Idaho's celebration of culture leaves little room for boredom

Lose the four walls and shake off that winter stupor by getting out and experiencing some of the cultural activities that make Idaho a special place during May. Here is a sample of what you might find to enjoy.

Cinco De Mayo celebrations are planned for May 5 at the Four Rivers Cultural Center in Ontario, Ore., from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., and in Moscow at the University of Idaho, time and location to be announced.

Caldwell will hold its annual celebration of culture, Fiesta de Mayo, May 18 and 19 at Griffiths Park.

Don’t forget that May is “Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month,” a celebration of the culture, traditions and history of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States.

Consider a visit to the Idaho State Historical Museum where information is available about the contributions Chinese have made to Idaho at the “Journey to Gold Mountain” permanent exhibit. Or, visit the University of Idaho online (at and learn about its Asian American Comparative Collection. The collection is a unique resource containing artifacts, slides and documentary materials essential for understanding Asian American archaeology sites, economic contributions and cultural history.

The state’s historical museum also is celebrating the 150th anniversary of the creation of the Idaho Territory with a special exhibition called “Essential Idaho: 150 Things that Make the Gem State Unique.” The major exhibit is one of the largest ever displayed at the museum and features rare artifacts, hands-on learning stations and compelling stories about this fascinating state.

How about experiencing the Moscow Renaissance Fair, May 4-5, where costumed characters recreate Renaissance culture in an annual celebration of spring? It features crafts, fine foods and musical performances.

More cultured than cultural is the 5th annual Buttermilk Festival at Kamiah’s Riverfront Park May 4. See what’s churning at the yearly event with a pancake breakfast at 7 a.m. and activities beginning at 10 a.m.

Sandpoint will help visitors get “Lost in the Fifties” May 16-17 with the town’s 27th celebration of culture and music from that era, complete with “poodle” skirts, ducktails, a street dance, car show and performers.

The Sacred Salmon Ceremony is a bicultural event celebrating the return of fish to their ancestral waters. The event is planned for May 19 at Spring Bar campground, approximately 12 miles from Riggins on the main Salmon River. Call (208) 628-3523 for information.

Share in the culture of nature May 19 with a hike through the flowers at Castle Rocks State Park with the park superintendent and other naturalists. Enjoy a day of wildflower walks, photography and plant identification in the pristine sagebrush steppe, aspen forests and high-mountain meadows of City of Rocks and Castle Rocks. Contact the state park office at (208) 824-5901 for meeting places and times.

Embrace a culture of health by attending the Sun Valley Wellness Festival, May 23-27, at Sun Valley. Classes, seminars and vendors feature ideas for the spirit, body and mind. Information: (208) 726-2777.

Published 4-26-13