BW Picks



We move through our days with eyes behind blinders, focused so much on the future that we're often oblivious to challenges looming on the horizon. Then one day, a reality slap reminds us that life is short, people are hurting and in need and we, as a community, can make a difference.

On Thanksgiving Day, Boisean Jack Barsness died of a heroin overdose. Friends, family and strangers alike mourned not only Jack's death, but the tragedy of another life lost to drugs and the harsh realization that he was not alone in his addiction. Many Boiseans, young and old, struggle daily with this demon in a city that offers little to no help.

Jack's death kick-started a call to action to bring a desperately needed drug rehabilitation facility to the City of Trees. A celebration of his life and a fundraiser to generate seed money for a detox center takes place this weekend. Highlights include a slide show celebrating the life of Jack and musical performances by DJ Whiteout, Torn Anus, Seven Thousand Man Contortion and The Adversives. All proceeds go to the building of the Jack Barsness Detox Center, so don't hesitate to stop by and contribute to a small answer to a big problem that will only get bigger without our help.

Thursday, December 30, 7 p.m., Neurolux, 111 N. 11th St., $5 at the door, $2 raffle tickets, 343-0886.


Celebrating the New Year means many things to many people. Some use it as a justification to revel in as much vice as possible before (and sometimes after) the clock strikes midnight. Others take the opportunity to be close to friends and loved ones and quietly reflect about the passing of another 365-day milestone. For most of us, it's a lovely mixture of champagne, kisses, recovery and hopes for the future, and Boise and its surrounding vistas offer an event to suit every fancy.

For those who loathe the chaotic city scene, why not spend New Year's Eve at one of the quaint bed and breakfasts that dot Idaho's mountain towns and smaller cities? Make a reservation and spend the evening dining on carpet picnic and playing cards with your favorite person while the snowflakes drop. If action is more your bag (provided it doesn't involve sequins and techno), why not hit Bogus Basin, Tamarack, Sun Valley, Pomerelle, Brundage or any of the other fine ski resorts our great state has to offer for a day and night of carving fresh snow and drinking good beer in the lodge. Take a scenic train ride, haul the pups to Camel's Back Park for a romp or do some Yoga Trance dancing with Jeff Clark--just get out there and move to your own New Years beat.

For those who crave crowded, exciting, loud parties, downtown Boise has just what the doctor ordered. The Big Easy offers the excellent musical stylings of the Clumsy Lovers and the Young Dubliners with all of the trimmings. The Mainstreet Bistro, China Blue and the Diggy Bass Room have teamed up to bring lots of prizes, bubbly and dancing to the 6th and Main Street block. But for a mellower backdrop with more emphasis on food, stop by Pair or the Kulture Klatsch for food, drinks and mood lighting.

For everyone in between, the Broadway Dance Center is having a traditional Scottish Hogmanay Celebration with dancing straight through the last seconds of 2004. There will be also be singing, toasting and bad impersonations of Scottish accents. And if you're a bit younger and want to stay away from all the holiday "cheer" (i.e. booze), Burning Point Ministry is having a New year's Bash with karaoke, games, coffee and fun for all ages.

However you choose to welcome 2005, have as much fun as you can--responsibly.