the “guide,” and the Extreme was hatched. The first expedition took place the next summer.
The sale of Extreme art often benefits the artists and FSPW as well. Many resulting works have been donated for auction or sold at events with the proceeds divided between the artist and FSPW.
“It’s a win-win,” said Hough. “Not only do the artists and FSPW benefit financially, the artists have opened the eyes of many to the beauty of the Scotchmans beyond the trail.”
There are other benefits for the artists as well. Extended time in the wild doing what one loves to do provides opportunity to rest from the “real” world, even while pushing physical limits toward the edge of capability.
“It’s an opportunity to enter into a different world,” Johnson said. “Painting in the Scotchmans isn’t like plein air painting anywhere else.” That isn’t in the brochure either.
The 14th Extreme Pleinair is in the planning stages. Learn more at www.scotchmanpeaks.org
plein air painting features 74 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
Painting in the Scotchmans isn’t like plein air painting anywhere else
ED ROBINSON’S PAINTING OF MELISSA BASIN, DONE ON A PLEIN AIR HIKE. PHOTO BY SANDY COMPTON
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GROUP REINVIGORATES AS PEND OREILLE ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP
by Trish Gannon
Early this year, Brent Baker was hired to man the helm at the Pend Oreille Economic Partnership. Formerly the Bonner County Economic Development Corporation, the nonprofit entity rebranded itself in order to expand its mission to more broadly provide resources and support for the Lake Pend Oreille region and its economic community.
Baker, a retired builder and developer, is no stranger to serving his community, having been a school board chairman and fire commissioner. He has also served on the Lakes Commission since inception, co-founded Sandpoint High School’s residential carpentry program, and helped design and implement an experimental youth job skills training program for the county’s juvenile detention center.
After “retiring,” Baker began Elevate Now Consulting, LLC, which focused on helping small and medium businesses develop strong leadership skills and company cultures, and developed and delivered consulting, training, and education programs to custom homebuilders and remodelers.
Now Baker is excited to work with PEP and its partners to address the challenges that face the economic future of the county. “Our focus is on quality of life,” he said. “We want a sustainable prosperity for the whole community; that requires healthy businesses, affordable housing, and a strong educational system.”
Baker said the area is challenged by an influx of growth that remains tilted toward an older demographic, while younger workers struggle to find affordable housing and livable-wage work with opportunities for advancement. “There are a lot of people doing good work to overcome those challenges.”
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PHOTOS, ABOVE: WORKFORCE HOUSING BEING BUILT BY SCHWEITZER ON TRIANGLE DRIVE IS AN AREA THE PARTNERSHIP SEEKS TO SUPPORT. STAFF PHOTO. INSET: BRENT BAKER, COURTESY PHOTO
Baker sees his role as being a support hub to various efforts to do just that. “PEP is a single, coordinating force. We offer businesses educational programs, mentorships, access to the data they need when making decisions, access to funding options, and more.” That type of help can make a big difference. “The area has been able to attract a lot of clean manufacturing—these are long-term jobs for the future—and we want to continue to help with that,” he added.
As this issue goes to press Baker will preside over the group’s Economic Summit, an annual event that provides a snapshot of the economic factors that impact our community. PEP counts a number of area businesses as partners—Litehouse, Bonner General Health, Washington Trust Bank, and Ting, among others—along with county and city governments, and organizations like Innovia Foundation. “We have participation options for everybody,” Baker said.
To get involved, or learn more about PEP, visit their website at www.pepidaho.org, or call 208-290-7752.
features 78 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 baker to lead poep Bizarre Bazaar upscale resale shop 502 Church Street , Sandpoint 208.263.3400
ONE GOAL OF THE PEND OREILLE ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP IS TO ENSURE OPPORTUNITY FOR LOCAL WORKERS—AND A GOOD WORKFORCE FOR LOCAL EMPLOYERS. STAFF PHOTO
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I’m Sexyand I throw it Disc golf courses a ‘hole’ better way to throw a frisbee
by Cameron Rasmussen
While sports like pickleball are making a splash and generating headlines with their exploding popularity, it’s easy to forget the ever-reliable disc golf.
Still among the fastest-growing sports in the world, disc golf has a thriving community in Sandpoint. Baldfoot Disc Golf Course, located off Baldy Mountain Road just west of the intersection with Great Northern Road, continues to grow year to year, and as of November 2018, players have a new, world-class course: Caliber Disc Golf Course about 10 minutes north of Sandpoint.
“I ran across a great piece of land, and the more I looked at it, the more I figured it was a special place that’d be great for disc golf,” said Caliber owner Paul Stiller.
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But with the growth in interest comes some concern for future stability. For Baldfoot officials, that means ironing out an agreement with the city of Sandpoint for long-term use of the public property the course is built on.
“Because this property could never be replaced due to its size and close proximity to downtown Sandpoint, it’s our opinion (and the opinion of city poll takers) that keeping this property open for public use far exceeds the small amount that the property would fetch if sold,” reads a statement from the board of Great Northern Disc Golf, which manages Baldfoot.
Let’s start with the good news: disc golf has never been more popular in Sandpoint. To support the community, the GNDG request that players contribute a user fee of $1 per round, and each year, the amount of money collected increases. Likewise, interest in tournaments and organized activities jumps from year to year.
“The Baldfoot league nights continue to grow each year, so regulars are using the course not just for leisure play, but also for competitive play,” read the board’s statement. “And our Facebook page now has over 1,200 followers, so all of these are good signs of support for the Baldfoot Disc Golf Course.
“We’re just seeing more players from a wider range of skill levels and ages coming out to play the sport,” they added.
The creation of Caliber Disc Golf Course several years ago adds to Sandpoint’s appeal as a disc golf destination. It was rated No. 8 in the world by users of the app UDisc last year. According to Stiller, they logged visitors from 47 states last year, and groups from Oregon and Washington come up monthly to enjoy disc golf without the crowds typical of the Pacific Northwest city courses. Stiller said the course is just starting to show
a return on the investment, and he has plans in place to add a second course, Motherlode, that they hope to annex to the existing Caliber permit.
“We’d also like to establish a better clubhouse with better food offerings,” he said. “And we want to just add more amenities generally.”
It’s no secret why disc golf is enduringly popular. It’s a great social activity made for hanging out with friends, easy to learn, one of the most affordable sports around, and fun for people of all ages and fitness levels. And thanks to the community building GNDG provides, it’s a great way to meet new friends through local tournaments, clinics, and league events.
To continue their part in building that community, the GNDG board hopes to reach an agreement with the city soon.
“It’s our hope that the Parks and Rec department would take over the property since the purchase price is so reasonable and the land is being maintained at no cost by Great Northern Disc Golf and thousands of hours of volunteer time,” read the communication from the board. “If that’s not possible, Great Northern Disc Golf hopes to raise funds through donations and grants to help pay for the property with the city’s help.”
Given that the local disc golf community members have already had to move once—their initial home was at the former University of Idaho property which has since been sold for housing development—they aim to do everything in their power to stay right where they are.
The board statement shared, “Our hope is that the Baldfoot course is in its permanent home for the area to enjoy. We also have plans to improve the course aesthetics and functionality, but we’re on pause until we have a commitment.”
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We’re just seeing more players from a wider range of skill levels and ages coming out to play the sport
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PHOTO PAGE 85: DANNY PFEIFER SINKS A PUTT ON THE 3RD HOLE AT CALIBER DISC GOLF COURSE. CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: RILEY EMMER RIPS ONE OFF THE 18TH TEE AT BALDFOOT DISC GOLF COURSE; (FROM LEFT TO RIGHT) KARL KLEINKAUF, RILEY EMMER & JOHN GADDESS ON THE MOVE TO THE NEXT TEE, ACCOMPANIED BY THEIR FURRY TEAMMATES; THE BALDFOOT LEAGUE GETTING IN SOME PRACTICE PUTTING BEFORE THEIR ROUND. ALL PHOTOS BY CAMERON BARNES
PASSION A Wild
HUCKLEBERRY PICKING AT SCHWEITZER.
PHOTO BY KORINE KOSZAREK
Tiny, purple, and an irresistible lure, huckleberries are North Idaho’s truest gem
by Renée Sande
By all definitions, it’s the wild child of the plant kingdom—a free spirit, refusing to be tamed—and it has us all under its spell.
Its nickname—Purple Gold—speaks to our infatuation with the small, sweet-tart, sometimes-elusive, coveted beauty called the huckleberry, named the state’s official fruit back in 2000, thanks to the work of a bunch of Sagle Elementary students.
“People love their huckleberries,” said Patrick Lair, public affairs officer for the Idaho Panhandle National Forest Service. “Our phones get busier in mid to later summer, for sure. People want to know what to look for, where to pick them.”
But if you’re looking for hints from other “huckleberry hounds” as to where to find them, expect to get a lot of very general direction, as in “the hillsides of North Idaho” or even “Texas.”
“Pickers are typically very proprietary of where they pick,” said Lair. “Some places are definitely more plentiful than others; you just have to go up high enough and know what you’re looking for.”
While it’s estimated there are about 20 different species of huckleberries in the Pacific Northwest, the Mountain Blue Huckleberry—the most prevalent in North Idaho—can be found at elevations typically between 4,000 to 8,000 feet.
Huckleberry bushes prefer part shade with dappled light but adapt to anything from full sun to complete shade. Flowering from late spring to June, the huckleberry plant has creamypink blossoms that are urn-shaped and thin, oval leaves, with a pointy tip. The leaves turn a brilliant red in fall.
Although purple is the huckleberry’s most noted hue, it actually ranges in color from orangey-red to purple to deep blue-black—depending on the type of huckleberry. The berries
like acidic soil and thrive where fires have thinned overgrowth and opened the forest canopy. (Pro tip: morel mushrooms like fire-burned areas as well.)
If it’s a particularly wet spring, comfort yourself with the knowledge that all that water makes for an excellent berry crop. While the berries are ripe for picking from mid summer to fall, when that picking window opens is largely dependent on warmth. Start looking at lower elevations around the middle to end of July, and you just might spend your day picking; the higher the elevation, the later it will be before berries are ready.
And if you don’t get out in the woods frequently, check local community Facebook pages; you’ll find many people giving updates on whether the berries are ripe yet.
For many, picking huckleberries is a peaceful pastime, soaking in the quiet of the Pacific Northwest forests, eating as you pick, consuming more than you take home, and hopefully ending up with at least a quart or so to make delicious huckleberry shakes or perhaps even a pie. You can easily substitute for blueberries in any recipe you like.
There are those who would love to partake in this natural delicacy without the laborious efforts of hiking and picking. After all, the reward for picking is very well-earned.
Not only are the berries hidden underneath leaf cover, they are small, making picking a slow process. As well, there is the competition with wildlife—especially bears—who depend on them for the fatty nutrients and carbohydrates that are crucial for energy and who may have gotten to them first.
That’s why there’s a high price tag when buying from commercial pickers, who can ask $20 to $50 or more per gallon, depending on the season. And while many do buy from these pickers, be aware that commercial picking is illegal on Idaho
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Be Kind to our
The Idaho Panhandle National Forest is reminding huckleberry pickers that commercial picking of huckleberries is not permitted. Additionally, huckleberry pickers are encouraged to pick only what they can consume so that others may enjoy the fun of picking and the delicious taste of our state fruit.
Minimum fines for commercial picking start at $250, and can increase based on the severity of the offense. For recreational huckleberry gathering there are no permits required, nor are there volume or weight limits.
Pickers are strongly encouraged to hand pick their berries. This ensures that only ripe berries are harvested and the bushes will remain healthy and productive for many years to come. Any methods that damage or destroy the bushes are illegal and may result in a fine for damaging natural resources.
Panhandle National Forest land. A $250 permit for commercial picking is required on Idaho Department of Lands property.
Hence, there’s been a push for decades for horticulturists and botanists to try to cultivate the plant for the backyard grower. Despite their determined efforts, however, the huckleberry—like the natural-born rebel it is—has seemed to foil them, time and again.
One of the brave souls who embarked on this journey in 1987 is Dr. Dan Barney: affectionately known as Dr. Huckleberry, Barney still holds the title as the nation’s leading huckleberry expert.
Barney spent 22 years trying to cultivate the huckleberry while a professor of horticulture at the University of Idaho and superintendent of the Sandpoint Research and Extension Center.
“We’re working with a problem child,” said Barney in a Spokesman Review article in 1997.
“Here’s a plant that grows where the temperature reaches 50 below, but it freezes at lower elevations without snow cover.”
Barney valiantly aimed to produce huckleberry/blueberry hybrids that tasted like huckleberries, but thrived under cultivation like blueberries. Unfortunately, this lofty goal never came to (ahem) fruition.
Starting at the UI about the same time as Dr. Barney left to continue his work in Alaska, Stephen Cook, department head and professor of College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, started a couple of projects involving the huckleberry.
“The huckleberry is one of their big money-makers. Being able to possibly cultivate and then sell them is a big deal,” said Cook.
Cook’s two projects look at the impact of soil amendments, and the viability of greenhouse starts.
“They didn’t do real well; it’s hard to get the huckleberry to
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PHOTOS PREVIOUS PAGE: OUR FAVORITE FRUIT. PHOTOS BY MARIANNE LOVE. THIS PAGE, CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: A HIKE INTO BEEHIVE LAKE REWARDED THESE SEARCHERS WITH A BOUNTY OF HUCKLEBERRIES. PHOTO BY CAREN BAYS. KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN FOR HUCKLEBERRIES JUST OFF SCHWEITZER ROAD. PHOTO BY FIONA HICKS. NEXT PAGE: BILL LOVE DISCOVERS A TREASURE TROVE AT AN UNDISCLOSED LOCATION.
PHOTO BY MARIANNE LOVE
do well outside the forest. I think there’s a microbial component we’re missing—that it’s not just acidic soil but that there’s a connection with the trees—that there’s something actually in the soil in these conifer forests that benefit the huckleberry.”
Despite the proven difficulties of growing huckleberries outside their natural habitat, there are always those who want to shake the dice and give it a try.
Kathy Hutton, nursery manager at Plants of the Wild in Tekoa, Washington, said they’ve been selling out of their 1,500–3,000 wild mountain huckleberry seedlings every year for 35 years now.
“There’ve been a lot of people who have succeeded in getting their plants to grow and maybe a little berry production but not a whole lot. However, everyone wants to give it a go.”
Huckleberries grow in areas that are also bear habitat and in the Panhandle there are both black and grizzly bears
Be Bear Aware
Huckleberries grow in bear habitat in the Panhandle, and there are both black and grizzly bears who depend on the berries for their fatty nutrients and carbohydrates that are crucial for their energy.
“Take your bear spray [when you pick], make lots of noise and stay aware of your surroundings. Look up and around every 10 minutes or so, and if you have a dog, don’t let them run off leash,” said Patrick Lair, public affairs officer for the Idaho Panhandle National Forest Service. “We don’t aim to scare, just remind you to be aware.”
map your route
A lot of forests don’t have cell service. Know where you are and where you’re going, even when you’re offline, by downloading a Motor Vehicle Use map from Avenza Maps. These are maps of the entire road system, marking your location with a red dot and putting navigation ease at your fingertips.
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Pickers are typically very proprietary of where they pick
First time picker?
When: Huckleberries usually get ripe towards the end of July into early August. This can vary depending on how much rain or sun we get during the spring so asking other berry enthusiasts what they are seeing out on the mountains is always helpful. The Schweitzer Activity Center is typically up to date on how the berries are ripening on the resort’s slopes so a quick phone call to them (208-255 3081) can save you time finding a ripe patch. Keep in mind that berries will ripen on the lower elevations first and rise as upper elevations warm up.
What (to take): Picking doesn’t require much in terms of equipment. Bare hands and a container to collect your berries are basically all you need. Ziploc bags or reusable containers work best. Throw on a hat and pack a small backpack with sunscreen, water, and bear spray so you are prepared for a few hours in the bushes. Please do not use huckleberry rakes to collect the berries as they can destroy the plants. You can always pack a snack but most likely, you’ll be eating a few berries here and there as you go!
Where (to go): Backpack in hand and covered in sunscreen, an easy picking spot for first-timers is between turn 3 and turn 4 on the Schweitzer Mountain Road. There is limited parking available in the pull-out areas on the east side of the road. Safely park then head into the bushes on the opposite side of the road. Pay attention to traffic as it can be busy during the summer months. Make noise to let the wildlife know you are there and then enjoy!
Huckleberry picking is a rewarding, meditative day on the mountain. Don’t be surprised if you find you’ve eaten more than you’ve picked at the end of the day. That, plus the purple stained fingers, is a true sign you’ve fallen under the huckleberry picking spell!
– Dig Chrismer
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FOR LOCALS, HUCKLEBERRY PICKING IS A FAMILY ACTIVITY. PHOTO BY KORINE KOSZAREK. BELOW: NO AGE IS TOO YOUNG TO INTRODUCE YOUR KIDS TO HUCKLEBERRY PICKING. PHOTO BY KARA BERLIN. BOTH PHOTOS WERE TAKEN AT SCHWEITZER.
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Some places are definitely more plentiful than others; you just have to go up high enough and know what you’re looking for
Meeting the Goal
In a 50-year quest, local man goes high – and low – to visit every lake in Boundary County
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by Sandy Compton
Scott Bourassa recently finished the adventure of a lifetime. Or was it a lifetime adventure? Last fall, he took his dad to Stampede Lake, a privately-owned chunk of water just south of Naples, Idaho. It’s not hard to access (with permission) being just off Highway 95, but it marked the end of a 50-year-long project: visiting all of the 70 named lakes in Boundary County. “It was an honor to do that with my dad,” he said.
Bourassa, 53, grew up in Bonners Ferry and graduated as a Badger in 1987. In high school, he ran cross country and track (he ran a 4:32 mile as a junior). His father Art went to Sandpoint High, where he was an impressive football and basketball player. He finished a Forest Service career on the Bonners Ferry/Sandpoint district. Bourassa’s grandfather, also Art, was a Sandpoint policeman and fireman. Those who grew up here in the 1960s and ’70s remember the senior Art as a tolerant cop when it came to youthful mischief.
Sometime in his youth, Bourassa’s parents took him to his first Boundary County lake. “I was a toddler, so I don’t remember which it was, but it was probably Smith, Brush, or Robinson.” All of which can be driven to, which makes them part of a minority. About 20 of the county’s lakes are accessible by vehicle. Another 25 have trails leading to them. The rest—roughly 25— are reached by the fine art of bushwhacking.
Bourassa’s first high mountain lake was West Fork Lake in the Selkirks, where he camped with his father and friend Kyle Hedgecock when he was around nine. “I was addicted to adventure from that point on.” And he has had a few. He
RELAXING ON BEAUTIFUL FAULT LAKE.
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PHOTO BY WOODS WHEATCROFT
CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: BOUNDARY COUNTY’S BALL LAKES ARE A FUN DESTINATION EVEN WITH KIDS. PHOTO BY FIONA HICKS; SCOTT BOURASSA AT BIG FISHER LAKE, CONSIDERED ONE OF THE MOST SCENIC IN THE SELKIRKS. COURTESY PHOTO; THE TRAIL TO WEST FORK LAKE WINDS THROUGH OLD GROWTH CEDAR BEFORE REACHING THE LAKE, ONE OF THE LARGEST HIGH MOUNTAIN LAKES IN THE DISTRICT. STAFF PHOTO; BOTTLENECK LAKE IN THE KANIKSU NATIONAL FOREST IS A LITTLE OVER 11 MILES TO HIKE TO AND BACK. STAFF PHOTO
features 70 lakes
was a kayak/raft guide on the Payette River in southern Idaho, in New Zealand, and on the Gauley River in West Virginia, legendary for its whitewater and the thousands who ride it during the fall “release” from Summersville dam.
He returned to Bonners Ferry in the late ’90s, worked at therapeutic boarding schools for a couple of decades, and had two daughters, Elizabeth, 19, and Emilie, 14. They and their mom, Katie, are his best hiking and lake-bagging partners. He’s grateful for their endurance. “It’s not easy to find hikers who can do 15 miles in a day—often off trail.”
Some of his students at the schools went along on his quest. The last he worked for, Northwoods School, encouraged him to get the kids out as often as possible. Sometimes that worked, sometimes not. “Once in a while, we’d encounter something the kids didn’t want to do. When things got brushy or cliffy, they would balk.”
IT’S DENNY’S FAULT
The goal of getting to all the lakes began to crystalize after his trip to West Fork Lake. He started hearing stories from his dad’s Forest Service friends about Denny Cooper, who was a Bonners gas station owner, and Cooper’s son Mike. Cooper fished local lakes every weekend, and there was a thought that he had visited them all. When young Bourassa heard that, he determined that he, too, would go to all of them. It turns out Cooper didn’t fish all of them, but the challenge stood, and continued for the next four decades. “I picked them off slowly over the years, but two-and-a-half years ago I committed to checking off the last 15 or 20 in short order.”
He visited unnamed lakes on his quest as well. “Some of the unnamed ones are more of a lake than some of the named ones, like Lower Beehive; just a spot where a moose can get a drink.”
Speaking of moose, he’s had one charge him, met a badger who had issues with his mountain bike, and had river otters chase him. A black bear with cubs stood up to him once, and a close encounter of the grizzly kind—not in pursuit of lakes— was a family hike highlight.
Bourassa’s rules of engagement from the beginning have stood the test of time. To count a lake, it has to be touched, fished in, and/or swum in. No motorized approach is allowed to lakes that a car or pickup can’t get to (especially a snowmobile), though a mountain bike is okay.
“My longest trip to a lake was biking 22 miles to (and 22 from) the Continental Mine to visit Continental Lake and Trap Lake.” He noted that the easiest lake to get to was Perkins, a drive-to northeast of Bonners near Moyie Springs. The hardest to get to is a tossup between Search and Parker lakes. Both are glacial tarns in the high Selkirks with no trail access.
His favorite lake? “Sorry. I can’t divulge that information,” he said.
Bourassa is very active in the mountain bike community. “I will lead 27 rides on 27 different trails on 27 Wednesdays this season.”
As a board member of 9btrails.org, he is charged with trail design and construction, and keeping winter trails groomed for cross-country skiing, fat-tire biking, and snowshoeing. The group has created 26 miles of trails for various purposes in just five years.
As for the future, now that the lakes are all touched, fished, and/or swam in, Bourassa is turning his attention to another Boundary County goal.
“There are 300 miles of maintained Forest Service trails on the Bonners Ferry Ranger District, and I haven’t been on them all.”
At least, not yet.
Bourassa sees his mission as a simple one—inspiration. “Never, ever give up on a goal,” he said. “Even if you get sidetracked. Denny and Mike inspired me,” he said. “My hope is to inspire others.”
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TOP: BOURASSA AND HIS DAD AT STAMPEDE LAKE, THE LAST ON HIS LIST. SADLY, ART DIED IN APRIL, AT THE AGE OF 81, BEFORE THIS STORY MADE IT TO PRINT; ABOVE: JUST A GAL AND HER DOG OVERLOOKING HARRISON LAKE, HIGH IN THE SELKIRKS.
A Family AFFAIR
Bunnies getting judged
Long-time fair goer, Jim Wood
Traveling turkey models
by Marianne Love
It’s 6 a.m. on an August morning. CaliJo Giard wakes up, gets dressed, and walks from her home to the nearby Holly Barn to milk Matilda.
Matilda, a 3-year-old dairy goat, provides nearly a gallon of milk daily for a foster “kid” and for CaliJo’s family.
“She gets her on the milk stand and puts her on a milking machine,” CaliJo’s mom Deanna explained. “While the machine is working, she can clean and prepare the stall and feed.”
CaliJo, 14, is taking eight projects in her seventh year as a member of the Sagle Saddle Tramps 4-H Club.
Her home, a Hideaway travel trailer housing her mom and younger sister CharliAnn, sits among RVs and tents forming a week-long community of 4-H families who live at the Bonner County Fairgrounds while tending to their animals during the annual fair.
This camping community occupies 80 spaces in designated areas around the fairgrounds. Some offer full RV hookups; others, only electricity, while others provide space for dry camping, including tents.
There’s always a waiting list for camping spots, said fair administrative assistant Maranda Montgomery. Fees range from $33 to $77. Campers at the full-hookup, horseshoe area in the trees overlooking Sand Creek must submit applications while others claim their spots on a first-come, first-serve basis.
The camping community, representing 4-H clubs from throughout Bonner County, moves in on Sunday before the fair and leaves the following Sunday.
After campsites are set up, hundreds of animals, ranging from Levi Wood’s market steer to CharliAnn Giard’s bearded dragon, arrive later, staying in pens, cages, or tethered in respective livestock barns around the grounds. Fair superintendents oversee the daily opening and closing of barns as well as general management of the area.
Since Deanna Giard serves as goat-barn superintendent, the family’s trailer occupies a spot close by, allowing Giard and her daughters a convenient setting for fulfilling their respective fair activities.
Meanwhile, at several RVs north of the beef barn, 4-H’ers are also up at dawn, feeding their cattle and cleaning stalls.
“After the kids are done with stalls, they all work together to clean the barn to make it presentable and inviting for fair goers,” said Dana Wood, mother of three Gold n’ Grouse 4-H’ers. “They need to be around to check in on their animals every couple of hours and offer them water, especially when it’s hot.
“The camper is a great ‘landing zone’ for the kids and their friends,” she added. “They can swing by, grab a snack, sit, and relax for a few minutes or change clothes if/when needed.”
For Quentin Ducken, swine superintendent, time spent camping at the fair with his wife Anna and daughter
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FOR MANY 4-H FAMILIES, THE COUNTY FAIR IS A 24/7 EXPERIENCE
Farmhouse booth Li'l ropers and riders
Mayle involves vacation days which he takes off from his job with the city of Sandpoint.
“I work harder at the fair than at my normal work,” he said; “early mornings, late nights, opening, closing ... helping the kids and checking on the pigs.”
The centrally located Ducken camping area provides an inviting atmosphere for kids with its old couch near the trailer “to make it cozy. Some may even crash on the couch,” Ducken said. “I have anywhere from two to 15 kids hanging out at my camper throughout the week.” The Ducken’s daily menu of tacos, crock-pot dishes, and even pulled pork prepared in a portable smoker, often attracts a few extra hungry mouths.
Prior organizing of clothes, cleaning supplies and food is a common ritual among campers, while some, like Fair Board member Gail Curless, a camper for several years, prefer sampling the wide variety of offerings from fair food vendors, and, of course, the popular deepfried elephant ears.
Ben Gunter, with his wife and daughters, has camped at the fair for ten years. Both Madison and Mirabelle show and sell 4-H market animals. Madison has also reigned as Bonner County Rodeo queen for two years. With her duties of visiting area rodeos, Madison’s family travels with her.
“We keep the trailer stocked because of rodeo season,” Gunter said. “Last year we didn’t even take it home—just went right to the fair.”
The Giard family assume individual responsibilities for their trailer. CharliAnn and CayliJo organize their showing clothes and help their dad Joe, who generally stays home and takes care of other animals, set up and level the trailer at the fairgrounds.
Like many fair campers, the Giards’ generational aspect of camping adds a nostalgic touch—four generations of memories, in fact.
Deanna’s grandmother, the late Bernice Spade, a longtime 4-H leader and fair superintendent, lived in her camp trailer next to the swine barn during fair time,
often taking Deanna to stay with her.
Bernice’s daughter, aka Deanna’s mom Patti Harkey, camped with her kids when they were 4-H’ers. These days Harkey, a former fair queen, visits the fair every day, watching grandchildren compete in everything from goats to rabbits. She also relaxes with family at the Giard trailer.
“I really enjoy it. We sit and talk about the day’s events, maybe have a meal or send out for something,” she said. “Last year I brought cupcakes for CayliJo’s birthday.”
A fifth generation of the family, soon to reach 4-H age, will likely extend the universally beloved fair traditions.
During each day, campsites often remain empty for hours while 4-H’ers feed, compete, or hang out with new and old friends at fair attractions and exhibits.
“We see them when they need money,” Giard said, “or when they come to bed by 9 or 10 at night.” During daytime hours, some parents even take advantage of the solitude by napping or reading a good book.
Each evening, campsites come alive again for family relaxation, meal times, and visiting.
“You’re part of the whole fair experience when you camp there,” said Gail Curless. “It’s a basic old time good time. It’s the friendships and, in many cases, it’s like our family reunion.”
On Sunday after the fair, the camping community shuts down with trailers headed home. Most are filled with piles of dirty clothes, fair ribbons, and trophies, all reflecting another year of good memories.
“There’s a lot of work and dedication and reward, experiencing kids having a good time showing, competing, and meeting new people,” said Quentin Ducken. “It’s a blessing to be a part of it.”
CaliJo Giard, agrees, ranking her fair experiences at “11” on a scale of 10.
“It’s our opportunity to show off the hard work we’ve done and an opportunity to inform the public,” she said. “When people see animals and projects, they learn what 4-H does for kids and how it teaches responsibility and character.”
a family affair
You’re part of the whole fair experience when you camp there...
It’s a basic old time good time. It’s the friendships and, in many cases, it’s like our family reunion
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CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: GRACE ACKERMAN AND HER DAUGHTER EMILY TAKE THE PONY JULIAN FOR A SHORT RIDE; WALKING HOME TO THE TRAILERS; YOUNG ZEKE SCHOONOVER IS ALREADY AN OLD HAND AT BOTH HORSE RIDING AND THE COUNTY FAIR; WYATT BURNETT WITH HIS ANGUS STEER; PHOTOS BY MARIANNE LOVE. LARGE PHOTO ON PAGE 99, ALL THE KIDS GET INVOLVED IN ANIMAL CARE AT THE FAIR. PHOTO BY AMY PETERSON
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SANDPOINTMAGAZINE.COM SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 99 growing up wild here | photo essay
100 | SANDPOINT MAGAZIN E SUMMER 2023 photo essay
SANDPOINTMAGAZINE.COM SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 101 growing up wild here | photo essay
PAGE 97: GROUSE CREEK FALLS IS A GREAT PLAYGROUND FOR KIDS.
PHOTO BY FIONA HICKS. CLOCKWISE FROM FACING PAGE: THE ROSS CREEK CEDARS ARE GIANTS EVEN IF YOU’RE NOT A YOUNGSTER. PHOTO BY FIONA HICKS. KIDS CAN’T WAIT TO HIT THE WATER ONCE THE SUMMER HEAT ARRIVES. PHOTO BY WOODS WHEATCROFT. A PLAY DAY AT SCHWEITZER. PHOTO BY DAN ESKELSON. COOLING OFF WITH A SPLASH.
PHOTO BY TAMARA PORATH
Walking around Sandpoint it’s evident that this town has style. But what kind is it? Entering Sandpoint from the Long Bridge to First Avenue, a person can witness at least three distinctive architectural styles: brick, log, and contemporary.
Buildings still standing from Sandpoint’s early years, most constructed in the early 1900s, are brick; brick buildings were, and still are, prevalent, some built with bricks made right here in town. Various downtown mercantile stores, the Pine Street annex, and the former St. Joseph’s Catholic Church (now the Heartwood Center) provide an aged brick patina that graces many small towns.
Moving up a few decades, the log look that identified Sandpoint as a lumber town became popular. Sandpoint Community Hall was built in 1935 and, in later years, Pioneer Square and the Cedar Street Bridge were among the new buildings that echoed this log construction.
Lately, a style unlike its predecessors is developing. A modern look is beginning to populate Sandpoint, one
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that features lots of glass and metal. This change began to appear downtown back in 2007, when the present 90,000-squarefoot, multi-use Columbia Bank building, adding glass and metal to a traditional brick facade, replaced Harold’s IGA grocery store and Cinema 4. A block north, another multi-use project is now nearing completion on the corner of Fifth and Cedar, with Boden Architecture at the design helm. Cedar Street Condos features less brick and more black.
Tim Boden’s team is responsible for many of Sandpoint’s newer building projects. His firm’s approach notably blends the client’s vision while adding to the appeal of Sandpoint being a historical town. Sandcreek Lofts, the condominiums overlooking the marina, were built to reflect its connection with the adjacent Power House’s historic past, and has features for a present and future clientele. Blending the past with the present is also found in the former Belwood’s Furniture building which dates to 1909, now home to Pend d’Oreille Winery and other businesses. The renovation combines old brick with new metal as a means of recognizing the building’s historical place while forging forward. Boden explained that clients Julie and Steve Meyers wanted to take a building that they loved, renovate it, and extend its life another 100 years. Boden is hard pressed to define Sandpoint’s style, yet his team strives to create structures that “must be highly functional as well as beautiful on the exterior and the interior.”
John Dana, of Dana Construction, referred to Sandpoint’s newest style as “Mountain Modern.” He is seeing more cubical construction with metal taking the place of stones to create a clean, uncomplicated look. “The mountain part of it comes in with the use of timbers for both the structure and accents inside and out.”
Dana builds a number of custom homes per year and finds that “homes built in the Sandpoint area are for people who are retired, or about to, and plan on living out the rest of their lives in them.”
In terms of those moving here, Boden believes they “are moving here generally
sandpoint has style
PHOTOS, PREVIOUS PAGE: BELWOOD 301 INCORPORATES THE OLD WITH THE NEW.
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PHOTO BY MARIE-DOMINIQUE VERDIER. THIS PAGE FROM TOP: THE BERND BUILDING IS A SHINING EXAMPLE OF SANDPOINT’S ORIGINAL STYLE. STAFF PHOTO. THE LOFTS AT SANDCREEK SHOWCASES THE NOW POPULAR “MOUNTAIN MODERN” STYLE. COURTESY PHOTO. A NEW BUILDING ON PINE STREET ALSO WENT WITH A MOUNTAIN MODERN LOOK. STAFF PHOTO
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This 3 bedroom 2.5 bath home comes with many great features like an open floor plan, large living area with natural gas brick fireplace, built-in cabinets, birch hardwood floors, gourmet kitchen with stainless appliances, quartz counters, custom wood cabinets and an open dining area. This home has a main floor master bedroom with in-suite bath, walk-in tiled shower, double sinks, walk-in closet, and a main floor laundry with sink & built-in cabinets. Upstairs are two large bedrooms with oversized windows, a full bath with tub and shower and third bonus room for a home office. There are both front and rear covered porches, a heated enclosed entryway, fenced back yard with raised garden beds, mature landscaping & a two car detached garage. Located just two blocks from the lake & Memorial Field. $929,000.
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for the quality of life that all of us who have been here a while appreciate. We are also seeing people wanting to contribute in a positive way to Sandpoint’s future.”
Blending the past with the present is evident not only in the Belwood building but in other businesses, such as MickDuff’s Brewing Company, which repurposed the former Sandpoint federal building on Second Avenue, built in 1928, remodeling the interior to suit its needs. Evans Brothers house their distinctive coffee offerings in the old Co-Op building, upgrading the interior for a casual ambiance.
Then there are landmarks that keep on keeping on like the Panida Theater, which retains its 1927 Spanish Mission style dignity with a cosmetic upkeep from time to time. And the old City Hall, built in 1910, where a recent remodel retained the fire truck doors, and is working to restablish the original bell tower (and bell), while providing functionality for its new occupants, Sandpoint Music Conservatory.
Throughout Sandpoint it’s evident that change is taking place and not all are embracing the prospect. Harsh graffiti marred the original posted concept plans for the One Bridge Street multi-use project, at First and Bridge, designed to replace the gaping hole left by a 2019 fire that claimed several businesses. A lively exchange on Reddit about the project indicates a number of people are puzzled by the negative attitude
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expressed towards change; they point out how many fought the bypass, yet today it would be difficult to manage without it. Others noted how upscale construction, like Seasons at Sandpoint, adjacent to City Beach, is often priced beyond what the average local resident can afford. And some worry that multi-level construction downtown will only further separate people from its crowning jewel—Lake Pend Oreille—which has precious few access points for locals.
What seems likely, however, is that what happened before will happen again. Sandpoint will embrace its new styles just as it has in the past, and decades from now those buildings will become part of the town’s treasured landmarks.
With all these various building types it’s difficult to succinctly describe Sandpoint’s style. Since Sandpoint is only 125 years old it could be considered to still be in its adolescence and, like any teenager, is experimenting, undecided on its true style. Time, and opinion, will tell.
For those interested, a walking tour brochure of many of Sandpoint’s most notable buildings is available at the Bonner County Museum, or check it out online at www.sptmag.com/ walkingtour.
Award Winning Architecture and Interior Design Residential + Commercial + Destination + PLANNING www.bodenarchitecture.com • 208.263.5072 SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 107
A RANGE OF BUILDINGS AROUND TOWN USED A STYLE THAT HIGHLIGHTED A NATURAL RESOURCE: TIMBER. ON PREVIOUS PAGE, THE INTERIOR OF THE CEDAR STREET BRIDGE CELEBRATES WOOD, WHILE THE SANDPOINT COMMUNITY HALL (ABOVE) USED A TRADITIONAL LOG-STYLE CONSTRUCTION. STAFF PHOTOS
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A MULTIMODAL CURVEBALL
Dub’s sale brings focus on expansive city street plan
by Cameron Rasmusson
In 2021, not long after communities went into lockdown due to the COVID pandemic, the city of Sandpoint adopted a multimodal transportation plan to provide an overarching guide to the development of city streets. A major consideration was routing traffic through town in the safest and most efficient way possible, while also allowing for and improving the bike paths and sidewalks residents have clamored for for decades.
The plan envisions changes that may be 20 years or more out. It is the very definition of “long term.”
In early 2023, the owners of Dub’s Drive-in, located on the
corner of Highway 2 and Boyer Avenue, asked the city to buy their property. Marty and Jeralyn Mire were retiring and younger family members were going to take over running the restaurant. And they were willing to look for a new location to move it to, provided the city would agree to give them time to do so.
The location is a critical component in that multimodal plan, which hopes to bring southbound Fifth Avenue traffic looking to head west along a couplet connecting it to Highway 2 near Dub’s; the city jumped on the deal. And residents—many of whom thought the connecting corridor, called “the Curve” when initially proposed decades earlier, was a dead issue—went wild.
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Often lost in the furor is the fact that the multimodal plan is not set in stone: like Captain Barbossa said of the pirate’s code, “It’s more like guidelines than actual rules.” Most of the plan’s projects—like the couplet—are currently unfunded and actual construction may be decades away. The city is now actively seeking people to participate in refining the plan to meet the community’s needs, via open houses, city surveys, public workshops, and more.
THAT CONTROVERSIAL COUPLET
From a traffic standpoint, Sandpoint is a complicated town; in the beginning there was no master plan, so state highways, city streets, walkways, and train tracks multiplied around and over a number of existing waterways wherever they seemed suitable at the time. In this current age of massive trucks, increased train traffic, and a growth in popularity putting ever more vehicles, people, skaters, walkers, and bicyclists on our city streets, “there will be no perfect solutions,” said the city’s outgoing Director of Infrastructure and Development Amanda Wilson. “But [city officials and members of the public] have developed a plan that tries to best meet the needs of all those users in as safe a manner as possible.”
One of the biggest changes to existing traffic flow in the plan involves the city’s through traffic. The completion of the Sand Creek Byway did much to alleviate the problem of Highway 95 traffic traveling north and south from clogging downtown streets. Still unaddressed, however, is traffic utilizing Highway 2 in both directions through town, with either origination or destination at points west. In order to avoid the downtown area, many of those vehicles end up using residential streets—with Division Street of special concern—as a connector between highways 2 and 95. It’s a less than ideal choice, given that Division is home to the high school, the middle school, Farmin Stidwell Elementary, and the schools’ associated traffic, including hundreds of walkers from grades kindergarten through 12.
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UAV / DRONE • MAPPING HDS LASER SCANNING CONSTRUCTION MAPPING EXPERT WITNESS DEVELOPMENT PERMITS SUBDIVISIONS & LAND USE BOUNDARY & SITE A.L.T.A / ACSM SURVEYS FE MA/LOMA TOPOGRAPHIC SURVEYS 303 Church Street Sandpoint, Idaho 83864 208.265.4474 www.glaheinc.com GPS • LIDAR • GIS CERTIFIED FEDERAL SURVEYORS (CFedS) SAFETY HAZWOPER MSHA RAILROAD 509.795.1375 | studioascent.design multimodal curveball
95 95 2 2 COPYRIGHT 2023 KEOKEE CO. PUBLISHING, INC. Map illustrates key changes in the city’s multimodal plan. See the city’s website for complete plan documents, at www.sandpointidaho.gov. 200
“[It] causes ‘cut-through’ traffic on residential streets of south Sandpoint that were not designed for such volumes or loads, resulting in safety concerns for pedestrians and bicyclists, as well as accelerating wear and tear on the infrastructure,” reads the Multimodal Master Plan report prepared for city officials in May 2021.
The current official Highway 2 route moves traffic from the west into downtown, where it turns and utilizes Fifth Avenue (owned by the state highway department, not the city) to connect with points north and east. The initial plan would have cut through many local businesses with a five-lane highway via the so-called Curve, which followed a former railroad track that was removed in the 1980s and is now part of the bike path through town.
The couplet concept was born back in 2012 to avoid those five lanes by separating them in half. It will connect Highway 2 to Fifth and Cedar with two travel lanes going west, allowing traffic moving south along Fifth Avenue to connect with the highway near Dub’s, following that old railroad track. Traffic coming from the west and heading north will still follow Highway 2 to Fifth Avenue, where it will turn left on what will become a one-way street going north as far as the junction with Cedar Street. In the current couplet plan (the one adopted in 2021 and agreed to by ITD) Pine Street from Fifth Avenue to First will become a two-way street, and the traffic light currently at Church and Fifth will move to Pine and Fifth.
At least, that’s the plan. But it’s important to keep in mind that, “This is [Idaho
real estate 112 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
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The plan is the very definition of long term
Transportation Department’s] highway— it’s their jurisdiction, and ultimately, they’re going to determine what the high way looks like,” Sandpoint Mayor Shelby Rognstad told the KRFY Morning Show.
With an engineering cost of $3 million to ITD, city and state officials have worked to ensure the couplet’s impact to pedes trians and town cohesion is as minimal as possible. Exactly when it will happen is up to ITD, but it is not a priority for the city.
With the acquisition of the Dub’s property, city staff sought to incorporate adjustments to the proposed couplet—in particular, a restructuring of the Boyer/ Highway 2 intersection. After public uproar over its potentially huge size, staff have taken those adjustments off the agenda. “Our focus now is on the minor improvements we can accomplish to improve safety,” said Stapleton. “When ITD is ready to make changes to the high way [and build the couplet] we’ll address those other concerns.
“It’s important to note,” she added, “that every one of the plans [developed by the city] has been 100 percent driven by community concerns.”
CHANGES TO BALDY AND GREAT NORTHERN
Also critical to the plan is a proposed connector extending Baldy Mountain Road at the Boyer Avenue intersection to connect with Fifth Avenue/Highway
2. The new road will intersect with Fifth near where the train overpass crosses the road and adjacent to the Sandpoint Chamber’s visitor center. Work has already begun to lower the grade of the highway where it passes under the train bridge, which is expected to be com-
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ILLUSTRATION AT LEFT: THE PLANNED STREET LAYOUT FOR DIVISION. COURTESY CITY OF SANDPOINT. RIGHT: THE COUPLET, WHEN BUILT, WILL RUN ALONGSIDE THE CURRENT BIKE PATH THROUGH THE GRANARY DISTRICT. PHOTO BY WOODS WHEATCROFT.
PAGE 110: DUB’S OCCUPIES A CRITICAL LOCATION. STAFF PHOTO
pleted this summer. That work, a state highway project, will allow oversize trucks to travel on Fifth Avenue through town. Currently, they utilize other residential roads to pass through the area as they can’t fit under the train bridge. A signal light will be installed at the new intersection of Boyer and Baldy.
Another important piece of the puzzle involves changes to Great Northern Road. A key street for Sandpoint’s industrial zones, Great Northern suffers from just about every problem a road can have, from soil to safety issues. The plan proposes a reconstruction that seeks to solve or alleviate all these problems.
The first phase includes restructuring Great Northern from the intersection with Gooby Road all the way to Woodland. This portion is already funded, and construction is slated to begin in spring 2025, though preliminary engineering work has already started. The second phase includes moving the intersection of Great Northern and Baldy to the east of where it is now located.
CHANGES TO DIVISION
The plan calls for two lanes (one in each direction) that include a 6–foot buffer and 6–foot sidewalk on the east, and on the west an 8–foot planter strip (to allow snow storage from the streets) and a 12–foot shared use path to help students move safely along the road.
INTO THE FUTURE
Longer term plans include other major changes to the way traffic moves through town.
The famously frustrating double intersection of Bridge and Church streets on First Avenue frequently creates delays and headaches given the volume of pedestrians and vehicles try-
ing to access City Beach. While the multimodal plan proposes restricting left turns from Bridge to First seasonally, the longterm solution reimagines First between Church and Bridge as a pedestrian- and bicycle-only zone, working in tandem with the other proposed traffic flow revisions.
“This will help reduce the vehicle delay at both intersections by eliminating stop signs and reducing the amount of pedestrian and vehicle conflicts,” the report reads. But, as depicted in the plan, vehicular traffic would be blocked and unable to travel north or south on First Avenue past that double intersection.
More control over traffic flow is also envisioned in reduced access to Highway 2 from Boyer to Ontario.
The plan calls for eliminating access to the highway from Michigan Street north of the highway, North Olive, South Florence, and West Superior south while North Ella will be extended to meet the highway, with a traffic signal at that new intersection when traffic reaches a point where it’s required.
South Boyer will be reconstructed to meet the highway on a path that passes through where the Dub’s building is now located. The intersection of Ontario with the highway will also be realigned on both sides.
Intersections where Sixth and Euclid meet Pine will become right turn only entry and exits, as will South Marion, and finally, sidewalks will be added to the south side of Highway 2 as ITD’s plan progresses.
The city’s multimodal plan is expansive and far-reaching and, like all plans, may change substantially before coming to fruition. Learn more at the city’s website under the planning tab, or visit www.sptmag.com/multimodal. And get involved. The city wants your participation.
real estate 114 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 multimodal curveball
DIVISION STREET, WITH ITS BUSY SCHOOL TRAFFIC, OFFERS CHALLENGES THE MULTIMODEL PLAN SEEKS TO ADDRESS. STAFF PHOTO
90 Kullyspell Drive
C OLLINB E GG S.COM community
NEW RESIDENTS BRING LOTS OF NEW THINGS TO STORE
by Cate Huisman
Those of us who have driven occasionally over the past 20 years to the big cities to the south cannot help but notice a significant change: What we remember as farmers’ fields seem suddenly to be filled with big, single-storied, multi-garage-doored, self-storage buildings. Every trip to Costco or REI or the MAC seems to reveal a new one. How can they possibly all be filled?
While it may seem these structures constitute yet another appalling attack on our rural way of life, they are, in fact, on land that has been zoned for commercial or similar uses for years, which seems appropriate considering it is adjacent to the highway. And while it may also seem that we in North Idaho must be incorrigible packrats for having created a need for these units, we don’t come near to leading the pack nationally in storage units per capita. This urge to accumulate is, evidently, part of our national consciousness. We love stuff.
What are we packing away? It’s mostly household goods, said Ned Brandenberger, owner and president of Sandpoint Property Management, which manages a half dozen local storage facilities. A 10 x 20 unit is a popular size, he said, and the general wisdom is that this is big enough to hold furnishings for an entire two-bedroom apartment. We also need places to store our boats, RVs, and other toys out of the snow in winter, and maybe a place to work on them too.
As a sign of the times, a new, high-end, “deluxe” set of storage units are going in on the corner of Schweitzer-Cut off and Boyer near the sheriff’s office.
As more people move to this area, they’re bringing their own excess stuff with them. Stuff, in fact, is
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our hidden immigration issue, as it takes up its own share of the former empty forest and farmland that used to be.
Holding onto our stuff doesn’t come cheap. A basic 5 x 10 space to store your daughter’s Disney princess bedroom set until the grandchild you may (or may not) have wants it (or doesn’t) will set you back from $75 to $100 per month. If you store all your household goods while you try out the good life in some sunny southern location for a few years, it can easily cost you more than you paid in rent when you first left the familial nest.
Have we begun to reach carrying capacity? “I keep thinking the market will reach saturation. Not so far,” said Brandenberger. “Almost every day I get inquiries,” both from people wanting to squirrel away their stuff and from people wanting to build more places for them to squirrel it. The units SPM manages are all “basically full” all the time. When a vacancy comes up, it is filled almost immediately.
Maybe we all need to get on a waiting list now.
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ABOVE: IN SAGLE AND ELSEWHERE, SINGLE-STORIED, MULTI-GARAGE-DOORED SELF-STORAGE BUILDINGS ARE STARTING TO REPLACE A LOT OF WHAT USED TO BE EMPTY FARM AND FOREST LAND. STAFF PHOTO. PREVIOUS PAGE: GARAGES ARE BURSTING. STOCK PHOTO
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Stunning Dover Waterfront
717 Olson Dr, Dover, ID Listed at $5,497,000
MLS # 20230216 4 Bd / 4 Ba / .87ac / 3,526 Sq Ft.
Luxury living awaits in this stunning waterfront estate in West Dover Bay. Just over 100 ft of private water frontage featuring a private beach, a deep water steel framed dock that has concrete pavers finished w/ 2 boat lifts. This property has the opportunity to earn income; while being 1 of only 4 waterfront homes that can be used as vacation rentals. The 3,526 sqft home features 4 beds, 4 baths (3 full baths & 2 half baths), high-end finishing touches, vaulted ceilings, & lrg Andersen windows to showcase the breathtaking views. The gourmet kitchen boasts Jenn Air ss appliances, quartz counters, & custom cabinets. The private primary suite has Andersen sliders to access the covered patio w/ a hot tub, a large walk-thru closet leading you to a beautiful ensuite bathroom complete w/ a dual vanity, extra lrg shower and dual shower heads. Two additional main floor bedrooms with a jack-and-jill bath, an upstairs flex space w/ an ensuite bath, & a loft overlooking this magnificent home. The 1,286 sqft heated garage has room for 3+ cars w/ high clearance doors & can be finished out as an ADU. Enjoy Dover Bay community amenities such as 9+ miles of walking/biking trails, a marina, gym, heated pool, & the popular Dish at Dover Bay restaurant located on the Pend Oreille River! This luxury home creates a quality of life that surpasses expectations.
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MLS #20230257 4 Bd / 3 Ba / 3.73ac / 2,980 Sq. Ft.
Meticulously maintained Waterfront Estate situated on 3.73 acres w/170’ of deep water frontage on the Pend Oreille River. This home boasts of a spacious 2980 sqft, consisting of 4 beds, 3 baths, beautiful stone & wood accents, Bosch appliances, Milgard windows, Hubberton Forge lighting, & many other highend finishings! Open Living Room seamlessly transitions from the Dining to the Kitchen spaces & features picture windows taking advantage of the panoramic water & Mtn views while allowing an abundance of natural light. Primary suite features vaulted ceilings, private indoor/outdoor Fireplace, access to covered patio & expansive ensuite bath complete w/a free standing tub overlooking the water & custom tiled walk-in shower. Thoughtfully designed landscaping paired with a private dock, fenced yard space & garden area all go together to create the perfect oasis. Don’t miss this rare opportunity at a stunning Waterfront Home w/end of the road privacy.
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OPENING SPACES TO OTHER SPECIES Habitats
by Cate Huisman
As more and more of North Idaho has been converted to the meet the needs of modern humans, less and less of it is left to meet the needs of other species. Recognizing that we might one day regret the loss of these others, many local people are working to stem this trend.
Monarch butterflies, the quintessential orange-and-blackwinged subjects of a typical second-grade science class, have a particular affinity for North Idaho. After wintering in California, they spend the spring and early summer traveling here. Why? Because monarchs can lay their eggs only on milkweed, and North Idaho is rife with it.
Or at least, it used to be. Milkweed is poisonous to livestock, so ranchers and farmers have been eradicating it for decades. Local numbers of monarchs have dropped 80 to 90 percent over this time.
So people in Bonner County have been planting milkweed.
The students of John Hastings, a teacher at Sandpoint High School, have been adding to a patch there for several years. “We sell hundreds of milkweeds at All Seasons Garden Center,” he noted of his family’s nursery business in Kootenai. “Lots of people are planting it.”
The more elaborate patches can be certified by Monarch Watch (www.monarchwatch.org), a nonprofit formed to protect and promote monarch butterflies. Gail Bolin, a local landscape designer, has worked with a commercial tree farm in the Selle Valley, Young Living, to create such a waystation on its property, where over 760 milkweeds have been planted.
In south Sandpoint, Preston Andrews and Patty Ericsson are also planting milkweed and other plants that support pollinators—the essential insects that transfer pollen among plants. This has involved a multi-year transformation of their property from its previous human use—as a Christmas tree farm—into a habitat that is instead optimal for bees and bugs.
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They started by replacing the dying farmed pines with native shrubs. Then they cleared the innumerable non-native thistles and planted milkweed, goldenrod, kinnikinnick, and yarrow—plants known to attract butterflies, bees, and other important bugs. Last summer they added a variety of more showy and colorful native plants so that something was always in bloom. Thus there is nourishing nectar throughout the growing season.
Their reward is a plethora of pollinators. Ericsson describes “furry and loud” bumblebees so big that she can see the pollen clinging to them as they go about their work. And like the monarch waystations, this garden is now certified too—as a “Pollinator Habitat” by the Xerxes Society, an international organization founded to support invertebrate species, of which bugs are a significant portion.
Rich del Carlo is known throughout Sandpoint as a master of all things bird. On his property in the Selle Valley, del Carlo has installed several nesting boxes to attract and protect different species. Among his favorites are falcons, and three of the boxes are for kestrels, small falcons that migrate yearly from Mexico and the southwest U.S.
He has a front row seat as kestrel family life unfolds in late spring. Del Carlo watches male kestrels bringing food to the
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nest and has been impressed with the sometimes Herculean efforts of the small birds: Once he saw a kestrel father arrive at a box with a large gopher. “It took every ounce of strength he had to shove that gopher through the hole,” he recalled.
When the baby kestrels leave the nest in late July, del Carlo has to endure a dicey period when the fledgling kestrels can leave the nest but not yet fly back up to it. He watches them struggle as they climb with their feet and beaks back to the nest or another tree, hoping for the best. If all goes well, as soon as they can truly fly, they are gone, eventually to head south with others of their kind.
Not all of us can be milkweed planters and birdbox builders. But a lot of us have lawns. Native-habitat supporters agree that the one thing we can all do to support native species is to keep our lawns as messy as possible. Well-manicured lawns are not what displaced species need; mixed plants (not to say weeds) and the occasional pile of cuttings are much more appealing.
It’s something to think about next time we’re trying to decide whether to spend a sunny day mowing the grass or relaxing by the lake.
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Happy Plants, Happy Gardeners
GOING NATIVE INYOUR LANDSCAPING
by Desi Aguirre
Ikill roses on a regular basis, but have a native wild rose in my garden that flourishes with very little help from me. The wild rose is fragrant and although the blossoms are small, they are abundant and glorious. While native plants aren’t always as showy as non-native species, they may be easier to take care of; and that’s just one reason to include them in your landscape plans.
Interested in good stewardship of the natural environment? Gardening with native plants is a great way to create a beautiful yard, garden, or landscape that is healthy and sustainable. Native plants are beneficial to landscapes by adding plants that flourish in our temperature zone while providing natural habitats for birds, bees, and other wildlife. They generally require less water and no extra fertilizers and pesticides, thus saving time, money, and the environment as well,
Karen Olson, landscape architect and co-owner of Aster Garden Design Center, said our local area has a rich variety of native plants that can benefit yards and gardens. But it’s important to understand any plant’s basic wants and needs. “If you want to be a happy gardener and never mourn the loss of a plant,” Olson said, “you need to plant the right plant in the right
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Local varieties of plants produce crops of flowers with nectar for birds, butterflies, and bees, as well as berries for deer and other wildlife
place.” For example, she explained, kinnikinnick, a versatile, low-growing, native shrub that uses very little water and provides great ground cover, will flourish and require very little maintenance in a sunny, dry area, but won’t do as well in a wet, shady spot.
Best of all, said Olson, gardening with native plants provides natural habitats for area critters. “Local varieties of plants produce crops of flowers with nectar for birds, butterflies, and bees, as well as berries for deer and other wildlife.” Serviceberries— shrubby plants that grow from 3 feet to 20 feet—blue elderberries, and golden currants all provide flowers with plenty of nectar for bees, which turn into berries that provide food for birds, deer, and other wildlife.
The Kinnikinnick Native Plant Society (www.nativeplantsociety.org) sponsors activities and events to foster the understanding and use of native flora while advocating for responsible use of native plants in restoring landscapes. Their book, “Landscaping with Native Plants,” is available in many places around town, and has a wealth of information regarding the proper use of native plants.
To get an idea of the beauty available in a native landscape, visit the North Idaho Native Plant Arboretum, located behind the Bonner County Historical Museum in Lakeview Park (611 South Ella St.). Planted, developed and organized by volunteers from the Kinnikinnick Native Plant Society, it showcases local native flowers, shrubs, vines, grasses, ground covers, ferns and trees. The Healing Garden, next to Bonner General Health, also features many native plants in a photo-worthy setting.
Although native plants can be found in the wild, harvesting them can destroy natural habitats and requires a permit, Olson said. To obtain healthy native plants that are sustainable and beautiful, check out the Astoria Garden Center, Cedar Mountain Perennials, All Seasons Garden Center, or shop the Kinnikinnick Native
homes as habitats real estate 128 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
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Plant Society annual native plant sale in June at the Arboretum.
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THE REAL ESTATE ROLLERCOASTER IS STILL RISING but the climb is not as steep
Spring is finally here after a long winter and I see a resilient market with adjustments for the current conditions,” said Lisa Travers, president of the Selkirk Association of Realtors. “We live in one of the most desirable areas in the country,” she added. “[and] some equilibrium seems to be returning to our market as buyers absorb the costs associated with home ownership in North Idaho and sellers realize that they need to adjust prices to a normalized state in order to sell in the current climate.”
So what does that mean as far as our market is concerned? Prices are still going up, but not as sharply as they have done in the past. Looking at the seven-month period between last September and April, and comparing it to that same period the year prior, the average sales price for all properties sold in Bonner and Boundary counties rose only 3 percent; in the city of Sandpoint, the increase was 8 percent.
“Sandpoint is the hub of our area and most people that are looking to live in ‘town’ seem to prefer Sandpoint over the outlying areas,” said Travers. “[This is] due to reasons such as work opportunities, schools, medical care, shopping, and entertainment. Home prices have held and appreciated in this market due to demand, and there are a substantial number of
new building starts that should be absorbed fairly easily.”
Living in Sandpoint has benefits, but for area workers, prices are tough. “Affordable housing continues to be a pervasive issue, with a lot of local and middle income buyers being pushed out of the housing market,” Travers said. “Increasing interest rates have done even more harm to this demographic by reducing their capacity to buy.” All indicators, however, show interest rates may only rise slightly this spring, and then stabilize or even fall slightly by end of summer, which will help.
“Vacant land is still selling if priced right as builders, well drillers, and other contractors are starting to have room in their schedules again. However, the cost of building remains inflated so, again, development cost factors definitely weigh on a buyer’s mind as they purchase vacant land,” Travers said. Those factors aside, a drive down many roads where previously there were few homes will show new construction on the rise.
Bottom line? North Idaho is where a lot of people want to be, so expect home prices to remain high for the foreseeable future, and to see more efforts at providing affordable housing for the area’s workers.
– Trish Gannon
marketwatch real estate 130 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 208.265.5506 Serving Sandpoint and Surrounding Areas Professional Movers Your Hometown Mover SandpointMovers.com
Bonner county market trends
Sales data based on information from the Selkirk MLS for the periods indicated. Information is deemed reliable but not guaranteed.
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 131 SandpointBuildingSupply.com SandpointBuildingSupply.com
Average days on market residential properties 85 98.75% of listing price Expect to pay (based on sales May 2022 through April 2023) Slowest month for sales january september Busiest month for sales First quarter 2023 Residential numbers sold Sold last year: 105 Sold this year: 63 % Change: -40.0% Residential waterfront sold Sold last year: 16 Sold this year: 23 % Change: +43.8% Bonner County $7,000,000 $6,000,000 $5,000,000 $4,000,000 $3,000,000 $2,000,000 $1,000,000 $900,000 $800,000 $700,000 $600,000 $500,000 $400,000 $300,000 $200,000 $100,000 $0 May June July August September October November December January February March April Single Family - Bonner County Single Family - Sandpoint City Single Family - Bonner County Lakefront Bonner County Vacant Land
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An Evening With
Natives & Newcomers
story and photos by Marianne Love
This issue’s Natives and Newcomers offers diverse stories about living in Sandpoint or recently choosing to live here. They also universally agree that Sandpoint offers a lifestyle that suits them just fine.
JANICE RAINEY JOHNSON Native
Janice Rainey Johnson’s love for family history has led her on some fascinating journeys. In 2018, she and husband Mark visited Mason, Wisconsin, from where lumberman John Humbird led several families, including Johnson’s Knudson ancestors, to work at the Sandpoint mill he established in the early 1900s.
“We saw the Humbird home, which in its day was no doubt the nicest in town,” she recalled. “It’s now abandoned and has seen much better days.”
The couple also visited Green Bay to watch her cousin, NFL Hall of Fame honoree Jerry Kramer, be honored and given his Pro Football Hall of Fame Ring of Excellence.
Johnson has always loved her life in Sandpoint. Born in 1955, she grew up on South Boyer near the “old” fairgrounds and Memorial Field.
“My favorite activities included swimming, picking huckleberries, and camping,” she said. “The county fair was a big deal.
“We had our own amusement park,” she added. The Raineys had permission to use a vacant lot next door. Her dad built a big swing set, merry-go-round, and swinging chairs which attracted “lots of friends” until the owner sold it.
A graduate of Sandpoint High, where she enjoyed business classes and marching in
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the Ponderettes drill team, she completed business studies at Spokane Community College. Back in Sandpoint, she worked in a law office and married Mark. The couple raised three daughters—Melissa, Julianna, and Laura—at their Selle Valley home. They started Johnson Excavating in 1986.
“I was the friendly voice that answered the phone and helped our customers,” she said. “We saw many changes in Sandpoint, many of which we were a part of.”
Now retired, Johnson is enjoying her grandchildren, gardening, traveling, and, of course, coming home.
“I have always enjoyed living in Sandpoint,” she said. “I’ve seen many changes but to me, Sandpoint still has a lot of smalltown charm.”
Q. Who were some Sandpoint local(s) who left an impression in your life?
Cleo and Emma Lockwood, the neighbors across the road when we built in 1980. Their kindness was beautiful: fresh bread, pastries, bags of garden vegetables, handmade quilts, snowplowing the driveway so we could get to the hospital when we were expecting our first baby.
Q. What was life here like in the good ol’ days?
Sandpoint was like living in Mayberry. As kids, we roamed freely with our friends, “dragged the gut” as teenagers, never missed football or basketball games. We considered all of our classmates as friends. It was ideal.
Q. Where do you take visitors?
Second Avenue Pizza. City Beach is mandatory. A drive in the mountains is fun—better if huckleberries are ripe. The beauty at the top of Schweitzer is unmatched.
Q. What is the most sacred aspect of Sandpoint you think is worth preserving?
Sandpoint’s downtown walkability possesses a charm that many cities do not have. In this age of busy lives, it’s a welcome atmosphere.
MIKE WINSLOW Native
When Mike Winslow started his career at Vern’s Barbershop in 1960, haircuts cost $1.50. When he closed his shop in
natives & newcomers 134 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 Formerly Sandpoint Storage 24 Hr Video Surveillance Temperature Controlled Storage Heated RV/Boat Storage Covered Outdoor Storage • Same Day Move-In • Secure & Convenient • Large Units Available
2010, the going rate was $12.
After graduating from Sandpoint High School, Winslow considered working in the woods like his dad Frosty, a local truck driver. Aware of woods-related injuries, he instead chose to attend barber school in Seattle.
He worked with local barbers before starting his own business on South First, known as Mike’s Sportsman’s Barbershop: Headquarters for Hunters, Fishermen, and All Other Fancy Liars.
Twice voted “Best Local Barber,” Winslow served several customers daily, including one well-known football player, NFL Hall of Famer Jerry Kramer.
“His hair was a little wild one time,” Winslow recalled. “I asked if he wanted me to put some spray on. He paid me. I said I’d spray him. He said he could do it, so he grabbed a bottle and sprayed his hair. It was the wrong bottle,” Winslow said. “He used clipper lube.”
Avoiding woods work did not exempt Winslow from danger. In 1969, he was kidnapped by two prison escapees who opened his car door while he was parked by the Pastime. One tried to shoot him.
“He pulled the trigger several times and caught the hammer with his thumb,” he remembered. Later, north of town, one kidnapper did graze him in the arm, but he escaped and called the cops.
Other than that, Winslow, a father and grandfather, figures he’s led a charmed life here. He enjoys fishing, hunting, golf, an occasional “eat-out” with his partner Linda at Second Avenue Pizza, and taking a spin in his red T-Bird with the top down.
He also treasures his hometown.
“I’ve lived here all my life,” Winslow, 81, said. “I’d say there’s never been a better place to grow up in than Sandpoint.”
Q. Who were some Sandpoint local(s) who left an impression in your life?
My parents, good hard-working people, gave me my hometown values. Charlie Stidwell, junior high principal. Tough, but great mentor! Police Chief George Elliot. If he caught you doing something, he’d talk to you about what you did wrong, say, “Don’t do it again,” and send you on your way.
Q. What was life here like in the good ol’ days?
Winters were different. In 1957 we had a blizzard in March and one in October with no warning, no permanent antifreeze, and lots of busted motor blocks. The worst winter I remember started the last couple of days of ’68. By January 23, 1969, it had snowed 82 inches. The temperature at Eddie’s Shell was minus 44. Drifts were 12 feet deep.
Q. Where do you take visitors?
To Schweitzer Basin to see the mountain ranges with views of the lake and Sandpoint or take them out on the lake by boat; (it’s) always a “wow” factor.
Q. What is the most sacred aspect of Sandpoint you think is worth preserving?
Keep our area as pristine as we can for years to come. It’s why we live here! And, the fairgrounds, the one place that supports all sorts of events, covering so many groups, nonprofits, sports, etc.
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STEVE WIMER Newcomer
Educator and retired Navy reservist Steve Wimer views Sandpoint as unlike anywhere he’s ever lived.
“I grew up in a California resort town, so I feel like I understand the dynamic that goes along with providing services for those who come here for the lake and mountains,” Wimer said. “What’s different are the strong family legacies and connections along with the traditions.”
The Wimers moved here from Seattle. Steve’s wife Kathy works as a nurse. Their children include Sandpoint High senior Jack, and Sophie, who recently earned her AA degree.
Wimer, 57, a St. Mary’s College graduate with several years of teaching experience, started with Lake Pend Oreille School District as a substitute teacher. He now instructs residential carpentry at Sandpoint High School.
“I’m fortunate that between SMS and SHS, I was able to find a niche,” he said. “I’m now in a position to make a contribution each day.”
A scouting mission, Kathy Wimer’s experiences vacationing here, and skiing at Schweitzer influenced their Sandpoint move.
“She thought it was the best fit for us,” Wimer said. While looking for property, a relaxation break at a MickDuff’s sidewalk table sealed their decision.
“People were friendly,” he said. “It [felt] easygoing and comfortable. It left an impression.” The family settled with their dogs on a small acreage off Lakeshore Drive.
Wimer hopes to revive his interest in cycling and fishing. A lifelong water lover, he’s already taken up kayaking.
He’s also gotten a taste of local huckleberry culture and strategy.
“We’ve tried to get into hiking and huckleberry picking,” he said, “but have found that advice from trusted people on huckleberry locations has been rather vague.”
That aside, he has no regrets about “starting over.”
“So far, Sandpoint has been enjoyable,” he said. “And we
136 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
natives & newcomers
As my friend says “It’s our diamond in the rough.” We’re lucky to have it so we need to preserve it!
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continue to learn about the community and the history.”
Q. Where was your hometown?
I grew up in Soquel, California, adjacent to the beach town of Capitola. The two were separated by the highway. The junior high was in Capitola; the high school in Soquel. It was small enough that we walked or rode bikes to school.
Q. How do you plan to contribute to the community?
Doing what I’m doing now, teaching and coaching. Those are keeping me active and connected.
Q. What’s been your best Sandpoint experience?
Each time I see something new or go somewhere I haven’t been. My favorites are Garfield Bay, Mirror Lake, Ice House Pizzeria, and Gold Hill Trail.
Q. What’s the most comfortable aspect of living here?
The quiet. It’s a lot easier to enjoy living without the constant noise of the city. Also, the ease of access to outdoor activi-
for a hike.
MEAGHAN SKYE SWINNEY Newcomer
In early 2022, Meaghan Skye Swinney left Cambria, California, bound for Sandpoint to join her partner Wayne Ball, a research biologist. She brought her
orange rescue cat named “Jake from the Lake.”
Swinney also brought a wealth of outdoor-related experiences, a sense of stewardship, and a desire to make a positive difference in people’s lives.
“I feel so blessed to have landed in a small town with such a thriving yoga and wellness community,” said Swinney, a 33-year-old yoga instructor and UCLA grad. She doubles as front-desk receptionist and aide at Ponderay’s Kauai Therapy and Wellness.
“I’m particularly passionate about working with the aging community,” she said, “and people with physical limitations who wouldn’t feel comfortable in traditional yoga settings.”
Now teaching yoga in The Yellow Room on Euclid, she hopes to offer more formal classes at Kauai.
“Like any true millennial, I have already taken many career paths in several industries in my three-plus decades on this earth,” she said.
Some include leading private night-
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sky programs, performing as a specialevents “fire dancer,” planning vacations, and working in the fitness apparel fashion industry.
She also spent four years with Sequoia Parks Conservancy, a National Parks Service nonprofit partner.
“I tapped into some of my favorite activities—living history performances, guided walks and hikes, and ultimately learning about astronomy and giving night-sky programs,” she said. “My favorite was bringing Arts into the parks and producing full-length, living-history programs among the Sequoia trees.”
Here, Swinney has enjoyed hiking Pine Street Woods, snowboarding at Schweitzer, and shopping the Farmers’ Market.
“We moved to Sandpoint not for what it’s becoming or what we think it should be,” she said, “but for what it is and where it has come from.”
Q. Where was your hometown?
Three Rivers, California. (It’s) a little mountain town that houses the southern entrance to Sequoia & Kings Canyon National Parks. It’s a small, scenic community attracting people from different walks of life—cowboys, hippies, starving artists, movie stars, fundamentalist Christians, Hare Krishnas, and a little bit of everything in between.
Q. How do you plan to contribute to the community?
I brought a lot of curiosity and enthusiasm with me ... some may call that “stoke!” I’m excited to share my “stoke” for wild places, human experiences, and mindful movement.
Q. What’s been your best Sandpoint experience? A. Wayne and I live close to War Memorial Field. During the Festival at Sandpoint, we loved hearing the bands and general merriment each day.
Q. What’s the most comfortable aspect of living here? A. My heart feels more at peace here, surrounded by scenic beauty. Even living in town we have the natural world all around us, from bald eagles and osprey pairs nesting a few yards over, to the lake and mountain views. It feels like where we’re supposed to be.
natives & newcomers 138 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
Downtown Sandpoint on the lake. Indoor pool, sauna, fitness room, hot tub. All rooms with lake view. Dine at Trinity at City Beach. Also 22-site RV park. Beyond Hope
Located on the Hope Peninsula. RV sites, tent sites, restaurant, cafe, showers, marina and private venues available. www.beyondhoperesort.com
2 x Two cute cabins, 400 feet apart from each other on beautiful Sunnyside. Minutes from Lake Pend Oreille and under 15 minutes to downtown Sandpoint and Schweitzer. Up to 4 guests: www.airbnb.com/h/CabinInTheCedars
Up to 6 guests: www.airbnb.com/h/LittleHouseInTheWoodsBnb Daugherty
Sandpoint’s luxury vacation home rentals, with properties on the lake and the mountain. See ad on page 5. www.staysandpoint.com
Waterfront bungalows at Dover Bay in Marina Village. Fully furnished, lake and mountain views. Fitness center, marina, hiking/biking trails. www.doverbaybungalows.com
FairBridge Inn & Suites
Lodge at Sandpoint
Pend Oreille Shores Resort
208-265-0257 or 877-487-4643
Twin Cedars Camping and Vacation Rentals
50 x x x x
Free breakfast with waffles, 24-hour hot tub, free wireless internet. Family suites. At the base of Schweitzer Mountain, two miles from Lake Pend Oreille. www.fairbridgesandpoint.com
Accommodations for retreats and banquets. Lakeside with swimming and docks. Views of lake and mountains for an unforgettable Idaho vacation. www.lodgeatsandpoint.com
Fully furnished condos and on-site athletic club on Lake Pend Oreille. Stay and play packages. www.posresort.com
Mountain accommodations, stay-and-play packages. Spectacular mountain and lake views. Outdoor heated pool and hot tubs. See ad on back cover. www.schweitzer.com
2 x x Sleep’s Cabins have been a beloved part of the community and a landmark on Lake Pend Oreille since the 1930s. Perfect for family vacations. See ad page 32. www.sleepscabins.com
10 x x Vacation rental homes, bell tents, RV sites and a camping cabin amongst two beautiful acreages on Lake Pend Oreille and in the Selle Valley, both with outdoor hot tubs. www.twincedarsvacations.com
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 139 No. of Units Spa or Sauna Pool on site Restaurant Bar or Lounge Kitchen Meeting Rooms
or 800-635-2534 54 x x x x x
Best Western Edgewater
Resort 208-264-5251 84 x x x
Cabin in the Cedars 208-263-1212
100 x x x
x x x x x
Dover Bay Bungalows 208-263-5493 19
25 x x x x
x x x
70 x x
TWIN CEDARS’ CAMPING CABIN VACATION RENTAL
SLEEP’S CABINS WATERFRONT VACATION RENTAL
DAUGHERTY MANAGEMENT WATERFRONT VACATION RENTAL, THE POINT
by Beth Hawkins
Summer rewards us with our favorite fruit—the prized huckleberry. And while the actual process of picking huckleberries in the mountains is a pastime enjoyed by many, the opportunity to taste its unique flavor is open to everyone who visits Sandpoint area restaurants.
Chefs and brewmasters alike incorporate Idaho’s official fruit and its tart flavor in concocting savory dishes, sweet treats, and refreshing libations that are one-of-a-kind to their clientele.
Catching breakfast at the Pack River Store, 1587 Rapid Lightning Rd., has always been a great decision. Try pairing
that country scramble or eggs Benedict with a huckleberry mimosa. And the Floating Restaurant, 47392 Highway 200 in Hope, wows Sunday brunch-goers with a delicious helping of buttermilk huckleberry pancakes served with orange butter … perhaps the perfect hearty start before a huckleberry-picking outing of your own.
Pastry and pies are the royalty of the huckleberry food world, and for some of the best it’s worth the drive to Clark Fork Pantry, 204 E. 4th Street in Clark Fork. The family-owned bakery is known for its use of fresh, natural ingredients in all its food (it’s all 100 percent GMO free, with no artificial flavors
140 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
Fabulous huckleberries add tangy flavor to dishes, brews and more
or colors), from homemade bread to deli sandwiches to ice cream treats. And when huckleberry season rolls around, you can find them in all those things (well, maybe not the deli sandwiches) and more. The store sells huckleberry cream cheese Danish rolls, as well as baked-from-scratch huckleberry pies, huckleberry milkshakes … even huckleberry bread! Things do sell out, so a quick call at 208-266-1300 can be a good idea if there’s something specific you have in mind.
The store also carries a large selection of huckleberry products that range from jams and jellies, to huckleberry licorice and taffy, to BBQ sauce and candy bars, many of them
made right here in Idaho.
Here in Sandpoint, you can satisfy your fresh huckleberry urge in season at Miller’s Country Store, which always offers a range of pies, stollen, and scones when the berries are ripe. You’ll find them at 1326 Baldy Mountain Rd.
You can also satisfy your sweet tooth with the huckleberry crème brulee at Schweitzer’s Chimney Rock Grill. A rich custard with a carmelized sugar topping, huckleberries add a sweetly tart complement to this traditional dish.
When it comes to huckleberries and Sweet Lou’s (477272 Highway 95 in Ponderay)—you can’t miss their huckleberry
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cheesecake. “We make all of our cheesecakes in-house, so this favorite dessert is only available when the berries are in season and we are lucky enough to come across a patch,” said owner Meggie Foust. The popular restaurant also serves up huckleberry lemonade—a perfect thirst-quencher on a hot summer day.
If you’re looking for ready-to-use huckleberry products—jams, syrups, candy, pretzels and the like—Winter Ridge Natural Foods (703 Lake St.) has a nice selection to choose from, as does Litehouse Specialty Foods at 212 S. Second Ave.
Wine lovers, this one’s for you: Pend d’Oreille Winery’s signature Huckleberry Blush. This blend made here in Sandpoint has just a hint of sweetness with Riesling as its foundation, and infused with locally pressed huckleberries. The winery, located downtown at 301 Cedar St., advises that it’s best served with hard cheese, nuts, and grilled or spicy meats.
And not to be left out, beer drinkers can lap up Laughing Dog Brewery’s Mountain Hound Huckleberry Cream Ale at their taproom at 805 Schweitzer Plaza Drive in Ponderay. This smooth brew has developed a loyal fan base with its fruity, creamy, sweet taste. In town, at 419 Second Ave., MickDuff’s Brewing serves up its Huckleberry Blonde Ale, blending its popular ale with locallyproduced huckleberry puree.
But there’s nothing that pairs with summer heat better than good, old-fashioned lemonade. For a thirst-quenching dose of huckleberry goodness, try a glass of the huckleberry lemonade at Jalapeno’s Mexican Restaurant, 314 N. Second Avenue. It’s been a longtime favorite at the popular downtown eatery, and can be ordered by the glass or by the pitcher. They also serve huckleberry margaritas for those who want to experience the ultimate huckleberry indulgence.
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made fresh in our bakery!
Danishes Bread | Muffins Jams | Ice Cream Milk Shakes
one of our many Huckleberry products at the Pantry:
eats+ drinks Locally
222 N First Ave,
Open Daily: 11am-LATE
- Try our new BFD
PREVIOUS PAGE: YOU WON’T WANT TO MISS THE HUCKLEBERRY CHEESECAKE AT SWEET LOU’S ; ABOVE, CLOCKWISE FROM TOP: CLARK FORK PANTRY’S HUCKLEBERRY BREAD AND (INSET) HOMEMADE PIES; LAUGHING DOG MAKES A HUCKLEBERRY CREAM ALE IN SEASON; HUCKLEBERRY PRODUCTS ABOUND AT THE CLARK FORK PANTRY. COURTESY PHOTOS
Home of the World Famous PJ’s hand-pressed Hamburgers, made with fresh Wood’s Ground Beef
Burger, Fries and Domestic Draft for $10.00!
BOOK YOUR RESERVATION TODAY. 58 Bridge St., Sandpoint, ID 83864 208.255.7558 | TrinityAtCityBeach.com Open Thursday - Monday. Closed Tuesday & Wednesday. TWO GREAT LOCATIONS: ONE ON THE WATER, ONE IN THE CITY. Now hiring for all positions! 113 MAIN INDULGE YOURSELF THIS SPRING AT SANDPOINT’S NEWEST RESTAURANT. Tuesday - Saturday, Opens at 3pm. Closed Sunday & Monday. CREATED BY
at Make your lodging reservations at www.HemlocksLodging.com 2023 Season Opening! JOIN US frIDAY, May 26 (Memorial Day weekend) RV The Hemlocks is a long-standing park with cabins, a newly remodeled boutique hotel, a restaurant and lodging. new mesquite slow smoked meats section Vacuum sealed for taking home. To-go menus and outdoor seating under the log pavilion! Old West Texas BBQ at the Hemlocks has a vast menu of culinary delights, utilizing the freshest ingredients to bring homemade dishes straight to your table. Come dine with us today on Mesquite Slow-Smoked BBQ. TEXAS BORN AND RAISED! TEXAS BORN AND RAISED! 208.267.4363 | 73400 HWY 2 , Moyie Springs, ID OldWestTexasBBQ.com | New hours, concert dates and great Texas BBQ! 208.267.4363 | 73400 HWY 2 , Moyie Springs, ID OldWestTexasBBQ.com | FRI, SAT and SUNDAY from 11.00 AM till 7.00 PM MAY, JUN, JULY & AUG !
by Patty Hutchens
It’s the time of year when people begin to fire up the grill and get out their favorite barbecue recipes, and the smell of hickory- (or apple-, or oak-, or your choice!) smoked goodness will fill the air. But if you’re not up to firing the grill yourself, there are several “readymade” barbecue options available year-round.
One popular barbecue establishment here in town is SmokeSmith Bar-B-Que, owned and operated by Sean and Katie Smith. SmokeSmith offers five handcrafted barbecue sauces that perfectly complement their food. Their sauces include classic, spicy, honey sweet , mustard-cue, and Carolina vinegar.
“All of our sauces are made from scratch and sweetened with cane sugar, molasses, or honey, not corn syrup,” said Katie.
The mustard ‘cue is new this year, and has been a huge hit. “It’s crisp, tangy, and tart with classic barbecue notes,” said Katie, who adds that it’s her favorite way to complement Smokesmith’s brisket. The Carolina Vinegar—the couple’s take on a pulled pork staple—is a North Carolina-type barbecue, not South.
Sean explains that traditional BBQ cuts are known to be tough when cooked quickly, which is why slow cooking is the best way to prepare them. He added there is no sugar in their rubs and they never add sauce to their pork or brisket unless a customer orders it.
Since opening their food truck in June of 2020, Sean and Katie have grown their business substantially and look forward to expanding to a brick-and-mortar store in the summer of 2023. They will be located at the corner of Boyer and Highway 2 in the building which formerly housed The Longshot.
If you’re up for a drive, check out Hemlocks Old West Texas Barbecue on Highway 2 in Moyie Springs. Everything is homemade, using the freshest ingredients. Texas-born owner Johnney Walker offers a lesson in true Texas barbecue: “Barbecue meats are commonly sold by the pound. Next, side dishes and desserts
QSandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 145 EATS + DRINKS
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE 145
From a taste of Texas to the grill next door, barbecue options abound
including slices of white bread, crinkle-cut dill pickle chips, sliced onion, jalapeño, and cornbread are picked up along the line. This style of barbecue emphasizes the meat, so if sauce is available, it is usually considered a side to dip into.”
Want a taste of Texas at the ready without having to frequently make that drive? The restaurant has a large selection mesquite-smoked, slow-cooked meats that are vacuum sealed for you to take home.
Be sure to check their website at www.hemlockslodging.com. The restaurant opens for the season on Memorial Day, and is open to diners Thursday through Saturday from 11 a.m. ‘til 7 p.m. or until the meat runs out. Barbecue is offered by the plate, the sandwich, or the pound with all the typical side dishes also on the menu.
Closer to home, Sweet Lou’s, located in Ponderay (with additional locations in Coeur d’Alene and Athol), has had a mouth-watering BBQ chicken sandwich on its menu since it opened 12 years ago.
“You can’t go wrong with bacon, chicken, melted jack cheese, and our house BBQ sauce,” said Meggie Foust who owns Sweet Lou’s with her husband Chad. She suggests adding avocado and dipping the sandwich into Litehouse bleu cheese dressing. “It makes the perfect combination.”
All Sweet Lou’s barbecue sauces are made in-house with recipes created by Chad. In addition to the BBQ chicken sandwich, they serve wings with a choice of sauces that include bourbon BBQ, buffalo, honey sriracha, and their house BBQ. You can also choose from bison or pork ribs smothered in your favorite made-from-scratch sauce. And for those with dietary restrictions, you’ll be happy to know that all of Sweet Lou’s sauces are gluten-free.
For other barbecue options in town, be sure to check out Pack River Store, Felkers Northern Smoke BBQ (now available for catering only), Shilla Korean BBQ with Seoul, and Farmhouse Kitchen BBQ.
146 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
Seasonal Pub Fare with a Unique Twist Summer Hours Tues-Sat 4:00pm to 10:00pm 301 Cedar St., Suite 102 208.265.PORK come hungry stay late eat well save room for our tasty b ee rs on tap open until 10 p.m. Som ething for Everyone - Bring the Family ww w.sweet lou si daho.com serving you 7 days a week at three locations! Sw ee t Lou ’ s Restau ra nt s Hwy 95 N Ponderay | 208.263.1381 • 6915 E Athol Crossing Road | 208.561.9496 | Atho l 601 Front Ave. 208.667.1170 | DOWNTOWN Cda
Elevate the art of backyard cooking to new culinary heights with some help from Wildwood Grilling. The company’s cedar planks, manufactured right here in the Sandpoint area, add a yummy smoke flavor into salmon and other fish. Wildwood also sells cherry wood planks for red meats. Want more flavor? They also sell a line of specialty rubs. Beyond that, they also sell beeswax fire starters—aside from helping to start fires, they’re excellent for mini-fires to cook s’mores (plus 1 percent of all profits are donated to organizations working to save the bees!). Wildwood Grilling has been in business since 1995, and employs about 50 people. Their products are sold across the U.S., and here in the Sandpoint area you can find them at the following locations: Super 1 Foods, Yoke’s Fresh Markets, Winter Ridge Natural Foods, and The Pickled Kitchen.
– Beth Hawkins
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PHOTO, PAGE 146: SMOKESMITH OFFERS UP A SLAB OF BBQ GOODNESS.
Natural beer, food & fun! Come visit us today at one of our two locations: amily Friendly Brewpub 312 N First Ave. Beer Hall & Brewery 419 N. 2nd Ave MickDuﬀs.com Barbecuing at Home?
PHOTO BY MADDIE ALBERTSON. ABOVE FROM TOP: OLD WEST OFFERS BBQ SANDWICHES FOR THE LIGHTER APPETITE. COURTESY PHOTO. SWEET LOU’S TOPS CHICKEN, BACON, AND JACK CHEESE WITH THEIR HOUSE BBQ SAUCE. COURTESY PHOTO
The Hive is alive
Downtown music venue reopens
by Olivia Keyes
This last winter,The Hive was revived. An upcoming cultural cornerstone of Sandpoint is navigating an exciting new chapter. After sitting dormant for a few years without a concert or event, the venue has triumphed—now back and better than ever.
The Hive, located at 207 N. First Ave., came under new ownership in the summer of 2022. Mack Deibel, whose family purchased it, is no stranger to Sandpoint. He has worn many hats in our community, from work as a dishwasher to manager at Mickduff’s Beer Hall. After finishing an advertising degree with a minor in marketing, Deibel also spent time as the communication manager at the Greater Sandpoint Chamber of Commerce, and has worked as a real estate agent for the last few years.
For Deibel, The Hive blends aspects of his background, combining customer service with a vibrant business. “It’s truly a family business I’ve wanted to do in Sandpoint for a long time. The Hive presented an opportunity to use my strengths while challenging me,” he said.
The vibrancy of this venue can be felt as soon as you walk in the door. From the three-dimensional honeycomb installations
to the beehive disco balls, there is no place like The Hive. The feel it provides is rare anywhere, let alone in Sandpoint.
This venue is a portal from our sleepy ski town to a worldclass entertainment scene.
“The care and thoughtfulness of this business concept from the founder, Jeff Grady—I am not misrepresenting The Hive when I say he truly left no stone unturned or nook untouched,” said Deibel. The authentic atmosphere is what drove the new owner to this institution. “Everything is custom, purposeful, and classy. The building itself is a work of art and, mechanically, another work of living art,” said Deibel.
This last winter, the venue hosted local favorites, including the RUB, the Miah Kohal Band, Copper Mountain Band, Last Chance Band, and Stoney Holiday, to name a few. The Hive truly has something for everyone, bringing in rock, country, bluegrass, and funk artists. The aim? To create a fun, affordable experience for our community and highlight local and regional artists.
In addition to wonderful concerts, The Hive is versatile, expanding into private parties, birthdays, celebrations of life, and galas, among other things. This new iteration of The Hive also
148 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 eats+ drinks
allows its visitors to rent out luxurious VIP booths, accompanied by private cocktail service and seating. The venue also offers to host music video shoots, commercial shoots, and album recordings.
Sandpoint has a longstanding ability to show up enthusiastically for small businesses and institutions. “The love this community has for The Hive is genuinely humbling,” said Deibel. He went on to say the gratitude and appreciation given to him and his team while they were getting up and going again lit up some of the darkest days of this new pursuit.
The lineup for the year is updated constantly. Follow along at The Hive’s website at www.livefromthehive.com or their Facebook page.
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THE HIVE IS NOW DRAWING CROWDS LIKE IT USED TO WITH ITS UNIQUE SANDPOINT NIGHTLIFE SCENE. PHOTO BY MARIEDOMINIQUE VERDIER
524 CHURCH ST, SANDPOINT 504 E SHERMAN AVE, COEUR D’ALENE WONDER MARKET, 821 W MALLON AVE, SPOKANE
CRAFT BEER, WINE, EATERY, EVENTS, LIVE MUSIC
SANDPOINT, COEUR D’ALENE, & SPOKANE WONDER BUILDING NEW!
Pizza needs beer, and beer needs pizza—it’s a simple fact of life that helped guide Paddler’s Alehouse owners Stephanie and Chris Wiens when they decided to expand the food menu at their thriving taphouse in Ponderay.
“We needed to offer more food and needed a route to take,” said Chris. “It seemed like a logical step for beer and pizza to come together.”
This past winter, the Wiens hired four kitchen staff members to craft the pizzas and calzones, which are made with hand-tossed dough and locally sourced products. The menu addition really took off with their taproom clientele. “It’s going really well; the pizza has been huge for us and for bringing people in,” Wiens said.
Paddler’s Alehouse, just off Kootenai Cut-Off Road at 100 Vermeer Drive in Ponderay, is a who’s who of regional brews and ciders. All the beers on tap are from small craft breweries within a 150-mile radius of northern Idaho, which includes Missoula to the east, Lewiston to the south, and almost to Wenatchee to the west. They’ve tapped into a niche for providing a welcoming place to gather while appreciating the fine beers and ciders made here in our region. The Wiens are pleased with the alehouse’s success and say it has matched the high hopes they had when it first opened in February 2021.
As for the pizzas, a top seller is The Paddler, made with white sauce, mozzarella, chicken, bacon, black olives, and banana peppers. “It’s one of our more popular pizzas,” said Stephanie, adding that new choices on the pizza menu now include a Philly cheesesteak pizza and a taco pizza. Paddler’s Alehouse also makes pizzas to go. Stop by and enjoy the classic combination of pizza and beer; open from noon to 8 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. Check out their fun events calendar at www.PaddlersAlehouse.com.
– Beth Hawkins
150 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 eats+ drinks
Winter Ridge Natural Foods is your onestop-shop to support your healthy lifestyle. Local Natural Delicious Organic Produce Salad Bar Deli Hot Food Bar Local Grass-Fed Meats and Dairy Extensive Wellness and Beauty Departments Exclusive Wines and Cheeses Beer and Kombucha on Tap Robust Bulk Items Healthy On-The-Go Foods And So Much More. (208) 265-8135 www.WinterRidgeFoods.com 703 Lake Street at Boyer St Sandpoint, ID Alehouse
TO GO TOGETHER. COURTESY
now dishes up pizza
PIZZA AND BEER
113 Main revitalizes classic location
Justin Dick’s latest restaurant (he owns Trinity at City Beach and is a co-owner of Jalapeno’s) is 113 Main located at, you guessed it, 113 Main St. downtown. The cozy, historic, downtown Sandpoint corner location offers delicious scratch cooking, a full range of beer, wine, and premium hand crafted cocktails, and entrees including a housemade citrus pesto gnocchi with Chilean sea bass. Open Tuesday through Saturday, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., it’s the perfect place for an evening with friends and family, or to use as a launching pad to downtown’s nightlife.
The former home to Truby’s Health Mart, Dick said, “I always loved the building when it was Truby’s. It used be our spot to hang out between lunch and dinner shift when the old Cafe Trinity was in business on First Avenue.” After purchasing the building, he added, “We were able to get it opened as a bar on the first day of Lost in the ‘50s, 2022. It took a long time to get our food equipment with supply chain issues, but we soft opened for food service in January 2023.”
The restaurant is almost an extension of Trinity. “I have an
amazing and long-tenured staff at Trinity and everyone has been working shifts at 113 Main to help fill the gaps with the lack of labor force,” Dick explained, which is why you’ll see familiar faces at both restaurants. “It’s been great to see the positivity from everyone as they move between restaurants and learn new things from each of our chefs. My hope in the future is to change into a hospitality company versus having several different restaurants, and allow all of our staff to move between locations.”
The building is somewhat limited in space, but future plans do include adding breakfast and lunch service. That small size, said Dick, means it “also has that old Cafe Trinity feel, where you’re going to know most of the people in the building, customers and staff.”
The building, as evidenced by its restored old sign outside, honors its history, with further art installations planned. When done, “My hope is to change the name to capture the historical significance of those who came before us,” said Dick.
– Trish Gannon
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THE OUTSIDE OF 113 MAIN EXUDES HISTORIC CHARM, WHILE INSIDE, THE FOOD IS MODERN-DAY, AND SUBLIME. COURTESY
“We Salt The Margaritas And The Side Walk” Magic Sundays—5-8pm | Margarita Monday—all day Taco Tuesday—all day Sundays Margarita Monday Tuesday PATIO DINING FAMILY FRIENDLY BANQUET ROOM FULL BAR Life is Good at Connies! Open Monday through Saturday 7-8 (Lounge open until 10) Sunday 7-3 323 Cedar St | Sandpoint, ID 38364 | 208-255-8791 email@example.com SINCE 1994
PHOTO AT LEFT; AT RIGHT, STAFF PHOTO
Special Food at a Special Place
Lizbeth Fausnight admits it: opening a restaurant at the age of 68 is a little bit crazy. Nonetheless, that’s exactly what she did when she converted her clothing store downtown—I Saw Something Shiny—into a full service restaurant serving lunch and dinner. “COVID hit us hard,” she said. “People can do without clothes, but they always need something to eat.”
Truth be told, however, Fausnight had already been moving in that direction. She had spent over two decades in the restaurant business, and had operated a restaurant on Boston’s waterfront, and the decision to open a clothing store had come out of a desire to do something a little less hectic. But her love of food prevailed, and during COVID she began doing catered wine dinners. Now, the clothing store is a specialty foods store (think specialty cheeses, food-related décor, and “an unbelievable wine shop; you can’t buy our wines anywhere else nearby!”), while also hosting a restaurant that seats 50 (plus 32 more in the summer, when tables on her ‘sidewalk cafe’ can be utilized) and wine bar.
Now called The District, locals have been raving about her food; Fausnight said her approach is to come up with dishes that are out of the ordinary. Think duck confit, lamb chops, Asian sea bass, lobster ravioli. Oh, and what’s routinely called “the best burgers in town,” The lunch menu tends toward the lighter side, with said burgers, salads, flat breads and appetizers. The food is so popular, “we always recommend making a reservation.”
And she’s apparently managed to remain a step back from the “hectic” lifestyle she wanted to escape, despite adding small cooking classes for the summer season. “This is my creative outlet,” she said. “I love it.”
The District is located at 313 N. First Ave. downtown. Learn more at www. thedistrictinsandpoint.com
– Trish Gannon
n152 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 100 Vermeer Dr. Ponderay Idaho 83852 208) 946-5256 Open Daily from Noon to 8PM Purveyors of quality locally crafted ales, ciders, and seltzers. Monday - Saturday Delicious Dailys Come & Taste! 11:00 am-9:00 pm Baxtersoncedar@gmail.com • 208-229-8377 • 109 Cedar St, Sandpoint
The District offers fine dining and a cozy atmosphere in the heart of downtown
with Trish Gannon
At Connie’s Cafe on Cedar Street, Benny Baker has started up “Benny on the Deck,” every Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m, where he hosts different musical guests to liven up your evening libations. But wait... where IS the deck?! Never fear, it’s being rebuilt, and the owners have reassured ‘fans’ that the tree will remain. When the deck was demolished, they said, there was “a bit of historic synchronicity: the truck driver that hauled away the old concrete was Conrad’s (Connie) son. The only treasure we found was a 1972 half-dollar.” Don’t forget, every Friday night, the restaurant still offers its clam chowder, or prime rib dinner.
For the third time, Evans Brothers Coffee (524 Church St.) has received the distinction of a Good Foods Award in the food and beverage industry, and have now won this award more times than any other roaster in the Pacific Northwest. The recognition is in honor of their Costa Rica Finca Calle Lajas Natural coffee, which was produced by Las Lajas Micromill, a partner with Evans Brothers for seven years. “This is the award we covet every year,” said Randy Evans, who owns the local roasting company with his brother, Rick. “The vetting process is intense
for this award [so it’s] validation for the hard work that our team of roasters puts into our craft.”
Evans Brothers’ team of talented baristas creates a new menu of hand-crafted drinks every season. Look for their summer menu to come out around June 1.
Matchwood Brewing Company, 513 Oak St., won a gold medal for their Paradise Peaches and Cream Ale at the Best of Craft Beer awards. Their taproom keeps around a dozen craft beers on tap, including “Save the Sled Hill”, brewed to support Kaniksu Land Trust’s fundraising efforts to purchase and reopen one of our area’s favorite recreation spots. Recently hired head chef Katie Freeman will be overseeing the new summer menu, which comes out early June—but house favorites will still be around! Enjoy the new items inside or on the sunny patio and accompanied, as always, by a long list of events, including a music series. Finally, the brewery has added Ester, a tiny tap truck available for rental both on and off site, so renters can bring the brews to their own special event.
Katie Adams at Heart Bowls (102 S. First Ave. Ste 100) learned last summer that tourist season can get busy. “We get
DISH SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 153 EATS + DRINKS Hours M-F 8:30-5:30 208-263-9446 1326 Baldy Mtn. Rd. Sandpoint, ID 83864 . www.millerscountrystoresandpoint.com Quality Homemade Goods & Local Products BULKFOOD LUNCH BAKERY Now Available With
so much tourist traffic in the summer that it is hard for locals and regulars to come in and wait in line,” she said, “and so this summer I really want to urge our locals and regulars to skip the line by ordering online.” Online order placement reserves your place in the queue, so you can pop in and pick it up (and eat on the patio if you like) without spending your lunch hour waiting in line. Deliveries can also be scheduled, at www.heartbowls.com.
Chad and Meggie Foust at Sweet Lou’s (477272 Hwy. 95 N.) have been doing a little bit of traveling and “are currently working on some exciting new dishes—brought to our attention and stomachs after some fun travel,” said Meggie. Although the recipes they’re working on weren’t ready to announce at press time, she did give a little hint: “Think Louisiana and Chicago.” A lot of good food has come out of those two cities, so look for it this summer on your plates right here in Idaho.
The Elks Club on Hwy 200 now features a new restaurant, Tracks at the Elks. Follow them on Facebook @SandpointElksLodge#1376.
They’re raising (and replacing) the roof at the former Panhandler Pies restaurant in order to make way for Savory, a new pub and grill downtown. Owner Jerry Dicker said on their Facebook page that, when opened, “We [will] have all your neighborhood grill favorites, minus the hassle. Quick, easy, fresh, and convenient.” A construction highlight: when the roof came off, old signage from when the place was BJ’s Burgers back in the ’80s was revealed.
154 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 HEART BOWLS AÇAÍ | SMOOTHIES | TOAST | COFFEE We are a healthy food cafe specializing in Lattes & Espresso, Açaí Bowls, Smoothie Bowls, Rice Bowls, Deluxe Toasts, GlutenFree & Dairy-Free Baked Goods and Breakfast Sandwiches. 102 S 1st Ave., Sandpoint, ID 208.304.7631 www.heartbowls.com OPEN 8AM - 4PM EVERY DAY REAL FOOD, REAL ENERGY
KATIE ADAMS UNVEILS HER NEW ONLINE ORDER PICK-UP STATION AT HEART BOWLS. COURTESY PHOTO.
EVANS BROTHERS COFFEE
524 Church St. Located in downtown Sandpoint’s historic Granary Arts District. Enjoy exceptional coffees and espresso, including the popular Headwall Espresso Blend. Locally baked pastries, breakfast burritos and more. Open daily. 208-265-5553 www.evansbrotherscoffee.com
At the corner of First and Pine in downtown Sandpoint. Superfood cafe serves 100 percent vegan and gluten-free Acai + smoothie bowls, baked goods, rice bowls, drinks and coffee, plus a kids’ menu. 208304-7631. www.heartbowls.com
1326 Baldy Mtn. Rd. Wholesome goodness with a selection of fine deli meats and cheeses, bulk food items, pie fillings, fresh-baked pies, breads, and pastries—plus soup and sandwiches, take-home dinners, and soft-serve ice cream. Open Monday through Friday. 208-263-9446 www. millerscountrystoresandpoint.com
703 Lake St. A natural foods grocery store with in-house deli, bakery, meat department, organic produce department, a juice and espresso bar, and hot food bar with indoor seating. Open daily. 208-265-8135 www.winterridgefoods.com
CLARK FORK PANTRY 03
10000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. Enjoy a fresh Evans Brothers espresso and treat your sweet tooth to a warm scone. Freshbaked pastries, breakfast burritos and lunch specials. Fine selection of beer and wine. 208-255-3037 www.schweitzer.com
204 E. 4th St., Clark Fork. All-natural, made-from-scratch baked goods, homemade soups and sandwiches, on freshly baked bread, made to order from the deli. Wide selection of bulk foods, snacks, spices, and gift items. Open Monday through Saturday. 208-266-1300 www.clarkforkpantry.com
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MOJO COYOTE AT SCHWEITZER
MILLER’S COUNTRY STORE & DELI 05 04 06 2023
COFFEE & CAFES HOT & COLD BREWS DELICATESSENS & MARKETS GET YOUR FOOD FRESH 01 02
TRINITY MOJO COYOTE 113
MILLER’S COUNTRY STORE
COZY AND COMFORT FOOD
113 Main St., Sandpoint. Cozy, historic, downtown Sandpoint corner location offers delicious scratch cooking, a full beer, wine bar and premium hand crafted cocktails, and entrees. Open Tues-Sat, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. 208-255-7558
109 Cedar St. Daily specials, fresh local products. Burgers, chops, steaks, signature Key Lime Pie. Open Mon-Sat, 11 a.m. and Sunday 3 p.m. Closes 8 p.m. (9 p.m. Fri–Sat). 208-229-8377 www.baxtersoncedar.com
58 Bridge St. Open for lunch and dinner with expansive, outdoor dining overlooking City Beach. Full Bar and live music. Thursday through Monday, 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Reservations recommended. (208) 255-7558 www.trinityatcitybeach.com
10000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. Fireplaces, comfortable seating in the bar, and diverse cuisinee. High-quality steaks, hearty pasta, scrumptious salads, exquisite seafood. Open daily inside the Selkirk Lodge at Schweitzer. 208255-3071 www.schweitzer.com
323 Cedar St. Welcoming atmosphere in the heart of downtown Sandpoint, Connie’s Cafe is all about good people, good drinks, and good food. Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus a lounge with full bar hosts many local musicians. Open daily. 208255-2227 www.conniescafe.com
10000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. Located in the new Humbird hotel, Crow’s Bench features fabulous views and a Bavarianinspired cuisine. Reservations recommended. 208-255-3051 www.schweitzer.com
THE DISTRICT BISTRO & WINE SHOP
313 N. First Ave. Exceptional cuisine and unrivaled wine selection in a convenient, downtown location. Sidewalk seating available. Open Tues-Sat at 11 a.m. ‘til evening. 208-265-8653 www.thedistrictinsandpoint.com
301 Cedar St. Suite 102. Enjoy an extensive draft beer selection in a warm pub environment with a rotating wine list. Classic pub fare and vegetarian menu. 208-265-PORK (7675) www.sandpointfatpig.com
201 E. Superior St. AND on Schweitzer Mountain! Legendary pizza with a wide selection of greens, appetizers and sandwiches. Beer, wine, outdoor patio. Streaming favorite sports all season long. 208-255-0685 (town) 208-255-5645 (Mtn) www.powderhoundpizza.com BAXTERS
73400 Hwy. 2 Moyie Springs
Open Thurs–Sun, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. or ‘til BBQ is sold out. Authentic, slow-cooked Texas BBQ served cafeteria style, or vacuum-packed meats available to take home. 208-267-4363 www.hemlockslodging.com
151 Clubhouse Way. Fine dining at the grand clubhouse overlooking the golf course and Pack River. Steaks, seafood, burgers, a starters menu and full bar. Open Wednesday through Saturday. 208-265-2345 www.idahoclubhospitality.com
215 S. Second Ave. Piledhigh specialty pizzas, calzones, specialty salads and sandwiches. Gluten-free choices. Beer and wine, takeand-bake pizzas available. 208-263-9321 www.secondavenuepizza.com
10000 Schweitzer Mountain Rd. Experience a lunch outing unlike any other at the summit of Schweitzer! A chef-inspired menu from locally sourced, farm-fresh ingredients. 208263-9555 www.schweitzer.com
212 Cedar St. Relaxing pub and grill mixes casual dining with seriously good food. Completely family friendly. More than a dozen beers on tap, good wines and live music. Upstairs game room with fireplace. 208-263-4005
513 Oak St. Brewery offers high-quality handmade craft beers along with a savory eatery menu. Open Wednesday through Sunday. 208-718-2739 www.matchwoodbrewing.com
419 Second Ave. Enjoy craft ales in the iconic restored old federal building downtown. Traditional and updated pub fare. Open daily. 208-255-4351 www.mickduffs.com
314 N. Second Ave. Traditional and Americanized Mexican dishes in a family-friendly atmosphere. Full bar, glutenfree menu and quick to-go menu. Open Thursdays through Tuesday. 208-263-2995 www.sandpointjalapenos.com
477272 U.S. Highway 95 in Ponderay. Terrific traditional and regional fare. Family friendly restaurant with full bar. Two more locations in Coeur d’Alene and Athol. Open daily. 208-263-1381 www.sweetlousidaho.com
TAVERNS, BREWS, AND WINERIES
GOOD FOOD, DRINKS & PEOPLE
222 N. First Ave. Opens 11 am every day. Smoke free atmosphere, full service bar with burgers and sandwiches, deck seating. Daily specials. Don’t miss Taco & Tequila Tuesdays! 208-263-2313
MICKDUFF’S BREWING CO.BEER HALL & BREWERY
220 Cedar St. Tasting room boasts 16 taps, local bar art, free popcorn and weekly entertainment. Beer Hall is Bring- Your-Own-Foodfriendly. 21 years or older. Open daily. 208-209-6700 www.mickduffs.com
PADDLER’S ALEHOUSE 27
100 Vermeer Dr. Ponderay. 24 rotating taps of Local beer, cider, and hard seltzer as well as local wines and non-alcohol options. Now featuring house made pizza and calzones! Open daily. 208946-5256 www.paddlersalehouse.com
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TRINITY AT CITY BEACH CHIMNEY ROCK JALAPEÑOS RESTAURANT SECOND AVENUE PIZZA HEMLOCK’S OLD WEST TEXAS BBQ THE FAT PIG CONNIE'S CAFE POWDER HOUND PIZZA 08 09 10 17 19 15 14 11 18
SKYHOUSE AT SCHWEITZER THE IDAHO CLUB SWEET LOU'S RESTAURANT EICHARDT’S PUB & GRILL 20 16 21 22
FOOD & DRINK ATMOSPHERE
MATCHWOOD BREWING CO. 23
A&P'S BAR AND GRILL 25
MICKDUFF’S BREWING CO. BREWPUB 24
HEMLOCK’S OLD WEST BBQ
SandpointMagazine.com SANDPOINT MAGAZINE | 157 EATS + DRINKS SANDCREEK LAKE PEND OREILLE Bonner Mall Larch Baldy Mountain Rd. Schweitzer Cut-off Rd. Kootenai Cut-off Rd. Fir Poplar Bonner General Health Healing Garden SandCreekTrail Sand Creek Byway Boyer Ave. Division Ave. Boyer Ave. Division Ave. Fifth Ave. S. Second Ave. Alder Oak Pine Main Church Lake St. Cedar St. Pine St. S. Fourth Ave. Main Cedar Second Ave. Third Ave. Fourth Ave. Bridge St. First Ave. City Beach Map not to scale! Visitor Center Town Square Panida Theater Marina liarT yaB ellierO’d dneP P AR K IN G Elks Golf Course To Dover & Priest River To Sagle & Coeur d’Alene To Hope & Clark Fork To Bonners Ferry & Canada To Schweitzer Mtn. Resort N W E S Superior 1 17 26 6 24 14 22 5 12 10 8 15 25 7 13 2 19 23 21 4 18 9 3 11 16 27 Farmin Park 20 Cedar St. Bridge Evans Brothers Coffee Mojo Coyote at Schweitzer Clark Fork Pantry Heart Bowls Miller’s Country Store & Deli Winter Ridge Natural Foods 113 Main Baxters on Cedar Cafe Trinity at City Beach Chimney Rock at Schweitzer Connie’s Cafe Crow’s Bench The District Bistro & Wine Shop The Fat Pig Hemlock’s Old West BBQ The Idaho Club Jalapenos Restaurant Powderhound Pizza Second Avenue Pizza Sky House at Schweitzer Sweet Lou’s Eichardt’s Pub & Grill Matchwood Brewing Co. MickDuff’s Brewing Co. Brewpub A&P’s Bar & Grill MickDuff’s Brewing Co. Beer Hall & Brewery Paddler’s Alehouse 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 COFFEE & CAFES DELICATESSENS & MARKETS ECLECTIC/FINE DINING PUB STYLE TAVERNS, BREWS, WINERIES
158 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023 Remarkable ospreys Click to www.SandpointOnline.com Watch them on the live web cam at their Memorial Field nest! Get Social With Us! INDEXadvertiser 95 Express Car Wash 36 A Glass Act 135 All Seasons Garden & Floral 72 Alpine Shop 17, 42 Ameriprise Financial 159 Anderson’s Autobody 137 Beyond Hope Resort 12 Blue Lizard Jewelry & Art 23 Blue Sky Broadcasting Radio 138 Boden Architecture 107 Bonner County Fair 19 Bonner General Health 13 Cast Architecture 124 Century 21 RiverStone Company 61 Century 21 RiverStone Company Skinner & Stevens 115 CHAFE 150 Bike Ride 106 Christian Benoit Design 135 Co-Op Country Store 26, 30 Coeur Private Wealth 76 Coldwell Banker Resort Realty 2 Coldwell Banker Schneidmiller Realty Williams Homes 3, 125 Community Assistance League/ Bizarre Bazaar 78 Dana Construction 122 Daugherty Management 5 DSS Construction 4 Eagle’s Nest Motel 34 Eve’s Leaves 20 Evergreen Realty 6 Evergreen Realty - Charesse Moore IB C Fairway Homes – Abigail Thorpe 62 Festival at Sandpoint 132 Fountain of You Spa 54 Glahe & Associates 110 Gregory Homes 126 Hendricks Architecture 119 Home Preservation Services 112 Hope Marina 70 Idaho Club 75 Idaho Luxe 9, 51 International Selkirk Loop 137 Jenny Benoit Fine Art 72 Kalispel Metal Works 118 Kaniksu Health 33 Keokee :: media + marketing 159 Keokee Books 159 KRFY Radio 28 Lake Pend Oreille Cruises 15 Lakeshore Health 37 Maria Larson Artist 72 Lewis & Hawn Dentistry 16 Lewis & Hawn Sleep Solutions 35 Litehouse YMCA 138 Monarch Marble & Granite 108 Mountain West Bank 113 Northern Lights Cooperative 65 Northwest Handmade 69 Northwest Realty Group –Alis on Murphy 38, 39 Northwest Self Storage 134 Pain Free Excavation 129 Panhandle Special Needs 28 Panida Theater Century Fund 136 Panorama Resort 55 Realm Partners 120, 121 Realm Partners–Jeremy Brown 128 Rock Creek Alliance 48 Sandpoint Building Supply 131 Sandpoint Furniture Carpet One 79 Sandpoint Movers 130 Sandpoint Online 158 Sandpoint Reader 106 Sandpoint Super Drug 78 Satisfaction Painting 110 Scheer Haven Studio 72 Schweitzer BC Selkirk Off Road Land Cruiser Shop 46 Skeleton Key Art 159 Skywalker Tree Care 128 Sleep’s Cabins 32 Studio Ascent Design 110 Sunnyside Queen Historical Boat 15 Super 1 Foods 57 Taylor Insurance 43 The District 49 The Local Pages 134 Timberframes by Collin Beggs 116, 135 Tin Roof Furniture 58 Ting 24 Tomlinson Sotheby’s Int’l Realty - Cindy Bond IFC Tomlinson Sotheby’s Int’l Realty - Rich Curtis 105 Tomlinson Sotheby’s Int’l Realty - Chris Chambers 1 Wildflower Day Spa 14 Willamette Valley Bank 66
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Sandpoint Community Resource Center provides an extensive website offering information about how to receive help in areas as diverse as healthcare, housing, utilities, and clothing, while also connecting those who want to help with groups in need of volunteers. There is even an option to register your organization’s need for volunteer support. Learn more about it at www.sandpointcommunityresource.com 208-920-1840.
Shop Sandpoint Go to www.shopsandpoint. com, for local web links to trusted services, merchants, artists, craftspeople, farmers and green building. Write your own reviews in the new SandpointBlog. Fun reading, recycling, and more!
Keokee A marketing communications firm providing web design, hosting, search engine optimization and marketing, graphic design, editorial, media consultation and more. 405 Church St., 208.263.3573. www.keokee.com. We publish Sandpoint Magazine and sandpointonline.com
Vanderford’s Offering the latest books and novels, office supplies, machine supplies and free delivery in Sandpoint. Order online. 201 Cedar St., 208-263-2417. www.vanderfords.com
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The Center for Functional Nutrition offers a full line of clinical nutrition products including Klaire, Thorne, Pure, Ortho Molecular, and Apex. 604 N. 5th Avenue.
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The beginning of 2023 was difficult for Sandpoint as a community, with the loss of four icons of the area, people who left an indelible mark on our community soul.
Dan Young—known as Bashful Dan far and wide—was one of those who get involved in their community. It’s hard to imagine an event that he wasn’t somehow a part of, generally standing on the back of a truck trailer blasting out tunes. “Y’all ready for this?”
If nothing else, it’s likely you knew Bashful Dan as the indefatigable DJ for the annual Lost in the ’50s street dance. But Dan, a U.S. Air Force veteran, was also a long-term talk show host for local radio; the former owner/operator of Rainbow Realty in town; one of the most well-known faces of the area’s Republican party for decades; the go-to DJ for uncountable high school dances; and an emcee at just about every event held in town. In the VA hospital for over a year, his last post on Facebook read, “Remember, if I ever told you I loved you, I meant forever and ever amen.” Dan, a Governor’s Brightest Star in 2004 and Sandpoint Citizen of the Year in 2005, was 68 when he died.
Valle Novak left us the day before she was to turn 93. She was born in nearby Chilco and grew up hunting, cooking and gardening. She became a master gardener, a master naturalist, and superb cook—skills she shared through her day job of almost 40 years as a writer and columnist for the Daily Bee.
When she moved to Sandpoint she joined the Daily Bee staff, where a young reporter, Chris Bessler, worked with her in the early 1980s. Bessler, now publisher of Sandpoint Magazine, lived for a short spell in a tiny cabin on rural property Novak owned on Wrenco Loop.
“She drove a Toyota Land Cruiser in those days, which was basically required equipment to get in and out of the place,” Bessler said. “She was a quintessential Idaho woman.” He noted she was also an animal lover, an inveterate reader, and a traveler who took delight in spending time in other cultures. “Valle was as mutli-faceted as they come.” Woman of Wisdom, world adventurer, and a now dearly missed mother and grandmother,
Novak left shoes that no one’s likely to fill.
With a slightly stooped frame, endearing grin, and a wild head of hair, Erik Daarstad was a familiar face around town, and at the Panida Theater. The Academy-award-winning cinematographer was an indefatigable supporter of theatrical efforts large and small. After a lifetime making documentaries throughout the world, he filmed “Sandpoint at the North End of the Long Bridge,” telling our town’s story; he also wrote an autobiography, “Through the Lens of History.”
Born in Norway in 1935, at the age of 7, his country under German occupation, he watched British bombers drop their payload on the mine where his father was at work. His dad was killed. His mother would die by the time he was 15. He became enthralled with films, and came to the U.S. in 1954 to learn how to make them at the University of Southern California. And that’s what he did, covering subjects ranging from biologist Jane Goodall, to the workings of the White House under then-President Nixon, to the Oglala Sioux Sun Dance on the Pine Ridge Reservation. He filmed documentaries on movie stars and musicians worldwide.
He moved to Sandpoint in the 1970s, and observed that a main attraction was “the friendliness and how helpful people are to them and to one another”—qualities he reflected in his own life.
By any measure, Jack Parnell led an illustrious life. It was one that reached from his young days in California working in various ways within the livestock industry, to the halls of power in Washington D.C. as deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and eventually to Idaho where he raised championship Clydesdales at his Parnell Ranch in the Selle Valley.
His accomplishments as a businessman, public servant, rancher and family man provided the experiences from which, in his 80s, he wrote three books for children sharing his philosophy and deep faith. “My Name is Ramsey,” told the story of his reallife Clydesdale that became a champion through perseverance, while his two books on “The Old Apple Tree” shared his insights on acceptance and compassion. Jack Parnell died in April at age 87, but his life and books leave a legacy that will continue.
natives & newcomers 160 | SANDPOINT MAGAZINE SUMMER 2023
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Bashful Dan Young valle Novak
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