Has anyone ever asked you what makes Idaho – or East Idaho – unique? Despite spending 30+ years in love with our region, I recently found myself stumped by that question. After all, each of our neighbors also boasts mountains, sunsets, crops, snow, and good-hearted people. No one factor makes our region unique, and that’s probably good. Like most interesting subjects, the region is complex. For many, it’s special simply because it’s home, at least for now. That may sound quaint or silly, but hold onto that thought, because it’s more meaningful than it sounds.
A related question: how does one go about creating an exhibit meant to encapsulate thousands of years of complex history, telling the story of our region in a way that’s never been done before? That’s what we’re doing now with the Way Out West exhibit, which will become the centerpiece of the museum after the grand re-opening in 2020. Read about the questions, stories, and conflicts that arise when writing a new history of an old region in this article from Idaho Falls Magazine.