May 29 George Lopez: Tall, Dark & Chicano, INB Performing Arts Center. If you like ethnic humor and Lopez’s sitcom, don’t miss this opportunity to hear his standup. (800) 325-7328 or http://ticketswest.rdln.com/.
May. 29-31 Art Fest 2009 at Coeur d’Alene Park, Spokane. Art, food, fine music and more can be adored in the eye/mouth of the beholder. This is one of the Northwest’s most respected art fairs, featuring over 130 fine artists and craftspeople. (509) 456-3931 or www.northwestmuseum.org/.
June 21 Taste Washington! Spokane. The exclamation point means there will be much wine at The Davenport Hotel, no minors allowed. More than 100 Washington wines and 25 restaurants will be ready for thorough consideration. (206) 667-9463 or www.tastewashington.org/spokane/.
June 27-28 Hoopfest, Downtown Spokane. For the 20th year, the largest 3-on-3-basketball tournament/family festival in the world takes over Spokane’s streets. Grab two friends or just swing by and spectate. (509) 624-2414 or www.spokanehoopfest.net/site/.
July 4, 4th of July Celebration, Riverfront Park in Spokane. Pack the American flags, confetti poppers, sunscreen and blankets for two days of music and food all building up to an awe-inspiring fireworks display. Don’t forget the kazoos. 625-6601 or www.spokaneriverfrontpark.com.
July 10-12 42nd Annual Cheney Rodeo, Bi-Mart Arena. Possibly the best reason to visit Cheney all year, it’s the largest rodeo in Spokane County. Cowboys compete for upwards of $40,000. Mosey on over to the parade and dance too. (509) 235-4848 or www.cheneyrodeo.com/.
July 24-26 100 Years of Motorcycles, Spokane County Fair & Expo Center. More than 30 celebrity custom bike builders, food and beer gardens make this an honest to badness motorcycle extravaganza.(509) 590-8376 or www.100yearsofmotorcycles.com/.
Aug. 15 Unity In the Community, Mission Possible, Riverfront Park. A multicultural celebration that couldn’t be any more free. Free bike helmets and fittings, free school supplies, world music, dancers, cultural villages, career fair, health fair and food. (509) 209-2634 or www.nwunity.org/.
Aug. 22-23 Motorcycle Rodeo, Springdale Rodeo Grounds. You don’t have to be a cowboy to enjoy this event, visit www.frontierdaysrodeos.com.
May 17 Tails & Trails in Coeur d’Alene. Bring the dogs! It’s a 5k Dog Walk or Fun Run with your favorite K-9 along the new Prairie Trail that benefits the Kootenai Humane Society. (208) 691-1532.
May 17 Demolition Derby, Bonner County Fairgrounds, Sandpoint, 1 p.m. (208) 263-3701 (ask for Harvey).
May 24 Coeur d’Alene Marathon. Coeur d’Alene is beautiful through blurred vision and heavy breathing. firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 12-13 Car d’Alene Classic Car Show, downtown Coeur d’Alene. Admission is free so come by and ogle over 1,800 show-worthy cars on the Friday night cruise. The Saturday Show and Shine and Vendor Alley should sap out any leftover drool. (206) 667-5986 or www.cdadowntown.com.
June 5-6 Hayden Boat and Water Sports Show, Honeysuckle Beach and Hayden Lake Marina. Get out on the water or just close enough to take a look at motorboats, sailboats, kayaks, Jet Skis and more. Contact email@example.com.
June 26 Summer Opening Day, Schweitzer Mountain Resort, Sandpoint (weather permitting). And you thought mountains were only good for skiing. The first summer day offers chairlift rides, mountain bike rentals, climbing wall, bungee trampoline and more. 800-8313-8810.
June 20-21 Father’s Day Weekend, Silverwood Theme Park. Dads get in free when they bring their children. A rare opportunity where your kids will actually save you money. (208) 683-3400.
July 4 Fourth of July Celebration, Coeur d’Alene. Witness a grand parade, boat parade, live music, food, children’s activities and a massive fireworks display over Lake Coeur d’Alene. (208) 664-3194 ext. 170 or www.cdchamber.com.
July 18 Bluegrass Festival, Schweitzer Mountain, Sandpoint,. The views are spectacular, the music is free, the microbrews are cold and an outdoor barbeque seals the deal. www.schweitzer.com/.
July 24-26 Julyamsh Powwow, Post Falls. One of the largest outdoor powwows in the nation features dancers, drummers, arts and crafts from the local Coeur d’Alene Tribe and other American Indians. 800-523-2464 or www.cdcasino.com.
Aug. 7-8 Motocross MRP LLC, Kootenai County Fairgrounds. Ying! Ying! Speed, big air and the anticipation of an accident; it must be motocross. www.mrparenacross.com or (208) 446-1680.
Aug. 26-30 North Idaho Fair & Rodeo, Kootenai County Fairgrounds. In addition to the rodeo, marvel at a motocross, demolition derby, live music, magicians, clowns, blue ribbon exhibits, baked goods and everything that makes a fair memorable. (208) 765-4969 or www.northidahofair.com/.
Aug. 22 Hot August Nights, Harrison. Hop on a boat at the Harrison Public Docks, it leaves promptly at 6 p.m. and the minimum age is 21. www.harrisonidaho.org/events.cfm.
May 22-25 Northwest Folklife Festival. A staple of Northwest life, Folklife is entering its 35th year and features 19 stages and nearly 1,000 performances. Immerse yourself in dance, crafts, visual displays, demonstrations and workshops. The food is great and the culture is counter to the norm. (206) 684-7200 or www.nwfolklife.org.
May 27 Taylor Hicks at The Triple Door. Hicks made his way to the top of American Idol before taking his soulful fan-pleasing act on the road. See him live and you’ll see why he managed to make it on American Idol with graying hair. (206) 838-4333 or www.stgpresents.com/.
June 20-21 Fremont Fair. Widely regarded as Seattle’s best annual street event, the much-anticipated weekend benefits anti-poverty programs of Fremont Public Association. (206) 649-6706 or www.fremontfair.org.
June 4 Neko Case at Paramount Theatre. Cult following would best describe the success of this alternative country singer/songwriter whose newest release “Middle Cyclone” revolves around her adoration of storms and nature. (206) 467-5510 or www.stgpresents.com/.
June 28 Seattle Pride Parade 2009, Out and Proud. Seattle’s second largest parade drew 23,000 spectators last year. This year, the mighty celebration of freedom begins at the corner of Union Street and Forth Avenue and continues all the way to Denny Way. (206) 461-5800 or www.seattlepride.org.
July 8-9 The Peking Acrobats with Seattle Symphony, Benaroya Hall. Chinese acrobats flip and soar as they dazzle beyond belief, you might recognize them from their appearance in the film, “Ocean’s Eleven.” (206) 215-4800 or www.seattlesymphony.org.
July 11-12 Chinatown-International District Summer Festival 2009. When’s the last time you went to Chinatown and got to see lion and dragon dances and rhythmic taiko drumming? Experience the largest Pan-Asian street festival in the Pacific Northwest. (206) 684-4075 or www.cidbia.org.
July 24-26 Bite of Seattle, Seattle Center. Bring an appetite for food, music and live entertainment, with over 60 restaurants and 150-plus performances. Nobody should go home hungry or bored. (206) 684-7200.
May 15 The Allman Brothers – Doobie Brothers Band, Rose Quarter. Both bands gather onstage for a night of ‘70s flashbacks, fuzzy memories and feelings of euphoria. (503) 797-9619.
May 28-31 Portland Queer Documentary Film Festival, Clinton Street Theater. The only festival in the United States and the second in the world devoted to Queer Documentaries. www.queerdocfest.org.
June 6 Dane Cook, Rose Quarter. Part of the ‘Global Thermo Comedy Tour,’ check out Cooke’s new material and experience the energy of his live shows. (503) 797-9619.
June 28 Reach the Bridge (formerly Beat the Burnside) Join the crowd as it races entirely downhill along an 8K or 2K courses with the sole purpose of reaching the bridge before it rises at 9 a.m. SHARP; you can leave as early or late as you please. www.reachthebridgerun.org.
July 2-5 Waterfront Blues Festival, Tom McCall Waterfront Park. The largest blues festival west of the Mississippi and the second-largest blues festival in the U.S. (503) 973-FEST or www.waterfrontbluesfest.com.
July 17-19 Portland International Beer Festival. The organizers of the Seattle Beer Festival have a similar event here, where you can partake in the joyous consumption of over 130 world-class frothy libations from more than 15 countries and learn where today’s brewing styles originated, and how refreshing they still taste! http://www.seattlebeerfest.com/.
July 23-26 Oregon Brewer’s Festival 2009, Tom McCall Waterfront Park. This festival is regarded as one of the top beer festivals in the world, with 73 breweries keeping the handcrafted suds flowing to over 60,000 thirsty mouths. (509) 314-7583 or www.oregonbrewfest.com.
Aug. 27-30 Festa Italiana 2009. Spend four days eating Italian food, as Pioneer Square becomes “Piazza Italia” www.festa-italiana.org.
May 30 Billings Micro Brew Festival. Montana knows how to throw a brew festival, with over 60 kegged micro brews, ciders, root beers, micro-sodas, malternatives, gourmet food and 40 bottled wines. (406) 633-2206.
June 26- 28 Blast From the Past Car Show and Drag Races, Helena. Not just a classic car show, but a drag race as well, complete with live music and food. (406) 439-5548.
June 27-28 Gateway to Freedom Air Show, Helena. The U.S. Air Force Demonstration Squadron, the “Thunderbirds” and the U.S. Army Parachute Team, the “Golden Knights” will blow minds and eardrums with this free show of military expertise. (406) 324-3036.
July 10-12 Bozeman Trail Gun Show. Over 300 booths of firearms including cowboy and Indian memorabilia, six shooters and old rifles, plus spurs and saddles, furniture, vintage clothing, jewelry, knives and other items to make any old West enthusiast feel like a kid in a candy store. (406) 586-6179.
July 24-Aug. 2 Montana State Fair, Great Falls. A true slice of the Montana culture with five nights of pro rodeo, horse racing and livestock shows, the Mighty Thomas Carnival, Native American art, quilts, cooking exhibits and 40 food vendors. www.bigskyroundup.com or (406) 727-800.
Aug. 7-8 Magic City Blues – Montana’s Urban Music Festival, Billings. Possibly the best blues festival Montana has to offer in an amazing outdoor atmosphere. (406) 670-2329.
Aug. 20-23 Montana Cowboy Mounted Shooting Competition, Bozeman. Flash back to the way it was and watch the raw talent as cowboys and cowgirls outfitted in
1800s period clothing mount a horse and tear through a timed shooting event with .45-caliber single-action pistols. (406) 763-4456.
May14-18 12th Annual Meadowlark Festival, Penticton. Explore the South Okanogan & Similakmeen Valleys as the seasons change with over 90 events including horseback riding, bird watching, botany, geology and literary opportunities. www.britishcolumbia.com.
May 15-17 Mountain Festival, Golden. Visit Kicking Horse Mountain Resort for wine, gourmet dinners, take a ride in a horse drawn wagon and attend a car rally. If you still have the energy, try a viewing trip of the Columbia with Wetlands Wildlife Safari, or see if you can haggle with local artisans over their wares. www.britishcolumbia.com.
June 6 Spilli Chilli Cook-off, Radium Hot Springs. Homemade chilis are just the beginning of the fun with art, craft and food booths. Bring an appetite and your favorite chili spoon for a day’s worth of sensations. www.britishcolumbia.com.
June 6-Oct. 13 Armstrong Explorer, Armstrong. A 2141 steam powered locomotive pulls a train of explorers between Kamloops & Armstrong. Learn about the history behind the beautiful scenery and appreciate a true slice of Canadian history. (250) 374-2141 or www.kamarail.com.
June 26-July 5 Jazzfest International, Victoria. Jazz it up for 10 days straight with over 80 performances of jazz, blues and world music in downtown Victoria. (250) 388-4423 or www.jazzvictoria.com.
July 1 Canada Day, Victoria. It’s all about Canada as Victoria’s Inner Harbour, Fort Rodd Hill and Fisgard Lighthouse become the settings for fun runs, street performers, artisans and a fireworks display. www.britishcolumbia.com.
July 4 Logger Sports Show, Slocan. Why celebrate the 4th in the states when you could travel to Canada for a logger competition? This one brings competitors from around the world to compete in events including pole climb, axe throw and double buck/underhand chop. For the ladies, there will be a choker race and burling. Beards encouraged. www.(250) 355-2662
July 10 10th Annual Beerfest, Mt. Washington. Travel to the Raven Lodge for UNLIMITED SAMPLINGS, souvenir glass and live music. www.mountwashington.ca or 1-888-231-1499.
Aug. 1-2 Victoria Electronic Music Festival. Bring the glow-in-the-dark bracelets; it’s gonna get weird at this dance-oriented gathering for lovers of everything electronica. (250) 480-9673.
Aug. 8-16 Kokanee Crankworx, Whistler. When the snow melts, mountain bikers come out to play at Whistler’s mountain bike festival. Take advantage of freeride competitions, pro riding demos, free music and entertainment, or bring your bike and get out on the mountain. www.crankworx.com.
Aug. 27-Sep. 6 Fringe Festival, Victoria. Alternative theatre is showcased in eight locations throughout downtown Victoria. Come see what the mainstream misses out on. (250) 383-2663 or www.intrepidtheatre.com.