Festival Fun: Southern Idaho’s Rodeos, Fests, Races, and More
Racing, rodeos, river sports — they’re all an essential part of summer fun in Southern Idaho! Check out the region’s best music and arts festivals, round up your friends for festive July 4 celebrations, or transport yourself back to the Old West during these annual events.
Spudman (Burley) – The Burley Lions Club puts on the Spudman Triathlon each year on the last Saturday in July. This is a family-friendly event featuring a 1.5K swim in the Snake River and a 40K bike ride and 10K run in the beautiful countryside of Burley, Idaho. Registration opens on Jan. 1 each year at noon.
Idaho Regatta (Rupert, Burley) – This racing festival takes place in Rupert and Burley and features a boat parade, race prep and shootout, tons of thrilling boat races, a fish fry, and live entertainment.
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Dry Creek Outfitters Bass Tournament (Murtaugh) – Dry Creek Outfitters of Murtaugh hosts this annual bass tournament on the Milner stretch of the Snake River. It’s competitive, too: officials inspect boats to make sure no tackle is on board before setting out to catch as many bass as possible before the end of competition.
Thousand Springs Festival of the Arts (Hagerman) – This festival attracts thousands of art lovers every year to Ritter Island in Thousand Springs State Park near Hagerman. More than 80 artists display their work while attendees enjoy live music, wagon rides, tours of the historic Minnie Miller dairy barn, birds of prey displays, and excellent food and drink vendors.
Lost N Lava Cowboy Gathering (Shoshone) – Top Western musicians keep the cowboy tradition alive at the annual festival in Shoshone. Discover cowboy cultures from around the world, learn a traditional skill, dance the two-step, plan for the West’s future with ranchers, and listen to tall tales during this three-day event.
Idaho Mountain Festival (Albion) – The Idaho Mountain Festival is Idaho’s all-inclusive climbing festival. This four-day outdoor event is hosted inside Castle Rocks State Park near Almo, Idaho (right next door to City of Rocks National Reserve). At the festival, climbers get the chance to enjoy the classic granite rock climbing and a solid collection of entertaining attractions.
Gordy’s Highway 30 Music Fest (Filer) – Gordy’s Highway 30 Music Fest is like a big family reunion. What started as a fundraiser for a local school has grown into a three-day festival featuring tons of great bands at the Twin Falls County Fairgrounds.
Joe Mama’s Car Show (Jerome) – Auto lovers flock to this car show in Jerome, which has been going strong for 20 years. There is no entry fee, but donations go to local charities.
Gooding Pro Rodeo (Gooding) – This award-winning rodeo transforms the small city of Gooding into a cowboy mecca thanks to a roster of world-class talent, including more than a 100 competitors who have been national finalists or world champions. Thousands of people turn out not just for the rodeo, but for the fair that accompanies it, along with the 4-H and FFA market animal sale. If you’re looking for a true Western fair and rodeo, Gooding is your place.
Magic Valley Folk Festival (Burley, Rupert) – This multi-cultural folk festival showcases dance, song, and amazing traditional dress from locations throughout the world. Locations include Rupert’s town square and the King Fine Arts Center at Burley High School. Previous dancers and musicians have come from Austria, Switzerland, Belarus, Chile, Ecuador, Indonesia, and more. The festival includes Youth Culture Day (a free event for kids), a parade, and gala performances.
Art & Soul of the Magic Valley (Twin Falls) – Art & Soul of Magic Valley, presented by the Magic Valley Arts Council, is the largest cash prize art contest in the Northwest. The competition brings artists, businesses, and community members together to award over $40,000 in prize money, with top prize taking home $15,000.
This unique art and community event offers fun, festivities, and excitement as artists’ works are seen by thousands of locals and visitors. Everyone 16 years old and older with a valid identification is encouraged to register to vote for their favorite art pieces. Public voting is free and determines all the winners. Artists’ works are showcased in Twin Falls city businesses, public offices, and public spaces that become galleries for hundreds of pieces of art work.
Hagerman Fossil Beds Star Party (Hagerman) – Explore the wonders of the night sky during this annual event that features solar viewing, hands-on activities at the Visitors’ Center, night-sky orientation, and telescope viewing at the Oregon Trail Overlook.
Camas Lily Days (Fairfield) – Celebrate the Camas lily bloom with activities for kids and adults and the return of the Sho-Ban to their ancestral lands. Activities include a free fishing derby, a hot dog feed, live music, a beer garden, and food. Members of the Shoshone-Bannock Tribes present a camas lily ceremony at the Fairfield City Park, as well.
Hagerman Birding Festival (Hagerman) – Participants can learn the basics of birding during this annual festival. Classroom sessions help identify different kinds of birds before field trips with birding experts.
Rupert July 4 Celebration – The entire city of Rupert puts on a big celebration for July 4, including food booths and a Christmas in July breakfast, free concerts, fireworks, mutton bustin’, horse racing, patriotic programs, Wild West shootouts, lawnmower races, and a parade.
Buhl Sagebrush Days (Buhl) – Buhl Sagebrush Days offers up an authentic, old-time American celebration that’s worth experiencing just to feel the down-home country charm. Highlights include an all-you-can-eat trout feed, a pancake breakfast, a fun run, a parade, activities and contests at Eastman Park, and fireworks.