Note May 13, 2009 

Consider me one of those out-of-state transplants who doesn't remember Boise before Parkcenter was put in. I don't have childhood memories of learning to ski at Bogus. I never saw Eagle when it was just a quiet cow town. Friends and relatives beyond Idaho who know about my penchant for globetrotting are incredulous that I've put down semi-permanent roots in Boise, and I am still answering the same question again and again: Why Boise?

My list of reasons is long, but when I'm forced to come up with the one word that best describes just about all of it, I say "summer."

In those six letters, I see rivers and mountains, patios and parks, hiking and biking, long days and short nights, outdoor concerts and theater under the stars, always blue skies and the smell of Russian olive trees in bloom.

I'd like to be able to say that if I had my way, it'd be summer year-round in Boise, but honestly, the cold, gray winters make me appreciate the summer that much more.

Every year, we put this little issue together and definitively call it The Summer Guide. Caps intentional. The idea is that when you're lazing around on a summer morning and it seems like a good day to call in "sick," you can pick up this issue of BW and find a distraction. In the main feature, you'll read a story we've been threatening to write for a few years now. This year's Summer Guide seemed a good time to put our money where our mouth is and put some water toys to the test. Beyond silly fun, you'll also find a couple of useful ideas for outdoor dining, recreating and arting. Turn to Page 55 for an overview of one-stop picnic shopping, or if you want to get a jump on some holiday shopping, flip to Page 44 for a list of all the outdoor arts and crafts shows you can stand in one season.

Only one word on The Summer Guide? "Outdoor." If you can't find me at the office this summer, it's because I'm "out sick" in the great "outdoors."

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