The Hometown Friends

It’s the holidays, and the old gang wants to get together for a long weekend. Maybe you’ve been palling around since elementary school. Or maybe you just feel like you’ve known each other forever. Either way, you want to do something that just lets you enjoy each other’s company.

Why not start out with some seasonal shopping? AUNTIE’S is always a reliable go-to because its book selection is large enough to have something for everyone. The lover of historical fiction and the fan of thrillers can each browse their preferred section without splitting up the party. If you’ve got a quirky side or appreciate a good pop culture reference, BOO RADLEY’S has an incredible assortment of stuffed animals, stickers, mugs, accessories and novelty gifts that pay homage to, say, cult movies or proudly bear quotes that you won’t find on your grandmother’s tea towels. For those who prefer to get their laughs in other ways, APEX CANNABIS (two Spokane locations) has a huge menu of recreational cannabis, including edibles and oils, along with experienced budtenders to help take the mystery out of it and guide your choices.

After all that, you’ll all be hungry. Next stop: the SATELLITE DINER, especially if you want to revisit some of your nostalgic haunts. They serve diner favorites like scrambles and homemade soups, but for extreme appetites they also have decadent options like the Cheese Bomb. More in the mood for Mexican? Right down to their handmade fresh salsa and guacamole, BORRACHO does things from scratch. They’ve got an assortment of super affordable street tacos, burritos and nachos. And lots of tequila-based cocktails with great nightlife to boot. Alternatively, check out HOGWASH WHISKEY DEN. Their food menu is eclectically international, with everything from vegan Asian-inspired options to signature smash burgers. Chase it all with one of their premium whiskey flights.

Then comes the entertainment. Head north to the Garland District and catch one of the many holiday-themed improv shows staged by the popular BLUE DOOR THEATRE in the Garland neighborhood. Their Ha!!mark show on Friday evenings is made up on the spot and pokes fun at the sappy seasonal movies you love to hate. If you’d rather stay downtown, catch one of the many winter gigs at the KNITTING FACTORY and its adjacent DISTRICT BAR. On Dec. 7, for example, you can choose from the classical-indie crossover outfit the Portland Cello Project in the District Bar, or Highly Suspect of Brooklyn by way of Cape Cod in the larger Knitting Factory.

And when the evening is over, venture out to your accommodations at NORTHERN QUEST resort & casino’s two hotels( 100 N. Hayford Road, Airway Heights) and keep the good times going. Try your luck at the casino or have a nightcap at Highball. Another great option is The Courtyard by Marriott, nestled near the Spokane River yet within easy walking distance of downtown Spokane’s nightlife scene.

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Holiday Time Is Family Time