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Smithsonian in Spokane?

I am SO tired of hearing people say that Spokane is lacking in arts and culture.  How could anyone say that about a city that is THE artistic hub of the Inland Northwest?  Perhaps they don't get out much.  Maybe it's ignorance.  Or maybe they just haven't looked around.

So for those of you who are too blind to see what's right in front you, I've devised a list of five reasons why Spokane's art scene is growing and thriving.  And these are just drops in the giant art pond!

Davenport District:  If the arts scene in Spokane were to have a home, it very well might be the Davenport District.  Anchored by The Davenport Hotel, a work of art in its own right, the Davenport District is where the art is at in the heart of downtown Spokane.  The D-District boasts awesome venues for live theater, music, art exhibits, and performances including the Knitting Factory Concert House, The Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox, The Bing Crosby Theater, Avenue West and Lorinda Knight Gallery . . . to name just a few.  Take the opportunity to walk around this area.  The people, the sights and the atmosphere are awesome.  www.davenportdistrict.org

First Friday
:  Here's a little piece of advice that I suggest you take - plan on being in downtown Spokane the first Friday of every month.  Why?  For First Friday!  It is one night a month that is completely dedicated to arts and culture.  You can catch live music, dance and theatre performances.  Not to mention the loads of exhibits showing off drawings, paintings, sculptures, ceramics, photographs and other visual arts from local artists.  Hands down, this is my favorite day of the month!  www.downtownspokane.org/first-friday.php

Symphony:  Like a fine wine getting better with age, the Spokane Symphony, the oldest professional performing arts organization in the Inland Northwest, continues to churn out top-notch performances.  Now calling the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox home, the Symphony presents critically acclaimed performances from some of the world's most respected soloists.  And don't forget about their presentations of The Nutcracker Ballet and the Symphony on the Edge.  If you're looking for an upbeat and modern performance, catch the Symphony on the Edge.  I dig it www.spokanesymphony.org

Museum of Arts & Culture:  Looking for prestige and variety?  Check out the Smithsonian affiliated Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture. Five underground galleries, an orientation gallery, education center, community room and the Center for Plateau Cultural Studies are all available for your art-craving pleasure.  Oh, and that Center for Plateau Cultural Studies also houses one of the largest collections of Plateau art and artifacts in the U.S.  And with all museum programs focusing on three major disciplines (visual art, regional history, and American Indian and other cultures) there's plenty of variety to keep your attention.  Heading to the MAC on the weekend to check out the different galleries is a must do!  www.northwestmuseum.org

Best of Broadway:  The Lion King, The Color Purple, Annie, Phantom . . . sound familiar?  They should!  They're all first-rate Broadway productions that have shown in Spokane - the very same productions that show in much larger cities throughout the U.S.  Not to mention that Spokane is the only city in the three-state, two-province region we know as the Inland Northwest where you can catch these acts.  If you haven't experienced a Best of Broadway show in Spokane you need to get off your art-starved butt and do it!  www.bestofbroadwayspokane.com

There you have it.  A list to get you started.  If you need any more, just let me know.  There are plenty more arrows in Spokane's artistic quiver.  Do you have any to add?



I had a really fantastic experience while living in Spokane for over 2 months this past summer. There is a lot of culture and adventure in Spokane from what I saw. I lived in the homeless shelter. I enjoyed all the events at Riverfront Park and riding my bike through beautiful historic looking downtown areas. I also had a great adventure climbing rocks at the park up the River there but I forgot it's name. A lot to do and see there.

On January 28, 2009 at 12:00 AM anonymous wrote:

dfry, you couldn't be more right! Interplayers definitely puts on a great show! Speaking of theatre, have you taken in a performance by the award-winning Spokane Civic Theatre? And for comedy, the Blue Door Theatre does a fantastic job as well.

On January 28, 2009 at 12:00 AM Joseph Johnson wrote:

Putting in my two cents...I've lived in Spokane for my entire life and only recently went to Interplayers Theatre. What an experience! I'm constantly discovering new gems in downtown Spokane. If you feel like there's nothing to do here, I suggest you take a walk around the block to see for yourself what you're missing.

On January 28, 2009 at 12:00 AM anonymous wrote:

Just heard that starting June 6th the MAC (Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture) will have an exhibit called "Out of this World: Extraordinary Costumes from Film and Television" with costumes & props from sci-fi films & TV shows (think Star Wars, Blade Runner, Terminator, Star Trek, Battlestar Galactica, Batman). Woo hoo! I can't wait!

www.northwestmuseum.org (Click on Exhibits & Collections, then on Upcoming Exhibits.)

On January 28, 2009 at 12:00 AM anonymous wrote:

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