These ‘Can’t Miss’ Summer Events in Missoula are Starting Soon
If you're a new resident of Missoula, you're about to notice a phenomenon that bears an explanation.
Every Wednesday, starting as early as 10:30, you begin to notice a parade of food trucks heading to the Garden City's "waterfront". That's soon followed a big increase in foot traffic, with the Beartracks Bridge and every sidewalk and crosswalk busier than any other day. Soon, the sounds of music fill the air. And the smell of delicious food.
Welcome to "Out to Lunch", Downtown Missoula's signature event, which for the past 37 years has fed hundreds of thousands of people and given us a chance to celebrate the best summer scenery and weather in the Northern Rockies.
Caras Park is the hub for food and fun
Every Wednesday from 11 am until 2 pm, Caras Park is filled with people enjoying the live music and sun, with the pavilion surrounded by food trucks offering standard fare like burgers and sandwiches, but a lot of local favorites too. In fact, it's a great chance to sample different treats and find your own favorites.
Live music is a huge part of the break. The versatile Josh Farmer Band, which someone suggested on Faceback should be Missoula's "house band" starts it all on June 7th. The rest of June features Kyle Curtis and the Promised Lands, Off in the Woods, and Sundog North.
If you can't make lunch, there's another option
If your schedule doesn't work for Out to Lunch, there's a second option. While it hasn't run as long as Out to Lunch, Downtown Tonight is just as fun and includes all the food, music and family activities every Thursday night from 5:30 to 8:30 pm.
This year Downtown Tonight starts with local blues band Moneypenny kicking off the summer on June 1st. That's followed by Red Light Challenge on June 8th, the Idle Ranch Hands on June 15th, and Wild Prairie Smoke on the 22nd. Among the rest of the lineup, a CSNY and Joni Mitchell Tribute should have some favorites on August 10th, with the talented Jon Zen closing the summer on August 31st.
Admission to both events is free, giving you the chance to spend whatever you'd like on the food and treats.
OUT TO LUNCH TIPS:
-Parking is limited, so best to walk. Better yet, use Mountain Line service
-Food trucks can get very busy around the noon hour. So plan in extra minutes to be served
-Parking and lines, improve after 12:30 pm
-Bring sunscreen or hats as some seating is in the open
-Take it easy, and get into the relaxed vibe