Newly built with a fleet of educational exhibits, the nonprofit Idaho Public Aquarium brims with underwater wildlife that scuttles, swims, and frolics, overseen by staff members and dedicated volunteers. Families peruse exhibits that give insight into a slice of aquatic life and emphasize its continuance, such as stingray touch tank and the shark nursery, where guests can witness baby sharks peeking out of their eggs while crooning peaceful lullabies or playing peekaboo. Added to the list are new exhibits, such as the 17,000-gallon sea turtle tank and the North Pacific cold water tank. Sea-resident enthusiasts can also participate in birthday parties with private tours and a nighttime animal feeding.
If one word had to describe Coeur d’Alene Cellars’ attitude toward winemaking, it would probably be "meticulous." During each stage of creation, from vineyard selection and harvest to bottling, winemakers carefully supervise and adjust conditions to suit their visions. They hand-harvest fruit from their eastern Washington vineyards only on days that fit specific temperature conditions. Between pickings, the vines are pruned for low yields that concentrate flavor and quality. And their syrah and viognier grapes are both hand-sorted the night of harvest before they’re pressed and fermented.
That process is carefully controlled as well. Syrah blends first ferment in open-top vessels, allowing for closer management of color and tannins. Only later do they age inside French and American oak barrels, like former daredevils bent on reliving their trip over Niagara Falls. Viognier blends, on the other hand, spend both fermentation and aging periods in small oak barrels.
The resulting well-balanced wines can claim myriad accolades from publications such as Wine Spectator and Wine Enthusiast. Their 2004 Sarah’s cuvée viognier, for instance, earned 89 points from Wine Enthusiast, which praised its "good balance" of "peach, apricot, sour lemon candy and even a bit of cinnamon." Current vintages include the 2007 Alder Ridge Vineyard syrah, whose smooth body supports flavors of berries, vanilla, and cinnamon that conclude in a lingering finish.
These and other wines are poured at Coeur d'Alene's onsite wine bar, Barrel Room No. 6. Inside, sleek red walls help create an upscale vibe. Glasses perch beneath pendant lighting on the bar or glitter on top of old wine barrels repurposed as tables. As customers sip, knowledgeable wait staff can suggest ways to bring out the wines' subtle flavors by nibbling aromatic cheese pairings or the hem of a neighbor’s freshly laundered shirt.
Snakes slither in glass display cases, and lizards wriggle in the hands of trained handlers as they're held up in full view of a curious crowd. This is the scene as one of Repticon's presenters educates attendees on the biology, behavior, and typing speeds of exotic cold-blooded creatures at one of the year-round shows held in cities across the country. Reptile and amphibian breeders, scholars, and handlers engage audiences in lectures and demonstrations in the midst of live reptile exhibits, family activities, and displays for exotic-pet supplies. Presentations may focus on the genetics of large snake species, the specifics of exotic-pet care, and the effect that tiny hats have on the image of arachnids such as tarantulas, scorpions, and spiders.
The artisans at Fusions walk beginning students through the fundamentals of creative glasscrafting. With the reassuring expertise of instructors to back them up, class participants begin the journey toward glassy awareness with the Basics 1 class. The small group of learners will design and assemble a 7"x7" fused dish, as well as three jewelry pendants, while absorbing kiln-fire techniques to achieve the desired final look. A lesson on glass-heat relations educates novices who might otherwise never know that glass can be set on fire with a substitute teacher's breath and prepares them for future independent crafting sessions during Fusions’ open studio times. The class includes all necessary ingredients and accessories, such as wooden spoons and sympathy; see the schedule for available daytime and evening options.
Throughout the year, Promote Idaho’s staff oversees expos that showcase local vendors that cater to events such as weddings and holiday parties. In the spring, the business partners with the U.S. Army to host the Treasure Valley Man Show, where guests listen to live music and mingle among muscle cars before entering duck, goose, and turkey-calling competitions.
Preserving memories and masterpieces since 1986, Perfection Framing provides a wide range of services for an even wider range of occasions. Through the use of archival museum-quality materials, UV-protected glass, and distinct moldings, a team of artistically inclined framers collaborates with customers to complete static narratives. Perfection Framing also transfers prints to canvas, coating each piece for popping contrast and pure saturation while reducing high-gloss glare and lowbrow scoffing from art-school dropouts. Though custom framing rates vary as much as the visuals contained within, complete works start as low as $49 for an 8"x10" with basic mat, glass, and backing; average orders run between $100–$300.
Founded in 1970 by Tom Cade, a former professor of Ornithology at Cornell University, The Peregrine Fund's World Center for Birds of Prey is a non-profit that strives to save birds of prey from extinction. Their efforts began nearly 40 years ago, when trying to save the Peregrine Falcon, which was eventually removed from the Endangered Species list in 1999. Today, at their 580-acre headquarter campus in Boise, Idaho, they focus on captive breeding of California Condors and Aplomado Falcons for the purposes of preservation.
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