Trolley

This 1989 Ford Trolley is currently being stored in a potato shed, undergoing repairs as it is being readied for service giving tours through downtown Blackfoot.

BLACKFOOT — Ding, ding, ding goes the trolley, through downtown Blackfoot.

Beginning Memorial Day, the Blackfoot Potato Museum and Blackfoot Downtown Development Incorporated will offer tours through Blackfoot on a trolley.

“We want to have a fun way to draw attention to the history of downtown Blackfoot,” said museum director Tish Dahmen.

The 1989 Ford Trolley was purchased out of Louisiana, however it originally came from San Francisco.

Two different tours will be offered for a small fee. One tour will leave the museum at the Alice Street exit and head west to Ash St., where tourists will see and learn about the history of the LDS Church, Elks Lodge, and the Post Office — all of which are Art Deco buildings — from hostess Kaye Stump.

At the Post Office they will learn of the mural, “The Arrival Celebration and the Roundup,” painted by Andrew Standing Soldier, an Oglala-Lakota artist, born on the Pine Ridge Reservation in South Dakota in 1917.

The tour will continue through downtown Blackfoot down Broadway where they will learn about the various murals and learn of the history behind the Nuart Theater, the old Bon Ton, and other historic buildings downtown.

A longer tour will offer tourists the opportunity to see the Eastern Idaho State Fairgrounds and learn of its history as well as historical buildings and homes, such as the Shilling house, Brown house (Bingham County Historical Society Museum) and St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. This tour will also pass by the Hawker Funeral Home, which was originally the Blackfoot LDS Tabernacle, the sixth grade center (original high school) and Courthouse Square. Other sites on the tour are the Grimm Brothers and the Blackfoot Livestock Auction.

“We are offering new, fun things for tourists to do, and spend more time in Blackfoot,” Dahmen said. “If anyone has fond memories of Blackfoot that they would like to share, we would love to hear them.”

Stories and historic photos can be emailed to info@idahopotatomuseum.com.

The Potato Museum and Blackfoot Downtown Development Incorporated are also working on other events to entertain tourists.

“The Blackfoot Community Players will host live performances at the Nuart once it opens in June,” Dahmen said. “Thanks to a grant from the Ifft Foundation Fund-Idaho Community Foundation, we will be able to offer virtual reality stations at the museum. People will be able to feel like they are standing in the middle of a potato field.”

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