Maybe you’ve lived in Spokane your whole life or maybe you’re new to the area and just started to explore this wonderful city. Here are some fun facts and a little history I bet you didn’t know about Spokane.
Birthplace of Father’s Day
Spokane is actually the birthplace of Father’s Day! The very first Father’s Day celebration took place back in June of 1910 at the YMCA. Lyndon Johnson officially proclaimed it a holiday in 1966 and it became a national holiday when signed into law by Richard Nixon 6 years later.
Original name? Spokan Falls
The city originally started as “Spokan Falls” – no “e” in Spokane. It was incorporated back in 1881 and the “e” was added two years later. Ten years later, “falls” was dropped from the name and its just been good ol’ Spokane ever since.
Great Fire of 1889
Have you heard about the Great Fire of 1889? It was a huge fire that took out all of downtown Spokane. The whole thing started at Wolfe’s lunch counter and lodge house – which was near Railroad Avenue and Post Street…that alley behind the Davenport Hotel Parking Garage. It could have been a lantern getting tipped over or as a kitchen fire. It started as a pretty small fire, but due to a problem at the pump station, there was no water pressure in the fire hydrants. In an effort to stop it, the mayor at the time ordered demolition of several dozen buildings. It didn’t help much and the fire just had to run its course until winds died down. In total, 32 blocks of the city were destroyed. It was a bad year for fires in Washington, as Seattle and Ellensburg were also destroyed by fires.
World’s Fair of 1974
Did you know we have the world’s fair of 1974 to thank for our well-known pavillion? At the time Spokane was the smallest city to ever host a World’s Fair, and it brought in about 5 and a half million people to our town. A HUGE revitalization project took place to get the city ready, focusing on the downtown waterfront and pavilion itself.
Cheney was established back in the late 1800s, and ties to education, agriculture and rail are what helped the town become what it is. Cheney is mostly known as a college town, since it’s home to Eastern Washington University – but there’s also a huge military population here, since it’s only 7 miles from Fairchild Air Force Base. It’s about a 15 minute drive from Cheney to downtown Spokane, giving way for homeowners looking for a lower than average cost of living and to be surrounded by unique landscape. Nearby is the Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge, which is 18,000 acres of wildlife and fascinating geology, providing opportunities such as hiking, photography, hunting and fishing.
- Top restaurant: Rokkos Teriyaki. When my husband was going to EWU, it was a must-stop place for us, serving up awesome teriyaki with – if you ask my husband – even better spicy macaroni salad.
- Top activity: There are two this week, depending on the season. In the summer you have to head to the Cheney Rodeo. This 50-year-old tradition is always the second weekend in July. In the fall and winter, Eagle football games are where it’s at. The team has been on a roll for the past 7, 8 years and it’s always a fun time at Roos Field.
- Top coffee shop: The Mason Jar. This bakery is in downtown Cheney, a block down from Rokko’s. They serve up awesome cups of coffee with wonderful, handmade baked goods – using ingredients from local farms.
The two elementary schools that students in the are usually head to are: Betz or Salnave…then kids head to Cheney Middle School and then on to Cheney High School. Click below to find out the statistics on those schools.
The Eagle Ridge neighborhood is one of the newest in Spokane, with gorgeous new homes close to Spokane. It’s peaceful without being remote. Eagle Ridge is only five miles from Spokane – but still so close to nature. There’s more than five miles of paved trails in the area, and about 150 acres of forested and preserved land. This neighborhood has absolutely boomed in the last 5 years.
- Top restaurant goes to the amazing Chaps. What started as a little farmhouse has been transformed into one of the best places to get breakfast in Spokane. It’s been featured on Diner’s Drive-ins and Dives as one of the best restaurants in the nation – and Guy Fieri doesn’t travel just anywhere! It’s a great place for brunch on the weekend – and don’t forget to try their famous blueberry french toast: basically a slice of delicious blueberry muffin cake topped with blueberry sauce and blueberry cream cheese.
- After eating all that delicious food, you can work it off at the Eagle Ridge Short Course. There are two courses here: your typically par 3 golf course and a par 3 foot golf course…essentially golf with a soccer ball!
- Okay this might be cheating, but the top coffee shop goes to Chaps too! The restaurant’s full name is actually Chap’s Coffee Company…so you know the coffee is good, too! Just make sure to get a pastry, too…and thank me later.
Depending on where your house is in Eagle Ridge, students take one of two paths. They will either head to Mullon Road Elementary then on to Sacajawea Middle and Lewis and Clark High School…or they go to Windsor Elementary, onto Westwood Middle and Cheney High School. Follow the links below for more information and statistics on these schools:
Here are a couple of my favorite listings on the market in Eagle Ridge right now:
This super cute rancher has a great view of the golf course and features a desirable open floor plan. This house boasts 3 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms and a full walkout, daylight basement and goes for $287,000.
Known for – big surprise here – its gorgeous lake and waterfront properties, Liberty Lake is right on the Idaho border and home to about 8,000 people. Liberty Lake was officially incorporated back in 2001. There are plenty of houses along the lake that were built in the 70s, but a majority of homes in the Liberty Lake area were built in the 90s and early 2000s. Homes are still going up, with lots of new construction happening now. Homes on the lake range from about $300,000 to a $1.5 million+. If you’re hoping to live on the lake, without having a long commute, Liberty Lake is ideal. It’s only about a 20 minute drive to downtown Spokane.
- Top restaurant goes to Hay J’s…hands down. They serve up American fare, featuring seafood and beef. Their seafood chowder is phenomenal!
- And top activity? That goes to Mica Moon Zip Tours. This 2 and a half hour activity starts at the reception area in downtown Liberty Lake. Then you take a shuttle about 15 minutes away to property on Mica Peak, where you’ll ride a UTV, go on two hikes and 8 zip lines. You’ll go through forest glens, across a valley, over a stream, and near moonshine camps where “Mica Moon” moonshine was produced during prohibition.
- Top coffee shop goes to The Well coffeehouse and pub. They feature live music at times and make a mean espresso.
Students living in Liberty Lake usually head to Liberty Lake Elementary. Then they’re off to Greenacres and Central Valley High School. Follow the links below to get more information about those schools’ statistics:
I mean really…does it get much better than this gorgeous 4,200 square foot home!? This breathtaking home nestled on the hillside overlooks Liberty Lake and Mica Peak. It’s a 4 bedroom, 4 bathroom home that includes 100+ feet of prime waterfront…because what good is a lake if you can’t play in it!?
In the last 5 to 10 years, this South Hill neighborhood has become one of Spokane’s hippest, featuring hot restaurants and trendy retailers. This neighborhood was born, if you will, back in the 1920s. But about ten years ago it was given a facelift from the city with new streets and sidewalks. Like a domino effect, multiple new businesses set up shop in the South Perry District, bringing life again to the neighborhood.
Homes in this neighborhood are mostly Craftsman and Victorian-styles, and typically between 15-hundred and 2-thousand square feet…built in the early 1900s.
- Okay, top restaurant was hard to choose this week… so there are two winners. First, goes to South Perry Pizza: home to some of the best pizza in Spokane. This popular lunch and dinner spot is actually in an old laudromat. And the second winner, is Casper Fry (Public House & Eatery), serving up true southern food in the old Altamont Pharmacy building.
- Top activity this week goes to the South Perry Street Fair. Perry street from 9th to 12th Avenues are blocked off and filled with vendors, food and music. It’s held the third Saturday in July every year, MEANING… the 18th annual South Perry Street Fair is tomorrow! I have more info on it in my blog, if you’d like to check it out.
- And top coffee shop goes to The Shop. This neighborhood coffee shop features craft beer, live music and a fun outdoor patio.
Kids living in the South Petty District typically head to Grant Elementary, Sacajawea Middle and Lewis and Clark High School. Click below to find more information about those schools.
Here are my favorite listings in the Perry District that are on the market right now:
This home on South Denver Street would be a perfect starter home! It’s an adorable 3 bedroom, 1 bathroom Bungalow with 1,500 square feet for less than $150,000.
This picturesque Craftsman on the 1500 block of 12th Avenue is on the market for $199,900. It also has 3 bedrooms and 1 bathroom, but comes with a whopping 2,500 square feet.
Just south of the Spokane River and west of downtown Spokane, Browne’s Addition was established in the late 1800s. It was the first neighborhood home to Spokane’s elite, and anyone who takes a drive through the neighborhood knows this. Massive, elegant mansions – many of which have now been turned into apartments – line the streets. Perhaps the most notable mansions in the area are the Campbell Mansion, which is neighbors with Spokane’s Museum of Arts and Cultural, and the Patsy Clark Mansion, which is available for private events. Browne’s Addition was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1976. Other than its historic nature, Browne’s Addition is popular with Spokane residents because it’s so accessible. There’s shopping, restaurants, parks and entertainment all within walking distance.
How about the neighborhood’s top spots? Well here are my two cents:
- Top restaurant goes to Italia Trattoria. In my opinion, this is the number one italian restaurant in Spokane. The owners are lovely and no matter if it’s brunch or dinner…the food has always been top notch.
- And top activity for the neighborhood? Well I couldn’t decide, so there’s two. First, the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture. It’s home to multiple art collections and various traveling exhibits. Second is Elkfest. This music festival is a free, all-weekend event in early June, featuring outdoor beer gardens and food trucks.
- And top coffee shop goes to Cannon Coffee and Cone. Their coffee is wonderful and they feature other local businesses, like Brain Freeze Creamery ice cream and Boots Bakery pastries.
Most children living in Browne’s Addition head to Roosevelt Elementary, then on to Sacajawea Middle and Lewis and Clark High School.
Here are some links where you can find more information about those schools.
There are so many gorgeous listings on the market right now in Browne’s Addition, but here is my favorite on the market right now:
This adorable home on the 2400 block of west 2nd was built back in 1889. It has 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms, boasting 3600 square feet with original floors and fixtures throughout.
If you’re considering a move into Browne’s Addition or any other amazing neighborhood in Spokane – and there’s a lot of them! – feel free to reach out to me and I’d love to help you out.
This beautiful, fast-growing neighborhood is one of the newest in Spokane, boasting gorgeous homes and landscaping. Five mile is a up on a plateau, so the views of Spokane are unrivaled. It’s in such a convenient location, only five miles from downtown Spokane – surprise, surprise – and if you go down the north side of Five Mile, it’s only a mile to Mead High School and the Wandermere-area. 15 years ago, Five Mile was primarily farms and wilderness, but now it’s home to newly-built houses anywhere from 1,400 to 5,000+ square feet… plus a farm here and there, sprinkled throughout the prairie. There are several parks in the neighborhood, the most popular being Sky Prairie Park – identifiable by the large yellow and white water tower. According to the Spokesman Review, a master plan was recently approved by Spokane’s Park Board that includes proposed improvements, such as a splash pad, pickleball courts and an amphitheater…so this hot-spot park could heat up in the coming years.
There aren’t any commercial or retail spots on the prairie, so this neighborhood’s top spots are in the vicinity of Five Mile.
- Top restaurant goes to Waddell’s Brewpub & Grille. It’s a great place to meet up with friends, grab a burger and a beer, and watch a game.
- And top activity? That goes to the Five Mile Grange. This rentable space was one a home, turned into an apple packing shed…and now it’s home to everything from flea and farmer’s markets to private events and pancake feeds for the neighborhood.
- And top coffee shop goes to Petit Chat. This bakery is at the bottom of north side of the hill. The portions are huge and if it’s pear season: make sure to try their pear croissant.
There are two schools on Five Mile: Prairie View (a public elementary school in the Mead School District) and Five Mile Prairie School (a Home School Resource Center). Most students living on Five Mile head to Northwood Middle School and then on to Mead High School. If you’d like more information on the statistics of these schools, click below:
One home that is the perfect example of the many beautiful, newly-built homes in this neighborhood is the home to the left, which is on the 3600 block of Prairie Breeze. I listed this breath-taking home a couple weeks ago and it sold that day. It’s super spacious, features many upgrades and even backs up to some farmland! Click here to see more information on the home.
Another favorite listing of mine up on Five Mile right now is this GORGEOUS home on West Horizon. It has phenomenal views, a pristine stone exterior and, of course, it has a lot of room! It’s 5,191 square feet and is listed at $699,900.
For the next few weeks, I’ll be highlighting different neighborhoods around Spokane. I’ll give you the top restaurants, things to do and where you can find info on the schools. The first up in our Neighborhood Spotlight series is one of the hottest neighborhoods on the market: the Audubon neighborhood.
What’s it like?
With massive Ponderosa Pines lining the streets and parks, this gorgeous neighborhood attracts first-time homebuyers and families who love to get outdoors. On one side of the neighborhood, you have a bluff that overlooks the Spokane River, with trails taking you down to the water. The other side boasts the lively Audubon Park. A majority of homes in the Audubon-Downriver neighborhood were built between 1920 and 1950. This neighborhood rivals Spokane’s hot and trendy South Hill in terms of architectural styles and feels. It’s said to be a “South Hill feel without the South Hill price tag.
Within walking distance, you have phenomenal restaurants (I’m looking at you, Flying Goat!), coffee shops and even a conveniently located hardware store.
One of my favorite aspects of this neighborhood is its convenient location. It’s in north Spokane, but pretty centrally-located: only ten minutes to downtown and ten minutes the other way: to the Y on Division.
Neighborhood Top Spots
- Top Restaurant: The Flying Goat. It’s rare to get in any night of the week without waiting for a bit… but it’s well worth it.
- Top Activity: Downriver Golf Course. This beautiful course is just a short walk away from any home in the neighborhood. And if you’re looking to get outside, but balls and clubs aren’t your thing…there’s also a disc golf course west of the golf course.
- Top Coffee Shop: Little Garden Cafe. They make a mean latte and take note that the cinnamon rolls are to die for.
Schools in the neighborhood are: Finch and Audubon Elementary Schools, Glover Middle School and Shadle Park High School.
Click below to find out more info on the schools, like the student-teacher ratios, test score averages, and performance ranking compared to other schools throughout the state :
Homes on the Market
3124 W Fairview Ave
First up is this super cute, 1920s rancher for $165,000. It has hardwood floors, new paint throughout, a finished basement and a new roof…making for a pretty perfect starter home. It has three bedrooms and one bath on about 14-hundred square feet.
3229 W Fairview Ave
Also on Fairview – just a block over – is this super spacious, adorable cottage on the 3200 block of Fairview. Not only is the home itself really spacious, but it sits on a third of an acre, so it’s set back from the street a bit and boasts a HUGE backyard – especially for this area. Five beds, two baths on 22-hundred square feet WITH central A/C. Asking price: $220,000.
If you’re interested in living in this beautiful and unique neighborhood, be sure to contact me and I’d love to help you find the home that’s just perfect for you.