Sep. 26 Oktoberfest in Hayden. See how Hayden celebrates their 15th annual fall fest with German music, children’s games, horse and carriage rides, dancing, beer, and plenty of food. 208-772-7371.
Oct. 3-5 Festa Italiana at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds in Coeur d’Alene. Eat, drink and be merry at the 4th annual festival! Exquisite food, cooking demonstrations, beer/wine garden, Italian Idol Karaoke Singing Contest, artisan and business booths, and Bolla Grape Stomp Contest. 208-773-8522 or www.idahoitalianfestival.com.
Oct. 18-25 Schweitzer Lakedance International Film Festival, Panida Theater, Sandpoint. Have a taste for the world’s best independent films and a historic theater? Well then. www.lakedance.com or 208-597-0961.
Oct. 24 Hayden Chamber’s First Annual Halloween Parade. Be there for the beginning of a tradition and bust out the paper-mache and tin foil; this parade includes prizes for best costumes in multiple divisions. High school classes will compete for the “Witches Broom” trophy, judged on theme, numbers and organization. Starts at 6 p.m., contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oct. 31 Trick or Treat downtown Coeur d’Alene merchants on Sherman Avenue, preferably wearing a
costume. Shopping also encouraged. 4-6 p.m., 208-667-5986 or www.cdadowntown.com.
Nov. 27 18th Annual Downtown Holiday Light Show Parade, Coeur d’Alene. A steadfast holiday tradition, the parade kicks off the season at 5 p.m. at 8th and Sherman. Show up early to stake out a good spot! 208-667-5986 or www.cdadowntown.com
Nov. 27-29 Festival of Trees in Coeur d’Alene. Get a hearty dose of just about everything Christmas related, including visiting the Coeur d’Alene Plaza Shops decked out to create a Christmas Wonderland with carolers and gingerbread houses. At the Coeur d’Alene Resort, enjoy looking at professionally designed Christmas trees. If you want to bring one home, make a bid on it at a gala auction to benefit local medical programs. 208-666-8733.
Late November through January, Journey to the North Pole Cruises in Coeur d’Alene. Hop aboard a cruise boat on Lake Coeur d’Alene and wind up at “The North Pole.” Brace yourself, and the kiddies, for 5,000 lights twinkling at a Victorian Village, plus animated displays and a meeting with Mr. and Mrs. Claus on the far shores of the lake. Board at The Coeur d’Alene Resort and prepare to be dazzled. 208-664-7268.
Through Sep. 26 Cowboy Supper Show at the Rockin’ B Ranch. Coutnry/Western Music Concerts, Pat McManus Comedies and BBQ dinners, all in a big ‘ol barn 100 yards south of Interstate 90 near Exit 299. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays in September. $29 covers dinner and show, doors open at 5:30 p.m. 509-891-9106 or www.rockinbranch.com.
Sep. 25 Valleyfest at Mirabeau Point Park in Spokane Valley. Pick a favorite festival event and you’ll probably find it at the 20th anniversary of Valleyfest. Crowds will enjoy the “Hearts of Gold” Parade, hot air balloon launches, Loggingfest, 5k run for hunger, pancake breakfast, classic car show, fishing at the falls, kids zone, and not one, not two, but three stages of music, entertainment and more. 509-464-1278 or www.valleyfest.org.
Through October and beyond, Free Argentine tango class & dance (1 hr intro class followed by 1 hr dance class), Community Building. Go solo to polish your tango skills before releasing them on the public when the time is right, or find a spicy partner and hoof it on the cheap! Smooth soled shoes and heels with ankle straps for the ladies are recommended. 2-5 p.m. at the Community Building. 509-499-1756.
Oct. 16-18 Washington State Quilt Show, Spokane County Fair & Expo Center. The largest quilt show in Eastern Washington is sponsored by the Washington State Quilters – Spokane Chapter and features 600 quilts, quilted clothing, wall hangings, Merchant Mall, Quilter’s Boutique, quilting demonstrations, and featured quilters Pam Soliday and Janet Nesbitt. 509-244-8821 or www.geocities.com/wsqspokanechapter/.
Oct. 31-Nov. 1 Fall Folk Festival at Spokane Community College Lair. Organized by the Spokane Folklore Society, this free event spotlights different cultural and ethnic traditions with crafts, dance and music. Learning can be fun! Over 5,000 people attended last year and watched 300 performers. Come by to immerse yourself in the history or just kick around the hacky sack in a friendly environment. 509-747-2640 or www.spokanefolklore.org.
Through November, “Spokane Timeline: Personal Voices,” Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture. Discover more than a century of Spokane’s history through a three-dimensional tapestry of personal stories. Highlights include the true tales of BIG TIMBER, with “lady loggers,” “river pigs,” railroads and more. 509-456-3931 or www.notrhwestmuseum.org/.
Nov. 11-Dec. 6 “Walt Disney’s The Lion King,” INB Performing Arts Center. The Lion King on stage is one heck of a production to behold for kids and adults alike, especially considering it’s directed by Julie Taymor. Tickets on sale through TicketsWest starting at $30. 509-279-7000 or www.inbpac.com.
Nov. 20-22 Custer’s Christmas Arts & Crafts Show, Spokane County Fair & Expo Center. Try not to get lost, or do so, at the largest arts and crafts show in the Inland Northwest, with 78,000 square feet of hand-blown glass, beaded jewelry, metal sculptures, woodworking, candles and more. $6 covers the whole weekend, children 12 and under admitted free. 509-924-0588 or www.custershows.com.
Oct. 20 Pop Culture Series: Ben Folds with Seattle Symphony, Benaroya Hall Music Center. From visitseattle.org: “Folds’ first-class melodic gifts, irony-laced lyrics, and punk-rock tendencies to play piano as if it were a contact sport, have earned him a legion of devoted fans of all ages.” That, and the always cool Seattle Symphony. www.seattlesymphony.org or 206-215-4800.
Oct. 24 Seattle Sounders vs. FC Dallas. The Sounders are quickly turning into a big deal and helping countless people discover their inner soccer fan. Don’t miss a chance to see the Sounders’ final game of their regular season at Qwest Field. Tickets range from $16-$75. Go Sounders! www.seattlesounders.net or 425-827-9777.
Oct. 24-25 Pumpkin Bash at Woodland Park Zoo. Finally, an event where hippos, bears, elephants, monkeys, and other animals smash pumpkins. Seriously. It’s all part of the zookeepers’ mission to keep the animals happy and healthy, mentally and physically. Spectators really dig it as well. www.zoo.org or 206-548-2500.
Nov. 4-7 Elton John and Billy Joel: “Face 2 Face,” Key Arena. Billy and Elton open with a series of piano duets, each with his own piano, then they split up and take turns doing a set with their own band before reforming in a spectacular genesis with all the supporting musicians for the finale. 206-628-0888.
Nov. 21 Cherry Poppin’ Daddies, Tractor Tavern. Eight members strong and juiced up on ska/swing, the Daddies’ sound should get the Tractor moving like whatever decade you want it to be. 206-789-3599.
Nov. 29 Seattle Marathon, Seattle Memorial Stadium. Start training now because this is a RRCA and AIMS certified marathon/half marathon, complete with awards for the top 10 finishers in 5-year incremental age divisions. 206-389-3275 or www.seattlemarathon.org.
Through Sep. 26 Gilbert Brewery – The Brewery Follies – Virginia City. For anyone who visits a brewery and wonders why there’s not a regular risqué contemporary American-burlesque-cabaret musical skit show, here is the answer. In addition to the two daily shows, there’s also top-notch beer, including Bayern Beer, craft-brewed in Missoula by Jurgen Knoller, a German immigrant trained at Wiensteffan. 406-843-5218.
Sep. 25- Oct. 23 Festival of Flavors, Kalispell. Hosted by the Flathead Valley Community College Foundation, the weeklong event features dinners with professional chefs, a sushi and sake ‘roll your own’ event, microbrews, brats and blazing saddle barbeque and a ‘grand wine tasting’ event featuring over 100 fine wines, accompanied by winery representatives to teach wine and food pairing. All proceeds support the FVCC student scholarship program. www.fvcc.edu or 406-756-3963.
Oct. 1-4 17th Annual Glacier Jazz Stampede, Kalispell. This stampede of jazz at multiple envfjis steered towards seasoned jazz lovers as well as young people that have yet to catch the fever with educational background on the origins of the music. Includes free dance lessons and a Friday night swing dance with the bands from 8:00pm to 10:30pm. 406-755-6088.
Oct. 22-24 Montana CINE Cultural and Environmental Film Fest, Missoula’s Roxy Theater. Entries range from world cultures to outdoor adventure, sports and recreation to conservation, indigenous people, and environmental issues. This juried competition is designed to promote awareness, knowledge and understanding of wildlife, habitat, people and nature through excellent film, television and other media.” 406-728-9380 or www.wildlifefilms.org.
Oct. 23-25 Christmas at the Mansion in Kalispell, Conrad Mansion. Work up an appetite and don shopping goggles for this Victorian holiday bazaar, complete with turn-of-the-century costumes and decorations. Breakfast and lunch will be served on the verandah, 50 artisans will be on hand to sell their goodies, along with pies, homemade baked goods and homemade candy. Live music helps set the mood along with a two-story professionally decorated tree.
Nov. 27 Christmas City of the North Parade, Kalispell. Join the townspeople as they gather on Main Street for the annual Christmas parade and start of the season. Will Santa make an appearance? Will he wish everyone a happy holiday? Perhaps…. 406-758-2800.
Nov. 27-28 A Christmas in Hamilton Celebration, Hamilton. Hamilton hosts a parade and traditional lighting of the tree ceremony. Adding to the cheer will be carriage rides, burning barrels for warmth and photographs with Santa. Hamilton also sports many shops. 406-362-2400.
Oct. 1-11 Fall Wine Festival, Okanagan Valley. It’s the only wine festival in North America which takes place during the height of grape harvest with a 10-day event. Includes vineyard tours, lunches, dinners and a great vantage point to witness the fall harvest itself in Canada’s wine country. www.owfs.com or 250-861-6654.
Oct. 9-12 Turkey Sale, Whistler. Single and double-plankers alike can go nuts at Whistler Blackcomb’s largest ski and snowboard sales event at the base of Blackcomb. Browse more than 20,000 square feet of equipment with prices up to 70 percent off retail, top name brands included. Don’t miss the preseason deals! www.whistlerblackcomb.com or 1-866-218-9690.
Oct. 9-17 Antimatter Film Festival 2009, Victoria. This noncompetitive festival focuses on the art of film and video is the premiere gathering of experimental cinema in the West. Features screenings, installations, performances and media hybrids – not your mainstream film festival by a long shot, and that’s the way they like it. www.antimatter.ws/ or 250-385-3327.
Nov. 12 ARTrageous at Whistler. Part of Cornucopia 2009, this “art party” is going strong into its 14th year…annually, not continuously. Features wine, food, interactive artwork and photography, dance, funk music, silk and more. www.whistler artscouncil.com or 604-935-8232.
Nov. 14-15 Holiday Festival of Creations, Kelowna. Find a Christmas gift or something special for yourself from 150 artisans throughout Western Canada displaying thousands of arts, crafts, food products, as well as gift giving and home decorating ideas, not to mention door prizes. Admission $5 and free for kids 12 & under. www.kelowna .cityguide.ca or 764-8083.
Nov. 26 Whistler Blackcomb Opening Day. Get out on the mountain and take in the first day of ski season! www.whistlerblackcomb.com or 1-866-218-9690.
Sep. 25-27 17th Annual Portland Juggling Festival, Reed College. Don’t waste your time at smaller juggling shows any longer; this is the biggest regional juggling festival in North America. featuring jugglers from around the world, it’s the real McCoy if there ever was one. www.portlandjugglers.org.
Oct. 2-4 H.P. Lovecraft Film Festival at the Hollywood Theatre. Whether you already know of Lovecraft as a legendary author of gothic horror or want to take a crash course on the cult following behind his work, this festival should do the trick. Professional and amateur filmmakers adapt his stories and weird tales to the silver screen to pay respects and encourage further adaptations. www.hplfilmfestival.com .
Oct. 4 Portland Marathon 2009. This ain’t no upstart jog around the block. The Portland marathon is rated as one of the top 10 local road race events in the U.S., and one of the top 40 races of all types and distances. www.portlandmarathon.com or 503-226-1111.
Oct. 11 AIDS Walk Portland 2009. Burn through nasty calories and end AIDS in the process. The Walk’s mission is to “lead efforts to PREVENT new HIV infections, CARE for people affected and infected by HIV/AIDs, EDUCATE communities to eliminate stigma and shame, and ADVOCATE for immediate action in combating the pandemic.” - A cause worth enjoying the outdoors for. www.cascadeaids.org or (503) 223-5907.
Nov. 27 Tree Lighting Ceremony, Pioneer Courthouse Square. For the 25th year, over 25,000 people are expected to arrive and witness the 75 foot tree’s first lighting for the season. Families welcome to be a part of the much-loved event that unofficially kicks off the holiday times. www.pioneercourthousesquare.org/.
Nov. 27-29 2009 Wine Country Thanksgiving, Willamette Valley. Take your pick of more than 100 wineries, some of which won’t be open at any other time during the year. Old vintages, new releases, barrel tastings, specialty foods, sales, meetings with winemakers, it’s all in the Willamette Valley. www.willamettewines.com or 503-646-2985.
Nov. 27-Dec. 30 The Grotto’s Christmas Festival of Lights 2009. When in full effect, the Grotto festival dazzles visitors with enough Christmas lights to rival certain Las Vegas streets. In addition to the stunning visuals, hourly concerts, outdoor caroling and family entertainment help carry on this holiday tradition that has been a staple of the season since 1988. 503-261-2400