Kay Merriam

Kay Merriam

Whether you are a new or old resident in Pocatello, there are so many things to see and do that you might stay home with your head spinning and your heart feeling as if it had reached its capacity. But, it’s a beautiful day (even though the weather might change in a radical manner). Still, you may say to yourself, “Well, guess I‘ll stay home.” But one suggestion is to get up, get out and not only breathe the air but see some of the enticing aspects not far from the Pocatello area. Besides, the weather this spring has brought beautiful flowers to bloom in a spectacular array.

Further, things to see in this area are not just of every day interest. Instead, they reflect the history of this section of Idaho. Again, you could say to yourself: “Who cares? If you’ve seen one town, you have seen them all.’ Sorry, that’s like saying nothing is different, nothing can interest you, nothing is worth the effort to get out and see it, and besides, you already know what you need to know. If transportation is the problem, gather some friends, chip in for gas, and expand your views.

Sorry, I shouldn’t have gotten into that negative stance, but after often hearing “so what, who cares?” or “I can’t afford to travel,” this is merely a suggestion that there is so much to see in this world, and we have a memorable part of it right here around Pocatello, so here goes with some unique activities that can help anyone become acquainted with the list of unique sites, geological phenomenon, flora and fauna and the list goes on. Besides, putting yourself into a position to learn factual and aesthetic information is good exercise for the cognitive part of your brain.

First, if you haven’t been to the Pebble Creek Ski Area, go there on June 22 between 3 and 10 p.m. Bring a lawn chair or a blanket and sit down to view an exquisite valley in which the river meanders long untouched by machines that would have straightened its curves for ease in building. As you sit comfortably; photograph or draw examples of the many flowers surrounding you. Don’t pick them, because to do so removes seeds for next year’s display. Also, listen to the music and eat available food if you didn’t bring your own picnic. Or, first ride the lift up the mountain side to see an expanse of mountain and valley geology. For more information, call 208-775-4452.

Also a must; go to the Ranch Rodeo and Indian Relays on June 28 and 29. This is held at the Eastern Idaho State Fairgrounds in Blackfoot. Even if you have been to fairs in every state from California to New York, you may never have seen the Indian Relays which require incredible agility and strength for the bareback riders to leap off of one horse and then, still at a run, leap onto the next horse. No matter how good you are at horseback riding, you will never have seen the ability these riders demonstrate. For more information, call 208-785-2480.

If you don’t mind “getting out of town,” check a map that will show Interstate 15, Malad, highway 91 and then Franklin, a small town said to be the oldest maybe in all of Idaho. Presently, it is mostly vacant but the fun run, parade, breakfast, history, jaunt to Candy Canyon all topped off by entertainment and fire works make this worth seeing and or participating. By involving yourself in participation, you will meet interesting people who have lived here long enough to provide you with more factual information and believed opinion. For more information, call 208-646-2300.

And now, back to the initial comments, just realize that I was blowing off a little steam. Why? Pocatello comprises many people who have lived here forever and perhaps don’t realize that this area is the center of a gem. I have been told, “You just don’t realize that many people here are poor and can’t afford to go to the places you have mentioned.” My only reply is, there are trails on both sides of our valley and they can let you walk to absolutely beautiful streams, lakes, four-legged animals, birds, and a host of timbers and smaller plants that are gradually being displaced in many parts of our country. Those walks or hikes do not go far, but they will absolutely expand your thinking, develop your appreciation and increase your ability to discuss and understand the makeup of this amazing area in which we live.

Kay Merriam of Pocatello has a Ph.D. from the University of Connecticut. She was the president of the state League of Women Voters for two years and president of the Pocatello chapter for two years as well.