A Walk Through the Neighborhood

I’ve been wanting to give you a tour of my immediate neighborhood, so you could visualize the setting when I talk about the view from my front porch or down my street. To make it easier to explain where everything is, I thought I’d draw you a little map. (This is a very primitive effort with my new drawing pad. I’m still trying to get a feel for it.)
Downtown Rathdrum is tucked up between two state highways… and Main Street is neither of them. You have to actually turn off the highway to go downtown. Of course, it’s not all that far out of your way from either highway, but still.  The railroad track runs right through town, parallel to Main Street and the highways. The highways are weird in that they merge on the bridge that goes over the railroad tracks (the purple line) and cross each other.

Let’s go for a walk, shall we?

We’ll start from the print shop, which is the yellow dot on the corner of Main and Gray Streets on the map. There’s another piece of Gray Street to the northwest on the other side of the railroad tracks and Highway 53, but on our side of the tracks it’s just one block long and the print shop is the only building on the block.


When you turn off Main Street onto Gray Street, you’ll see the shop. If you’re coming to visit us, please knock on the brown door on the end of the building. That’s our front door. If you come during business hours just come on up on the porch. The shop door will be standing open (this time of year) so you can come on in. Or if you’d rather, just have a seat on the porch. Either way, I’ll probably offer you a cup of coffee.


Once we’ve finished our coffee, we can continue our walk. Across Main Street is the auto repair shop (that looks like a vintage western building) and the community garden. I’m not exactly sure what’s in the quonset hut. On this side of the garden (not in the picture) is the Parks & Rec building. There’s a skate board park on the other side of that. But we’re not going that way. Walking “into the picture” where the little trees start lining the street, we’ll come to City Hall.


Our mail box is down here, so we can check the mail before turning around to walk back toward the shop.


Turning back onto Gray Street, I want to take you around to the historic district. Past the print shop…


just around the corner…


The red building is the Old Jail museum. I haven’t gone through it yet, but I keep meaning to. It’s only open on weekends in the summer, and it seems like I’m usually busy doing something else when I think of it at the right time.

The purpley-gray building is the lodge building. I don’t know how old it is, but old. We rented it for our homeschool graduation (along with several other families) the year Laura graduated (2011), so I have been all through it. It’s a neat old building.

Beyond that is St. Stanislaus Catholic Church. It is over 100 years old. It’s a beautiful little brick building, but my favorite thing is that they ring their church bell every Sunday morning at 8:55 just before Mass. I think it would be so interesting to visit a service there, but as a Protestant, I’m not sure that would be proper. I don’t know. Sometimes the church ladies come in to have copies made. Maybe I’ll get up my courage to ask one of these days.


Here’s the view back toward Main Street from that same spot. The mountains and the trees almost make it seem like it’s out in the country… but no, this is right in the heart of downtown Rathdrum.

It’s a special little town.


  • Jan

    Great post! I LOVE that little town and I miss it!

    A couple comments: When you visit the old jail, take note of the checkerboard and chairs sitting at the front office, I believe. Sam made it for our coffee shop, going for the old fashioned look. After our coffee shop it spent some time in Tom’s newspaper shop and ended up in the museum when he closed the newspaper. It warmed my heart to see it there.

    Secondly, I think you would be welcome at the Catholic Church. My friend and I attended one, once (not that one) but simply because we wanted to see the old building and we were curious. You probably just won’t participate in some things. For example, you wont be allowed to take the communion because you aren’t Catholic. But I am sure there will be other non-Catholics there, too. Yes, I LOVE the church bells and wish more churches still utilized them.

    Great little tour!

    • Karla Ezell Cook

      I miss your coffee shop, Jan! That is so neat about the checkboard and chairs. I’ll definitely look for them. It seems like maybe the Jail is closed for the season now.

      Maybe you should come over and go to the Catholic church with me some Sunday morning! That might be fun!

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