The commercial and cultural center of the eastern part of Idaho, Idaho Falls is also the state's second biggest city after Boise. Idaho Falls is the county seat of Bonneville County and is situated not far from the state's border with Wyoming. The city covers an area of 23.14 square miles and has an estimated population of over 61,000 people, with around 145,000 people living in the surrounding metropolitan area. CDC information for travelers. Hours/availability may have changed.


1.Idaho Falls

Idaho Falls
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The area that would eventually become Idaho Falls was first just a small group of ranches and farms, with the first real foundations of the city occurring in 1864. A man called Harry Rickets constructed a ferry and set sail on the Snake River, boosting transport links and migration towards the Idaho Falls area, where a toll bridge was constructed. A hotel, post office, and bank were added to the area, with many people traveling along the Montana trail and choosing to settle in Idaho Falls. The town was originally known under the names of Taylor's Crossing and Eagle Rock, before eventually becoming Idaho Falls in 1891.

Nuclear reactors were constructed in the area in the mid-20th century and energy became a key part of the city's economy. Nowadays, the city relies on the Idaho National Laboratory for most of its high-income employment, but many other small businesses can be found around Idaho Falls and various neighborhoods have undergone renovation over the years. The city is regarded as a great place for families and has a lively arts and culture scene, as well as serving as a great base for nearby national parks like Yellowstone and Grand Teton.

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2.Elevation of Idaho Falls

Elevation of Idaho Falls
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Elevation tells us how high or low an area is in relation to sea level and is a key geographical statistic with many uses. The mean elevation of the United States is 2,500 feet (760 m), but many of the country’s biggest cities and urban locations are situated in low-lying coastal areas with elevations that tend to be lower than 500 feet (152 m). The elevation of Idaho Falls is 4,705 feet (1,434 m), meaning it's nearly twice as high as the national average and several thousand feet higher than the country's biggest cities like Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York.

Idaho is the sixth highest state in America, trailing behind Colorado, Wyoming, Utah, New Mexico, and Nevada. It has an average elevation of 5,000 feet (1,520 m), which is double the national average. This means that the city of Idaho Falls is just a few hundred feet lower than the state average. The point with the highest elevation in all of Idaho is Borah Peak, a mountain in the Lost River Range, which has an elevation of 12,668 feet (3,861 m), while the lowest point in the state is the confluence of the Clearwater and Snake rivers, which is situated at an elevation of 713 feet (217 m).

The highest city in all of Idaho is Island Park, which can be found in Fremont County and has an elevation of 6,290 feet (1,917 m). Elevation can vary quite widely among the major cities of Idaho. The state capital of Boise, for example, has an elevation of 2,730 feet (830 m), while another of the state’s biggest cities, Twin Falls, is situated much higher at an elevation of 3,743 feet (1,141 m). This means that Idaho Falls is actually one of the highest major cities in the entire state. Next read: Best Weekend Getaways in Idaho

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3.Climate and Things to Do in Idaho Falls

Climate and Things to Do in Idaho Falls
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Weather in the city of Idaho Falls is influenced by its high elevation, with temperatures regularly dropping below freezing point through the winter months. The city receives around 44 inches of snow each year, with most of this falling from November through to February of each year. The city gets around 11 inches of rain as well. The coldest month of the year is January, with average lows of 12°F (-11°C), while the warmest month is July, which has average highs of 86°F (30°C).

One of the key attractions of Idaho Falls is its river walk, offering various open-air art installations and several cycling and hiking trails along the Snake River. Other major attractions include the Museum of Idaho and the Idaho Falls Zoo, as well as various art centers. Many tourists also visit Idaho Falls as a base for their adventures in nearby Yellowstone National Park and Grand Teton National Park, both of which offer a multitude of activities like climbing, hiking, camping, fishing, and more.

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Idaho Falls Elevation



Attraction Spotlight: Idaho Falls Japanese Garden

Come see the beauty that is the Idaho Falls Japanese Garden and Pavilion. Conveniently located along the Snake River in Idaho Falls, the garden presents a wealth of natural beauty to calm even the most anxious of hearts and is one of the top rated attractions in the town.

History

The Japanese Pavilion opened to the general public in 2016 after months of hard work from the many volunteers dedicated to creating it. Both the garden and the pavillion have been ranked as high as the fourth most popular attraction in Idaho Falls. It is part of the Sister Cities International Program (with Tokai Mura in Japan) and exchange students visit the garden as well as the area in general every other year.

Some of the stonework and other gardening elements have been donated from their sister city as well, giving an authentic look to the replica garden. The garden and pavilion are constantly undergoing growth and expansion, as the garden designer always has projects that he has in the works.

Permanent Attractions

Both the Japanese Pavilion and Japanese Garden are open to the general public all year round, 24 hours a day. However, occasionally the premises will be rented out for a special event like a wedding or a birthday party, which may require certain areas to be closed temporarily. Most of the time, guests can still walk quietly around the grounds with permission. Below are a few of the “must see” sections of the garden:

? Sidewalks - Walking into the gardens, guests should be sure to look down. All of the sidewalks are made from lava rock, replacing the original clay sidewalk paths which became dangerous when they got wet. The sidewalks were all locally fabricated by landscapers.

? Wooden floors - The wooden floors at the Japanese Pavilion have been hand selected from a cedar company who has specialized wood grown only in a very small geographic area located on the beautiful Oregon Coast. The majority of the wood that the company chosen for the flooring sells ends up in Japan, in fact, making this the perfect company for the Japanese Pavilion. The closeness of the type of wood grown onsite and the type used and grown in Japan is almost 99%.

? Moss garden - The moss garden was specifically for its beauty and Japanese authenticity. The green moss was developed for guests to view, especially while sitting in the shade.

? Roof/woodworking details - The roof and the woodworking associated with the structures located in the garden are intricate and beautiful, as well as being handcrafted by volunteer woodworking artisans. Up to eight different layers of tile has been permanently installed and held in place with nails (stainless steel), heavy-duty wiring, and mortar that was specifically chosen to match each tile. The mason who completed the project used new techniques that haven’t been seen in Idaho to this point. This type of Japanese style roof is rare in the US due to the intricacy required for creating it and is a local, as well as national, architectural gem.

? Metal ornaments - Located on many of the roofs are handcrafted, intricate metal ornaments. These ornaments often feature the chrysanthemum, which is a symbol of both Japan and the Emperor there.

Educational Opportunities

The Japanese Pavilion and Garden exist entirely on volunteers. Many volunteers, especially students of gardening, landscaping, or metal work, find helping out around the garden to be highly beneficial to their careers and their education. Often, projects that are necessary around the garden can be “sourced out” to volunteers to work on during their own time and/or at home. This can be a great way to volunteer at the garden without having to be locked in to a specific schedule or time constraint. For students interested in helping out around the garden, contact Edward who is the main person in charge of the garden by phone. He will help discuss what is needed and what each specific participant can do to add to the health, beauty, and landscaping potential of the garden as a whole. There is absolutely no time commitment that must be made, which makes this the ideal way to get some “field” time in while learning a new skill or furthering the understanding of a current one.

Dining

There are no official dining options for visitors of the garden and pavilion, but guests are welcome and encouraged to bring a picnic lunch and stay awhile. It is mandatory, however, that guests pick up after themselves and all trash must be placed in a receptacle before leaving. No grills or alcoholic beverages are allowed.

Idaho Falls Japanese Garden, Island in river at Broadway, Sportsman Park, Idaho Falls, ID, 83210, Phone: 208-881-3569

More Things to Do in Idaho Falls

Attraction Spotlight: Artitorium Broadway

The Artitorium Broadway, located in Idaho Falls, is a unique, family based interactive arts experience. With a huge selection of hands on stations, the Artitorium encourages creativity through fun, thought provoking, and education experiences. The Artitorium opened its doors to the general public in August 2014. Housed in the Rio Theater located on West Broadway near downtown Idaho Falls, which closed in 2001 after being open as a working theater under several names since 1924.

History

The building was actually donated by an anonymous fan of the arts with the hopes that the creators would take it to the next level and provide a fun and educational arts experience. It is owned and operated by the Arts Council in Idaho Falls, which also has two other arts-based attractions in the area.

Permanent Attractions and Exhibits

The core of the Artitorium is its interactive experiences, which are aimed at adults and children alike, with a focus on children from birth to 12 years old. Below is a selection of some of the most popular available.

? Motion Wall - The motion wall greets guests when they enter Artitorium. This interactive wall invites visitors to use digital brushes to “paint” different shapes and colors and create masterpieces. The unique camera also allows guests to see themselves through a virtual kaleidoscope, using unique features and filters.

? Virtual Gallery - Six huge touch screens make up the virtual gallery, which lets guests browse famous art galleries like the Smithsonian while also creating their own artwork at the easels.

? Creation Stations - Creation Stations features six diverse types of software meant to help guests create art. Choose from the collage machine, still life, action painter, pattern maker, stone painter, and scape. Creations can either be printed or taken home with a USB drive.

? Green Machine - One of the coolest areas at the Artitorium is the Green Machine, an enormous green screen that guests can use to make their own minute long video masterpiece. Use moving or still backgrounds, add special effects or music, and let creativity take over.

? Animation Stations - Explore the wonders of stop motion animation, which has been used to movies like Shaun the Sheep and Chicken Run. Using toys and other craft objects, guests can make their own videos.

? Tune Up - Create music at Tune Up, which helps visitors use a digital guitar and piano to make unique visual effects while producing their own sheet music. There are many different musical instruments available, but some will need to be checked out from the front desk.

? Found Object Sculpture - With a wide and diverse selection of materials provided by the Artitorium, guests can make their own crafts and sculptures. There are also crayons, markers, and coloring pages for smaller visitors.

? Light Table - Translucent objects and shapes of all sizes teach guests how to experiment with color, shadow, and shade.

Admission is required, but children under 3 are admitted free. The Artoritium is open Sundays from 1 pm to 5 pm, Mondays from 5 pm to 8:30 pm, and Tuesdays through Saturdays from 10 am to 6 pm.

Educational Opportunities

Field trips are always more than welcome at the Artitorium. Group field trips can be catered for students between kindergarten and 12th grade and were specifically designed to meet and exceed the common core standards dictated by Idaho, as well as standards in media and visual arts. Descriptions of the many different program options are available on the website and are meant for classes from 20 to 120 students at a time. Some of the programs available are Ships in a Storm (a 4th grade program that teaches about artist creation of movement by the use of water and ships) and Space (meant for all ages levels, this program showcases how artists recreate the moon and space in general). The educational staff is also more than willing to work with teachers to handcraft a program as well.

There is a cost for field trips, but funding is available to help classrooms who cannot afford to pay it. Teachers can apply on the website.

Special Events

The Artitorium is the perfect place for many different special events, and it has especially become a family favorite for birthday parties. Guests can bring their own food, view a movie in the theater, or add on additional arts activities (for an additional cost). Contact the museum for information about how to reserve space.

Besides birthday parties, the building staff hosts regular special events during their open hours which focus on specific art projects like paper projects, exploring specific artists, building, and abstract art. There is an up to date calendar located on their website.

Artitorium on Broadway, 271 West Broadway, Idaho Falls, 83402, Phone: 208-552-1080

More Things to Do in Idaho Falls