Boise is located in southwestern Idaho, about 41 miles (66 km) east of the Oregon border, and 110 miles (177 km) north of the Nevada border. Like all major cities, it is composed of several neighborhoods that give a large variety of activities and interests to explore and enjoy.
Downtown Boise is Boise's cultural center and home to many small businesses and a few mid-rises. The area has a variety of shops and growing option for dining choices. Centrally, 8th Street contains a pedestrian zone with sidewalk cafes and restaurants. The neighborhood has a number of local restaurants, bars and boutiques and supports a vibrant nightlife. The area contains the Basque Block, which gives visitors a chance to learn about and enjoy Boise's Basque heritage.
Downtown Boise's main attractions include the Idaho State Capitol, the classic Egyptian Theatre on the corner of Capitol Boulevard and Main Street, the Boise Art Museum on Capitol in front of Julia Davis Park, and Zoo Boise located on the grounds of Julia Davis Park. Cultural events in Downtown Boise include Alive after Five and First Thursday.
Boise Towne Square Mall, the largest in the state, as well as numerous restaurants, strip malls, and residential developments ranging from new subdivisions to apartment complexes.
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Boise Travel Guide - https://www.visitsouthwestidaho.org/idaho-travel-guides/
See and Do - https://www.visitsouthwestidaho.org
Visit Idaho - https://visitidaho.org
Boise Convention & Visitors Bureau - https://www.boise.org
Boise is a regional hub for jazz, theater, and indie music. The Gene Harris Jazz Festival is hosted in Boise each spring. Several theater groups operate in the city, including the Idaho Shakespeare Festival, Boise Little Theatre, Boise Contemporary Theater, and ComedySportz Boise, among others.
The Treefort Music Fest in late March features emerging bands, as well as many other artistic endeavors, and has perforce "morphed from quirky music festival to consuming community event, and the HomeGrown Theatre is notable for continuing the avant garde satirical tradition of puppetry for millennials.
The renovated Egyptian Theatre hosts national and regional music acts, comedians, and special film screenings.
Professional sports teams in Boise include the Boise Hawks of the short-season Class A Northwest League (minor league baseball), the Idaho Steelheads of the ECHL (minor league hockey), and the Treasure Valley Spartans (semi-pro football) of the (Rocky Mountain Football League). An arenafootball2 franchise, the Boise Burn, began play in 2007 but is now defunct.
On the sports entertainment front, Boise is home to an all-female, DIY, flat track roller derby league, the Treasure Valley Rollergirls, which beginning on Labor Day Weekend 2010 hosted an international, two-day, double elimination tournament, the first Spudtown Knockdown, featuring eight teams from throughout the American West and Canada.
Boise also has a thriving performing arts community. The Boise Philharmonic, now in its 49th season, under the leadership of Music Director and Conductor Robert Franz continues to grow musically, and introduces excellent guest artists and composers year after year. The dance community is represented by the resurgent Ballet Idaho under artistic director Peter Anastos, and the nationally known and critically acclaimed Trey McIntyre Project also make their home in Boise. All of these perform at the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts, on the Boise State University campus. The Morrison Center also hosts local and national fine arts performances.
Rounding out the classical performing arts is Opera Idaho, under the direction of Mark Junkert, which brings grand Opera to various venues throughout the Treasure Valley.
The Morrison-Knudsen Nature Center offers a streamwalk with water features and wildlife experiences just east of downtown. It is located adjacent to Municipal Park. It features live fish and wildlife exhibits, viewing areas into the water, bird and butterfly gardens, waterfalls and a free visitor's center.
A number of recreational opportunities are available in Boise, including extensive hiking and biking in the foothills to the immediate north of downtown. Much of this trail network is part of Hull's Gulch and can be accessed by 8th street. An extensive urban trail system called the Boise River Greenbelt runs along the river and through Pierce Park. The Boise River itself is a common destination for fishing, swimming and rafting.
In Julia Davis Park is Zoo Boise, which has over 200 animals representing over 80 species from around the world. An Africa exhibit, completed in 2008, is the most recent addition. Boise is also home to the Idaho Aquarium.
The Bogus Basin ski area opened in 1942 and hosts multiple winter activities, primarily alpine skiing and snowboarding, but also cross-country skiing and snow tubing. "Bogus" is 16 mi (26 km) from the city limits (less than an hour drive from downtown) on a twisty paved road which climbs 3400 vertical feet (1036 m) through sagebrush and forest.
Boise is home to several museums, including the Boise Art Museum, Idaho Historical Museum, the Basque Museum and Cultural Center, Idaho Black History Museum, Boise WaterShed and the Discovery Center of Idaho. On the first Thursday of each month, a gallery stroll known as First Thursday is hosted in the city's core business district by the Downtown Boise Association.
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