The Year that Was... 2004

25 Years of the Inlander

Todd Hudson of Hudson's Hamburgers.
Todd Hudson of Hudson's Hamburgers.

A humble little website called "THEFACEBOOK" made its online debut. James Blunt's "YOU'RE BEAUTIFUL" played nonstop on every radio station. The lovable geek NAPOLEON DYNAMITE graced movie screens and inspired kids to dance like no one was watching. And METALLICA and VAN HALEN both traveled to the Inland Northwest to perform at the Spokane Arena.


You know that constant stream of city-folk moving to North Idaho to escape intense traffic in search of a peaceful, lakeside abode? It's been that way for a quite a while. "BOOM TIMES IN NORTH IDAHO," our cover story on May 13, 2004, detailed the dramatic growth that the area had seen over previous years. Idaho residents were concerned with increasing housing prices and a tourism industry boom, and cities like Sandpoint were on their way to becoming Jackson Hole-esque. Fourteen years later, it's safe to say that North Idaho hasn't gotten there yet, but there is still plenty of time to grow.


Being a weekly in the Inland Northwest with endless outdoor opportunities right at our doorsteps, it would be a crime if we didn't have outdoor-centered issues. "PLAY OUTSIDE!," a camping and backpacking special issue in 2004, gave Spokanites all the deets about how and where to camp in the area. On the list of camping-must haves, products included Dr. Bronner's 18-in-1 Liquid Soap, a flashlight, Ziplock bags and tabloids. Since then, the Inlander has released various outdoor/adventure-themed issues, including our most recent Outdoors Issue, on stands on June 28.


click to enlarge The May 13, 2004, issue; cover illustration by Chad Crowe
The May 13, 2004, issue; cover illustration by Chad Crowe

John Kerry and George W. Bush went head-to-head during the intense presidential election year of 2004. Leading up to the election, the Inlander covered both candidates' campaign runs. On Aug. 19, we published "DIVIDED WE STAND," a piece about the political polarization plaguing the United States (sound familiar?). In one story, a liberal, a conservative and a nonpolitical third party were brought into the Inlander offices to have a conversation. Despite the fears of a shouting match breaking out, the three had a civil chat, discussing everything from government roles to same-sex marriage.


The Inlander had a Q&A with rapper LUDACRIS about his 2003 album Chicken-n-Beer. NIKE IMORU chatted with us about her new role as the artistic director of the Interplayers Theatre. She has since gone on to become a casting director in Hollywood. BARISTAS from Spokane gave us the rundown on cappuccino culture. And TODD HUDSON, from Hudson's Hamburgers in Coeur d'Alene, talked with us about keeping a burger joint simple; sadly, he passed away at age 53 just last year.

Hoopfest 2022 @ Downtown Spokane

June 25-26
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