Spokane is a great place to live because it is a “big” little city. It has most of the amenities that large cities have- night life, restaurants, big-name concerts and diverse employment opportunities. Along with the usual attractions of a larger city, Spokane is home to quite a few “hidden” gems.
Bloomsday is a 12km race through the beautiful city. It starts downtown and loops through a few local neighborhoods before coming to a finish in Riverfront Park. It’s a great way to get out and see the city on foot in a way you would normally not experience. Like many races, there are sites to see along to way – people decorate their yard, cheer you along the way, and sometimes they even have someone set up with beer tasting! (Not sure if this is a “race event” or just a really friendly person trying to get everyone the boost they need to finish the race, ha!)
Another popular attraction is Hoopfest, the largest 3-on-3 basketball tournament in the world. The event attracts over 6,000 teams, requires 3,000 volunteers and extends 45 city blocks. Because it is such a large event, there are numerous vendors for shopping, food and outdoor entertainment. Celebrity sightings and the occasional NBA player are not uncommon. Each year brings something new!
The area is also home to one of the top basketball teams in the nation – Gonzaga! Because Gonzaga is such a huge influence, it has many of the attractions that a college town would – without too much “college-y” stuff happening to take away from the city. If education is your reason for re-locating, it is also close to North Idaho College, Eastern Washington University, and both University of Idaho and Washington State University are just over an hour and a half away!
If you’re looking for the hidden gems, there are plenty of attractions for the outdoorsy person. The centennial trail extends through the city and continues into Idaho. It’s perfect for dog walkers, joggers, bikers and just the occasional stroll. There are parks scattered throughout the city, with Riverfront Park and Manito being two of the more popular ones. There are also numerous lakes driving distance – the lakes are diverse, some are known for hiking, camping, swimming and relaxing. There are also indoor events as well – the Spokane Comedy Club has numerous shows throughout the week, there are several big-name concerts that come to the Spokane Arena (and smaller concert venues for local talents,) museums, and plays at the local theatres – just to name a few.
The blessing of having a town that’s on the brink of a big city is that it appeals to the diverse lifestyles of the people who live here, but it’s small enough that you are still able to drive from one end of the county to the other or take a day-trip “out of town” without it becoming too much of a burden. Spokane really is a city you must experience for yourself – once you visit, it’s hard to leave.