What Everyone Floating the Boise River on September 1 Needs to Know
Kids are back in school. Pumpkin Spice Lattes are back at Starbucks. The sun is going down earlier. You may have needed a light jacket at the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic. These are all classic signs that we’ve reached the last days of summer in Boise.
Labor Day always marks the end of the official Boise River float season, so you may be planning on loading up your raft to make that six-mile trip from Barber Park to Ann Morrison Park one last time. If you’re planning on doing that Friday, September 1 things will be a little different than they’ve been on Fridays throughout 2023.
That’s because the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic is preparing for one of its signature events, the Night Glow Spectacular, which takes play at Ann Morrison Park where floaters usually end their adventure. In order to do that efficiently and safely, there will be NO PUBLIC PARKING available at Ann Morrison Park on Friday, September 1. If you’re accustomed to leaving a second vehicle at the park, you should plan ahead to utilize the shuttle service between Barber and Ann Morrison Parks.
Just a heads up that the shuttles will be running on their regular Friday schedule which means they’ll leave Ann Morrison Park every hour, on the hour from 12-9 p.m. That shuttle costs $3 for a one-way trip.
Floaters are reminded that it is illegal to drink alcohol on the Boise River and within 250 feet of the river. Breaking the rule could result in being cited for an open container violation.
Lifejackets are mandatory for kids 14 and under. If you don’t have one, you may borrow one from the loaner station at Barber Park. Just return it to the kiosk at Ann Morrison Park after you take out.
Remember to inflate your raft BEFORE you arrive at Barber Park or bring a portable air pump. The public air pumps were removed from the park after the 2019 float season. There are no plans to bring them back.
Attending the Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic Night Glow
Live music, food trucks and vendors begin Friday, September 1 at 5:30 p.m. with the actual Night Glow performance scheduled to begin around 8:05 p.m. During the Night Glow, the balloons don’t leave Ann Morrison Park. Instead, around 15 pilots will inflate their balloons and fill the night with color to musical cues. Essentially, the balloons turn into 75’ tall Chinese lanterns! It’s one of the best photo-ops of the entire week.
Like all Spirit of Boise Balloon Classic events, the Night Glow is free and open to the public.