Sailing high is perfect end to summer

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Many people here in our corner of the world took advantage of the long weekend and nice weather to camp in the great outdoors or frolic on any of our much-less-crowded lakes and rivers, a last hurrah before school begins and summer ends. Most of the tourists have gone home to their lives lived in places not quite as extraordinary as here.

Several years ago Bert and I started a tradition of doing at least one adventure each summer that we’d never done before. We’ve flown in a small plane over the Grand Canyon, ridden bicycles on the Route of the Hiawatha, taken a jet boat tour of Hells Canyon, whale watching boat tour in the San Juan Islands and stepped way outside the comfort zone white water rafting on the Clark Fork River in Montana.

On Labor Day our 2019 adventure was very close to home once we realized that in the 35 years this business has operated and that we’ve enjoyed seeing the colorful canopies sailing over Lake Coeur d’Alene, never have we parasailed.

Coeur d’Alene Parasail made the experience exceptional in many ways, starting with the customer service. Owner Jamin Rodriguez is the captain of the parasail boat and quite expert at every aspect. We knew he wanted us to enjoy the trip but also that our safety was a priority. His deckhand, Dom Dotts, is a really exceptional young man. The Post Falls High School senior is a competent and confident crew member and throughout engaged all of us in our hour aboard on Monday.

Blue skies and late afternoon sunshine, sailing several hundred feet above the lake with views for miles ... perfection. It was so beautiful and serene. Since you take off from and land right on the boat it’s effortless. I kept wondering what took us so long to enjoy something that’s right here in our own backyard. The good news is that their parasail season lasts through Sept. 15 if you want to play tourist at home while summer lingers.

An additional moment of gratitude as I watched Bert lift off from the boat with a wave and a smile, recalling that six months ago he was on a ventilator in the ICU after open heart surgery. What a perfect metaphor for living life to the fullest.

• • •

Here’s a group Good Sport Award to the hundreds of kids, from kindergartners to seniors in high school, who let their parents take first day of school photos on Tuesday to post on Facebook. A longtime empty nester, I thoroughly enjoyed seeing so many smiling faces, especially those of the parents!

The best back-to-school photo post of the day goes to the Post Falls Police Department School Resource Officers. Each are pictured on a variety of playground equipment holding first day of school signs with their names, favorite food (doughnuts!) and what they want to be when they grow up. SRO Putnam wants to be a time traveler, SRO McMillen aspires to be a hair model, SRO Duce’s career goal is to be Captain America, and drum roll for SRO Clark ... when she grows up she wants to be a firefighter!

• • •

Things to Do Highlights:

This evening, visit the Downtown Coeur d’Alene Farmers Market, 4-6:30 p.m. each Wednesday through Sept. 25.

Also tonight is the final Live After 5 summer concert at McEuen Park from 5-8:30 p.m.

Friday is the annual Boys and Girls Club of Kootenai County’s “A Night in Black and White” dinner and auction, 6-11 p.m. at The Coeur d’Alene Resort.

Through Oct. 19, the Kootenai County Farmers Market, at Prairie Avenue and U.S. 95, is open 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

On Saturday COEURfest takes place at McEuen Park, noon to 6 p.m., with something for everyone. The Hitching Post will celebrate 100 years in Coeur d’Alene with a free wedding vow renewals at 3 p.m. at the event.

Also on Saturday the Water Lantern Festival in Post Falls at Q’emiln Park is 5:30-10 p.m.

Sunday the Civil Air Patrol hosts an open house at Coeur d’Alene Airport from 2-4 p.m.

• • •

Happy birthday today to Paulette Fabian, Rob Elder (60!), Rhonda Wellsandt, Maggie DeTar, Steve Yost and Rich Dickman. Tomorrow Jay Broderick, Ken Bookamer, Bobby Olson and Dave Pulis celebrate.

On Friday Carl Riegert (50!), Jack Evans, Amy Carlson, Evelyn Wegner, Dave Chamberlain and Della St.Clair blow out the birthday candles. On Saturday Keri Alexander (50!) shares a birthday with her mother Sherry Krulitz, Vicki Fulton, Laura Umthun, James Arras, Lori Millsap, Kathleen Cavender, Nikki Luttmann and Jim Brannon. Sept. 8 is a special day for Anne Mitchell, Juli Stratton, Lea Williams, Vicki Currie, Lisa Gould (60!), Sheena Dunn, Angie Demmig, Lorna Price, Gayle Simpson, Imogene Sverdsten, Irina Ponomarenko, Brad Marshall, Sonya Fernandes, Rosemary Dickson and Bob Coles.

Nine is the lucky number for 9/9/19 birthday celebrants Mary Larson, Dani Zibell-Wolfe, Kibbee Walton, Seth Anderson, Dominick Pokosa, Daniel Connelly, Krysta Azzollini, Marty Meyer, Donna Boise and Chase Price. On Tuesday Gregg Gain, Mary Ellen Denton, Tami Martinez, Helen Terway and Annette Kennedy celebrate.

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Kerri Rankin Thoreson is a member of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and the former publisher of the Post Falls Tribune. Main Street appears every Wednesday in The Press and Kerri can be contacted on Facebook or via email mainstreet@cdapress.com. Follow her on Twitter @kerrithoreson.

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