By Veronica LeMaster
The 12 weeks of summer is never long enough, and as it comes to a close, it’s important to spend the last few weeks doing something exciting. With the kids out of school, the sun blazing heat, and budgets always on our minds, we set out to find family friendly (and budget friendly!) activities to do in our beautiful city. From block parties to movie nights, festivals to markets, there’s always something for everyone during the summer months here in Meridian. Here are our favorite events from July to September to enjoy. Oh, and don’t forget the sunscreen!
Take a stroll downtown and take part in the arts during Meridian Art Week. Channel your inner artist by participating in activities centered around the arts. The fourth annual Meridian Art Week will feature even more downtown businesses and activities to enjoy. Downtown businesses participating are Deja Brew Laugh a Latte, Potter’s Tea House, Meridian City Hall’s Initial Point Gallery, SlyceBox, Caleb’s Chop Shop, and many more! Bring the whole family for fun activities such as painting, dancing, poetry, film, clay modeling, and much more while being surrounded by local artists. For an updated schedule of activities and locations, visit meridiancity.org.
June 7- August 23
Bring the whole family to this free movie night! On Friday’s from June 7 to August 23, the giant outdoor movie screen will be inflated in Settler’s Park for a family-friendly movie. CableONE/Sparklight hosts this fun event and partners with a community member each week to bring something new, so watch out for fun surprises like bounce houses and giveaways each week! The event is entirely free, but you can always splurge in a treat at the concession stand. Bring your lawn chair or favorite blanket along with your date and enjoy the fresh summer Meridian air! Movies start at dusk with the full movie schedule available on meridiancityspecialevents.org.
Saturday, September 7
Join the community for one last hoorah of summer at this community block party on September 7. From 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park will be filled with local vendors, games, crafts, and live entertainment. This year will be the tenth annual Meridian Block Party and is hosted by the Meridian Parks and Recreation Department. Similar to previous years, you can expect to see local food, art, crafts, clothing, and much more as you stroll through the park. Keep the kids busy with activities and crafts such as an inflatable jungle and The Boise Co-Op Kids’ Corner. The event is free to the public and will provide something for everyone to enjoy! For more information visit meridiancityspecialevents.org
April 13 – October 12
Enjoy handmade food, crafts, art, clothing, and so much more at the Meridian Main Street Market. The market is open from April 13 until October 12 on each Saturday from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Formerly known as Meridian Youth Farmer’s Market, the Meridian Main Street Market sits downtown on Meridian’s City Hall Plaza on East Broadway Avenue. The market is open to all vendors, including small businesses and youth. Vendors differ each week, but include businesses such as Cold Springs Winery, Everyone Café, Tamales Nelly, Star Vista Farms, Handcrafted, and many more. Enjoy a morning walk downtown for fresh produce, local handmade goods, bakery items, artwork, handcrafted jewelry, Idaho gear, and so much more! The Main Street Market will always keep you finding something new while supporting local businesses.
Sept. 7, 21 and Oct. 5
This year, Meridian’s Concerts on Broadway will be taking place at the end of summer/early as a way to combat the heat and smoke that has been an issue in the past. Enjoy the warm weather at these free outdoor concerts taking place on Saturday, Sept. 7, 21 and Oct. 5. Opening acts start at 2:30 p.m. and main performances start at 3 p.m. Performances will be by The All New High Street Party Band featuring Emily Stanton (Sept.7), The Big Wow Band (Sept. 21), and Kevin Kirk of Onomatopoeia (Oct. 5). For more information, visit meridiancity.org.
Saturday, August 10
Save the date! Idaho’s only African American/African inspired foods and entertainment festival will be held Saturday, August 10 from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. The festival will be held at Julius M. Kleiner Memorial Park, and will feature delicious soul food including barbecue, ribs, hot links, Cajun cuisine, sweet tea, and much more. Enjoy dancing to Gospel, R&B, jazz, rap, and soul music as you celebrate all of the things that make African American culture great!
Tuesday, August 6
Join this national event that is designed to send a strong message on Tuesday, August 6. Neighborhoods will be planning block parties and celebrations that involve the city police to enhance relationships between officers and neighbors. The national event is designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness, increase your sense of belonging in your neighborhood, and build connections within the community and help you get to know your neighbors. Thousands of communities across the country will be participating in National Night Out. To see if your community will be participating, reach out to neighborhood officials.