Ketchum

Thomas Hawk / Flickr

The eclipse is now less than a week away. As anticipation builds for this once-in-a-lifetime solar spectacle, logistical realities are setting in. Communities in the path of totality are expecting to be swarmed and are preparing for hordes of people.


Shutter Runner / Flickr

With up to a million people predicted to come to Idaho to watch the solar eclipse on August 21, the sky is big business. While day turning to night is rare to see, the night sky is a spectacle unto itself.


courtesy of the artist and Dolby Chadwick Gallery, S.F.

Idaho cities in the path of the total solar eclipse on August 21 are preparing to host hundreds of viewing parties. Some cities are more accustomed to welcoming tourists, like Sun Valley. 

Courtney Gilbert, from the Sun Valley Center for the Arts in Ketchum, explained, "Hotels started selling out about two years ago. The city of Ketchum is partnering with the city of Sun Valley to organize a day of activities that will take place in Festival Meadows."

Ted S. Warren / AP

Ernest Hemingway’s historic home in Ketchum has new ownership. The nonprofit and privately funded Community Library in Ketchum now owns Ernest Hemingway’s home along the Big Wood River.

 

 

Despite the new acquisition, Executive Director of the Community Library, Jenny Emery Davidson, intends to preserve the historical significance of Hemingway’s house.

 

Tom Michael / Boise State Public Radio

Wood River Valley residents continued to battle floodwaters over the weekend. Officials distributed sandbags as worried residents moved to fortify their homes throughout Blaine County. 

The Big Wood River continued to rush along at flood-level stages. The river hit a peak level on Friday night, as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers began reinforcing the Broadford levee in Bellevue. On Saturday, Governor Butch Otter arrived in Hailey to meet with local officials.

Each day, librarian Randy Kemp has seen Warm Springs Creek rise and rise by his Ketchum home.

City of Ketchum

Officials in central Idaho have expanded a flood evacuation order to include about two dozen homes near the resort town of Ketchum.

Blaine County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Holly Carter said the homes are all in a narrow canyon west of town that runs along Warm Springs Creek. Cater says rapid spring runoff and the swollen creek waters have made it impossible to keep the road maintained enough for emergency vehicles to reliably reach the homes.

Robert Couse-Baker / Flickr Creative Commons

Ketchum’s water ordinance was put into effect in 1992. To city Public Water Works director Robyn Mattison, the decades-old law shows just how dedicated the city is to water conservation. 

The ordinance bars daytime watering, the idea being that overnight watering when temperatures are cooler is more efficient. Mattison says homeowners are used to the restriction and in the three years she’s been in the position – she hasn’t heard many complaints.

Thomas Hawk / Flickr Creative Commons

Officials in the central Idaho resort town of Ketchum are moving ahead with possibly installing three or four welcome signs.

The Ketchum City Council on Monday directed City Parks and Recreation Director Jen Smith to work with the Ketchum Arts Commission on potential designs.

The Idaho Mountain Express reports that the council also wants to look into starting a fundraising campaign and a process for selecting an artist.

Councilman Baird Gourlay says he wants a sign where visitors can pull over and take photos.

Elevated / Flickr Creative Commons

The Ketchum City Council this week passed an ordinance authorizing police to break into cars to rescue pets endangered by high temperatures. It may be the only city ordinance of its kind in Idaho. That could be because most law enforcement agencies don’t think it’s necessary.

Meridian Deputy Police Chief Tracy Basterrechea says even though his city doesn't have a specific ordinance on it, his officers have the authority to break into a car to rescue an overheated animal.

Sheep Bridge Jumpers / YouTube

NPR Music announced the winners of their inaugural Tiny Desk Contest Feb. 12. Nearly 7,000 bands from across the country sent in their videos for the music gurus to judge, including some Idaho groups.

In the end, the winner was Fantastic Negrito, an Oakland act with a soulful performance filmed in a freight elevator.

Gary Knight VII Photo Agency

NPR social sciences correspondent Shankar Vedantam is speaking Thursday in Ketchum at the Sun Valley Center for the Arts.

Vedantam regularly connects public radio listeners to scientific studies that show how unconscious factors can influence people without their awareness. Vedantam has written a book on the topic and calls these subconscious drivers the “hidden brain.”

Aspen Skiing Company, artist rendering

Aspen Skiing Co. plans to build a hotel in Ketchum, Idaho, modeled on its Limelight Hotel in Aspen.

The company said Tuesday the hotel will be near Sun Valley's River Run base at Bald Mountain. It will also be called the Limelight.

Aspen Skiing bought the property from Bald Mountain LLC. No cost figures were released.

The company says the site has approval for 119 rooms and suites and 11 residential units. The company says it will ask Ketchum city officials for minor modifications in the plans, including a reconfiguration of the main floor.

Jody MacDonald

A Ketchum resident has received an unusual honor this year. Gavin McClurg is one of National Geographic’s Adventurers of the Year. McClurg is a paraglider who, earlier this year, flew more than 400 miles through the Canadian Rockies.

Paragliding is flying using a parachute. Some people do it as a hobby but it’s also an extreme sport. It’s popular in Europe where the biggest competitions take place.

Manoosh26 / Flickr Creative Commons

The Wood River Valley is bracing for the loss of one of its largest employers. Ski equipment maker Smith Optics is one of the area’s top 10 employers and one of the biggest private-sector employers, according Harry Griffith, director of Sun Valley Economic Development - a nonprofit focused on the Blaine County economy.

smith optics, business
talksrealfast / Flickr Creative Commons

A central Idaho company whose founder invented the double-lensed, vented ski goggle that is now the industry standard is moving operations and 85 jobs out of the resort town of Ketchum.

Smith Optics announced Monday that its design headquarters will move to Portland, Oregon, during the first half of 2015.

Other parts of the company are moving to Clearfield, Utah, or Parsippany, New Jersey, over the next three years.

Robert Earl "Bob" Smith came up with the double-lens goggles in the 1960s and patented his invention. He died in 2012 at age 78

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