We're lucky in the Inland Northwest to have a significant number of weekly farmers markets, keeping our fridges stocked with fresh produce. But if you're looking for some fresh new art for your home, you need a market with more than fruits and veggies. Head to one of these summertime open-air street fairs for a healthy dose of food, antiques, art and music.
For starters, there's a new weekly market in town, and it's like a farmers market on steroids. The KENDALL YARDS NIGHT MARKET (kendallnightmarket.org) runs from 4 to 8 pm on Wednesdays from mid-May to mid-October, rain or shine. It aims to bring neighbors and the community together in one of Spokane's rising hot spots. Pick up produce, baked goods, farm-fresh milk and eggs and locally crafted jewelry while enjoying live music. Bring the whole family and have dinner at one of Kendall Yards' restaurants, or grab some street food and dine al fresco in the plaza area.
The Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture (northwestmuseum.org) celebrated its 30th annual ARTFEST fundraiser in summer 2015. The three-day fair, held at the end of May at Coeur d'Alene Park in Browne's Addition, hosts a juried art show and 150 local vendors of gourmet food, ceramics, one-of-a-kind jewelry, photography, fiber arts and more. To sweeten the deal, there's also live music, artist demonstrations, a wine and beer garden and a kids' fair.
The historic Idaho town of Wallace is locally known as a tourist mecca, and with good reason. Walking in the historic downtown district feels like traveling back in time to the Silver Valley's mining boom at the turn of the 20th century. The mayor has even declared the town "the Center of the Universe," mostly because there's no way to prove that it's not. If you're considering a visit, try to make it to the annual WALLACE STREET FAIR (wallaceidahochamber.com), which offers music, antiques, crafts, games and lots of food. The fair is typically held the first weekend in June.
Brought to you by the hip folks behind Terrain, a wildly successful cultural gathering aptly named BAZAAR (terrainspokane.com/bazaar) has taken place on the third Saturday in June for the past two years. The market hosts local artists and vendors who sell their work to the community, at mostly budget-friendly prices, in an effort to increase the presence of and market for visual art in the Inland Northwest. Many of the items for sale include themes from Spokane and the Pacific Northwest. The second annual event in June 2015 hosted 55 vendors, drew more than 9,500 people and sold more than $60,000 worth of art, up from $36,000 at the debut event. Keep an eye out for the third annual Bazaar in June 2016.
Hosted by the South Perry Business and Neighborhood Association at the end of July each year, the SOUTH PERRY STREET FAIR AND PARADE (southperry.org) brings a lively event to an already lively neighborhood. Show up for the vendor booths and parade and stay for the beer garden, kids' craft fair and wide variety of local food. The parade includes a bike, stroller and wagon decorating contest that all are welcome to join. Live music begins in the early afternoon and continues until late evening. Proceeds from the fair benefit two charities each year.
The self-proclaimed "highlight of the summer" in Coeur d'Alene, ART ON THE GREEN (artonthegreencda.com) has provided North Idaho with a weekend of art, music and good eats for nearly 50 years. The art ranges from affordable pieces to expensive oil paintings, sculptures and photography. The three-day event is hosted by the Citizens Council for the Arts, a nonprofit group of more than 500 volunteers who work to encourage and promote the arts in the community. Held in late-July/early August it draws more than 50,000 people to the Fort Sherman Grounds on the North Idaho College campus each year.