Best of Boise: Public Eye (Readers Picks) 

From Nonprofits to politicians to TV personalities

Best Local Nonprofit

Boise Bicycle Project

Holy velocipede, Boiseans are bike people. From the Foothills to the Greenbelt and beyond, the bicycle is less a mode of transport than a lifestyle choice. Here to help support cycling in all its pedal-powered forms is the Boise Bicycle Project, which offers bicycle education, hosts bike events, opens its shop for repairs and workshops and even recycles bikes back into the community. BBP's mission is to make Boise the "cycling capital" of the United States, and it's rolling toward that goal. boisebicycleproject.org

2nd Place: Women's and Children's Alliance, wcaboise.org

3rd Place: Idaho Youth Ranch, youthranch.org

Best Local Website

boiseweekly.com

Aw, shucks. We can't tell you how happy we are that you like our website. We might be a weekly newspaper, but boiseweekly.com is a seven-day-a-week affair, and we're glad you're with us from dawn to dusk. boiseweekly.com

2nd Place: KTVB Channel 7, ktvb.com

3rd Place: This is Boise, thisisboise.com

Best Local News source

KTVB Channel 7

They of the perfect hair and snappy suits, KTVB Channel 7 has once again seized Best of Boise glory as the Treasure Valley's premier news source. From breaking stories to community news, KTVB has it covered--both on the tube and the net. ktvb.com

2nd Place: Boise Weekly, boiseweekly.com

3rd Place: KBSU/KBSX Boise State Public Radio, boisestatepublicradio.org

Best Local Radio station

KRBX Radio Boise 89.9 FM

For the second year in a row, KRBX Radio Boise took the top spot in the hearts (and ears) of Best of Boise voters. From public affairs on Democracy Now! to local, regional and national touring acts on Antler Crafts with Eric Gilbert; glitch-fest Toast n' Jam with Chad, Marisa and Sarah; and reggae et al. on Sunday Sound System with Dr. Fresh, there is--literally--something for everyone at 89.9 FM and 93.5 FM. radioboise.us

2nd Place: KRVB 94.9 FM The River, riverinteractive.com

3rd Place: KBSU/KBSX Boise State Public Radio, boisestatepublicradio.org

Best Local Politician

Boise Mayor Dave Bieter

Boiseans made a bet on Bieter back in 2004 and after 10 years in office, it's clear they think they have a winner in Hizzoner. One survey respondent, possibly in error, possibly as a nod to authority, even called him Major Bieter--whatever his actual rank, it's high in the minds of his constituency. Whether it's his commitment to sustainability, his bike-friendliness, his unrelenting boosterism or a combination of all three, if there was a Great State of Ada, we bet he'd be governor. cityofboise.org

2nd Place: Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter, gov.idaho.gov

3rd Place: Boise School District Board of Trustees President and Democratic gubernatorial candidate A.J. Balukoff, ajforidaho.com

Best Local DJ or Radio Personality

Mike Kasper and Kate McGwire, KCIX Mix 106 FM

Boise Weekly readers aren't the only ones to heap praise on Mix 106 morning hosts Mike Kasper and Kate McGwire: Since teaming up in 2001 (then at Magic 93.1), Mike and Kate have earned four Best Radio Show nods from the Idaho State Broadcasting Awards. Every weekday from 5:30 a.m.-10 a.m., the duo helps wake up the Treasure Valley with a high-energy combo of news, cultural commentary, humor and contests. It's a helluva a "mix," pardon the pun. mix106radio.com

2nd Place: Misty Taylor, KRVB 94.9 FM The River, riverinteractive.com

3rd Place: Tim Johnstone, KRVB 94.9 FM The River, riverinteractive.com

Best Neighborhood Park

Camel's Back Park

Camels have been known to go upwards of a week without drinking water, but that's too long for many Boiseans to go without visiting Camel's Back Park. The land was acquired from a relative of former Mayor Herbert Lemp in 1932, and the park dedicated in 1965. Today, Camel's Back is 11 acres of grass, playground equipment, tennis courts and picnic tables bumping up against the Boise Foothills and giving easy access to a network of trails that goes for miles. Of course, few parks can contend with the sloping sand slide down the southern side of the "hump"--one of the best sledding spots in the city when the snow flies. parks.cityofboise.org

2nd Place: Ann Morrison Park, parks.cityofboise.org

3rd Place: Settlers Park, meridiancity.org

Best Local Weatherperson

Scott Dorval, KIVI Channel 6

All hail Scott Dorval, seven-year first-place winner for best local weatherperson in the Best of Boise poll. This guru of the green screen, prince of prognostication, sultan of smoke advisories and wizard of winter weather warnings has proved his pride of place year in and year out as Boise's most trusted storm tracker. jrn.com/kivitv

2nd Place: Larry Gebert, KTVB Channel 7, ktvb.com

3rd Place: Rick Lantz, KTVB Channel 7, ktvb.com

Best Local TV Station

KTVB Channel 7

What? There are other local TV channels? You wouldn't know it from the past decade-plus of Best of Boise rankings. KTVB Channel 7 has demolished the competition in this category since the mid-'00s. The tagline for the NBC affiliate is "#1 for Idaho News & Weather," and it's not kidding. ktvb.com

2nd Place: KAID Channel 4, Idaho Public Television, idahoptv.org

3rd Place: KBOI Channel 2, kboi2.com

Best Place to See and be Seen

Alive After Five

The nickname "city that never sleeps" is already be taken, but Boise is plenty lively after 5 p.m. Nowhere is that more clear than Alive After Five, which brings thousands to the Grove Plaza each week through the summer for open-air concerts, food, beer and community togetherness. If you don't bump into at least three people you know at AA5, you need to get out more often. downtownboise.org

2nd Place: Downtown Boise

3rd Place: Eighth Street

Best Free Parking Space in Downtown Boise

Tie: Bike Racks/Downtown Streets after 6 p.m. and on Weekends

Let's be honest. We all know there are plenty of secret free parking spots scattered around the city but, Best of Boise voters kept those havens close to the vest. One of the most common answers for this category was "I'm not telling you." Regardless, survey respondents doubled down on their cyclophilia by pointing out that parking is always free for the two-wheeled set. For the car-bound, city streets seem to do well enough after hours, which suggests that Boise's parking situation might not be as bad as some say--that or Boiseans are playing coy about their hidden fee-less haunts.

2nd Place: First hour in downtown garages

3rd Place: Fourth Street

Best Way to Move Around Boise

Ride Your Bike

Whether it's a combination of biking and walking or biking and busing, or it's biking nude, biking with beer (via pedal-pub), biking carefully, biking on formerly existent bike lanes, biking a tandem cycle, biking on the Greenbelt or using the upcoming Boise bike share program, Boiseans are clear: Two-wheeled transport is the way to go.

2nd Place: On foot

3rd Place: By automobile

Best Addition to Downtown Boise

Eighth and Main Tower

Boise is obviously happy to be rid of its signature hole--so much so that we wonder if it really mattered what went into it. More than a few responses to this question referred to the Eighth and Main Tower simply as "the hole-filler," or "the building in the hole." We tend to think that Eighth and Main is a little more than that, with its gleaming glass and steel design, spiffy light-up spire and mix of restaurants. If you're going to fill a hole, might as well do it with a skyline-topping tower. (And yes, we know that Trader Joe's was a life-changing addition for many, but we didn't include it in the top three because, of course, it's not local.)

2nd Place: JUMP (Jack's Urban Meeting Place), jacksurbanmeetingplace.org

3rd Place: Bike lanes

Best Local TV Anchor

Dee Sarton, KTVB Channel 7

We might as well rename this category "Best KTVB Anchor." For years, the top three spots have been a game of musical chairs between Dee Sarton, Maggie O'Mara and Carolyn Holly. In fact, we could have copy-pasted this blurb from last year, when the rankings were identical. Whatever these broadcasters are doing, they must doing it right. ktvb.com

2nd Place: Maggie O'Mara, KTVB Channel 7, ktvb.com

3rd Place: Carolyn Holly, KTVB Channel 7, ktvb.com

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