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Theater
6:01 am
Thu December 26, 2013

Listen: Geek-Speak And Metaphysics Meet In Boise Contemporary Theater's New Play

Boise actor Stitch Marker will play an automaton in The Uncanny Valley. He's seen here in BCT's 2011 production of Shipwrecked! in which he played several characters including a dog.
Credit Andy Lawless / Boise Contemporary Theater

Boise playwrights Matthew Cameron Clark and Dwayne Blackaller have a little more than three months to curtain on their latest work-in-progress.  The Uncanny Valley, mixes science fiction with Idaho's landscape.

Co-writer Blackaller says most people will likely think the title refers to where it takes place, a valley in Idaho's Sawtooth Mountains. But it’s actually a reference to the themes in the play, not the setting.

You can listen to Blackaller explain what the title means by clicking on the audio player.

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Idaho Music
6:30 am
Tue December 24, 2013

Idaho Musicians Release 4th Holiday Album As A Foodbank Fundraiser

For the fourth-straight year Idaho musicians and local coffee chain Moxie Java have teamed up to release a holiday album to raise cash for The Idaho Foodbank.

The aptly-named IdaHo Ho Ho CD features local artists including Curtis Stigers, Ned Evett, and Belinda Bowler.

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Theater
6:06 am
Tue December 24, 2013

What Boise Contemporary Theater’s New Original Play Is About, So Far

Matthew Cameron Clark and Dwayne Blackaller work on The Uncanny Valley in their basement office at Boise Contemporary Theater.
Credit Adam Cotterell / Boise State Public Radio

Boise Contemporary Theater (BCT) has earned respect producing works by nationally-known playwrights. The company is also demonstrating it can create strong original work in-house.

Early in 2013, BCT debuted A Nighttime Survival Guide. It was written by Artistic Director Matthew Cameron Clark and Education Director Dwayne Blackaller, and it was a hit for the theater.

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Theater
11:27 am
Mon December 23, 2013

2 Boise Playwrights Feel "Right Amount Of Panic" As They Work Toward April Opening

Dwayne Blackaller on stage in A Nighttime Survival Guide. He co-starred in and co-wrote this play that drew the largest audience in BCT's history.

Boise Contemporary Theater (BCT) is selling tickets for a play that opens in April, but that play hasn’t yet been written. For the next few months, I’ll be following its progress as it goes from idea to rehearsal to an audience.

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Transportation
11:21 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Oil Equipment Megaload Crosses Into Southern Idaho

A megaload of oil refinery equipment headed to Canada has arrived in Idaho.

The 380-foot, 450-ton load left Vale, Ore., Sunday night, traveled across the border and was parked Monday at the junction of U.S. Highway 95 and Idaho Highway 55.

It took three weeks for the load to travel 315 miles through Oregon.

The Idaho Department of Transportation issued a permit Friday to Omega Morgan.

It will be allowed to travel in Idaho only between the hours of 10 p.m. and 6 a.m., and it will not be allowed to travel at all from Monday evening until Wednesday night.

Wildlife
10:26 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Conservationist Groups Sue To Stop Controversial Wolf Hunting Contest

This photo was taken in Yellowstone National Park's Lamar Valley.
Credit Jim Peaco / Yellowstone National Park

Update, 11:26 a.m.: The groups finished filing their suit Monday morning. You can read it here.

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Food
9:14 am
Mon December 23, 2013

Boise's Mormon Cannery Serves Beyond Its Church Walls

On this day in Garden City’s LDS cannery John Viehweg (left) is first to get his hands on the pears that have been peeled, cored and halved by a machine. Viehweg turns them right side up. The volunteers further down the conveyor belt cut the bad spots off
Adam Cotterell Boise State Public Radio

Many churches view feeding the poor as an important responsibility. But none go about it quite like the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Across the country, the LDS church has farms, orchards and ranches. And the crops go to church-owned food processing facilities. Six of these facilities handle perishable food like meat and fruit, including this cannery in Garden City, Idaho.  

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Gay Marriage
6:00 am
Mon December 23, 2013

How Utah’s Ruling In Favor Of Same-Sex Marriage Could Impact Idaho

Credit MyTudut / Flickr Creative Commons

Utah became the 18th state in the country Friday to allow same-sex marriage after a federal judge ruled the state's ban on gay marriage violates the U.S. Constitution. This is the first federal case of its kind since the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act earlier this year.

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Bethine Church
11:48 am
Sun December 22, 2013

Bethine Church, Sen. Frank Church's Widow, Political Partner, Dies At 90

Bethine Church accepted the Lillick Award on behalf of her husband in 1978.
Credit Special Collections and Archives, Albertsons Library / Boise State University

Bethine Church, the widow of Idaho Sen. Frank Church, has died at the age of 90. Her son, Chase Church, posted Saturday on his Facebook page that she had passed listening to Christmas music. “She wasn’t in any pain and she always wanted to pass at home,” the post noted. 

Earlier this month, her son posted on his Facebook page that his mother had been “suffering from old age” and poor health.  She’d been on hospice care for the past two weeks and would have turned 91 in February.

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Idaho Legislature
5:31 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Idaho Rep. Patterson Formally Resigns, Effective January

Idaho Rep. Mark Patterson said he'd resign by the end of this week in the wake of revelations that he'd pleaded guilty to a sexual assault charge in 1974.

But when Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter got the resignation letter Friday evening, it was clear that wasn't quite the case — Patterson made his resignation effective at midnight, Jan. 5.

Now Otter's office is trying to figure out if that leaves enough time to seat a replacement before the legislative session with Otter's State of the State address on Jan. 6.

Transportation
3:36 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Expect Travel Delays, Idaho Issues Megaload Permit For Southern Route

The massive shipment will cross 84 bridges in Idaho and travel mostly on backroads.
Credit Idaho Department of Transportation

This post was updated at 5:15 p.m.

Snow has delayed a 450-ton shipment of oilfield equipment from moving into Idaho as it rumbles toward the tar sands oil development in Canada.

The company hauling the megaload had expected to cross the border from Vale, Ore., into Idaho on Friday night.

Spokeswoman Holly Zander says they will have to wait for better weather, and hope to try again Saturday night.

Meanwhile, the state of Idaho has issued a permit for the megaload to use highways crossing the southern part of the state on its way to Montana.

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Idaho Legislature
3:15 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Gov. Otter Appoints Boise Representative To Fill Vacant State Senate Seat

Ward-Engelking was a teacher for more than 30 years.
Credit Idaho Legislature

Governor C.L. "Butch" Otter has selected Boise Rep. Janie Ward-Engelking, a Democrat, to fill the Idaho Senate seat vacated by Sen. Branden Durst.

Ward-Engelking is a freshman lawmaker who was elected to the state House of Representatives in 2012.

Here's the press release issued by Gov. Otter's office.

Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter announced the appointment today of freshman Representative Janie Ward-Engelking to the Idaho Senate vacancy left by last month’s resignation of first-term Senator Branden Durst of Boise.

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Gay Marriage
2:57 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Federal Judge Strikes Down Utah's Same-Sex Marriage Ban

Credit Austin Jenkins / Northwest News Network

A federal judge has struck down Utah's same-sex marriage ban, saying it is unconstitutional.

U.S. District Judge Robert J. Shelby issued a 53-page ruling Friday saying Utah's law passed by voters in 2004 violates gay and lesbian couples' rights to due process and equal protection under the 14th Amendment.

Shelby says the state failed to show that allowing same-sex marriages would affect opposite-sex marriages in any way, and the state's unsupported fears and speculations are insufficient to justify deny allowing same-sex marriages.

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Economy
1:21 pm
Fri December 20, 2013

Idaho's Jobless Rate Falls To 6.1 Percent In November

Idaho's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell by a record sixth-tenths of a percentage point to 6.1 percent in November.

The state Labor Department said Friday the rate matches the post-recession low posted last spring and the decline is double the previous record one-month swing of three-tenths of a percentage point.

The agency says about 3,800 more Idahoans were at work in November, with total unemployment dropping to 47,300, the lowest level since last spring.

In November 2012, Idaho's unemployment rate was 6.5 percent with over 50,000 people out of work.

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Wildlife
10:49 am
Fri December 20, 2013

Idaho Wolf Hunting Contest Highlights Ongoing Divide Between Hunters And Advocates

The image of this grey wolf was captured near Mammoth Hot Springs in Yellowstone National Park.
Credit Jim Peaco / Yellowstone National Park

A group of hunters in Salmon, Idaho is being criticized for a two-day "coyote and wolf derby" its sponsoring next week.

Idaho for Wildlife's organized hunt is December 28 and 29. The event is focused on young hunters. Sponsors have put up two $1,000 prizes for teams that kill the biggest wolf and the most coyotes. 

The contest has once again highlighted the divide between wolf hunters and wolf advocates.

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Governor's Mansion
10:51 am
Thu December 19, 2013

Idaho Plans To Sell $70,000 In Furniture That Filled Vacant Governor's Mansion

The hilltop house in Boise has never been a permanent residence for an Idaho governor.
Credit Katherine Jones / Idaho Statesman

Idaho aims to unload $70,000 in surplus furniture that once filled the never-occupied governor's mansion before it was returned to potato mogul J.R. Simplot's family this year.

The Spokesman-Review reports the furnishings include two bedroom sets, dining furniture, wall art and kitchen supplies.

The Idaho Governors Housing Committee Wednesday decided to dispose of the items that are now costing about $318 a month to store.

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Bowe Bergdahl
10:14 am
Thu December 19, 2013

Card Campaign Asks You To Put Idaho POW On Your Holiday Mailing List

Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl of Hailey, Idaho, appears in a 2010 video from a Taliban-affiliated insurgent group, the Haqqani Network.
Credit IntelCenter

Supporters of a captured soldier from Idaho are urging people to add one more name to their holiday mailing list. Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl has been a prisoner of the Taliban since 2009.

Now, organizers in his hometown of Hailey, Idaho are trying to get Christmas cards to him.

It's been four-and-a-half years since Bowe Bergdahl was captured near his base in southeast Afghanistan. The now 27-year-old is still believed alive, but so far there's end in sight for his captivity.

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Recreation
5:30 am
Thu December 19, 2013

Explore The Owyhee Canyonlands With New Trail Guide From Idaho Author

A view from the "Between the Creeks" hike in the Owyhee Canyonlands.
Credit Steve Stuebner

The Owyhee Canyonlands cover more than 5 million acres of rugged landscape in southern Idaho and eastern Oregon.

Few hikers and campers venture into this desert wilderness because there aren't many trail signs or information.

Steve Stuebner teamed up with photographer Mark Lisk to create a guidebook for the Canyonlands. Their new book, The Owyhee Canyonlands: An Outdoor Adventure Guide, details 55 hiking and biking trails.

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Legislature
11:47 am
Wed December 18, 2013

Rep. Patterson Says He'll Resign From Idaho House

Credit Idaho Legislature

Republican Rep. Mark Patterson says he'll resign from the Idaho Legislature, a day after party colleagues from his district in Boise urged him to quit.

Patterson said Wednesday he'll hand in his resignation to Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter this week.

On Tuesday, members of the GOP District 15 precinct committee voted unanimously to ask Patterson to quit. That's after revelations in early November that he pleaded guilty in a 1974 rape case in Florida.

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Politics
11:01 am
Wed December 18, 2013

A Year After DUI Arrest, Idaho Sen. Crapo Says He's Successfully Quit Drinking Alcohol

Sen. Mike Crapo, R-ID.
Credit U.S. Senate

Idaho's Republican Sen. Mike Crapo said Wednesday that he has not consumed alcohol since his arrest last December near Washington, D.C.

Crapo was arrested in northern Virginia on December 23, 2012 after he was pulled over for running a red light. A test showed Crapo’s blood alcohol content was .11, an amount above the legal limit.

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