Blackfoot & Bingham County
The city of Blackfoot is known as the “Potato Capital of the World” because more potatoes are grown here than in any other
county in the United States. Blackfoot’s rich agricultural identity is evident in the large farms surrounding the city.
Want to learn more about potatoes? Visit the Idaho Potato Museum, gift shop and café. Take a selfie with their giant potato! Hop on a trolley to tour historic downtown–murals, window vignettes and live performances May through August. Jensen’s Grove Park offers 35-acres of waterskiing & fishing, a skate park, basketball courts, a 6.5 mile paved trail, a sandy beach, amphitheater, playgrounds, and picnic areas.
Major community events include Celebrate Blackfoot the last weekend of June and the weeklong Eastern Idaho State Fair which starts Labor Day weekend.
Growing that many potatoes uses up a lot of land, but somehow Bingham County has some left over for sportsmen, play, and three communities that will win your heart. If you are headed north your first stop will be Blackfoot. Blackfoot is at the confluence of the larger and better known Snake River and the Blackfoot River from which it gets it’s name.
Blackfoot loves parks and has 10 of them, the biggest is Jensen Grove right off Interstate 15. The 20 acre Jensen Grove Pond provides swimming, water skiing and personal watercraft opportunities. The park contains part of a Greenway system which links the community of Blackfoot with the Snake River, part of the path crossing over the north end of Jensen Lake.
Then there is the Eastern Idaho State Fair. That’s the official title. It is in fact one of the finest agricultural fairs in the country. Starting Labor Day weekend and running through the following Saturday, this fair will draw over 200,000 visitors to the town of 10,000. You’ll find the expected exhibits along with pari-mutuel horse racing, rodeos, carnival rides of course, and big name entertainment every night. In addition, two small stages on each end of the fair grounds offer free entertainment acts daily.
Now’s the time to head for the Snake River again, especially if you’re making your trek in an RV. You are looking for what’s called North Bingham County Park. It’s the newest park in the Bingham County system and offers RV hookups and dump station and a picnic area to let you enjoy the view of one of the country’s most attractive rivers. This area also features a Greenway linking the town of Shelley and the Snake River, near the park it runs adjacent to the river to make stretching your legs a scenic event.
Then there’s Aberdeen. Aberdeen is south of Shelley, and west of Blackfoot. Take State Highway 39 to get there because the trip is worth it. In addition to the surrounding potato country, Aberdeen is near the shore of the American Falls Reservoir. There’s more information on the Reservoir in the American Falls section of this travel guide. You’ll want to check out Sportsman Park for its access to the reservoir and complete services for RV travelers and fishermen.