idaho

LOVE IN THE BOI: Jen + Brian

Meet Jen and Brian.

Their love story started on the first day of college at BSU. Their love continues to thrive and grow since day one.


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My husband and I met on the first day of college in the Chaffee Dorms at BSU.  He was from Spokane Washington and was in Boise to wrestle on scholarship, I was from the Seattle area and we started dating 6 months later—never looking back—and relocating to the Boise area.  Fun facts:  we have spent 24 Valentine’s Days together, we have 3 daughters, and we all train jiu-jitsu together.  Most fun fact:  Brian is fighting on the pro-card for Front Street Fights in Boise on February 1st after a 7 year retirement.  


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She wrote a story about the moment that sealed the deal for them to become more than friends.  It was featured in the Stonecrop Magazine at College of Western Idaho and it encompasses so much charm about Boise, and being kids and about loving the simple things about each other.  Here’s her story:

How We Became Us

I called him that night, Friday. The cold gray walls of my dorm were easy to resist, and when I asked him if he wanted to hang out, he did.

We hopped into his red Nissan pick-up, and over the radio, he asked me if I wanted to drive. I lurched and stalled it so many times that we traded seats. He may have laughed at me—yes, I am sure he did.

My lack of experience was a novelty.

We went up the hills overlooking the City of Trees. The air was cold and crisp, and lighted by Christmas. When we reached the top of the highest hill, the frosted, twinkling city so far below, we teetered there at the edge. Lying before us was some semblance of a road. Darkness on the backside of the hill swallowed up the Nissan’s narrow headlight beams.

"Let's go for it.”

He stepped on the gas and together we slipped down into the night and the mud, away from the city, from finals, cardboard pizza, stale coffee, and the quiet of an all-girls dorm. The engine called it quits when we plunged to a stop at the dark bottom of, what? We couldn't discern anything. The road was not a road at all, but a trap.  Other auto-victims had been here before.

 

Striking a flare and circling around, we spied underbrush for miles upon miles.  Deep scars of tire tread were etched into the ground around us.  An abandoned car.  A side view mirror, broken and half-buried. 

He fumbled with the winch, but sagebrush offers no leverage and when I pointed the flare to the ground, it licked my palm and singed my sleeve and I dropped it with a yelp.

We grasped shovels and flung mud until exhaustion formed blisters and then collapsed into the bed of his truck, tracing constellations in the sky and laughing at the mud smeared on our temples.  Giving in, we planned our escape route on foot. 

We were crushed by darkness and lost feeling in our toes but we were kids with no weight on our shoulders, and getting stranded in the hills was no big thing. Especially when it meant wearing a warm coat that smelled like him, holding hands, and catching the glint of that first-love spark.

But like I said, it was no big thing. Even when the tow truck gave up and the tractor said, "No way." To the tune of $400—all his measly college savings—the Nissan was set free by a CAT. Nothing M&W powdered donuts and orange juice couldn't fix.

What I recall most is that we drove up the hill as friends, and came down as a glimmer of something more. And three years later, on bended knee, a promise was made on the same nameless road. But this time, instead of foolishness, a proclamation of devotion and friendship.

And yes, love.

It’s been twenty-four years and I can say that I still like the way his jacket smells.

Thank you Jen & Brian for sharing your LOVE IN THE BOI story! You may follow them on Instagram at @jenwieber_writer and his is @thesemicolon

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Music Mondays: Faded Leroy

Written by: Aaron, ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy  Source: ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy

Source: ConcertPhotography208


It’s time for Music Monday to throwdown with the high energy, post-hardcore, band Faded Leroy!

The beginnings of Faded Leroy are rooted within Brendan Nickel, guitar/vocals, and Beau Kolar, drums, playing in various bands for nearly a decade and touring regionally with a local band called Abrupt Edge. In 2012, Brendan found himself between projects but kept up with Beau a few times a week. These jam sessions between the two created an album’s worth of material, but they needed help to further the idea. Brendan and Beau sought the help of Jeremy Cummings, vocals, and after a few bassists the trio put a Craigslist ad out to find their fourth. Brian Lewis answered their call saying “We hit it off immediately.” And from that fateful Craigslist ad, and friends striving to create, the awesome band Faded Leroy was born.




Faded Leroy  Source: ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy

Source: ConcertPhotography208

The band brainstormed for a name for quite sometime ending up with a list of hundreds of names! The band had everyone pick 5 names off the list they felt were the best and Faded Leroy was on everyone’s list. “Faded Leroy is a character that time forgot, that people passed by. He may fade into the shadows for a time, but he will eventually have his day. It's a lesson in not underestimating people that presently fade into your background, because you never know when they will come back to haunt you. It's also about not worrying what people think of you and using your hardships to make you stronger.” They said. We all can relate to this message of the character that Faded Leroy represents. Everyone experiences times of hardship where life takes them on a different path but eventually we find ourselves again. Hardships make us stronger, this band’s name and their performance is wonderfully electric, and you can feel it from the audience.

Brian found his connection with the bass while playing with his first band and continues to strive for perfection each time he plays. Jeremy found his love for the harsh vocals by screaming along with his albums. Jeremy staid “…it was something I was arguably good at and I enjoyed writing poetry/lyrics and creating music. Got serious about vocals when I joined a band called Sub*Vert in the early 2000’s.” Brendan grew up in a musical household with a mother who was a concert pianist as well as a piano teacher. Brendan started playing piano at a very young age and backed up his skills by studying music theory. As he grew older he moved from the piano to the guitar and spent hours self-learning the songs of Tool, RATM, and Alice In Chains. Beau started playing the drums at 12 years old and hasn’t stopped since!


Faded Leroy  Source: ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy

Source: ConcertPhotography208

Each band member brings their own musical influences to the sound that is Faded Leroy. Influence is drawn from Deftones, RATM, Tool and Sparta. As a group the band tries to create music that fits their world and their thoughts saying “As a group, we have always tried to let our music develop organically and never really set out to write a particular style of music. We really just try to let the music happen naturally.” The band understands that their music may change with the current state of tension in their lives and the lives that surround them. The band members, much like the character that is Faded Leroy, understand that there are dark times in life and they use their music as a healthy expression.

This healthy expression can be found within the band’s lyrics. Bringing the thoughts of frustration, conflict and loss into the feel of their music saying, “the band has become very cathartic and is often a place for us as individuals to work out things that we are witnessing or going through personally.” These guys do not want to sit on their struggles but provide a type of positive message or solution when it comes to facing any type of conflict in life.



Faded Leroy  Source: ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy

Source: ConcertPhotography208

In 6 years, the group has written, recorded and produced two full length albums as an independent band, which are awesome! They have had the opportunity to open for great bands and play at some fantastic venues. They love connecting with the different bands and their fans as they play their gigs. They look forward to playing and expanding their fan-base.

The band would like to “…Thank all of our fans, our families, the promoters, dj's, venue owners and all the bands we've played with. We are honored to have the privilege of doing what we love and sharing music with others and we appreciate all the people that help us make that happen.”



Faded Leroy  Source: ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy

Source: ConcertPhotography208

Music Monday has been fortunate to see this band play several times! Each time they leave everything on the stage and hold nothing back. If you hear the that Faded Leroy is playing anywhere in the Boise area, make sure you see them. You’ll feel better about life no matter what ales you as this band will allow you to release some tension!


Faded Leroy  Source: ConcertPhotography208

Faded Leroy

Source: ConcertPhotography208

For more local music exclusives check out Randy Perkins

And for more concert photos and videos check out Music Monday's Instagram @concertphotography208

LOVE IN THE BOI: Carlleen + Michael

Cupid did strike Carlleen and Michael when they first met on OK Cupid (dating app). From a first date watching football to enjoying exploring Boise together — this is Carlleen & Michael’s LOVE IN THE BOI story.


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How did you two meet?

We met on a dating app site (okcupid) back in 2014. What made Michael so special compared to any other guy that messaged me was his greeting was hey. No pickup lines, no commenting on my beauty or how tall I was. Just a simple hey. We messaged back and forth for a while, mainly about college math classes (I was good at math, he was not) but we also did the classic get to know each other topics too.


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Describe your first date.

Our first date was the Packer's/Seahawks game on September 4th, 2014. I asked him to watch the game with me. However, we met a few times before the date and Michael showed me around the Treasure Valley because I'm from Wisconsin. He never once made a move on me until he felt comfortable and so did I. Actually, Michael didn't make us official until 2 days after the Packer/Seahawks game. We were hanging out on the tailgate of his best friends truck and I was showing "interest" of him holding my hand. It took so long for Michael to actually hold my hand that his best friend said that if Michael didn't hold my hand that night (because I was showing all of the signs) that he would have kicked his butt and made him hold my hand.


What advice do you have for those looking for love in Boise?

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Act like tourists and see what sights the other person wants to show you! Michael showed me where he worked at, the schools he attend, and some of his hangout spots. Don't be afraid to date someone who's a normal human being! Michael and I are completely different people with different interests but sharing the love with someone you love is the best feeling ever.


Where is your favorite place to go (or thing to do) together as a couple?

If we are eating out at a restaurant/bar our go to for the Boise area is Quinn's on Vista. Our favorite things to do together would be fishing or taking a boat ride in my boat at the lakes around the area.



Go follow this couple at @carlleen13 & @wrxbumm 

Professional photos taken by: 7slottedadventures (https://aubreymilesphotography.com/)  


Top 12 Holiday Activities to Cross of Your #BoiseBucketList



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If you are like me a two years ago, I didn’t know what to do when it came to my first holiday season in Boise. For those who are new to Boise, or if you’re looking for a few new ideas, here’s my Top 12 Holiday Activities to Cross Off Your Boise Bucket List:


 

1. CAPITAL TREE LIGHTING ON THE GROVE PLAZA

Source: Downtown Boise Association

Source: Downtown Boise Association



Date: November 23rd, from 5pm -6:30pm. 

Get ready to snuggle with your loved ones as you enjoy the holiday tree lighting. It’ll be held at The Grove, and festivities begin at 5pm. Entertainment by Red Light Challenge and the Boise Men’s & Women’s Choruses.

For full details, please visit: https://downtownboise.org/events/downtown-holiday-tree-lighting 



2. SAINT ALPHONSUS FESTIVAL OF TREES


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Date: November 21st - November 25th

Last year, I attended this wonderful event and I highly recommend it. For so many reasons. All funds raised will support the expansion of Saint Alphonsus. You get to walk around and be surrounded by all of the holiday splendor that makes you feel warm inside. Let’s not forget the hundreds of decorated Christmas trees, wreaths, and holiday decor For more information, please visit: https://www.saintalphonsus.org/ways-to-give/boise/festival-of-trees/.



3. IDAHO FOOD BANK EMPTY BOWLS

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Date: Friday, November 23rd; 10am to 1:30pm

The Empty Bowls is where you get to choose from hand-painted bowls from professional and amateur painters, students, and studios.  After you select a bowl, you can then enjoy a hot bowl of soup generously donated by one of the local Boise restaurants.

Over 3,000 bowls to choose from, and bowls start at $10.00.  It’ll be held at the Boise Center. *Parking WILL BE FREE on Friday.

Recommendation: ARRIVE EARLY! I made the terrible mistake of attending around 12pm. The line was long, wrapped around Main Street.




4. BOISE CLASSIC MOVIES AT THE EGYPTIAN THEATER



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I’m movie geek and fanatic, so when Boise Classic Movies released its holiday schedule, I screamed with joy. Maybe not scream, but definitely got giddy.

This year, the list of classic movies range from action to romcom to the classic holiday movies:

  • Love Actually

  • Christmas Vacation

  • It’s a Wonderful Life

  • A Christmas Story

  • Home Alone

  • White Christmas

  • Elf

Some of the movies showings include beer and wine (21+).  I believe these will all sell out, so grab your tickets early. Plus, you get to watch it in the coolest place here in Boise: The Egyptian Theater. For more info, please visit: https://boiseclassicmovies.com/deals/.


5. ICE SKATING AT THE VILLAGE OF MERIDIAN

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Date: November through January 2019

I’ll admit — I’m not the best when it comes to ice skating. BUT for the holiday season, I’ll put on some ice skates.

The Village of Meridian now has an ice skating rink in Fountain Square. Its open from November thru January.  Ticket prices start at $5.00.

Enjoy a night of ice skating, then grab hot chocolate at Village Coffee, and sit by a warm fire. For more info, please visit: https://www.thevillageatmeridian.com/event/Ice-Skating/2145514930/.


6. WINTER GARDEN AGLOW AT THE IDAHO BOTANICAL GARDEN



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Date: Thursday, November 22 – Monday, January 1; 6pm; Botanical Garden

The Garden isn’t only for the warm months. The Idaho Botanical Garden becomes a dazzling display of lights during the holiday season. Over 400K lights, to be exact.

On select nights, you can even see Santa and enjoy the sounds of local choirs.

Tickets start at $8, and children under 4 are FREE.

For more info, please visit: https://idahobotanicalgarden.org/event/winter-garden-aglow-2018/2018-11-22/.


7. THE NUTCRACKER AT IDAHO REGIONAL BALLET

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Date: Friday, December 14th and go through Sunday, December 16th. 

When I was growing up, my parents brought my siblings and me to see the Nutcracker. My sister especially loved it because she was into ballet. When I close my eyes and think of Christmas, seeing the Nutcracker is part of that vision.

Luck for us, we have a chance to see the Nutcracker live at Idaho Regional Ballet. Come celebrate the holiday season with Idaho Regional Ballet and Lisa Moon’s staging of The Nutcracker. This marvelously imaginative production has become a holiday tradition for Treasure Valley families. Over 100 dancers in the cast and guest artists, Benjamin Griffiths and Leta Biasucci, courtesy of Pacific Northwest Ballet will grace the stage to Tchaikovsky's beloved score.

Snag your tickets early because these showings HAVE SOLD OUT! Not kidding. You may purchase your tickets HERE:





8. #WhatsYourAwesome DOWNTOWN CARRIAGE RIDES WITH WASHINGTON TRUST BANK

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Date: Every Friday and Saturday from November 24th – December 16th, 4pm – 8pm

You’d think you’d have to travel to New York City to enjoy a classic carriage ride. Or, at least that’s what I see in the movies.

Starting in late November, you have the chance to enjoy a FREE carriage ride in downtown Boise. Yes, I said FREE. Washington Trust Bank is providing free carriage rides and hot cocoa to the Boise community throughout the holiday season! 

Pickup is in front of the Washington Trust Bank 9th Street downtown Boise.



9. CLAUS N PAWS DAY AT ZOO BOISE

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Date: Saturday, December 1st from 10am – 5pm

Want to have a fun FREE day at the zoo? On Saturday, December December 1st starting at 10am, you and your family can enjoy all the zoo offerings. Santa Claus will visit the zoo for photo ops.





10. WINTER WONDERLAND LIGHT DISPLAY IN DOWNTOWN CALDWELL

Source: Idaho Press

Source: Idaho Press

Date: November thru January 15th, 2019


If you haven’t driven to Caldwell for its Winter Wonderland Light Display, you’re definitely missing out! I attended this last year, and I’m so happy the time has come where I can go again.  You have the beautiful light display  in downtown Caldwell. For more information, please visit: https://www.cityofcaldwell.org/play/city-of-caldwell-events/winter-wonderland#ad-image-0.





11. IDAHO STATE CAPITOL CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING

Date: Monday, November 26th



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Last year, I attended the Idaho State Capitol Christmas Tree lighting right after work, and it was absolutely worth it. There was free hot cocoa and cookies for everyone. After the tree lighting, you can head inside and explore the Idaho State Capitol building. Holiday decorations are something that’s magical – amazing, even. With the vibrant reds and the deep greens to the holiday wreaths, you can get lost in the sea of beautiful holiday decorations. The Idaho State Capitol building does not disappoint. The interior of the Capitol building is absolutely amazing!

For more info, please visit: https://www.facebook.com/events/2196687820351778/.



12. VIEW THE LIGHTS AT THE SCENTSY COMMON GROUND


Source: Idaho Statesman (2016)

Source: Idaho Statesman (2016)

Head to the Scentsy Common Grounds in Meridian to experience over 23-miles of amazing holiday lights. The public is welcome to explore the grounds during the holiday season to view the lights up close & personal. You can also see the beautiful Christmas Tree in the lobby from 9am to 5pm (business hours).


Do you have a traditional holiday activity that didn’t make the list? Feel free to email me at info@boisebucketlist.com. Make sure to use the hashtag #boisebucketlist on Instagram at a chance of being featured! Enjoy crossing these activities off your list.










































#MusicMonday @Death Proof Coffee


Aaron from @ConcertPhotography208 is back with another #MusicMonday installment. This week, he is featuring Death Proof Coffee. It’s not your typical coffee shop. Checkout his blog below!



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It’s Music Monday! Lets visit a place that is filled with passion, created with local bands in mind, and is quickly becoming a staple venue in Boise, enter, Death Proof Coffee. Mike Verlennich, Nik Verlennich and Izak Izak have created a venue that can bring a professional edge to any garage band. This place is chill coffee house in the front and full-on fog and light show party in the back! The venue attached to Death Proof Coffee provides an environment for all ages to enjoy live music on a professional stage.

Death Proof Coffee and venue has been in the works for a few years and was perfected by the trio who each bring a unique perspective to the venue. Mike has the passion and leadership to guide his son, Nik, to create energy within the venue. Nik speaks about music, the local scene, and the drive to create a space for local bands in a way only an artist can express. The lighting design Izak brings during the shows can only be described as perfection. Not too over the top or too bright, taking photos into their lights was a concert photographers dream.



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From the moment I walked into the venue I knew something was different, there was too much theater design in Death Proof’s venue. There was forethought and planning, this isn’t some slapped together pallet stage. I’m talkin’ perfect straight lines, and complementary color schemes, and finally some balanced sound, someone had theater experience I just knew it. I later found out that Izak has a background in theater lighting which explains all the attention to every detail. His lighting designs were inspired and not once over shadowed the performances. Another amazing aspect to Izak’s design is he does it all while being red/green color blind. Most would think this would be a determent to a lighting designer not being able to see colors “normally.” I will say the exact opposite is true here, Izak is able to create light schemes that many trained lighting professionals only dream of. His lack of being able to see colors makes him extremely unique and another part of Death Proof that makes this venue great.


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Death Proof Coffee was literally created by the hands of Mike, Nik and Izak. These men hand-poured the countertops you see in the coffee lounge and created the sound panels on the walls within the venue. Each contributing their skills from theater, lighting design, and from the knowledge of owning previous businesses. The most impressive piece of this puzzle? The stage. The attention to detail can be seen by the painstakingly created light boxes these men wanted to fill the back area. They hand built the drum lift and worked tirelessly to make sure every line, device, or panel was perfect from the audience perspective.

If you are looking for a local coffee shop that wants everyone there to enjoy themselves and feel welcome this is your place. If you want a venue that wants to breed a diverse culture of creativity and grow the local music scene this is your venue. Finally, if you are a band that wants that next stepping stone, to know what it feels like to play on a raised stage, with technics, and a crew that wants you to succeed; this is your new home.



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Death Proof Coffee is a much-needed addition to the local Boise music scene. I certainly look forward to seeing more shows, taking more photos, and doing many more blogs about Death Proof Coffee and Venue. See you at the next show!


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Death Proof Coffee 
10481 W. Fairview Ave. in Boise, ID 83704

To book an event

https://www.deathproofcoffee.com/contact/
https://www.deathproofcoffee.com/events/

*All photos are owned by ConcertPhotographer208.