BOISE, Idaho — With temperatures expected to come close to triple digits this weekend, why not head north and enjoy the fresh mountain air and some old fashioned family fun in one of Idaho's historic ghost towns? Or head to Sun Valley where dozens of vendors will showcase their products at the base of Mt. Baldy.

If you're looking to stick close to home, head out to Caldwell and splash around at Indian Creek Plaza's giant splash pad and fountains and celebrate the second annual 'Plaza Palooza.'

And don't forget to pick up your free french fries on Saturday!

For more ideas, check out our summer events guide.


French fries
Simplot plans to serve up thousands of pounds of French fries during free french fry day at JUMP

WHEN: Friday, July 12, 4 - 7 p.m. 

WHERE: JUMP (Jack's Urban Meeting Place) in downtown Boise

WHAT: The Simplot Company will serve up free french fries in honor of 'National French Fry Day' on Friday, July 12.

This event benefits The Idaho Foodbank. Guests are encouraged to bring canned food donations.

Boise Fry Company will also be dishing out $1 small russets all day at all locations on Saturday, July 13.


WHEN: Saturday, July 13

WHERE: Downtown Boise

WHAT: Now in its 33rd year, the ASWD Twilight Criterium features the top pro men's and women's cycling teams in the nation and the best local and national amateurs. 

And new this year, parathletes will compete in the handcycling race.

The event "turns the streets of downtown Boise into a high-speed, high-stakes course." 

Registration for 'Kristin Armstrong Kids' Ride' begins at noon at the Borah Post Office (8th & Bannock). 

That race begins at 12:45 p.m.

Kids ages three to 10 can sign up to ride with three-time Olympic gold medalist and Boise native Kristin Armstrong on a short course starting and ending at the Idaho Statehouse.

COST: Free


WHEN: Saturday, July 13, 9 a.m. - 6 p.m.

WHERE: Expo Idaho

WHAT: Over 200 vendors will showcase their goods and services on the fairgrounds of Expo Idaho.

Food trucks will also be on site.

COST: $2 general admission, kids 12 & under are free


WHEN: Friday, July 12 - Sunday, July 14

WHERE: Festival Meadows in Sun Valley

WHAT: Over 100 Idaho artists and craft makers will display their creations at the base of Mt. Baldy in Sun Valley over three days.

Enjoy live, local music, food and beverage vendors and a free kids' activity tent.

COST: Free


WHEN: Saturday, July 13

WHERE: Indian Creek Plaza, downtown Caldwell

WHAT: Indian Creek Plaza is celebrating their first anniversary with a family-friendly party.

Kids (and parents) can beat the heat by playing in the splash pads and fountains before checking out one of the several vendors on site.

COST: Free


WHEN: Saturday, July 16, 6 p.m. - 10 p.m.

WHERE: Old Idaho Penitentiary

WHAT: Comb through decades of Idaho History as our annual Summer Scavenger Hunt tests your knowledge of the Idaho State Penitentiary's 101 years of cons, cats and contraband. 

Assemble your team or set out on your own and explore the site while locating clues, uncovering secret inmate activities, and planning a successful escape from the penitentiary.

COST: $6 for adults, $3 for kids


WHEN: Saturday, July 13, 10 a.m. - 4 p.m.

WHERE: turn off Highway 75 at Sunbeam and follow Forest Road #013 for nine miles.  

Park at the upper Yankee Fork Gold Dredge parking to and take the free shuttle bus to Custer.  

No parking is permitted in Custer.  

WHAT: Head up north to historic Custer, Idaho and pan for gold or try real Dutch oven cobbler, even hand-churned ice cream.

COST: Free