This past Monday my Idaho City business (BoCo Sluice Box) was the “host” for the kick off of the third in the Idaho City Chamber Fall Tour Series. The day started out miserable, not raining (or snowing) anymore but chilly and overcast. I had announced one of my fall pop up days at the shop from 1pm-5pm and had talked a couple of my “girl crew” in to helping construct a scarecrow family out of odds and ends we gathered from the Sluice and our homes. The Idaho City Arts Council is having a competition amongst the homes and businesses that line Main and Montgomery streets. It was a fun afternoon and after much cheering from me, the sun did shine and the mish mosh, mustache family of scarecrows was born. Check them out below 😉
The tour group gathered and we loaded up and made our way to the end of Main Street and parked in the Idaho City High Shool football field parking lot. Our tour guide on this crisp fall day was John McFarlane, Superintendent of Schools and Secondary Principal for Basin School District #72.
Eighty seven acres known as the Idaho Center for Outdoor Education (ICOE) spread out before us. This project has origins dating back to 1999. A Public Services Act was passed that was a way to get land to non profits. A lease deal was initiated in 2011 and in 2016 the land was purchased by the District. I am including an information sheet our guide provided for us for best accuracy. (I hope that you can somehow read this/print it to read).
The area adjacent to this on the ICOE property is wetlands and a Wetland’s Specialist will be assisting with the Master Plan. A 3D archery range is part of that plan which will be developed utilizing a grant from Fish and Game and the Office of Idaho Drug Policy. There is potential for a zip line as one has been donated. An indoor science classroom will exist in this area and the building will also include a large foyer and a meeting room. The ICOE believes this is the type of facility that “if you will build it, they will use it.” The large foyer area will house a collection of 27 mounts of animals indigenous to Idaho which were donated to the school district and are presently on display in the High School library. A $17,000 grant is secured as part of this development. There was discussion about the Sparish Fork seasonal stream as well as the riparian area and work with the Army Corp of Engineers to repair damage done over the years by motorized vehicles.
We moved on to the area known as the Amphitheatre, making our way past the vault toilet built with grant money. This Amphitheatre area hosts an annual Career Day dedicated to the Environmental Sciences in association with USFS; BLM; Fish and Game and the like. A