Donna on the Side
at the Bob Firman Invitational

by Donna Dye

Part 1 - Boise
Part 2 - the races
Part 3 - the sideline scenes
Part 4 - the wave
Part 5 - winners and awards

BOISE ID 9/22/2007 -- Boise is the home of the Firman Invitational and the capitol of Idaho. Boise is a city of about 163,000 people. But when the Boise Valley metropolitan areas are included, the population rises to 1.4 million people. Boise is called the "City of Trees." That name came from French Canadians who were surprised to see the Boise River flanked, thick with cottonwood trees. The referred to the area as "Les Bois" or "The Woods." The name stuck. Boise is also one of the "Gem Cities" (Boise, Nampa, Caldwell, Meridian, Kuna, Eagle) and set in the "Treasure Valley" (southwest Idaho--surrounding the low-lying lands of the Boise, Payette and Snake Rivers). Boise is a sophisticated urban area complete with downtown loft living, upscale shops, downtown traffic, thriving businesses, a variety of attractions, lots of parks, a 25 mile greenbelt area that flanks the Boise River, active nightlife and lots of places to eat and drink.

Treasure Valley has its roots in the gold and silver mines in the Boise Basin and Owyhee Mountains. This treasure hunting lured miners as well as settlers looking for productive farmland. Some of the settlers were dropouts from those heading west on the Oregon trail. With Improvements in transportation and irrigation the area prospered and towns and cities were founded to fill the needs of the growing area. Boise was founded in 1863 and continued to grow with opening of the Oregon Short Line Railroad and the Boise Diversion Dam which heads the New York Canal. A complex irrigation system throughout the Treasure Valley was completed in 1909. Today, the city is a major regional center for business and industry including engineering, agricultural, building materials and high-tech firms.

There was too much to do with so little time to do it. So, we concentrated on downtown Boise, our host. We'll save the rest for other visits.

And now for a pictorial stroll through downtown Boise.

Hospitality of the Nez Perce Indians.
The piece portrays discussions about geography between Nez Perce
Chief Twisted Hair and Lewis and Clark in 1805
A steaming river mural on the side of the Grove Hotel
Mark Baltes' dual- view post card from Boise - Side 1
Mark Baltes' Post Card - Side 2

A city of murals


A city steeped in history

A city of places to eat and shop

There is the Block 44 in the BoDo (Boise Downtown) District, the historic area and the Basque block.


A city of arts, culture and entertainment

The city offers choices from classical, pop concerts, country and rodeo to name just a few.

Theatre and music in the cultural district
The restored 1927 Egyptian Theater

The Basque Heritage

Basque immigrants came to the United States from the Basque Region of Spain. They came with little money and knowing little of the ways and language of the United States. They took work that few Americans would do. They became sheep herders. Though they did not tend sheep in Spain, they took the work that was available in the United States. They established themselves and became well known for their hard work and perseverance. Idaho is still one of the major Basque communities in the United States.

The Basque Museum & Cultural Center
Basque living quarters
Basque Center

Some say Boise is the place to enjoy life!

Bandanna, meet sponsor and supporter of the running and walking community

Bandanna is a store providing running and walking supplies to the entire area. It's a place filled with staff passionate about running. Bandanna was founded in 2004 by Rich Harris who now co-owns the storewith Gregg Mizuta. Together Rich, Gregg and staff keep running enthusiasts up and running.

So where does the name Bandanna come from? Back in the 1970's Rich started using a bandanna to keep his long hair in check. He became the “the guy who wore the yellow bandanna." And so he continued to run bandanna and all. You can find more about Rich and Bandanna at their web site:

The front or maybe it's the side view of Bandanna sports a delightful display of flowers thanks to
Bandanna's Nate Kinghorn.


Part 1 - Boise
Part 2 - the races
Part 3 - the sideline scenes
Part 4 - the wave
Part 5 - winners and awards



Bob Firman Invitational home page




Now a look at Marlton.