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The Anniversary Issue





Working together. We think that’s the key to better health care for you and your family. And now the doctors and specialists at Billings Clinic and Mayo Clinic are joining forces. We will work together to resolve your hard-to-solve medical problems and to find better answers. For you that means peace of mind, and access to the finest medical knowledge available. Right here at home. Billings Clinic and Mayo Clinic. Working together. Working for you.

To find out more, visit 2 I MAY 2013 I MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE




and FRONTIER CANCER CENTER are teaming up in the fight against cancer.

For more than 15 years, Frontier Cancer Center has explored new horizons, utilizing the latest research to treat and beat cancer. That’s why St. Vincent Healthcare is proud to partner with Frontier, uniting the region’s most experienced oncology and hematology experts with the healthcare system you know and trust. Together, united in a mission to provide patients with an extraordinary level of care. Learn more about St. Vincent Frontier Cancer Center at or call (406) 238-6290.




may 2013



the Modern west

celebrating a decade of magic






Award-winning producers of “Class C” focuses on high school rodeo



Eating heart smart in cowboy country





Hot days, cool nights: look your summer best

Equestrian enthusiasts talk their trade





Billings: the last best CITY

Cowboy couture the latest western wear



25 rEASONS WE love billings


mONTANA, inc :



The Anniversary Issue

MAY 2013



lACROSSE Move over baseball, there’s a new sport in town

by brenda Maas




jobs you won’T find IN nyc




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MC_52MAY2013COV1.indd 1



SUMMER FUN FOR KIDS Your everything-guide to children’s summer activities


4/26/2013 4:05:06 PM


Photo by larry mayer



may 2013




















by ALLYn Hulteng





relaxation station




photo by james woodcock


Why Magic City?



1 54



Five local mixologists concoct a Special Magic City cocktail for our 10th Anniversary Issue

Sp ecia l 1 0 t h

Annivers a ry d rin k s


28 39







45 48


62 67


timeless elegance


Signature cocktails

raghavan iyer: THE SPICE OF LIFE










In the early 1880s, immigrants and adventurers came in droves to seek their livelihood on the verdant land along the Yellowstone River. The hastily constructed tents and log cabins made it appear as if Billings materialized overnight – thus earning the name “The Magic City.” Today, as the largest city in Montana, Billings proudly retains its ‘Magic City’ moniker. As for Magic City magazine, we promise to continue our mission to uncover all that is unique and wonderful and changing in this great community ... and we guarantee a few surprises along the way.

may 2013 I VOLUME 11 I ISSUE 3

Michael GulledgE Publisher 657-1225 editorial

Allyn Hulteng Editor 657-1434 Bob Tamb0 Creative Director 657-1474 Brittany Cremer Senior Editor 657-1390 Brenda Maas Assistant Editor 657-1490 Evelyn Noennig asistant Editor 657-1226 pho tograph y

Larry Mayer, James Woodcock, Casey Page, Bob Zellar, Paul Ruhter A dvertising

Dave Worstell Sales & Marketing Director 657-1352 Ryan Brosseau Classified & Online Manager 657-1344 Shelli Rae Scott SALES MANAGER 657-1390 LINSAY DUTY ADVERTISING COORDINATOR 657-1254 MO LUCAS Production/Traffic Artist 657-1286 C ontact us: Mail: 401 N. Broadway Billings, MT 59101 F ind us online at F ind us at various rack locations throughout Billings: Billings area Albertsons I Billings Airport I Billings Clinic Billings Gazette Communications I Billings Hardware I Copper Colander Curves for Women I Evergreen IGA I Gainan’s I Good Earth Market Granite Fitness I Kmart I McDonald’s (select locations) I Neecee’s I Pita Pit Real Deals I Reese and Ray’s IGA (Laurel) I Sidney Airport Stella’s St. Vincent’s Healthcare I The Y I Valley Federal Credit Union (Downtown location) Western Security Banks (Downtown location) I Williston Airport Yellowstone County Museum I Plus many other locations Subscriptions are available at the annual subscription rate of $29 (5 Issues). Single copy rate $4.95. Mail subscription requests and changes to address above, ATTN: Circulation Magic City Magazine is published five times a year by Billings Gazette Communications Copyright© 2013 Magic City Magazine All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without express written consent is prohibited.

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A decade of Magic and counting

Billings is a phenomenal place to live, work and play. Our quality of life, coupled with engaged citizens, contributes greatly to our ability to produce a signature lifestyle magazine.

Ten years ago, the Billings Gazette Management Team, along with several local business leaders, talked over the idea of creating a magazine that reflected life in Billings and the surrounding area. At the time, the city was nearing 100,000 people – a mark of urban distinction – and the group felt the timing was right for such a publication. In May 2003 the premiere issue of Magic City Magazine was published. At just 40 pages, the first issue proved one thing: there was no shortage of great stories to tell. Today, the publication has grown to 156 pages and has the distinction of being Billings’ most read magazine. This month we are pleased to celebrate Magic City Magazine’s 10th anniversary. We want to thank you, our readers, for accepting us into your home and taking time from your busy schedules to read our magazine. Your interest and support are vital to our success. Billings is a phenomenal place to live, work and play. Our quality of life, coupled with engaged citizens, contributes greatly to our ability to produce a signature lifestyle magazine. During the past decade Billings has transformed into a major regional hub of commerce for a huge geographic region. Serving all of eastern Montana and northern Wyoming, Billings is the destination for business, finance, agriculture, health care and professional services as well as a burgeoning energy service sector. At the same time, the community retains its western heritage and our tradition of hard work and respect for others. When it’s time to play, no place else in Montana offers more outdoor recreation, sports, arts and entertainment than we enjoy right here. From the river to the Rims, there is an abundance of passion for our unique lifestyle. Billings is poised for a dynamic future. We are fortunate to have community organizations and leadership focused on important issues facing a growing population. Moreover, residents of this region care about their community, are philanthropic and welcome newcomers. As Billings continues to grow and thrive, you can be sure that Magic City Magazine will follow along the way, chronicling the people, events and special traits of this region. We hope you continue the journey with us – the future is filled with stories we can’t wait to share. Michael Gulledge Publisher Vice-President – Sales and Marketing Lee Enterprises


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A wonderful journey Ten years ago I was asked to take the lead on producing a new magazine for the people of Billings and the surrounding region. At the time I didn’t have any formal experience as an editor – which was both good and bad. Good because I wasn’t bound by an established protocol; bad because there was no established protocol. Nevertheless, I enthusiastically embraced the assignment – boy have I learned a lot. Lesson no. 1: Listen and you’ll learn that everyone has an amazing story. When we first started Magic City Magazine, I wondered if there would be enough content to keep the publication fresh for the long haul. I needn’t have worried. Billings is filled with amazing people whose experiences inspire, humble, educate and move us. Curiously, the more stories we tell, the more we discover we’ve barely scratched the surface. If people are the fabric of our community, then we live in a wonderful place.

Brenda MAAS is a self-proclaimed magazine junkie. She has her own version Pinterest, but it is scattered about her office floor. Raised on a Wisconsin dairy farm and as a true Packer Backer, Brenda has been writing since she reported her own high school basketball games. But, her heart lays in crafting personal profiles and her blog about raising three boys, “Life in the Trenches.” ( “My job is never boring. I get to meet—and know—folks from all walks of life,” she said. “And each one has their own story to tell. I am inspired by the strength and courage that I see every day. I try to bring that positive energy to my life, my parenting and my writing.” Brenda has been with Magic for more than eight years, first as a freelance writer and more recently as an assistant editor and writer. 12 I MAY 2013 I MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE

Lesson no. 2: Never take the quality of life we enjoy for granted. Billings is unique. Our community is large enough to offer every kind of urban amenity, yet small enough that neighborhood block parties are the norm. Toss in easy access to world-class outdoor recreation and you’ve got bragging rights. There’s a very good reason our city is hitting the radar as a great place to live, work and raise a family. That’s something to be proud of. Lesson no. 3: Teamwork counts. While you may see my name as the editor, in truth I work with a team of extraordinary professionals who do the heavy lifting when it comes to producing Magic issue after issue. Bob Tambo, Brittany Cremer and Brenda Maas are saints in my book. These three individuals work tirelessly behind the scenes developing content ideas, editing copy, assigning photos, designing smashing

layouts plus handling the hundreds of other details that must be taken care of before we go to press. Affectionately known as “The B Team,” Bob, Britt and Brenda are not only brilliant colleagues, they are dear friends. Take a peek at their bios and I think you’ll agree – I’m one lucky editor. Ten years ago we promised to bring you the best of the Magic City. Looking back, I think we delivered on that promise. We hope you continue along with us on our journey of discovery because I’m pretty sure the best is yet to come.

Allyn Hulteng

Bob Tambo has been a commercial artist for over 30 years.

Brittany CREMER believes life is an ever-changing, always-

He started his career in southern California as art director for national trade and consumer magazines. Bob switched jobs and became an agency creative working on entertainment and retail accounts. After 17 years in advertising, Bob returned to publishing and was hired as creative director for Magic City Magazine in 2007. Raised in Los Angeles, California, Bob left the fast-paced “SoCal” lifestyle for the tranquility and beauty of the mountains and has been in the region for 13 years. Bob feels he missed his true calling as a singer/guitarist for .38 Special and globetrotting gourmet chef. When not cooking or strumming his guitar, he and his wife, Kit enjoy their two little needy, mutant Chihuahuas. Their son, Robbie, proudly serves in the United States Marine Corps.

inspiring kaleidoscope of words and color. She developed her communication skills early, once racking up a $174 phone bill calling 1-900-SANTA in an effort to unsuccessfully acquire Moonshoes™ and a pink corvette. She channeled her drive and creativity into a print journalism degree from UM (Go Griz!) and Master’s Degree in public relations from MSU-Billings—melding her two loves, writing and people. With more than 10 years of media experience, she credits her doting, supportive husband and vivacious 18-month-old twins for her strength and inspiration. When she’s not busy as Senior Editor of Magic or Your Home editor of The Billings Gazette, you’ll catch Britt reading to her boys, slicing the heck out of the golf ball and singing show tunes. Her guilty pleasures include: extraneous rhyming, speaking with a British (naturally) accent and quoting obscure movies from the ‘80s (“Type, type, type like a fat little pigeon!”)


Chris Rubich, A Billings native has more than 35 years of experience as a reporter, photographer and editor for newspapers in Montana and Wyoming, including 29 years with The Billings Gazette. A graduate of the University of Montana, she enjoys sharing plants from her garden with others, volunteer activities and walking her rescue dogs.

Shelley Van Atta is the strategic marketing and public relations executive for EBMS. She has degrees in journalism and English from the University of Montana, and formerly was university relations director for MSU Billings and director of college relations and marketing for Rocky Mountain College. She and her husband, Larry, both native Montanans, have three children and are very active in the Billings community.

Jason Burke writes for the discoverer in all of us. As a professional engineer, management consultant and freelance writer, work keeps him on the move, meeting interesting people everywhere he goes.  Originally from San Diego, his background includes degrees from UC Berkeley and Montana Tech, a private pilot certificate,and sharing with others the wonders of engineering, aviation, and technology.  In Montana for eight years, he lives in Billings with his wife, Christy, and their three children. Virginia Bryan is a free-lance writer based in Billings.  She is an MFA candidate in creative nonfiction at the University of New Orleans and chairs the High Plains Book Awards Committee, a project of Parmly Billings Library.

Karen Kinser loves the wizardry of words. She also enjoys travel because of that present-moment sense, which travel conveys so well, that each day is a gift to unwrap. Other passions include hiking, gardening, photographing and entering recipe contests. Both she and her husband are fascinated with factory tours, literary landmarks and seeking restaurants mentioned in novels—just to see if they exist.

Allyson Gierke The nature of my writing varies; I love writing stories about things that are happening locally, like the documentary that the Kurth brothers have put together featured in this issue. I love to write stories about my travel sojourns that capture the cultural truth of any given place: the food, mood, history, museums, galleries, architecture; all of it.

Dayle Hayes is an award-winning author and educator. Her creativity and commonsense have made her a sought-after speaker across the USA. As a parent and member of the School Nutrition Association, Dayle is dedicated make school environments healthy for students and staff. She collected school success stories for “Making It Happen,” a joint CDC-USDA project, wrote a chapter on communicating with students in “Managing Child Nutrition Programs: Leadership for Excellence,” and co-authored “The “Position of the American Dietetic Association: Nutrition Guidance for Healthy Children Ages 2 to 11 Years.”

Julie Green’s lifelong passion has always been writing and eventually became her profession. During her career, she has done technical, legal, business and creative writing (some all at the same time!)  A native of Cowley, Wyoming, Julie is a part of the copy/concept/creative team Billings-based Kinetic Marketing & Creative.   In her free time, she enjoys spending time with her husband Dave and their two children.

Anna Paige is a freelance journalist specializing in lifestyle, music and pop culture features. As an avid supporter of music and culture in the West, Anna pens music features for a variety of publications and maintains “Magic City Kitsch,” a weblog on the Billings music scene. She also operates Pen and Paige, a freelance writing company.

Stella Fong divides her time between Billings and Big Sky where she writes, cooks and teaches. Recently she received a Robert Parker Scholarship for continuing studies at the Culinary Institute of America at Greystone.

Tim Lehman is Professor of History at Rocky Mountain College where he teaches a wide variety of courses in American, Western and Environmental History. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and is the author of Bloodshed at Little Bighorn: Sitting Bull, Custer, and the Destinies of Nations. 

Julie Johnson Rollins returned to her hometown of Billings in 1996 after a decade and a half living in Boston and New York City. A physician, mother, wife, musician, nonprofit devotee and writer, she desires to write about “anything and everything that piques my curiosity.”

Kristen Rickels Prinzing runs the nonprofit MusEco Media and Education Project ( in Billings where she produces the TV PSA series “Green Smarts with the Green Man” ( On the side she is an avid outdoorsperson and naturalist, writes and performs music (, gardens – and eats— organically. She does all of these things together with her husband, co-worker and co-adventurist, Scott Prinzing (who stars as the Green Man in MusEco’s TV series).

Lee Hulteng grew up in Billings and moved to Grand Forks, North Dakota in 1986 where he worked as a visual journalist for the Grand Forks Herald until 1998. While there, the newspaper staff he worked with received a Pulitzer Prize for coverage during the 1997 flood. He has lived in Maryland since 1998 where he worked as a senior illustrator for McClatchy/Tribune in Washington, DC. He still lives in Maryland where he now freelances along with restoring vintage motorcycles.

Trish Erbe Scozzari is a Montana native who enjoys writing about the people and places of her home state. Her first published story highlighted the adjudication of Montana’s water rights. She’s written about our country’s first Native American registered nurse, who was from the Crow Indian Reservation, as well as, rocket scientists in Butte testing and firing candle wax-fueled rockets for space travel. Trish and her husband, Ray, live in Billings and have two married daughters and their first grandchild.



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“There’s electricity in the air with live music. In the studio, everyone wants it to be perfect. By the time you’ve heard the song 50 or 60 times, the magic is gone.”




Rock On! bill culhane The year: 1976 The club: New York’s legendary CBGB, the birthplace of American punk. The scene: Bill Culhane receives a call from a friend urging him to return to New York. Culhane, who is in California taking a break from a hectic life on the road of mixing live sound for traveling bands, needs a strong reason to leave the sunny coast. His friend is insistent. “You can pick any band you want,” he said. “Just get out here!” Few elements characterize the late 1960s and early 70s more comprehensively than rock and roll. The music so embodies that era, that a few simple tunes can immediately transport a listener to Woodstock or a Grateful Dead concert. Like a perfect storm, the changes in how music was recorded and released collided with the emergence of touring bands. Sound engineer Bill Culhane was situated directly in the middle. Top: Bill Culhane in his music room in Billings. Left inset: Miles Davis, left, in rehearsal with saxophone player Kenny Garrett and Quincy Jones, right, at Montreux in ‘91. Photo Courtesy of Bill Culhane.

Finding his rhythm

Culhane got his start in the music business in the 1960s. On a whim after college, he followed friend and folk violinist Jay Unger, who had landed a recording contract, to New York City.

Unger’s roommate worked as a sound engineer, and Culhane followed suit. He started work at RLA Studios, a small studio with a notorious reputation. Bands such as the Mothers of Invention and the Fugs, poet Allen Ginsberg and other eclectic artists of the ‘60s passed through this studio—the ultimate melting pot of progressive thought. Through various connections in the New York music scene, Culhane transitioned from RLA Studios to Electric Lady Studios, where he worked as a junior engineer for the late great Jimi Hendrix. “It was a fascinating time,” Culhane said. “I kept wondering how the hell I got there.”




Before a concert, Miles would bring in each musician and instruct him or her to change something in the song, Culhane recalled. “The entire band knew there would be three changes in the music, but they didn’t know when or from where. That told me why so many musicians that came out of Miles’ band have such incredible careers; they learned how to listen.” Playing by ear

Culhane rose quickly in the music business, though he found it took time to gain confidence and fully understand the music that surrounded him. “My ears weren’t in shape when I first started,” he said. “I’d hear music as a listener, but not as a participant.” He had to learn how to listen to music its entirety, while simultaneously paring the sound down to each individual instrument. “I was not only listening for distortion, pitch, time—all the technical aspects that go into it as music—I was at the same time judging the music.” Culhane said. Yet he was never truly satisfied with studio work. “You never meet the patients if you’re a surgeon; you’re just cutting them up. That’s what being in the recording studio is like. You’re making something, but it’s one piece at a time. The charm of all that gear wears off. There’s no more mystery.”

Moving onward

song 50 or 60 times, the magic is gone.” The live audience combined with the onstage collaboration of the band was the perfect recipe for Culhane’s success. He’d gleaned talents from the studio, such as microphone technique, which gave him an advantage over soundmen that didn’t have studio background. Yet, as bands started touring, Culhane witnessed the rise of production companies. So when sound gigs became mobile, so did he. The advantage this time was Culhane’s experience with acoustics across so many different venues.

On the road

Culhane first traveled with Blue Öyster Cult and Mahavishnu Orchestra. He estimates there were only a dozen people doing what he was doing at that time. Though he was touring the country, running sound for a new crowd every night, Culhane found himself restless listening to the same band day after day. “I was spoiled during those first few years of live sound in New York. Even if had a band I didn’t enjoy, I was only with them for four to 10 days. Doing a whole tour with a band—you better have a good band if you’re going to enjoy it.” The second band Culhane toured with was New Riders of Purple Sage, one of New York’s prominent rock bands of that time. Culhane recalls they outdrew the Allman Brothers and frequently

All around Culhane, New York’s live music scene was exploding. Traveling production companies were virtually nonexistent at the time. Yet only a handful of people knew how to mix live sound; demand was high and growing. Culhane found himself in a burgeoning market with a unique set Miles Davis on stage in Istanbul in ‘88. Photo courtesy of Bill Culhane of talents. He was hired away from Electric Lady Studios in the early 1970s to begin mixing live concerts for toured with the Grateful Dead. Weisberg Sound where he mixed upwards of 50 percent of all the Of the Dead, Culhane found their crew to be quite different than bands that came to New York at that time. He ran sound at Madison Square Garden, the Academy of Music, Gaelic Park in the Bronx and the New York scene in which he’d previously worked “I can’t object to anyone’s lifestyle, I’m not in the position to,” Central Park, among others. At one point he found himself in Port Culhane said. “But I thought the crew was amateurs. They were Chester, New York, where the infamous Grateful Dead liked to play. bulky, street thugs. It wasn’t the image that the Dead portrayed at all. “There’s electricity in the air with live music,” he said. “In the They were a bunch of hippies out of northern California versus the studio, everyone wants it to be perfect. By the time you’ve heard the


New Yorkers with tons of stage experience. Musically, one night in four might be complete magic, but the other three they couldn’t find the beat. But the audience didn’t care.” Culhane traveled throughout the 1970s with bands such as Mink Deville, an early punk band associated with New York’s CBGB nightclub. He took off to Asia with Blood Sweat & Tears, and did a short stint with Stevie Wonder.

Changing course

“When I was done with that, I didn’t want to do rock and roll anymore,” Culhane said. It’s now the early 1980s, and to him, jazz seemed a bit “saner.” He took off to the Dominican Republic with Gato Barbieri, an Argentinean jazz tenor saxophonist and composer. “One thing led to another, and I found myself designing a 5,000-seat theater in the Dominican Republic for Gulf and Western,” Culhane said. It was a crash course on Greek and Roman theater design.” Called Altos de Chavón, the amphitheater was a recreation of a Roman village, and the inaugural concert in 1982 included performers Frank Sinatra and Santana.

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Final track

After being away from music for several years, Culhane didn’t know if wanted to go back into sound production. He was in his 40s, unsure what to do. After scanning his options, Culhane decided to pursue stage management, which led him to one of his most memorable career choices, working with Miles Davis on his European tours. “When you’re a tour manager and going to Europe, you’re a battlefield commander,” Calhune said. “Five weeks, 30 flights, all the tickets, checking the contracts, making sure everyone is on the plane. It’s complicated and messy.” Though Miles Davis wasn’t drawing huge crowds in the States, he was hugely successful overseas in markets such as Japan. Culhane recalls the band outdrawing the Rolling Stones throughout Europe. “In the early rock and roll bands, I found there were certain people keeping rhythm together, but no one was listening to the whole thing,” Culhane said, describing the way Miles Davis worked with the various musicians in his group. “Miles taught musicians that when you are playing, you have to listen, and you have to listen to everything.” Before a concert, Miles would bring in each musician and instruct him or her to change something in the song, Culhane recalled. “The entire band knew there would be three changes in the music, but they didn’t know when or from where. That told me why so many musicians that came out of Miles’ band have such incredible careers; they learned how to listen.” Culhane stayed on as Miles’ European tour manager for eight years, up to Miles’ death in 1991. “It felt like I was riding a wild horse without a bit, and I’m just holding onto the mane,” he said. Culhane retired in 1996, though he picks up an isolated gig here and there, which is how he met his wife Sandy. “Prior to that I couldn’t even have a dog, much less develop and maintain a relationship,” he said. “If you’re in music, it’s really hard.” The couple’s musical commonalities bonded them, and they moved to Billings when Sandra was recruited to join the Billings Symphony Orchestra as their executive director. But change is the one constant with a career in music. This summer the couple is again focusing on Sandra’s career and moving on to yet another gig.

Catherine Louisa Gallery Billings, MT


406 670 7746 MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 19



Special K Ranch: A Place To Be Needed

Nestled along the banks of the Yellowstone River, about 30 miles north of the Beartooth Mountains as the crow flies, lays the Special K Ranch. It is a serene setting for a very unique operation. Simply put, Special K Ranch provides family-oriented Christian homes, based on a working ranch, for adults with developmental disabilities. But that is just the packaging. In reality, the ranch is a “second family” to both staff and residents. By virtue of their daily work and play, they build skills, self-esteem, a sense of belonging and togetherness. Originally modeled after a similar operation in Arizona and supported by the six Billings-area Kiwanis Clubs, the Special K Ranch opened in 1987 with four residents and then-executive director Larry Goehner. It has evolved into a working ranch with seven homes for 31 residents along with a caring married couple, who complete the family unit, said Mike Oberg, executive director. The Ranch’s vocational program encompasses livestock, greenhouses


and garden enterprises along with a native seeding program with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Special K residents contribute hands-on to nearly every facet of the operation. Oberg explained the evolution of the horticultural program: There was a time on the ranch when there was not much going on—the hay had been put up and the sheep had not started lambing yet. We were encouraged by Jim and Loyann Kimmery, then-owners of Village Gardens, to buy and construct a small greenhouse. Thus, the horticulture program began, he said. “It wasn’t part of the master plan, but I am sure that it was part of our Master’s plan,” said Oberg. Today, Special K is known locally for its greenhouse-grown tomatoes, garden produce along with a wide array of flowers and bedding plants. Its members operate more than 50,000 square feet of greenhouse growing space and have become contract growers, providing bedding plants throughout Montana and Wyoming. The residents of the ranch enjoy the fruits of their own labors. All their meat for meals comes from livestock raised on the ranch. During the harvesting season, at least 25 percent of their food originates from

the ranch’s gardens. Special K grows its greenhouse tomatoes from seeds that are started in January. Under the gentle tutelage of ranch staff, residents engage in seeding, potting, transplanting and growing the tomatoes. Once the harvest begins, they also pick, wash and prepare the fruits for retailers in Billings and Columbus, said Leslie Zeigler, greenhouse manager. But flowers and decorative plantings are Special K’s biggest crop, said Carla Oberg, bedding house manager. An array of popular and regionally-hearty flowers and decorative plants are grown for sale as bedding-out plants, hanging baskets and patio pots. The plants retail at a number of regional hardware stores as far afield as Anaconda, and in nearly every hardware store in Billings. Oberg emphasizes the connection between the growing plants and the needs of the residents. All the plants grow so well “because the residents love the plants so much,” she said. Special K’s popular stand at the Yellowstone Valley Farmers’ Market in Billings features their greenhouse tomatoes and other garden produce as well. In addition, residents enjoy being able to interact with the public at the market; their presence always adds an enthusiastic and cheerful ambiance to the event. Since 2006, Special K’s horticultural program has partnered with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), germinating and growing thousands of native plants for agency restoration projects. Special K resident of 15 Special K Ranch does not years, Laurie Bogrett, echoed the accept government funding for sentiments of others when she daily operations. Rather, the shared how living and working at organization is supported, in part, Special K makes her feel. by selling goods as listed here. “It’s really been a blessing for me Special K’s Spring Market is to be here,” she said. “It’s like being offered every Saturday in May, part of a second family. I mean, you from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at either work together as a family, you play the Sears parking lot on Grand together as a family and you just Avenue or the Bullman’s Pizza parking lot on 24th Street West. hang out together as a family.” In addition, bedding plants, Looking toward the garden flowering hanging baskets and where other residents were picking decorative container plantings vegetables and laughing together grown by the residents and staff with staff, Bogrett finished by of Special K will be available saying simply, “You just feel for sale at the following area needed here.” locations:

Green Support


Clockwise from opposite page, left: Special K Ranch residents work planting in one of several greenhouses on the grounds. Special K Ranch resident Hank Gremmer taps the tops of tomato plants to help pollinate the crop while working in the greenhouses on the property. Ben Johnson gathers a flat of snapdragons while working in the Special K Ranch greenhouse. Special K Ranch resident Dallas Eide carries a day-old lamb in one of the ranch barns. Dallas has been at the Special K Ranch for 26 years.

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Kevin Red Star Always Apsaalooke’ “Change is inevitable for an artist. I may reach back 15 years for an image that still resonates with me. It may have more detail or expression. Or, it might leave more to the imagination.” Kevin Red Star’s ‘‘The General’’ is a vivid portrait of an affable man wearing a head dress and a bright blue military-style jacket adorned with gold buttons. With a feather in one hand, his distinctive eyes peer at the viewer as if he’s from another era. Maybe an army officer gave him the coat he proudly wears. Perhaps the occasion was a treaty signing in the 1800s when his tribe, the Apsaalooke’ (Crow), allied with the United States to protect their homeland. “The General,” a part of the Yellowstone Art Museum’s permanent collection, fascinates 5th and 6th grade museum visitors. How did the man live, they ask. What was his life like? Why is his face green? In his sun-lit studio just off the highway through Roberts, Mont., Kevin Red Star leaned back in his chair, smiled broadly and said he wonders about many of the same things himself. “Green iron oxide face paint is still used at many Crow celebrations,” he explained. “It’s a color made


from natural elements.” Then he added, “I never went to an art museum as a boy. It’s wonderful to hear of these visits.” Red Star created “The General” one summer in Lodge Grass in 1989. By then, he’d graduated from Santa Fe’s Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) and was making his way as an artist. Later, he would receive an honorary doctorate from the IAIA and another from Rocky Mountain College and travel to the Russian embassy in Moscow with the Montana Arts

Council. But that summer, he’d just come home to paint. He cobbled together a makeshift studio in a neighbor’s garage with a table, an easel and a few shelves. Inquisitive aunts, uncles and cousins soon began visiting. They remembered Red Star as the clever boy who spent hours tracing and coloring western scenes from gas station calendar prints. He was one of nine children when representatives from the newly-created IAIA came to the Crow Reservation looking for a student with artistic talent. He’s sure one of his teachers said, “Go get Kevin.” “I was just a rez kid. I’d never been farther away than Sheridan (Wyoming).” Red Star credits his mother, known for her fancy shawls, beading and traditional designs, for his artist’s life. “She encouraged me to go to Santa Fe,” he said. “‘Just for today,’ she’d say, ‘don’t be angry and don’t worry. Be grateful and do a hard day’s work. Be kind to others.’” Red Star’s bold, larger-than-life paintings of Apsaalooke’ people, tipis, horses and shields have found homes in private and public art collections, museums and public buildings world-wide. But he’s clear where his home is. Kevin Red Star’s studio is “I was Apsaalooke’ before Santa Fe,” located at 19 South 1st Red Star said. “I will always be St., Roberts, Mont., phone Apsaalooke.’” “Change is inevitable for an artist,” 406.445.2549. Red Star said. “I may reach back 15 years More information for an image that still resonates with me. It can be found at may have more detail or expression. Or, it might leave more to the imagination.” or by Sunny Red Star works alongside her contacting father. She’s never quite sure what’s coming His when she sees a new, blank canvas on his studio easel. work is available at Catherine “My dad,” she said. Then she paused. Louisa Gallery, 120 North BroadIn her eye, a glimmer of light reminiscent way, Billings. An award-winning of “The General” in his new coat. “He paints from his heart.” documentary film, “Kevin Red

View Red Star’s Work

Star: From the Spirit” can be found on YouTube.

Above: “The General.” Top right: “Old Eagle Foot.” Center: “Mountain Crow Horse Shield”. Right: “Three Crow Warriors.”




Relaxation Station Summer is just about here and what better way to spice up your outdoor entertaining than the addition of a backyard kitchen? Check out these elements.

This entire kitchen grilling unit from Bull™ is composed of customizable units. Mix-and-match according to what fits your family and your needs. In this layout, the Bull Gourmet Q Outdoor Island Kitchen includes an Angus BBQ™ stainless steel 5-burner grill and rotisserie with 75,000 BTUs; 4.4-cubic-foot and an outdoor refrigerator.


After dinner, relax “Legendary Cuddle Chairs and Ottomans” by Homecrest™. Aptly named—they are comfy, snuggly and the ideal addition near the 42-inch “Chat Firepit,” also by Homecrest™(below). This firepit features glass fire beads and a faux leather top for that extra touch of sophistication.

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Open Range Cookbook by Jay Bentley and Patrick Dillon


Copper Mountain Band With Montana-made musicality, Copper Mountain Band appeals to all audiences with their electric energy and multi-dimensional talent. The close-knit country crew calls Troy, Mont. home but plays gigs all across the region. Catch them May 16 at the Miles City Bucking Horse Sale where you can expect to hear crowd-pleasing favorites like “Beers and Beers Ago,” “He’s Your Man,” and their spirited remake of Cher’s “Just Like Jesse James.” Pick up their self-titled album Copper Mountain Band at or learn more at:


Hungry for Change

Not just a major vacation destination, Montana is a veritable melting pot of delicious grub. Add to it the wide-open spaces, outdoor living and the riches of nature and it’s enough to make any vacationer question the decision to go home. This must-have cookbook is full of “great, honest and authentically-hearty chow you can prepare at home,” the Montana way. Open Range serves up generous portions of meat—including venison, quail, duck, elk, fish, pork and beef—seasoned and prepared with gourmet accoutrements. The Mint Bar and Café in Belgrade, Mont. inspired the book, but the recipes include much more than menu offerings. Far from dusty chuckwagon cuisine, Montana’s culinary influences are Cajun, Creole, French and Italian. Standouts include Fried Meat Pies, Campfire Coffee Chili, Buttermilk-Fried Quail with Steen’s Syrup and Poacher’s Deer Leg. The authors put their considerable knowledge of meat-eating to use: beginning with how the animal was raised through all the steps of choosing, prepping, marinating, cooking and enjoying it. From the open range to your table, this book celebrates our primordial desire to prepare, cook and enjoy the bounty in our own backyard.


Directed by: Carlo Ledesma As a society, we have branded convenience more important than health, and big business has taken advantage of this decision in some pretty nefarious ways. Hungry for Change exposes shocking secrets the diet, weight loss and food industries don’t want you to know about deceptive strategies designed to keep you coming back for more. Find out what’s keeping you from having the body and health you deserve.


The Oregon Trail app

Ford the river! Oh no, the axle broke! Relive the classic game you used to play on floppy disc with this reincarnation by Gameloft. See if you and your family have what it takes to ferret your way through perilous prairie, craggy mountains and vast plains to make it to the Promised Land. Available at the iTunes store or






In a world that embraces one home trend after another, few designs remain timeless. Take one step into this West End residence, however, and you are instantly surrounded by a classic look that will never go out of style. E X T E R I O R PH O T O G R APHY B Y K E L V I N I I N T E T R I O R PH O T O G R APHY B Y J AM E S W O O DC O CK MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 29



Built to accommodate the diverse needs of a growing family, this home balances luxury with necessities of everyday life. And the quality of design and construction, according to the owners, is unrivaled. “One of the first things that caught our attention was the workmanship,” they recall. “Every finish, inside and out, was remarkable. The builder thought about even the smallest details.” The home’s exterior is built of stone imported from Ontario, Canada, which can withstand even the most extreme Montana winters. The roughness of stone contrasts handsomely against the rich glow of custom copper accents. Near the circular drive, a tiered metal fountain adds a welcoming and unexpected touch. “When you stand next to the fountain, the water caresses the metal making music,” the owner says. “The sound is Right: In the foyer, a beautiful crystal chandelier sparkles over the dramatic staircase. Like many other features throughout the home, convenience was a consideration— the chandelier is motorized so that it can be lowered for cleaning. Next Page: With 20-foot ceilings, creamy white walls and gleaming Brazilian cherry floors, the formal living room is filled with light. The east-facing wall of windows is set above three sets of French doors that lead to the patio, allowing unobstructed views of the Rims.










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wonderful.” The main floor is open and welcoming, with an expansive kitchen, formal living room, inviting family room and beautiful library. Off the kitchen is one of the owners’ favorite spaces, a craft room with alder cabinets and artist easels, which also serves as an informal office and homework space. The master suite, also located on the main

Above: Perfect for curling up to read a book or conducting business, the library is quiet and comfortable. The room’s floors, cabinetry and built-ins are a rich American cherry, while the gas fireplace is surrounded by marble. “One of the things we love about the library,” said the owner, “is that is has an unexpected surprise. One of the shelving panels is actually a door that swings open into a hallway. Kids love it.” Right: No cook could resist this gourmet kitchen, complete with commercial-grade appliances suitable for preparing breakfast for the kids or a formal eightcourse dinner. Painted and glazed maple cabinetry offers ample storage, while two separate granite-topped islands are ideal for preparing food and entertaining friends.


“The master suite is truly a retreat,” the homeowner says. “It’s very quiet and the color is soothing. There is also an area with a small refrigerator, so you can have coffee in the morning or chill a bottle of wine and settle down for an evening in.” The room features a tray ceiling with rope lighting and black walnut built-ins along with French doors leading to the patio.

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level, provides privacy as well as personal access to the meticulously-landscaped backyard. On the second floor, every room is designed with fun and family in mind. In addition to a one-of-a-kind playroom, features to entertain children are found throughout the space. “One of the closets has a door that leads to a secret play area,” the owner says. “It has lighting and carpeting—it’s a popular spot when kids play hide-andseek.” Two of the upstairs bedrooms have verandas that look over the backyard. They also feature built-in shelving, desks and reading nooks, and each has a private bathroom. Down the hall, a plush theater and guest suite await visiting family and friends. It is the home’s lower level, however, which holds a special place in the owner’s heart. “The whole house had been decorated when we bought it

Right and below: In warm weather, there are few outdoor areas that can compete with this outdoor oasis. With a large pool, in-ground hot tub and outdoor kitchen, it is the perfect spot to host a party or just relax after work. Far right: The en-suite master bath features a jetted soaking tub flanked on either side by distinctive his-and-her cherry wood and granite vanities. It also includes a tumbled marble shower separated from the main room by a curbed glass block wall.



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except for that space. Although we did keep the beautiful antique mahogany bar, we really got to decorate everything else. One of my friends is a designer and when I said I needed a red wall, she gave me one,” the owner says. Other walls boast a golden faux finish, while the coved ceilings are painted a deep brown. With classic leather pieces and a stone fireplace, the look is both cozy and refined, making it suitable for formal entertaining or for a night in with family. “This is a home where kids can have their own space, and adults can have their own space, too,” says the owner. “It’s perfect for a family and for entertaining. That combination isn’t easy to find.”

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Above and right: The downstairs family room has highcoved ceilings, bay windows and doors and is large enough to accommodate a pool table, foosball table and plenty of entertaining space. Lower right: Located on the second floor, the theater room is ideal for watching the latest release or the playoffs. Thick carpeting dampens noise, and custom drapery ensures the room stays dark even during the day. Photography by Kelvin.


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out of


The historic Northern Hotel re-opened this spring, punctuated with fine dining at TEN—the hotel’s opulent restaurant named after Thomas Edward Nelson, the father of co-owners Chris and Mike Nelson. Here, guests can enjoy a unique, western-chic atmosphere and the lavish creations of Chef Eric Stenberg, who believes that local fare is best.



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Morel mushrooms, fingerling potatoes and fresh asparagus—few food items embody the taste of spring like these wild ingredients. Partner them with thick, local beef tenderloin and you have Montana right on the tip of your tongue. (Recipe on page 44)

Grilled Beef Tenderloin Steak with Asparagus, Fingerling Potatoes, Spring Onions and Morel Sauce



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Glazed Banana Fritters with Pistachio-Crusted Vanilla Ice Cream

For a nutty spin on the traditional sweet tooth, try this creamy combo of pistachios with frittered bananas. Drizzle all with a bit-o-honey, locally-produced of course, and you have the perfect ending to a fabulous meal. (Recipe on page 44)

Chef Eric Stenberg From Portland, Ore., to Alsace, France, to Montana, Chef Eric Stenberg promotes unique, rich flavors with his mission to keep food as close to home and plate as possible. Most recently Stenberg owned and operated the Savory Olive in the Baxter Hotel in Bozeman. He was featured by Food and Wine Magazine in “The Story of a Steak.� At the newly-reopened historic Northern Hotel, executive chef Stenberg blends the great products of Montana into memorable meals to enhance the experience for hotel guests and residents alike.



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for 3 to 3 ½ minutes then flip them and do the same thing on the other side, cooking to medium rare. Remove and let rest. Brush the potatoes with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, place on the grill and brown and heat through. Put the asparagus on the grill after the steaks have been removed and are resting. Cook until tender (about 5 minutes). Remove the potatoes from the skewers and you are ready to plate—spooning the morel sauce over the steaks.

Honey Glazed Banana Fritters with Pistachio-Crusted Vanilla Ice Cream Pistachio Ice Cream ½ cup roasted salted Pistachios 1 pint vanilla ice cream

Grilled Beef Tenderloin Steak with Asparagus, Fingerling Potatoes, Spring Onions and Morel Sauce Courtesy of Chef Eric Stenberg, executive chef at TEN and food and beverage director of the Northern Hotel ½ pound fingerling potatoes, washed Kosher salt 1 large bunch asparagus 3 small spring onions ½ pound Morel mushrooms ¾ cup extra virgin olive oil 1/3 cup Madeira 2 cups beef stock 3 sprigs fresh thyme 1 bay leaf 2 tablespoons butter 2 8-ounce (preferably locally-raised) beef tenderloins Put the potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water, add salt and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Lower the heat and simmer until tender to a knife inserted in the widest part of the potato. Remove the potatoes from the heat, drain and briefly run cold water over them to stop the cooking. When the potatoes are cool cut them in half and thread on two 12-inch skewers and set aside. Wash the asparagus and snap off the woody, fibrous ends. Reserve until ready to grill. Wash and trim the onions, leaving 6 inches of the green tops. Clean and trim the root end, leaving enough intact to hold the halves together once the onions are split. Slice the onions in half lengthwise and set aside. Clean the morels by wiping them with a warm, slightly damp cloth. Leave them whole. Add 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to a wide sauté pan and warm over medium high heat. When the oil is hot, add the mushrooms, season with salt and cook until tender. Once the mushrooms are cooked, deglaze the pan with Madeira, add stock, thyme and bay leaf and gently reduce the liquid by half. Remove bay leaf and slowly whisk in cold butter, bring sauce up to a slight boil. When all butter is added, hold sauce to the side on very low. Heat your grill to high. Generously season the steaks with salt and black pepper and brush lightly with olive oil. Toss the spring onions and the asparagus with 2 tablespoons of olive oil in separate bowls. Season with salt and pepper. Put the onion halves on the hottest part of the grill to caramelize, about 2 minutes, before moving them to a cooler spot of the grill. While the onions are cooking on the side, add the steaks to the hottest part of the grill


Process the pistachios in a food processor until finely-ground. Put pistachios in a bowl and with an ice cream scoop form ice cream balls and roll in the pistachios until coated, reserve in the freezer. Banana Fritters 2 tablespoons sesame seeds 2 ounces cornstarch 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1-½ teaspoons baking powder ¾ cup ice water 4 cups plus 1 tablespoon canola oil 6 ripe medium bananas-peeled and quartered ¼ cup honey Toast the sesame seeds in a small non-stick pan over medium heat until golden brown. Set aside. Combine the cornstarch, flour and baking powder in a large bowl. Slowly add the ice water and 1 tablespoon of canola oil, whisking constantly until the mixture is smooth and slightly thinner than pancake batter. Heat the canola oil in a heavy duty sauce pan to 370° (using an instant-read thermometer or candy thermometer). Drop bananas in the batter and coat thoroughly; work approximately six pieces at a time. Carefully put bananas in the oil and fry for 3 minutes or until golden brown. When they are done take them out of the oil and place on paper towels to remove excess oil. Repeat these steps with the remaining bananas Divide the bananas evenly and place on plates with ice cream. Drizzle honey over bananas and sprinkle sesame seeds over the bananas to serve.



cheers! Magic City Mixers

All it takes is one sip, and the truth comes out. A quality cocktail cannot hide behind its mixer. Everything is out in the open. Just like Magic. To celebrate our 10th Anniversary, we asked five local mixologists to concoct a signature drink in honor of our readers. Take a peek—and a taste. We are sure that you will agree. Ten years is indeed worth celebrating.

by brenda maas I photography by james woodcock MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 45

celebrate our 10-year anniversary with one of these signature cocktails



Jake’s Downtown Cocktail: Bent Outta Shape Mixologist: Tom Paxinos Straight up: Pucker up, baby! This creation will thrill all the grape and blueberry fans out there. While beer may be an unlikely partner, it turns the tide into a tsunami of unexpected fruity flavors. Think grape Crush with a kick!


Bent Outta Shape From Tom Paxinos of Jake’s 1 oz. Grape Pucker 1/2 oz. Stoli Blueberi Bent Nail IPA Beer 7up and Soda Fill hurricane glass with ice. Add liquors and fill glass to within about 1-inch from top with beer. Top with a splash of 7up and soda. Garnish with orange slice and cherry.

TEN at the Northern Hotel Cocktail: Lemon Berry Magic Mixologist: Jeremy Salazar Straight up: Salazar used fresh mint to bring this drink to life. And what is an early summer drink without strawberries— super-sized! Infused lemongrass and ginger makes this unique blend truly magical.

Lemon Berry Magic From Jeremy Salazar of TEN 3 strawberries (reserve 1 for garnish) 6 mint leaves 1 oz. lemongrass and ginger simple syrup 1-1/2 oz. Barcardi limon Soda water Muddle mint and strawberries with the infused simple syrup in tall glass. Add rum, then ice and finish with soda. Garnish with reserved strawberry and mint leaf.

The Rex Cocktail:

The Magic City’s


Mixologist: Reid Pyburn Straight up: This cocktail is a take-off from the classic negroni, created by Count Cammillo Negroni in 1920s Florence, Italy. Now grown up and customized for Billings, this elegant cocktail dresses up and beams with sipping pleasure.

The Magic City’s Negroni From Reid Pyburn at The Rex Healy’s gin from Trailhead Spirits Sangiovese from Yellowstone Cellars Pama Pomegrante Liquor Splash of simple syrup Add equal parts of all ingredients into shaker. Strain and pour into chilled martini glass. Garnish with a cucumber slice. Can also be served as a cocktail or as punch.

Trailhead Spirits Cocktail: Crazy Mountain Mixologist: Casey

Crazy Mountain From Casey McGowan at Trailhead Spirits


Straight up: Using gin distilled right here in Billings with family-grown, Montana wheat, this cocktail is cool as a cucumber but with a quick habanero punch. Crafted at Billings’ newest “go-to” spot, this drink looks good enough to eat!

The Feedlot Steakhouse Cocktail:

Razor Creek


Mixologist: Mike Bolte Straight up: There’s nothing rustic about this drink. Named after a nearby creek, this summery sensation brings the taste of the beach to Montana’s plains. In fact, you may feel a strong urge to apply coconutsmelling sunscreen.

Razor Creek Sunset From Mike Bolte at The Feedlot Steakhouse

1oz. Healy’s Gin by Trailhead Spirits ½ oz. freshlysqueezed lime juice, pinch of freshly-sliced basil and ½ oz. simple syrup Habanero salt from Yellowstone Olive Company 3 cucumber slices Shake top 4 ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Use Yellowstone Olive Company habanero salt to rim the glass. Pour mixture into glass and garnish with 3 sliced cucumber wheels.

½ shot Malibu rum ½ shot Peachtree ½ shot Pendelton Fill a 12-oz. glass with ice. Pour in ingredients above. Add 1-oz. cranberry juice, fill almost to top with orange juice and a splash of 7up. Garnish with an orange slice. You may also blend this drink.





The Spice of Life

Create delicious Indian cuisine using just 10 ingredients or less I By Stella Fong Raghavan Iyer brings magic to the food he cooks. But there is no smoke and mirrors in the lessons he teaches about Eastern Indian cuisine. “To say that every Indian dish is layered with an armload of ingredients is wrong,” Iyer said. “It is very possible to create those sensational flavors with a small handful of key ingredients.” A featured chef at this year’s Wine & Food Festival hosted by the MSU-Billings Foundation, Iyer finds joy in bringing exotic flavors to everyday tables. In his latest cookbook, Indian Cooking Unfolded: Master Class in Indian Cooking (to be released in July) he presents 100 simple recipes using 10 ingredients or less. His user-friendly, laid-back approach to Indian cooking demystifies the exotic cuisine and makes entrees approachable. The recipes are adapted to the American kitchen with easy-to-find ingredients that can be purchased at a “regular” grocery store, he said. Iyer innovatively infuses the flavors of his culinary culture into iconic American dishes such as pizza, buttermilk-fried chicken and pot pie. But fear not, he also includes more traditional recipes such as naan (India’s classic flatbread), tamarind date chutney and red lentil dal.   The key to cooking success is buying whole spices, Iyer said. How they are utilized and treated–raw, toasted, whole or ground–results in different incarnations. Iyer has graciously shared with Magic readers an evocative, delicious recipe found in his new book. Broaden your culinary mind and prepare your taste buds for a fanfare of spicy delight.

Raghavan Iyer Bombay-native Raghavan Iyer is a Certified Culinary Professional and a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals. He is a cookbook author, culinary educator, and consultant to many national and international clients. Iyer is the author of 660 Curries, chosen as one of the top cookbooks of 2008 by the New York Times and Food and Wine Magazine. His fourth book, Mastering Indian Cooking the Easy Way, was released in April. He has written numerous articles for national food magazines including Cooking Light, Weight Watchers, Cooking Pleasures, Gastronomica, and many others. Raghavan Iyer is a co-founder of the Asian Culinary Arts Institute, a member of the Board of Directors for the International Association of Culinary Professionals, and is also a frequent cookbook judge for the prestigious James Beard Foundation. Fluent in more than six languages, Iyer leads food and cultural tours to India annually. As an accomplished and prolific culinary instructor, Raghavan has shared his culinary talents at many international, national and local MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 49 venues including numerous International Association of Culinary Professionals conferences.

vuArneT is back and BeTTer than ever.

Almond Pepper Soup (Badam Mirchi Ka Shorba)

Indian food is not always comprised of in-your-face, complex seasonings. This creamy, slightly smoky, nutty soup drives that point home. Makes 6 cups 1 pound red bell peppers, stems, ribs and seeds discarded, flesh cut into 1-inch cubes ½ cup almond slivers or slices 6 green or white cardamom pods 3 fresh green Serrano chilies, stems discarded coarsely-chopped (do not remove the seeds) 1 ½ teaspoons coarse kosher or sea salt 6 tablespoons finely-chopped fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems

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Pour 3 cups of water into a medium-sized saucepan, add the bell peppers, almonds, cardamom, chilies and salt, and let come to a rolling boil over medium-high heat. Cover the saucepan and reduce the heat to medium. Let simmer, stirring occasionally, until the peppers are fork-tender, the chilies look pale green and the cardamom pods appear plump (about 15 minutes). 2013 MSUB Foundation Pour half of the bell pepper mixture Wine & Food Festival and its liquid into a blender. Make sure Indian Cooking Class the blender is only half full (or half empty, Class description: Flavorful Dishes from India, China and depending on the way you look at things Southeast Asia with 10 Ingredients or Less in life.) Without adequate space, the steam Ravishing. Exotic. Addictively flavorful. Let Raghavan Iyer, from the hot contents rises and can build up cookbook author and IACP pressure that can force off the lid, creating a Cooking Teacher of the Year, cornucopia of colors on your ceiling. Hold demonstrate how to blend the blender lid in place with a towel and the beloved flavors of India, run the blender in pulse to puree the soup. China and Southeast Asia with 10 ingredients or less. Pour the pureed soup into medium-sized bowl. Repeat with the remaining bell pepper Cost: $75 mixture and liquid. Add the second batch of Time: 6 p.m. puree to the bowl. Date: May 15 Alternatively, if you have an immersion Location: Billings Food Bank (or stick) blender, you can puree the soup For more information: log on to www. in the pan. Ladle the soup into individual bowls and serve it warm sprinkled with the cilantro.




More than a century old, this home is rich in history and character I By shelley van atta

To own an historic home is to own a textured piece of the past, and few historic homes in Billings can rival the signature architectural style of the residence at 2116 Virginia Lane. When Henry Oaks began construction on this iconic home in 1923, the location was vastly remote, far from the hub of Billings proper. An aerial photograph of the area, taken circa 1925, shows expansive open spaces in frontier land where sounds did not cease until they echoed off the Rimrocks. Sandstone, quarried in 1923 by Oaks, a manual arts instructor at students from Billings Polytechnic Billings Polytechnic Institute—predecessor Institute (predecessor to Rocky of Rocky Mountain College—used students Mountain College), comprises the from his classes to quarry the sandstone, home’s exterior. The grounds boast which served as the home’s anchor and lush landscaping and signature touches from the green thumb of rendered its aesthetic beauty. These students owner Jim Gainan. honed their skills through construction of the home, but the learning did not happen quickly. While the interior remained unfinished, the home was purchased by

Photos by jennifer deppmeier MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 51



Clyde Bowen, owner and proprietor of Bowen’s Men’s Store. For Montana history buffs, Clydehurst Ranch, in the Beartooth-Absaroka Mountains, is his eponym. According to Kathryn Wright, author of “Historic Homes of Billings,” Bowen intended to have mahogany wainscoting, but it was stolen from the home before it could be installed. Bowen’s luck did not improve. An article in the, June 12, 1927 issue of The Billings Gazette, stated (sic): “The body of the late C.W. Bowen, who was killed last Wednesday night in a New York City Fifth Avenue bus accident, arrived in Billings Saturday night at 11:38 on Northern Pacific train No. 1. R.M. Hart of the Hart-Albin company, a business associate of Mr. Bowen, accompanied the body to Billings from Chicago to where it was taken from New York by Charles Weill of the firm of Weill & Hartmann, resident buyer for the group with which the Hart-Albin stores are affiliated. Upon arrival in Billings the body was taken to the Bowen home on Virginia Lane, just off of the Poly drive, where it will repose until the funeral services.”

A home with Hart

Following her husband’s death, Mrs. Bowen sold the home to Ray M. Hart, founder of the Hart-Albin Company. Wright’s research shows the Hart family moving into the home in 1927. Their son, Russell Hart, later brought his bride, Senia Croonquist, to live there, where they raised a family until selling the home in 1957 to Frederick W. Mueller. Russell and Senia Hart repurchased the home in the spring of 1977. Prior to becoming a realtor, local businesswoman Karen Frank was one of Hart-Albin Company’s premier buyers. Frank recalls a buying trip to New York City with Russ Hart when he was in the midst Top: Craftsman touches and hardwood throughout earmark the iconic home. Above: An original stone fireplace anchors the living area.


of renovations on his Virginia Lane home. “We stopped at a every pay phone on Madison Avenue because Russ would remember ‘one more thing’ he wanted to have done to his and Senia’s home. I didn’t mind at all. I actually found it rather entertaining, and remember thinking that his careful attention to detail was why he was so successful, and also was why theirs was one of the most beautiful homes in Billings.

A new owner blooms

In 2007, Jim Gainan, president of Gainan’s Flowers and Garden Center in Billings, purchased the home. Like the Hart family, Gainan is civic-minded and actively involved in the community; however, also like the Hart family, he, too, treasures his privacy, which the set-back location of the home affords. “My attraction to the house was how it made me feel when I walked in,” Gainan said. “It’s warm, protected, interesting and secluded.” Gainan treasures his home’s past. “You don’t have to be an archeologist or historian to appreciate an historic home. I see it as an investment in history.” However, he adds, one thing that is no longer periodically significant is the home’s location. What once

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Home site

Top: When the home was built in 1923, the location was considered the “outskirts” of town. Above left: Senia Hart pictured in the Hart Albin store. Above right: Russell Hart, pictured far right, with Hart-Albin executives. Senia and Russell bought the home in 1957 then repurchased it in 1977. Photos courtesy of the Western Heritage Center.

Historic homes are not for everyone, but they are for those who want the appeal and charm that is distinctive to period homes. Buying one provides a singular opportunity for a family to intertwine their roots with those who lived there before. Historic homes hold a certain coolness factor, too. It’s an intrinsic feature that is intangible, but nonetheless real. Many home owners see an historic home as a rearview look at a more elegant period, full of style and warmth, boasting meticulous craftsmanship, classic lines and beautiful finish work that are unique to its place in history, all of which the Virginia Lane home has. An architectural stalwart, many have driven by this home daily without realizing it has been in our community for 90 years, weathering through the flood of 1937 (which literally was in its own backyard). It has endured various home ownerships, the evolving landscape of the city and modern day updates and renovations. This has hallmarked the home’s time with elegance and grace, thanks to the nurturing care it has received from the many people who loved it through decades of change. The massive stone fireplace still dominates the living room, an immoveable memory of things that do not change. The adjoining land, which once expanded to Sixth Street West, still remains nearly an acre, a tremendous tract of land in the heart of the city. And, of course, with a Gainan tending care to the landscaping and

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Above: The guest rooms feature garden views of the property. Right: The smartly-appointed bath features vintage touches like a pedestal sink and angled ceilings.

garden, the grounds are nothing short of spectacular. The interior renovations have been in keeping with the integrity of the home—subtle, yet brilliantly chosen. This residence is an ageless classic beauty, still the fashion of her time. History or not, some things never change. Facts for this article were gleaned from “Historic Homes of Billings,” by Kathryn Wright and illustrated by Carolyn Thayer. Historic photos are courtesy of the Western Heritage Center.

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Chinatown Lost Much of our history is visible in the landscape around us. Roads, trails and buildings remember the names of pioneers and town founders. The city of Billings takes its name from railroad financier Frederick Billings. Zimmerman Trail marks the path blasted through the Rimrocks by a pioneer sheepherder. Charles Bair’s once immense sheep herds are remembered in a theater named for his daughter. The Moss Mansion, homes in the historic district and street names all over town evoke the images and personalities of a not-so-distant past. Yet there are other strands of our history that are nearly invisible. Some of these threads of the past in Billings are simply lost; others willfully forgotten. Before Billings existed, when settlement clustered at the nearby river town of Coulson, Chinese immigrants were already present in the Yellowstone Valley. Coming to America with the 1849 gold rush in California and to Montana with the 1860s gold rush in Bannack, Virginia City, and Last Chance Gulch, the Chinese population of Montana numbered nearly 20,000, or 10 percent of the territorial population in 1870. Chinese labor and expertise proved vital in drilling, dynamiting and grading the mountainous stretches of the

Northern Pacific railroad through the western part of the state. Although paid only half of what white workers received, Chinese workers were respected for their skill in building the railroad through steep hillsides and dangerous terrain. Although there were larger “Chinatowns” in Helena and Butte, one Chinese individual settled in Coulson and opened a laundry next to Perry “Bud” McAdow’s general store. Despite discriminatory laws passed in the territorial legislature and some local hostility, at least four Chinese joined the merchants, farmers and cowboys in the frontier town of Coulson. Misunderstood society In 1882 the railroad town of Billings replaced the river town of Coulson with such astonishing speed that it soon became known as the “Magic City.” That same year Congress passed the Chinese Exclusion Act, the nation’s first major immigration law restricting entry into the United States. Enacted in response to fears of economic competition and buttressed by notions of Chinese racial inferiority, the law halted Chinese immigration for 10 years and prohibited Chinese from becoming U. S. citizens. The immediate practical effect in Montana was to freeze into place the existing Chinese population,


Above: Headstones from some of Billings’ first Chinese settlers are located in the southeast corner of Mount View Cemetery on Central Avenue. Inset, left page: A 1849 etching of a Chinese prospector.


more than 90 percent male, and make it nearly impossible for these men with underground tunnels that were the home of opium dens, gang wars to reunite with their families, find wives or start families. The law did not, and other illegal activities. With a few exceptions, this legend owes more however, interfere with the already existing small Chinese community to the racial imagination of white society—the fears and misperceptions that was growing up alongside of the railroad, hotels, stores and houses about an exotic culture from the Orient— than it does to the reality of life in China Alley. From the 1880s that constituted early Billings. through the 1940s, the entire life cycle The Chinese pioneers of early of China Alley, there were only two Billings settled between Minnesota homicides and one drug raid in the area. Avenue and First Avenue South, in or In 1909 a gambling dispute near an alley that connected 27th Street between Sam Lee, a long-time resident and 26th Street East. About 90 people and business owner, and Hoo Sue Quong, lived in what became known as “China who had arrived in Billings only two Alley,” a crowded set of houses, business weeks earlier, erupted into an unfortunate and shacks that provided scarcely shootout between police and Quong. At more than a room and bed for many Lee’s request, the police dispatched two workers. They found employment in officers to arrest Quong and force payment low-paying jobs that typically did not of his debt. Quong retreated into the shack compete with white workers such as where he lived and began shooting at the laundries and restaurants. At least one officers as they approached. Both officers individual, Wong Sun, offered services and Quong emptied their guns, with one as an herbalist healer and did a popular officer wounded slightly and Quong hurt mail-order business throughout the more seriously. Quong died five days later region. At home in China Alley, they in the hospital, after rumors had falsely played fan-tan, a traditional Chinese identified him as a fugitive from New gambling game, relaxed by smoking Typical opium den used by Chinese settlers. York City. opium and tobacco, and generally kept The legend of China Alley grew a few days later when police found, to themselves, according to police reports of the time. Despite the work ethic and business contributions of the Chinese in according to press reports, “40 wily celestials” playing “the mystic game of Montana, a legend developed in early Billings that China Alley was laced fan-tan.” Police fined the proprietor, One Fong, $50 and followed him home

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to collect the fine. Against Fong’s protests, they followed into his house where they found evidence of recreational opium use. They left him with the fine money and a warning that they might return to destroy the “opium dens.” A second death occurred in 1916 when Wong Hong, owner of the Busy Bee café, had an altercation with three members of the Toy family, who owned a nearby saloon. Wong died the next day, and the three Toy family members were sentenced to the state prison. One died there, and the other two were eventually deported to China. At the time police blamed tong wars, tongs being the secretive organized criminal gangs that were active in some larger “Chinatowns.” Over time, however, it became clear that this death was over a personal grievance rather than an organized feud. According to a later verdict, “As a general rule, the old-timers recall, China Alley’s population was more sinned against than sinning.”

Billings a supply depot in the national trade. As federal agents clamped down on drug production and distribution in major cities, Billings took a larger role in the narcotics trade. Fed by outside criminal rackets, both white and Chinese, and fueled by high prices from an insatiable demand, local participation in the drug trade peaked during the years from 1929 to 1934. In 1934 Sheriff E. M. “Cap” Birely led a raid on an opium den in the Maple Leaf Club, a building in China Alley. Wielding sledge hammers and crow bars, the police searched for two hours, breaking furniture and pulling up floors and walls to find opium, cocaine and various drug paraphernalia. They seized the drugs, filled the basement of the building with tear gas, and arrested three Chinese, including the 75-yearold Chong Kee. Ho Gar, informally known as the “Mayor of Chinatown,” provided bail for all three. Organized criminal activities from the larger society, mostly run by whites, had finally created the “dope dens” which Billings residents had always imagined to exist in China Alley. Police and federal agents raided other buildings in China Alley, knocking down iron doors and finding false walls that revealed elaborately concealed basement rooms. No doubt this concealment of illegal drug activities fed

Despite the work ethic and business contributions of the Chinese in Montana, a legend developed in early Billings that China Alley was laced with underground tunnels that were the home of opium dens, gang wars and other illegal activities.

Outside forces

The legend of China Alley also claimed that it was a narcotics supplier, a several block area honey-combed with underground tunnels and “dope dens” full of opium and cocaine dealers. Although there had always been some recreational drug use in China Alley, it was not until Prohibition that the nation-wide demand for narcotics made

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The Billings Gazette feature on “China Alley” published on Oct. 31, 1943. Inset photos of the location in “China Alley” where a shoot-out ensued between residents and police. Photos courtesy of Western Heritage Center.

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the dominant perception that the Chinese were a “secretive race.” One raid, for instance, broke down an iron door and found a group of Chinese sitting around a table packaging “bindles” of cocaine for later distribution and sale. Yet the Chinese were not the only ones implicated in the drug trade. In 1935, Sheriff W. E. “Ned” Boley, city police and federal agents raided three houses in China Alley, searched for and found narcotics in the usual hidden places, and arrested seven culprits—none of whom were Chinese.

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By the late 1930s, the Chinese in Montana and in Billings were leaving for larger “Chinatowns” in San Francisco or elsewhere on the West Coast. Discriminatory laws and a hostile society had always made family formation, assimilation and citizenship difficult for Chinese immigrants in Billings and throughout Montana. Larger communities on the West Coast offered greater social opportunities as well as the chance to preserve Chinese language and culture. During the 1940s, small Chinese communities in Billings, Helena, Bozeman, Butte and elsewhere, probably numbering several thousand in total, seemingly vanished without a trace. The group that once formed 10 percent of the people in the territory had apparently disappeared from the state. The residents of China Alley did leave a marker of their presence, however. Mountview Cemetery on Central Avenue in Billings contains, clustered in the southeast corner, a series of grave markers from this era. Etched in English and Chinese, reflecting the dual language and identity of the lives remembered there, these markers stand as silent sentinels of an (almost) vanished history.

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now and then We are fortunate to live in a community that bolsters both roots and reinvention. Knowing where we’ve come from only adds context and color to who we are now. In celebration of 10 wonderful years publishing Magic City Magazine, we take you back as far as 100 years to catch a rare glimpse at Billings’ metamorphosis.

Stapleton Building

Then: Designed in 1904, the Stapleton Building was the tallest and largest building in Billings at the time. The building originally housed Hart Albin Department Store, offices and a men’s overnight club. This photo was snapped in the heyday of the 1920s. Now: The Stapleton Building is now home to a parking garage in the basement, retail stores and restaurants on the first floors, offices on the second floor and condominium apartments on the third and fourth floors.

By Brittany Cremer Vintage photography courtesy of the Western Heritage Center. Present-day photography by Bob Zellar 62 I MAY 2013 I MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE

McKinley School

Then: Students, donned in appropriate attire for the age, proudly stand at attention for a group photo in 1910. Now: Children frolic and play at recess at McKinley School.

Senior High

Then: Prior to 1939, high school students in Billings attended the crowded and congested Lincoln School (now referred to as the Lincoln Center.) With the leadership of superintendent Mike Gallagher, the school district applied for supplemental funds from the Public Works Administration totaling about $1.3 million. Grand Avenue and Virginia Lane was selected as the building site, and the school board received much criticism for building a school “way out in the country.� The job was completed in 1940, when this photograph was taken. Now: Located in the heart of Billings, Senior High School offers a coeducational, comprehensive learning experience with a multitude of extracurricular and academic activities. School population now tallies upward of 1,800 students.

2500 block of Montana Avenue

Then: The historic Commercial Hotel anchors the 2500 block of Montana Avenue in the 1920s. The structure was torn down in 1967, but several of the original edifices on the block remain today. Now: Montana Avenue brims with local art, culture and cuisine.



p h oto journ a l

N. 27th St. from Montana Avenue

Then: A hardware store, drug store, café and telephone company earmark what was one of Billings’ busiest streets circa 1925. Now: Downtown traffic bustles on 27th Street—some traveling to the hospital corridor, to the airport or to jobs downtown.

Elks Club

Then: In 1920, the Elks Club (Lodge #394) distinguished itself with stately front columns and tiered deck. Now: The original Billings Elks Club remains one of the city’s signature historical gems.


North Broadway and Minnesota Avenue

Then: Dirt roads and wooden walkways hallmark a provincial North Broadway in 1908. Now: The railway bisects a portion of Broadway, which is still home to several thriving Billings businesses.

Northern Hotel Parking Garage

Then: Downtown shoppers enjoy the sunshine as they park their Chevys and Buicks in the Northern Hotel’s parking garage in the 1950s. Now: The newly-renovated “grand dame” of Billings was revealed to the public on March 17, 2013, but the adjacent parking garage was demolished just months before.




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Riding the Rocket­From Roy Rogers to Fellini By Gene Colling I illustration by lee hulteng

Some of life’s transitions are subtle, others are more like rocket rides. One of my early rocket rides was touched off by a diminutive college English professor. I found my way to her classroom after leaving a small school in a small town. Due to the efforts of my superb high school English teacher, I was placed in her Advanced English class my freshman year of college. On the first day, our highly-cultured professor, Mrs. Hvistendahl, peered over her reading glasses to tell us that she did not expect to deal with any grammatical errors in our writing.   She also said she wanted to see the caliber of writing that justified placement in her class.  A creeping sense of dread began coming over me. Then she asked each of us to tell the class what we had read that summer. Dread gave way to panic. I had spent my summer hunting gophers and talking to the girls at the town drive-in; the only thing I might have read was a condensed article in Reader’s Digest. Sitting in the back of the room, I listened as the other students spouted names like Updike, Hemingway, Faulkner and Dostoevsky, and my mind raced to come up with a plausible excuse for my ignorance. Fortunately, the class period expired before my turn. I would not be exposed as a complete fraud. I slunk out of the classroom realizing that I was now in a bigger pond with bigger fish. The next class, Mrs. Hvistendahl swept into the room, positively entranced.   “I saw a movie last night that has changed my life,” she gushed. “I want all of you to see it so that we can discuss it in class. It’s called 8 ½ and directed by an Italian director named Federico Fellini.” At that time I could list all the movies I had seen on both hands. Living on a farm, it was a rare event to go to the local movie house, and


when I did the shows were limited to westerns and biblical themes. That evening I stood in the gilded foyer of the college theater waiting for the first showing to clear out. As people were leaving, several looked over at us saying, “Get your money back.  Don’t see it. It’s terrible.” I was a little shaken, but Mrs. Hvistendahl’s pious endorsement convinced me to ignore them. How could someone with Mrs. Hvistendahl’s refined sensibilities steer me wrong I reasoned, and handed my ticket to the usher. The first shock was that the movie was in Italian with English subtitles. After the first five minutes of what I later learned was a dream sequence, I had a pounding headache, and any shred of sophistication had vanished. Every movie I had seen before had a plot that was as obvious as a two-headed calf; this film’s plot was as elusive as a sharp photo of Sasquatch. The noise inside my head was turning into a din. Questions began echoing around my skull. What’s the story about? Who’s the good guy and the bad guy? Is this Mrs. Hvistendahl’s idea of a practical joke? What am I going to say in class when she calls on me to give an intelligent analysis? Why don’t I understand this?  What is wrong with me? The rest of the movie was a blur as it sank deeper into strange and random images. It seemed I had ridden a rocket of consciousness from Roy Rogers to Fellini, and it left me warped and dumb struck. As I walked through the lobby, I wished that there would have been another show so I could have yelled at the waiting crowd, “Don’t go.  Get your money back!” There was no Google or Wikipedia to help me fake my way through Mrs. Hvistendahl’s next class. But I was able to read a movie

review in the library and learned that Federico Fellini was the darling of the New Age movie directors. The review called Fellini “a genius possessed of a magic touch, a prodigious style. The beauty of this film lies in its confusion.” I couldn’t have agreed more. In Mrs. Hvistendahl’s next class I learned a valuable lesson that has stayed with me through life. There will always be people who don’t mind monopolizing meetings and discussions. The same students that had read all the authors I had never heard of tried to outdo even Mrs. Hvistendahl in their enchantment of the movie. I sat in back trying to look invisible. Despite my Fellini experience, I became a movie buff in college. The town had two classic theaters, and movies were cheap entertainment. For me they were a cultural and geographic transporter – a way to learn about a world far different from my prairie upbringing. Going to a movie was a total experience – the beautiful foyers and plush décor set the stage for experiences beyond my imagination. These days my movie going has slowed down considerably, since most films feature an overuse of propane explosions and computer animations. I also miss the classic movie theaters, which have given way to mega-cineplexes. I started thinking I should maybe give Fellini another shot. Perhaps I would see it with different eyes, and it would make perfect sense and change my life. Or maybe it would be just another rocket ride. Gene Colling claims dual residency in both Billings and Missoula. He recently retired after a career with the U.S. Forest Service. For 25 of those years, he produced video programs including ones on such Billings area topics as the Beartooth Highway, Pryor Mountain wild horses, Lewis and Clark expedition, Hebgen Lake earthquake and Nez Perce Trail.

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aren’t afraid of animals and want to live and breathe a snapshot of real Western Americana.

What You’ll Love: Ranch life isn’t always “all work and no play.” After a hard day’s work, you can soothe your muscles—and star gaze—in one of the two outdoor hot tubs.

What Will Surprise You: The area is steeped If you’ve always harbored a hidden hankering to ditch city life and work on the range, then the Lonesome Spur Ranch may be your ticket. Set in the Clark’s Fork Valley in the shadows of the Pryor and Beartooth Mountains, this fifth-generation working cattle ranch, run by Lonnie and Elaine Schwend, allows guests to get down and dirty in the day-to-day operations and rhythms of ranch life. It’s nothing fancy, but it’s authentic—so authentic, in fact, that Nicholas Evans spent time at the ranch researching The Horse Whisperer. Daily activities at Lonesome Spur are dictated by the weather, the cattle and, er, well… Lonnie. Most summer days are spent in the saddle branding, inspecting fences and water Opposite page, top: Hidden Hollow Hideaway. holes, moving cattle and checking on the herds. With the cattle ranges encompassing Photo courtesy of Hidden Hollow ranch. about 100,000 acres of varied terrain, your rides will also introduce you to abundant wildFar left: Guest in meadow. Courtesy Lone life. Other horse-related activities include team penning, cutting, sorting, barrel running and Mountain Ranch and Donnie Sexton. Calf pleasure riding. branding, courtesy of Lonesome Spur Ranch. Food—or vittles, in ranch-speak—at the Lonesome Spur consists of good, old-fashioned Right: Roping calves, courtesy of Dryhead meals (including ranch-raised beef and bison), served family-style in The Lodge. Once a Ranch. Above: Cattle drive at Lonesome Spur week, Buffalo Mike’s Dutch Oven Campfire features buffalo roast, veggies, and peach cobRanch. Inset, top right: Cookout area and bler. cabin. Bottom right: Guests participate in For lodging, you’ll find log furniture in western-themed rooms, including rooms in The cattle drive with views of the Pryor Moutains Ranch House, which sports a large wrap-around deck. Watching the sun sink behind the in the background. Photos courtesy Lonesome mountains is the perfect end to an exhilarating day. Spur Ranch.

in Native American history, and some of the pleasure rides include trips to visit Indian pictographs.

Greenbacks: The standard ranch package at Lonesome Spur is $1,650 per week per adult and $1,100 per week for children under 10.

Give a Holler To: Call the Lonesome Spur at 406-662-3460 or check out


Mountain Sky Guest Ranch Emigrant, Montana

This is The Place to Hang Your Hat If… You are a foodie and don’t want to work too hard—this is vacation, after all.

What You’ll Love: There’s an incredible camaraderie between staff and guests. You’ll love feeling that you’re part of a big family. Why You’ll Be Surprised: You probably wouldn’t expect phenomenal fine dining at a guest ranch. Cruisine offerings—which change daily—include items as varied as king crab legs, lobster thermidor, butternut squash soup garnished with a kaleidoscope pattern of lemon crème fraîche, roasted pepper and tomato salad with prosciutto.

If you’re looking for a luxurious, laid-back ranch experience where you’ll be pampered within 8,000 acres of paradise—Paradise Valley, that is—look no further than Mountain Sky Guest Ranch. Welcoming guests since 1929, the staff at this AAA 4-Diamond rated facility wants to help you revive your soul, rejuvenate your spirit and reconnect with nature. There, the world is your own, it almost seems, with a variety of mind, spirit and body-enhancing activities. Start your day with an energizing yoga class before selecting from the abundant activities available for the rest of the day. Choose from horseback riding through some of the most stunning scenery in the country, hiking through dazzling meadows, fly fishing, golfing on the ranch’s nine-hole, Johnny Miller-designed course, swimming, rafting on the Yellowstone River, relaxing with a massage or visit to the sauna. In the evening, you’ll enjoy Western dancing, hayrides, sing-alongs, hot-tubbing under the stars or cozying up to the warmth of the outdoor stone fireplace before Top: Guests enjoy trail rides in the slipping into soothing slumber. And, if you’re bringing kids, the staff has cooked up Paradise Valley. Inset left: Golfing fun activities like arts and crafts, nature walks, horseback riding and swimming to with majestic views is available for keep them happily engaged. guests. Inset Right: Shooting is Not only is the scenery and service unparalleled at Mountain Sky, but so is the an option for enthusiasts. Photos food. The day begins with buffet-style breakfasts, muffins or made-to-order omelets. courtesy of Mountain Sky Guest Casual outdoor lunches include salads, homemade soups, fruits, cheeses, varieties of Ranch. ethnic dishes and home-baked cookies. For dinner, enjoy gourmet continental cuisine in the Mountain View Lodge; or, choose a more casual dinner ride of barbecued steaks, chicken or seafood at the historic working cattle ranch.


Greenbacks: During the summer season (June 9 through August 25), all stays are one week minimum and run from Sunday to Sunday. Adult rates range from $3,590 to $4,540 per week. Rates are all-inclusive and cover lodging, meals, ranch activities. Kids’ rates run from $2,940 to $3,040, depending on age.

Give a Holler To: For more information, check the website or call 406333-4911

The 3Rs of Ranch Life

By Michelle Williams

Whether you choose a dude ranch, a working ranch or a resort ranch, riding like one of the cowboys requires some basic know-how. Think you have what it takes? Jennifer Cerroni, owner of the Dryhead Ranch, gave us some tips on what you need to know to cowboy up. According to Cerroni, there are three Rs you need to perfect in order to function on a working ranch: roping, riding and ranch language. Most you’ll learn while in the saddle, but here are a few important tips:


On a ranch, roping is important for managing and caring for livestock. This skill is most valuable when you’re miles from the ranch and come across sick or injured livestock. Roping the animal allows the cowboy to administer care immediately rather than transporting the animal back to the ranch. Other reasons for roping include: applying identification tags to ears, branding, training, vaccinations and sometimes, to keep the animal moving in a desired direction when sorting or trailing. Roping takes years of practice to master so don’t get discouraged. Here are a few tips to help improve your skills: Start on the ground roping a stationary object until you can consistently catch the object from 30 feet away. Aim the loop for the top of the object you’re trying to rope. Keep your throwing elbow at a 90-degree angle. Select the correct weight and length of rope for what you are roping. Move to your horse and continue to rope stationary objects until you are able to accurately gauge timing and distance while moving.

Riding Riding a horse can be challenging for beginners but with practice, everyone can learn to ride with the same grace and confidence of a cowboy. Wear a good boot with a heel—always. This is important for proper foot placement in the stirrup. Sit as relaxed as possible because horses are very sensitive to body position and movement. Add a hat to your outfit for sun protection, allowing you better visibility, comfort and protection from weather. Sit balanced in the saddle. Good body position includes a straight back, reins in your right hand and feet properly placed in the stirrups, with toes turned out, heels down and resting on the balls of your feet. Remember these common commands: “Whoa” is stop while gently pulling back on reins. A gentle kick means “go.” Most people don’t realize that being a good rider also involves understanding your horse’s basic body behavior. Horses communicate through body language, and understanding your horse’s changes in body movements will help you determine when he’s happy, sad, in pain, afraid or distracted. Here are some basic behaviors to look for both from the ground and in the saddle:

Ears: A horse’s ears follow his line of vision and tell you in which direction he’s focused. If a horse’s ears are pointed

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forward, be careful approaching from the side or rear. He may not see you approaching and become startled. A horse with ears pinned against his head indicates anger, and flicking his ears can mean he’s nervous or afraid. Eyes: A horse’s eyes function as bifocals, but opposite of humans. The lower part of the eye helps them see far away and the top part is near. A horse will raise his head to look at something in the distance and lower his head for objects closer to him. Head: When a horse’s head is raised and ears pointed forward, he is alert. It is important to realize that at this moment, he is not paying attention to his rider. A neutral head position is a sign your horse is relaxed and feeling good. When the rider is on the ground, a well-trained horse will follow his rider’s movements with his head to show respect and attention. Tail: A tail raised above the level of the back is a sign of excitement and energy. When this occurs, the horse is not paying much attention to you and could be prone to spooking, bucking or bolting. Putting the horse to work will help regain his attention. A nervous or stressed horse will press his tail down against his hindquarters. Swishing of the tail is all about fly control.

Ranch Talk Lastly, if you’re going to rope and ride like a cowboy, you need to start talking like one. Here are some common terms you’ll hear on the ranch:

Wrangle: To bring in the horses out of the pasture Lid: Refers to your hat Riggin: Refers to a cowboy’s clothing or the equipment on a saddle

Dally: Once you’ve roped an animal, you dally by wrapping the rope around the saddle horn to keep the animal from pulling it from your hands Green: A term for any person or animal with lack of skill or training Broke Horse: A horse that has been given some education. A green-broke horse is partially trained; a well-broke horse is well-trained Crow Hop:  Stiff-legged jumps by a horse. A crow hop can also happen when a horse is trying to stop forward motion and the rider is handling the reigns incorrectly; also known as frog walking Hobbles: Restraints that fasten around a horse’s front legs below the ankle, to keep him from running off while the cowboy is out of the saddle. Most commonly used during the night when the cowboy is on the open range

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Dude Ranch Roundup Working and ranching almost seem redundant. If that is the experience you seek, here are four more working ranches where you can get down and dirty. Dryhead Ranch Lovell, Wyoming

Hidden Hollow Hideaway Townsend, Montana About an hour from Helena and on the western slope of the Rocky Mountains, this ranch offers adventure and accommodations for up to 10 guests each week. Rates ($2,000) include meals, lodging and ranch activities such as horseback riding, cattle drives, wildlife and photo tours, gold panning and aerobic exercise in the form of fence repair, yard maintenance and wood-splitting. Photo courtesy of Hdden Hollow Ranch. The Dryhead Ranch is an authentic working cattle ranch located on 20,000 acres in the Pryor Mountains. The guest-friendly cow horses (no nose-to-tail trail horses here) will be your partner for a week while you move cattle, rope and doctor sick or injured animals, check fences and enjoy breathtaking scenery from the seat of your saddle. This is a John Wayne-approved vacation. The rate is $1,700 and includes five days of riding, lodging, home-cooked meals, well-trained cow horses and riding instructions.

ing, volleyball and billiards. The $1,890 weekly cost includes meals, lodging, riding instruction and fishing privileges.

Bonanza Creek Guest Ranch Martinsdale, Montana Focusing on horseback riding, this ranch, which includes 15,000 head of cattle on 25,000 acres, offers personal attention to up to 12 guests per week. Set beneath the Crazy and Castle Mountains, the solar-powered ranch also features stunning scenery, homestyle meals, wagon rides, hiking, massages and fishing. Their $1,950 weekly per-person rate includes lodging, meals, horseback riding and other ranch activities.

63 Ranch

Livingston, Montana Dating from 1863, this authentic working dude ranch is a National Historic Site that sits below Elephant Head Mountain and adjacent to the two million acres of Gallatin National Forest. You can help with ranch work—or not. Enjoy horseback riding, fly fishing, hiking, square dancing, bird watchPhoto courtesy of Bonanza Creek Guest Ranch.


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Circle the Wagons & Relax

If you are not partial to blisters and calluses, then these four resort-style guest ranches may be more to you likin’.

Triple Creek Ranch Darby, Montana Prepare to be pampered at this adults-only, award-winning resort ranch, set in the Bitterroot Mountains. Ideal for a romantic get-away, Triple Creek offers horseback riding, cattle drives, hiking, birding, photo safaris, fly-fishing, tennis, a fitness center, swimming and a melting pot of internationally-flavored meals—all complemented by an incredible wine cellar (they’ve won the Wine Spectator Award of Excellence for many years). Nightly per-couple rates range from $950 to $1,450 and include meals, snacks, house wines, cocktails and an incredible array of activities.

Averill’s Flathead Lake Lodge Bigfork, Montana You don’t normally think of sailing as a ranch activity, but with Flathead Lake right there, it is a must at Averill’s. There’s also horseback riding, barn dances, tennis, beach volleyball, hiking, biking, nightly beach fires with live music, golfing, whitewater rafting and a plethora of water sports. The weekly rate of $3,444 includes cozy accommodations, family-style Western cuisine, horse and water programs and all on-site activities.

Lone Mountain Ranch Big Sky, Montana This ranch’s setting within the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem means that your horseback riding experiences will likely take you through wildflower-filled alpine meadows. You’ll also enjoy fly fishing, tours into Yellowstone National Park, yoga, massage, oil painting workshops, whitewater rafting, ziplining, rock climbing, golfing and nightly entertainment. Weekly rates range from $2,500 to $3,400 and include lodging, unbelievable meals, horseback riding, Yellowstone Park trips and other entertainment.

Photo courtesy of Red Ruflet Ranch and Dave Huber.

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Red Reflet Ranch Ten Sleep, Wyoming The Red Reflet is both a working cattle ranch and luxurious five-star resort, located on more than 27,000 acres in the nearby Big Horn Mountains of Wyoming. Men’s Journal-approved and kid-requested, guests enjoy luxurious amenities, chef-prepared cuisine and chalets with a private outdoor spa tub. Rates are all-inclusive with unlimited activities for the entire family. Whether you ride with the cowboys or relax with a massage, Red Reflet will exceed your expectations in many ways.

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the last best city

billings the last best city If you live in Billings, you’re lucky.

live I play I work

Montana’s largest urban center boasts a strong economy, affordable housing, low unemployment and an enviable lifestyle. But it gets even better. As a community, we’ve largely avoided becoming another homogenized version of everywhere else, choosing instead to retain our western way of life. Here, chivalry is not dead, your word is your bond and neighbors reach out to one another. In the following pages we celebrate having the best of both worlds – Old West values coupled with a New West vision. It’s a unique perspective which you won’t find anywhere else in the world.

photogra larryI MAY mayer MAGICphy CITY by MAGAZINE 2013 I 77

W illing s B S P E C I AL F E A T U R E

the last best city


We Love


Billings has dual appeal. It’s an attractive destination for out-of-staters and home to

generations of Montana natives. To investigate its charm, we did some askin’ around. Read on to find

out why so many are proud to put down roots and call Montana’s Magic City home.

E d ite d b y A l l y n Hu lten g a n d B ritt a n y Cre m er




Down home

Social networking

Like the song goes “they know you by name and treat you like family.” Here, everyone is so darn friendly.


Vittles variety

You can dine on savory Montana steaks or awardwinning sushi, or both.

We knew how Facebook™ worked long before Mark Zuckerberg—well, in a manner of speaking. In Montana, we know that word travels fast, and gossip travels even faster— which is why we try to mind our p’s and q’s.


In these parts, rodeo is religion

Our cowboys are the quintessential symbol of strength and humility. Don’t be surprised to see them “rub some dirt on it” and “cowboy-up.”

3. Urban cowboy

Go on—wear a cowboy hat, jeans and boots to a black-tie affair. You’ll fit right in.


$9.99 means $9.99

No sales tax means shoppers pay the retail price and nothing more. Double bonus: Show your Montana ID in Washington State, and most stores will honor Montana’s no-tax policy.


Amenities matter

Billings boasts a newer minor league baseball park, a newly-renovated event arena, a new public water park and soonto-open state-of-the-art library. Photo by Paul Ruhter



Pomp and Circumstance

Montana State University Billings, Rocky Mountain College, City College, Yellowstone Baptist College – there’s no shortage of higher education.


Montana’s Holy Trinity

The Yellowstone, Clarks Fork and Stillwater Rivers offer blue-ribbon fly fishing mere minutes from the city.


Have dog, will travel


No compass required

Our furry friends hallmark the backs of our trucks. But we’ve taken it a step further. Pup-pedicures, doggie hotels and canine specialty shops have sprouted up across the city, catering to our affinity for our fourlegged family members. (Cat lovers need not despair; there are plenty of posh amenities for kitty creatures, too.)

The Rims to the north, the Yellowstone River to the south, the Beartooth Mountains to the west and Sacrifice Cliff to the east means no one ever gets lost.


Point A to point B



Commute? What commute? We have no idea what “gridlock” and “bumper-tobumper” really mean.


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Spin, run or walk

With miles of spectacular trails looping through the city, there’s no reason not to get out and get moving.


Fair shake


Our reputation for being hard-working, industrious and honest folks just happens to be true. A handshake is your word and bond.



We have a robust cultural and arts environment, including a burgeoning indie music scene. Feed that right brain!


Dancin’ in the streets


Alive after 5 (or AA5 if you’re in the cool kids club.) The Magic City’s downtown transforms into a live music festival every Thursday night during the summer.


Billings is one of the few cities where you can watch a teenage girl sprinkle sparkles on her prize-winning pig at Montana Fair.

15. Barefoot blue jean nights



Because here, Levi’s™ trump Ralph Lauren™ for fashion any day of the week. (This is true for the ladies, too.)


Swish, swish

In 90 minutes you can have your ski tips pointing downhill at the top of Grizzly Peak lift.


From downtown, the vehicles driving along airport road appear to be driving off the edge of the earth. Land-ho, Columbus!


Matchbox™ cars and trucks


Pub hub

We have a burgeoning downtown microbrew scene. If hand-crafted beer isn’t your thing, try Trailhead Spirits, a local distillery or Yellowstone Cellars, the local winery.

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406.860.1284 MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 83


Make a statement

With more than 150 specialty license plates to choose from, there’s no excuse not to express yourself.


Magical, mythical

At Pompeys Pillar, we have physical proof that famed explorers Lewis and Clark existed. We’re still on the lookout for Sasquatch.


“Howdy, folks!”

We’re the largest city in Montana, yet we’ve retained our Western charm. We are a populous of more than 100,000 friends.


From staged to SOLD!

Ours is one of the hottest real estate markets in the nation—if not the world—and yet housing remains affordable.

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the last best city

M a de in monta n a — so ld wor ld wide

Think everything’s made in Chin a? Think again. Montanans have a reputation for producing unique, highly-sought after goods. Here’s a sampling of some of our favorites.



H-Bar Hatworks Hats off to Mike Hodges and his fine line of hand-crafted rustler wear. For the past seven years, Hodges has worked to capture the essence of the Old West in the brim of his fine, custom-made cowboy hats. His business, H-Bar Hatworks, has distinguished itself as Billings’ local, premiere custom hatter, creating oneof-a-kind pieces of wearable art. Hodges’ deep-seeded connection to the West is the impetus behind his passion. Hats are individually sized and molded to the wearer’s exact head shape, created from the finest hare and beaver pelts. Featured Product: Custom-fitted cowboy hat made from pure, water-resistant beaver fur Price: $420 for beaver $320 for beaver-blend $250 for hare Available at: H-Bar Hatworks 2513 Montana Ave. Ste. B Billings, MT 254-7126

Photo courtesy of Fine Gems International and American Sapphire Co., photo © Robert E. Kane

Montan a Sapphires Gold miner Ed Collins first reported sapphires in Montana on May 5, 1865, along the Missouri River near Helena. Because the stones were generally pale and greenish in hue, the discovery did not initially create much excitement. Twenty years later, a gold miner along Yogo Creek sent a collection of attractive cornflower blue stones to an assayer who in turn forwarded them to Tiffany & Co. The stones were identified as very fine sapphires and purchased by Tiffany & Co. for a tidy sum. Thus began the legacy of Montana sapphires. Montana is the most prolific producer of gem-quality sapphires in North America. The gemstones originate from four primary deposits including Yogo Gulch, the Missouri River, Dry Cottonwood Creek and Rock Creek. Yogo sapphires from Yogo Gulch are unique in that they have a very uniform, intense blue color and thus never require heat treatment. Other Montana sapphires occur in every color of the rainbow. Many jewelry designers and manufacturers welcome Montana sapphires for their precision cutting, high brilliance and wide range of colors. Excerpted from “The Sapphires of Montana: A Rainbow of Colors,” by Robert Kane, Re-published January 2004. Robert Kane is the former Director of the Gubelin Gem Lab in Lucerne, Switzerland and former Manager of Gem Identification at GIAs West Coast Gem Trade Laboratory. Kane is currently President and CEO of Fine Gems International in Helena, Mont. Montana Sapphire and Yogo Sapphire prices vary. Montana Sapphire and Yogo Sapphire gemstones and jewelry are available at fine local jewelers


C. Sharps Arms, Inc. The crew at C. Sharps Arms in Big Timber know a little bit about how the West was won. C. Sharps Arms Co., Inc. has been in the rifle business for more than 35 years and more importantly, has been in the business of producing some of the finest quality firearms available worldwide. Employees are “proud to say that our guns were the first in Montana and the finest in the world.” All Sharps rifles are stamped with the original Sharps Rifle Manufacturing Company trademark, “OLD RELIABLE.” This historic and well-earned trademark is the property of C. Sharps Arms Co., Inc. and cannot be used or duplicated by any other manufacturer in the world today.

Featured Product: C. Sharps Arms Custom shop 1874 Grade IV Heavy Hartford Long Range Sporting and Target Rifle. Custom features on this rifle include: Presentation grade American walnut, custom fit and finish, French gray receiver with grade IV engraving, ebony nose cap, full pattern hand checkering, pistol grip, cheek rest, 34” part round barrel, Deluxe long range tang sight and globe front with spirit level.  Price: Basic models of this rifle are available at $2,095, plus options.  The model featured retails at $7,950. Available at: C. Sharps Arms, Inc. P.O. Box 885, Big Timber, MT Phone: 406-932-4353

Buckaroo’s Scott and Staci Grosskopf have a heart for horses (and their riders, too). The couple specializes in capturing the unbridled beauty of a traditional buckaroo lifestyle and sells cowboy gear to match. Their hard work, dedication and commitment to producing and manufacturing authentic and time-tested products has earned them accolades as one of the largest distributors of ranch ropes in the U.S. They also manufacture their own line of sterling silver B/B brand bits and spurs, an appreciation for which has spread from high desert cowboys to horsemen across the globe.

Featured Product: Sterling silver embellished horse bit Price: $540 Available at: Buckaroo’s 221 North 15th St. Phone: 406-252-5000 or 1-888-955-ROPE

Gerry Rhoades pens Gerry Rhoades displays infinite patience with his craft. A seasoned artist and wood worker, Rhoades spent many years building custom fly rods before trying his hand at creating one-of-a-kind writing instruments. Made out of exotic wood, mother-of-pearl, rock and other materials, each pen has a unique “thumbprint” that emerges as Rhoades works the grain. Once he finishes the casing, Rhoades expertly adds custom fittings before buffing and finishing the instrument.

Featured Products: Ballpoint pens, rollerball pens, fountain pens, dip pens and pencils. Price: $75 and higher Available at: Gerry Rhoades 860-8882


Simms G4Z Stockingfoot Wader Since its humble start in 1980, Simms™ has become one of the leading manufacturers of fishing products in the world. Based in Bozeman, Mont., the company pioneered a new kind of wader that integrated GORE-TEX into the design increasing the level of comfort and performance. Today, Simms™ makes 10 models of GORETEX waders in their Bozeman, Mont., production facility— waders which many anglers consider the gold standard of the fishing world. From the kid’s GORE-TEX stockingfoot waders to the top-of-the-line G4Z waders, all of Simms’ GORE-TEX waders proudly carry the “Made in the USA” tag. Featured Product: G4Z Stockingfoot Waders Price: $800 Available at: East Rosebud Fly & Tackle, Bighorn Fly & Tackle Shop, Scheels All Sports and Cabela’s


Cream of the West The very first batch of Cream of the West whole grain, hot cereal was cooked in a Montana ranch kitchen back in 1914. Since that time, Cream of the West has become a Montana staple. Cream of the West uses 100 percent whole grains including hard red spring wheat, soft white wheat, triticale, oats, barley and rye, which are the cereal’s only ingredients. The grains are grown on the high plains of Montana which is renowned for producing superior quality and high-protein content. After harvest, the grains go through a proprietary roasting process that produces a delicious, whole-grain favor. In 2002, seven ranch families bought Cream of the West and moved operations to Harlowton, Mont. The new owners worked to expand the product line, which now includes a variety of hot cereals, snacks and mixes, organic flours and grains plus honey, jams and syrups. In 2014 Cream of the West will celebrate 100 years as a Montana business. Products and prices vary. Available at: Cream of the West Harlowton, MT 59036 Phone: (800) 477-2383 Also available at most area grocery stores. • No Starches or Sugars • Complete Supplement • All Natural • Convenient • Speeds Healing

Keyser Creek Made in Montan a The staff members at Keyser Creek Smoked Meats have made mouthwatering and made-in-Montana synonymous with their signature line of deliciously-seasoned meats. Established in 1994, Keyser Creek is a fifth-generation business of butchers who take great pride in creating and selling only pork and beef raised by local Montana ranchers. They also carry a special line of from-scratch candy, jellies, syrups and honey—the perfect complement to a savory, salty gift basket of cured meats. It’s downhome delicious! Featured Products: Jerky, breakfast meats, steaks, hamburger, ham and turkey. Price: Varies based on item selected. Customer may choose to purchase individually or create a custom gift basket. Available at: Keyser Creek Made in Montana 632 N. 9th St. Suite 110N, Columbus, MT Phone: 406- 322-9073

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Regional Outlet & Home Office: 33N 15th St. Billings, MT M-F 9-5 or by appointment

RotaRy inteRnational® the RotaRy Foundation® There’s something that all Rotary club members have in common: We take action. As community volunteers, we reach out to neighbors in need. We build, support, and organize. We save lives. We work locally and globally.

Around the world and around the corner, the 1.2 million men and women of Rotary • Get involved in their communities • Connect with other professionals • Share their time and experience with young people • Support global causes, such as eradicating polio • Use their skills to help others

Whether you’re a veteran volunteer or new to community service, we’re looking for people like you.

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The Billings Rotary Club Meets Mondays at Noon - Crowne Plaza The Billings West Rotary Club Meets Wednesdays at Noon - Red Door For more information please contact 406-860-6181 • 406-671-3088

Service Above Self MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 89

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Forget high rise offices and up-tight suits. Meet six individuals whose jobs would never fit the confines of a cubicle.


Nate Murphy, Dinosaur Hunter Photo by Andrew Halbeck


Nate Murphy, Dinosaur Hunter Owner Judith River Dinosaur Institute and Dino Lab

Brad Olszewski

As told to Allyn Hulteng I Photo by Larry Mayer

As told to Allyn Hulteng I Photo courtesy of Brad Olszewski

Back to the future

I’m in the business of excavating, restoring and marketing fossils, including the full-scale skeletal reconstruction of large dinosaurs for major exhibits. What is unique about the Dino Lab is that we encourage students and other interested people to tour our facility and have their own “hands on” experience with dinosaur bone restoration. There’s no glass wall between the visitor and the bones.

Jurassic graveyard

We contract with private property owners in eastern Montana and Wyoming to hunt for fossils on their land. When we find a

of a museum exhibit. But before we shipped the skeleton, we took casts of the creature’s skull, which are on display at the Dino Lab. T Rex was a formidable predator; with stereoscopic vision and massive, multi-jointed jaws, they could easily spot prey and chew 150 pounds of flesh in a single bite.

Digging dinos

Excavating a dinosaur takes care and patience. When we find a graveyard, we isolate the bones into “islands,” or groups. Next, we cover the island in plaster and burlap. Once that hardens, we can lift the whole pod of plaster and bones and safely transport it back to the lab. At the lab we carefully separate the bone from layers of hardened dirt in a controlled environment.

Fossil fact

People are always surprised to learn that the dig is only 20 percent of recovering dinosaur remains – the other 80 percent takes place in a lab.

Hands on

dinosaur that is a viable specimen, we excavate the site and bring the fossil back to the lab where we prepare the bones and reconstruct the skeleton. The dinosaur is then marketed to museums in the U.S. and throughout the world. When we sell the exhibit the landowner receives a portion of the proceeds.

Finding Tyrannosaurus Rex

In 1998, we unearthed a full Tyrannosaurus Rex, which is now part


Recovering dinosaurs is an educational experience. We encourage people to come to the Dino Lab to learn about paleontology through tours and by working on actual projects. For those who are serious about learning about natural history and love the outdoors, we offer six-day long field programs. Our excavations attract a wide audience: students, science teachers, professionals and people from all around the globe.

Bet you didn’t know…

Only six stegosaurus skulls have ever been unearthed in North America – we found two of them.

Fish, Wildlife and Parks Fisheries Technician

Office with a view

From May through September my “office” spans the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness. I leave for the mountains on Monday and spend the majority of the day hiking to the first high-altitude lake, generally arriving late in the day. Before setting up camp, I set a gill net and hike the perimeter making basic observations about fish spawning habitat and noting fish and amphibian activity. The next day, I hike to another lake and do the same thing all over again until Friday evening when I return home.

Natural curiosity

I love the outdoors; growing up in Great Falls I started fishing at a young age, and that really influenced my career choice. In college I earned a wildlife management degree.

online sharing campsite conditions, whether there is adequate fire wood, the types of fish in each lake and other helpful information for hikers. An important aspect of my job is to do a thorough job assessing each campsite, providing up-to-date information.

Walking the wilds

In nine weeks during the summer, I hike between 175 to 200 miles – it’s a crazy whirlwind hiking to a different lake each night, but I love my job. I plan to keep doing this as long as my body allows. There will come a time when I can’t keep up the pace, but for now I stay in great shape.

Seasonal splendor

My first job was a seasonal fisheries technician in Yellowstone National Park where I worked on the lake trout removal program. It was a great experience. I was doing important work while enjoying the most amazing scenery, wildlife viewing and fishing in my off time.

No snow days

If we have a late spring, getting to our destination in the mountains can be difficult. We had a season like that in 2011. That spring we pitched tents in the snow, and some of the lakes were still frozen late into the season. You don’t take days off in the field due to snow.

Posting updates

Fish Wildlife and Parks posts a guide

People are surprised to learn…

Everyone thinks my job involves actually fishing the mountain lakes – that’s not true. I set nets and then use an electrode to attract fish to the net. Fish aren’t grounded; the electricity causes their spine to align with the electrical current, and their muscles pulsate causing them to swim to the surface. It’s an effective way to sample fish populations. The fish are temporarily stunned and recover quickly.

Dave Salys, General Manager

Big Sky Wildlife Control Services LLC

As told to Allyn Hulteng I Photo courtesy of Dave Salys

Sue Bellows

Artificial insemination technician ABS Global, Inc. As told to Brenda Maas I Photo by Larry Mayer

Who you gonna call?

When people discover a skunk in their crawl space, a porcupine in their shed or a den of snakes under their house, they call me. I’ve been a wildlife control expert in Billings since 2002.

Stinky situations

My claim to fame is that I can remove a skunk from your house and it will not spray. I once removed a skunk from under a water heater in a home in Yellowstone Country Club without having it spray. Another time a construction crew left vents open in a house in Red Lodge and three skunks tumbled in – I caught them without any odor, too.

Urban dwellers

Natural instincts

As a kid growing up in Indiana I learned to hunt, fish and trap for fur, and I still enjoy doing those things. Trapping for fur is totally different from trapping and removing critters. I spent several years studying wildlife control before starting the business.

Nuisance wildlife isn’t just found in the outlying areas of town, I’ve caught beaver within a five-minute walk of downtown Billings.

Rabid response

Yellowstone County has a real problem with skunk rabies, especially in the Heights. If you see a skunk acting strangely, be very careful and call an expert.

Unique niche

Don’t touch!

What I do is different from Fish, Wildlife and Parks. FWP manages game animals like deer, antelope, moose and game birds – they don’t handle skunks, raccoons, badgers, porcupines and the like. The people at FWP are very supportive of the service I provide to property owners.

The number one rule with animals is “if you care, leave them there.” If you see a baby bird or bunny, leave them where you find them. Chances are the mother is nearby. If you see a snake – do not pick it up. A bull snake at a glance looks a lot like a rattlesnake. Call an expert.

Snake charm

Get out, stay out

Snakes are the number one reason people contact me. I handle everything from removing a single snake from inside a house to eradicating an entire den of snakes from beneath a foundation – which isn’t as uncommon as you might imagine. If there’s erosion under the driveway or around the foundation, snakes can easily get in and nest. If you look outside on a warm spring day and see 50 snakes in your backyard, that’s a pretty good sign there’s a den situation going on.

A big part of what I do is exclusion – keeping animals from getting back in once they’re caught. That might include such things as bird netting, patching a soffit or installing a squirrel screen to keep squirrels from getting on a deck.


My motto is “critters don’t take days, off and neither do I.”

No bull

With artificial insemination (AI), we do the job that the bull would do, but AI allows for greater genetic selection. I work with my husband, Norm—we are a team. Basically I put my left arm into the cow’s rectum and feel the reproductive tract, physically thread the AI gun to just past the cervix and deposit semen into the cow’s uterus. I use my right arm to guide or run an ultrasound from the outside. I know this is weird, but most of my shirts are missing the left sleeve.

Ag-Ed in action

I have an undergraduate degree in animal science and a master’s in reproductive science; the physical aspect of this job is really hands-on. I also work at the USDA’s Fort Keogh Livestock and Range Research Laboratory in Miles City. I’ve been doing this for 26 years.

High-grade herd

Most people who know me would say that I’m not happy unless I am covered in manure. But I absolutely love my job—being outside, working with animals, helping the ranchers. Many of these folks would never be able to purchase the quality genetics that we can bring to them with AI. Those bulls are just too expensive—we can bring that to them one bull at a time.

All in the family

We cover a geographic area from Hysham to Glendive, Jordan to Broadus. My favorite time is when ranch families bring their kids out, getting them involved. These are family operations and it passes from one generation to the next, so I try to take the time to talk with those kids and answer their questions.

Timing is everything

We synchronize the cows’ heat cycles so that we can AI an entire herd in one weekend; the timing is crucial— this is the rancher’s livelihood. There are no sick days. If Norm and I have two helpers we can run 80 cows through the chutes in an hour, inseminating about 450 cows in a day. You have to be in good shape and have stamina.

Be brave

This can be a dangerous job. You have to know how to work cattle, and they are not always friendly—you have to be brave. I have had a cow break down the chute behind me and trap me. A cow weighs 700-1500 pounds and I’m only 130; that put me in a very bad position. I broke a few ribs, but we had to get the cows done.

The calling

I’m only 5’4” and many people say, “You are too small to be working those big cows.” I’ve heard it many times. This job requires a good sense of humor and I go with it. I can’t imagine anything different.


Susan Ziegler, taxidermist

Dale Edlund

Tru-Life Taxidermy

As told to Brenda Maas I Photos by Paul Ruhter

Independent pilot, airplane mechanic and crop duster Charles Trower Aviation As told to Brenda Maas I Photo by Larry Mayer


My husband, Jim, started Tru-Life taxidermy in 1985. I’ve been doing this since 1994 and our daughter Stella joined the business in 2007. We are a tag-team of sorts and we play off of each other’s strengths. Jim does all the head mounts, Stella likes the life-size mounts and I do the birds. I love that we all work together; our three-year-old granddaughter is here with us and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Globe trotter

You also have to be strong. I sometimes stand for hours at a time, working on one section. The larger animals require strength to get the right alteration.

Artistic eye

You have to have a good eye for detail to do this job. We keep an extensive reference library but you have to study the animal, know its patterns. How does it look relaxed, alert or in flight mode? What do its eyes look like? The flare of its nose? Details matter.

We are one of only three taxidermists in the state who holds a USDA import permit. As such, we get jobs from all over the globe— Alaska, Africa, Asia, Russia—you name it. If folks hunt, chances are, we have mounted it. The world comes to us this way.

Everyone has a story

I recently completed an ostrich—that was a lot of up-and-down on the ladder. And Jim did a giraffe. That was a first for all of us.

Hazards of the job


But this job can be dangerous. One slip of the knife and you are headed to the ER—I have scars to prove it. The worst is when you bleed on something white, like a mountain goat—pink hair doesn’t work.


Inches and seconds

I fly about three to four feet off the ground and spay the crops. On a good day—that means no wind at all—I get up to 15 feet and it spreads out real nice. But I’m always prepared to land.

to fly. I’ve probably logged 15,000 hours in Braves.

Something from nothing

I once recovered a wrecked Cherokee 6 aircraft from the wilds of Alaska. I was young and tough back then. It rained every day, so I built a shelter over the wreck and worked 16 hours a day for 28 days. I was already there and I was broke—it had to get done. When I landed it in Billings, I threw away the wings.

It got real quiet when the crankshaft on my plane broke, I started looking around for a place to land it, and four minutes later I was on the ground on Paul Burger’s ranch, just north of Sand Springs. I’ve probably had about three or four emergency landings in my life. I never really had a time when I didn’t think I would make it.

I have had guys call me from the side of a mountain, even text pictures. They are so excited to get their animal. You can feel the energy in the air around here when hunting season starts. When they bring their animal in, they trust us with their trophy—and that’s the neat part. The hunt is so exciting for them, and they all have a story. They share that with us and many customers become our friends.

Too tall

I’ve been in agriculture all my life. From growing up on a farm near Westby to spray-cropping, I’m always around farms. I was in the Air Force but did not actually learn to fly until after I was out, in 1954. I was an airplane mechanic first, then a pilot.

Makeshift runways

Experience pays

We use normal, every-day tools from various industries and have learned by doing. We have a tannery on-site, and I like to do pelts and rugs. We make our own plaques and Stella can weld, too. We’ve been doing this for so long that vendors often ask us for feedback on their products.

Roots and wings

What we do is more than taxidermy. We are preserving memories. It was a great adventure with someone they really care about—it matters. That’s the big reward for me.


I’m 80 now, and I just passed my FAA physical, again. I also have inspection authorization—that means that I can inspect the work of other pilots and sign off on it. Instead of dropping flags like we used to, I now use GPS to grid the fields. In fact, I think we had one of the first Satloc GPS Spray Systems in the state.

Trains, planes and automobiles

Although I don’t own any airplanes right now, I’ve probably had more planes than cars. My favorite was the Piper Brave—I liked the cockpit and the visibility and it was just a rugged airplane that was nice

These days

We crop sprayers are a dying breed because ground rigs are taking over. Plus, the insurance is so expensive that it’s tough for a young guy to get going. But I’m only semi-retired. I’ll probably fly 200-300 hours this season, compared to the 5,000 I used to. I always figured that you retire to expire, and I’m not ready for that yet.

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Cowboys, Indians, horses, hats and spurs have long been part of our culture. In the following pages, we celebrate our western heritage and pay homage to those who continue the legacy.

Ta l l i n t h e S a d d l e :

A new documentary on high school rodeo by award-winning producers and brothers Brian, Wally and Kevin Kurth

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Tall Saddle in the

Filmmaker Jim Abel, and actor/producer brothers Wally, Kevin and Brian Kurth, chronicle the ups and downs of high school rodeo, showing that the sport is as much about building character as it is about winning.

BY Allyson Gierke The young cowboy slowly picks himself up and limps through a cloud of brown dust back to the gate. He had hit ground hard; the thud still thunders in his ears. His horse is snorting nearby, wondering, as is he, if he’s qualified for another shot at it; another go round.

Across Montana there is a group of talented and dedicated high school athletes that never hear a pep band play or raucous cheering at a school rally. Nevertheless, day after day, week after week these young people ride, rope and practice their drills with an eye on becoming one of the best. These are rodeo athletes, and they epitomize the best in a young generation of western traditionalists.


High school rodeo is not a high school-sanctioned sport

in Montana. Those who participate do so almost exclusively with the emotional and financial support of their families. They train after class, between other sports practice, studies, farm chores and work. The next day they get up and do it all over again. Sid Kurth held a high degree of respect for the young rodeo gal or guy. Although he made his living as an attorney in Billings specializing in agriculture and tax law, he grew up in Fort Benton and understood the western way of life. A strong believer in higher education, Kurth saw an opportunity to shine the spotlight on these rodeo athletes and help them financially through scholarship support. Through the efforts of Kurth and others, The Montana Pro Rodeo Hall and Wall of Fame, a non-profit organization, began holding annual events to raise scholarship funds. But Kurth recognized that in order to sustain the support, it would be critical to create a permanent endowment. Prior to his death in 2009, Kurth asked his sons, Brian, Kevin and Wally, to produce a documentary about the skills, adversity and wonders of high school rodeo. Kurth knew that such an inspiring story could The producers of encourage others to contribute to an Tall in the Saddle endowment. The plan to release the brothers agreed. documentary at the No newcomers to producing 2013 High School independent films Rodeo National Finals – Wally Kurth held on July 14 – 20, has produced the award-winning 2013, in Rock Springs, documentary Class Wyo. Brian Kurth C: The only Game in noted that the film Town – Brian, Wally and Kevin enlisted will also be submitted the talent of veteran to the Sundance Film filmmaker Jim Abel. Festival. A public For more than a year, Abel followed the showing in Billings high school rodeo will be scheduled for circuit, documenting later this summer. events and individual stories in an hour-long film. Sprinkled throughout are micro-vignettes by such rodeo greats as Dan Mortensen, Richard Realbird and Hank Franzen. Hosted on camera and narrated by actor Wally Kurth, Tall in the Saddle is a powerful testament to the tenacity and character of these budding adults.

coming this summer

From top: Scenes from Tall in the Saddle, bronc rider hangs on. Center a bull rider gets thrown as a wranglers attempt to help. Far right: Producer, actor Wally Kurth. Right: High school rodeo atheletes, Chase Brooks, top and Josh Davidson, bottom.


A disciplined sport, a disciplined student

Most Montana rodeo athletes are hardworking members of ranching families. They work on the ranch, they work to further their education and they work long hours perfecting their skills. But training is just one facet of rodeo. These young men and women must also train and care for their livestock and travel long hours to weekend rodeos in venues from Plentywood to Hamilton, Kalispell to Crow Agency. Rodeoing is not easy, and it comes with a cost. Feed, fuel, equipment and time – lots of time, days and nights stretched to the very limit. The time and discipline required to pursue high school rodeo can be exhausting. Those who persevere, as the film reveals, build incredible character. These kids don’t accept disappointment. The documentary doesn’t just speak to those who are drawn to rodeo. “Rodeo here is a vehicle to show what hard work and dedication can do for the future of all young people and, hopefully, beg the question: The Montana Pro Rodeo ‘What if all kids were like Hall and Wall of Fame that?’” Abel says. (MPRHWF) is a non-profit


Changing landscape

While many rural communities in Montana are shrinking, there is a core of people who choose to continue the tradition of farm and ranch work. Most rodeo athletes say they are likely to stay in agriculture, raise families and pass along a heritage they value. “These are the people who raise our food and care for the land, now and in the future,” Brian said. “It’s important to sustain future generations of farmers and ranchers, and financial support for education is paramount. Tall in the Saddle tells that story.”

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Timing is Everything!

rodeo and wish to further their education. Each year the organization provides 12

• Residential • Recreational

$3,000 college scholarships. To date, more than $250,000 in scholarship money has been awarded. Producers of the

Don’t miss the Swiss!

documentary Tall in the Saddle hope that the film will generate support for a permanent endowment for rodeo athlete scholarships. For more information or to make a contribution, contact Montana Pro Rodeo Hall and Wall of Fame Endowment, P.O. Box 930, Billings, MT 59103 or call 406-255-8931 or log on to

Maya Burton

406-591-0106 MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 103

sweetheart rodeo of the

By Allyson Gierke

“Rodeo is definitely hard and not for everybody, but I think that it is the most rewarding sport out there.” — Jacklyn Teague, bARREL rACER


Jackie Teague has been riding horses since before she can remember. The daughter of avid horse enthusiasts, Teague first entered youth rodeos in the sixth grade and continued through high school. Currently a 4.0 student at the College of Great Falls, Teague talks about what it takes to participate in youth rodeo, and why she remains committed to the sport. What is the biggest misconception about rodeo?

I think that rodeo is the most unappreciated sport in the world. People think that our horses do all the work, that isn’t true. Most people just can’t comprehend the money, hours, sweat and blood that goes into the sport.

Talk about what it was like to rodeo in high school.

In high school, I played volleyball, basketball, rodeoed and was an excellent student. I would get out of school at 3 p.m., go to ball practice until 5 p.m., drive home, load up my horses and head to rodeo practice. Most nights I wouldn’t get home until 10 p.m. – and then I had to feed the horses and do my homework.

How is college rodeo different?

College hasn’t changed anything! I go to class all day, ride in my spare time, do homework when I can. I’m up until at least 1 a.m. every night. Sometimes I spend 5 hours at the barn helping run chutes, working horses or helping with maintenance. I literally never stop moving and still ended up with a 4.0 GPA last semester.

What distinguishes people who rodeo?

Rodeo people are the toughest, grittiest people I know. One of my professors always says that if she needs something done, she goes straight to the rodeo students because she can count on them.

How do you afford the cost of being a rodeo athlete?

I work all summer at a guest ranch. I also had to part with my dairy cow, Cleo, that I owned for seven years. My parents help me out a lot, but that’s because I’m performing in school. If my horses need something, they get it; I don’t shop for myself, I keep track of the money I spend. You have to pick and choose and make sacrifices.

How has rodeo helped you as a person?

I am incredibly patient, and more determined and inspired as a competitor. Rodeo has instilled a sense of family in me – I know wherever I go I can count on someone in my rodeo family to help me out, and people can count on me. Rodeo people would give you the shirt off their back without thinking twice. That’s what is so cool about rodeo – it’s the only individual sport where people will help their competitors, even if it means they get beaten by them.

What else do you want people to know?

I have been really blessed in my life with very supportive parents, amazing horses to work with and a great team of coaches. My rodeo coach at Great Falls, Dick Lyman, is great. I am so grateful for my experience with high school rodeo and all of the scholarship money that I received. Rodeo is definitely hard and not for everybody, but I think that it is the most rewarding sport out there.


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Jacklyn Teague. Photo courtesy of Tall in the Saddle. MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 105 Find us on Facebook



By Shelley Van Atta Those who are lucky enough to own a horse will tell you they share a special bond that cannot be explained. A horse owns a piece of your heart that through the years becomes the lifeblood of your soul. There are no words to describe it and you cannot touch it, but you feel the empty space it leaves when it is gone. For three Billings horse owners, who hail from different parts of the country, a love of horses has been with them since early childhood, and the magic endures. “Little girls and horses have always been close to a fairy tale that is true life,” said Barb Skelton, owner of Intermountain Equestrian Center, north of Billings. “I have come to realize over the years that the bond between humans and horses isn’t so much about the horse; it’s about two resilient spirits, intensified by the company of one another. Horses open our souls to creativity, honesty and love we may not otherwise see in ourselves.” Skelton was a Montana ranch girl. Her grandfather raised “magnificent Percherons,” and her grandmother had horses “just for the love of them.” Their horses worked cattle during the week and were in rodeos or horse shows on the weekends. Horses were part of her lifestyle from her earliest memory. That wasn’t the case for Nona Stockton and Deanna Hovland, both of whom were raised by “non-horsey parents” who introduced


I have come to realize over the years that the bond the horse; it’s about two resilient spirits, intensified by 106 I MAY 2013 I MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE

Iver Hovland, 14, rides Rosie across Wendell’s Bridge at Norm’s Island.

between humans and horses isn’t so much about the company of one another. — Barb Skelton ­­


Horse Sense Horses are a visual elixir, a natural tranquilizer by their very presence. Who is not awed by the power and independence of a galloping herd of horses? They are stunning to view and have been the inspiration for countless artists, writers and poets, transfixed by their innate equine grace and beauty. However—and it is a big HOWEVER—it’s one thing to love them from afar, and quite another to have the daily commitment that comes with ownership. Many people love the idea of owning a horse, but find that actual ownership is not as idyllic as they had imagined.

Nona Stockton offers advice for those who may be considering ownership: ‘‘The mistake I see folks make is that they get into horse ownership without proper expertise and then are dissatisfied with the experience. Horses are not like our usual pets, such as dogs and cats, in that dogs and cats are predators and horses are prey animals with a completely different set of instinctual behaviors, maintenance requirements and training strategies. Many times I see new horse owners who think their horses are “bad,” when the real problem is lack of knowledge on the part of the horse owner. A person cannot buy a trained horse and think they are set. Every single interaction we have with a horse is a learning experience and teaches the horse “desired” or “undesired” behavior. The best advice I can give is to find an expert horseperson to advise teach, and remain involved with you and your horse. What to look for in that person? A certified riding instructor is a good place to start. Also look for verifiable expertise in the particular type of riding you are interested in. When looking for a riding instructor, look around at the general atmosphere of the riding facility. Are the horses and students happy and healthy? Is there demonstrated knowledge of and compliance with the industry standard for safety with and around equines, which would include riding helmets, proper attire, well-maintained fences, corrals and pastures, no smoking/drinking policies.’’


them—Nona in Alabama and Deanna in Vermont—to the world of horses as novices, themselves. Both Stockton and Hovland ended up in Montana and both remain, as does Skelton, lifelong riders. Their common bond: horses. “I still have the same love of horses as that little 7-year-old girl, and that love is what I enjoy instilling in my riding students,” said Nona Stockton, whose education after graduating from Auburn University with a degree in animal sciences encompasses a formal riding education and a varied riding experience that includes eventing, jumping, trail riding, showing, fox hunting, ranch work and even riding a Somali pony in Kenya. Stockton once managed the sprawling N-Bar Ranch, where the fact that she was a certified riding instructor was one of the reasons she was sought to give riding lessons to Chelsea Clinton during her father’s presidency. After having taught in the Rocky Mountain College equestrian program for many years, where she developed the therapeutic riding instructor program, Stockton, who once had as many as 30 horses, now is a licensed clinical professional counselor and certified EAGALA (Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association) practitioner, and is the equine therapist at a local residential youth treatment program. Deanna Hovland, past president of the Montana Hunter Jumper Association, was part of an active horse-riding family in Vermont. During her adolescence and college years, she and one of her horses teamed up to compete in the regional show circuit. After that wonderful experience, Hovland thought she had “retired” from the horse world. She became a nurse, married Dr. Mike Hovland and moved to Montana. The couple purchased a large parcel of land west of Billings, with no intention of owning horses, and settled in to raise their two sons.

Clockwise from top left: Deanna Hovland leads Rosie to the trailer for a ride at Norm’s Island. Iver Hovland laughs as Rosie paws water on to his brother Erik, while riding Rocky in the Yellowstone River. Kesley Shurson (left) gets instructions from Nona Stockton, equine therapist. Deanna Hovland carries a saddle to the trailer as she prepares for a horseback ride with her sons Iver and Erik. Ribbons adorn the Hovland’s horse shed wall.

Knowing she had experience with horses, a friend talked her into helping with the Eagle Mount equestrian program, where she met Nona Stockton, whose passion for horses rekindled hers. “I thought I had said goodbye to all of that, but it’s hard to be around horses, and around Nona, and not fall in love with horses all over again,” Hovland said. Stockton helped find Deanna’s “equine dream,” Rosie, and “it was like I never had quit. Riding Rosie made me feel like I had come home.” And what better home to enjoy horses in than the expansive space and big sky of Montana, where the love of horses is more than a part of our heritage; it’s in our cultural DNA. “Montana has a wonderful horse community,” said Hovland. “There are opportunities for everyone and they gravitate to where they are most comfortable. People are attracted to those with similar attitudes about horsemanship. I have a community of friends whose relationships I value because of how they treat and bond with their horses. They don’t see horses as a piece of equipment that is going to help

them win trophies; they see them as part of their family. Their horses aren’t status symbols; they’re partners and friends. There is something spiritual about horses that combines with the women I know who have the same attitude. This is the glue that holds us together and forges lifelong friendships.” It’s been nearly a decade since Hovland resumed riding, and it’s obvious her youthful skills have translated into adulthood. She and Rosier have travelled to shows throughout Montana and beyond, earning a stable full of ribbons, trophies and national championships. “Rosie is a tremendous athlete, and I would not participate in shows if she didn’t enjoy it,” said Hovland, who pointed out a beautiful horse in her pasture. “Maggie is a magnificent mover, and I paid way more than I ever thought I would for a horse. We went on the show circuit and were winning, but I knew something was wrong. The vet discovered an ulcer. I realized Maggie wasn’t enjoying herself so I immediately stopped, and keep her with me just for enjoyment. She’s a very expensive pet, but she’s happy, and that’s all that matters.” As for describing that special bond? “Horses got me through childhood,” she responded. “They’re wonderful therapists. Even now, when I’m having a bad day, Rosie will put her head on my shoulder, look at me with those deep brown eyes, breathe on my neck, and the world is right again.” Stockton partners with horses for therapy every day. “I use the actual movement of the horse to elicit an emotional response,” she explained. “The rhythmical motion of a therapy horse can provide something called ‘safe carriage,’ which can mimic the warmth, rhythm and modulated input provided by a mother in healthy mother-infant bonding.” Skelton said that she, too, has seen horses help heal and enhance the life of people with emotional and physical disabilities. “Being able to work and bond with this big four-legged animal, who, without ever saying a word, lets you know that he never judges you on how you look, walk or talk; whose soft muzzle lets you know he loves you just the way you are conveys to the person a sense of accomplishment and self-respect.” she said. “And a carrot or two always helps; kind of like roses for a woman,” she laughs. Skelton and her daughter have bred and shown world champion horses, one of whom was ridden by President Bill Clinton during his visit to Montana. Skelton still keeps a rope horse around, “mostly just for the memories of yesterday.” Even though horses were an everyday part of her life growing up, they still were her dream. “When I bought my barn in Billings, my mother reminded me that as a little girl, I said that someday, if I had ‘great horses behind white fences,’ I would have achieved my dream. It made me realize I’m living my dream every day. The horses were, and continue to be, my dream.” She said the love of horses is a common bond we all share. “It all comes down to the joining of two spirits: the human and the horse. It’s as simple as that.”


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Icons like John Wayne, Roy Rogers and Henry Fonda helped romanticize what it meant to be a cowboy. They worked from sun up to sun down, wore their boots until they had holes in the soles and donned duds that were more functional than flashy. Items weren’t purchased on sale. They made the extra investment and purchased goods that were made to last and hand-crafted. It was quality enmeshed with craftsmanship—a retail work of art. That sentiment has withstood the test of time, but with a twist. Designers have contemporized the look with bright hues, interesting patterns and everything-sparkly. So go ahead, give your wardrobe a little kick of country—Billings-style.

Happy trails! Connolly’s Saddlery in Billings has been creating hand-crafted saddles and tack for more than 100 years. This Will James Rancher saddle was inspired by noted Western artist and author Will James, who was close friends with the Connolly brothers until his untimely death in 1942. Available at Connolly’s Saddlery in various styles and price points.

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Country chic In these denim capris by Let ‘R Buck™, romantic lace overlay top and buckskin satchel, you’re outfitted perfectly for an afternoon of shopping or local rodeo. Available at Western Ranch Supply Cut Loose™ brown undershirt: $64 Urban Mango™ lace top: $45 Charm necklace: $36 CC Leather™ satchel: $45 Let ‘R Buck™ jean capri: $79

Prairie flower When the weather warms, don this eyelet strapless dress by Cowgirl Justice™ with boots and denim jacket. Tie the look together with turquoiseembellished belt. Available at Shipton’s Big R Eyelet dress: $80 Belt: $64

Darkwinged wrangler Kick up a fuss in these leatherembellished boots by Corral™ Available at Shipton’s Big R $269


Fifty shades of silver This classic string of silver pearls will make even the shyest cowboy stop and say, “Howdy.” Available at Buckaroo’s $540

Hip handbag Saddle up to this black and turquoise tooled satchel by Trinity Ranch. Available at Shipton’s Big R $77

Turquoise turns heads Accent your favorite outfit with this turquoise necklace and earing duo by Silver Strike™ Available at Shipton’s Big R $25

A healthy purse Store all your necessaries in this roomy, whimsical, hand-tooled handbag. For a sweet contrast, add the matching wallet in indigo. Available at Western Ranch Supply Pink purse: $199 Indigo wallet: $65

2814 2nd Ave N MAGIC259-3624 CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 113

Casual cowboy Pair this ocean-blue button-up by Ariat with a pair of Tuff™ jeans. It’s a look perfect for work or the weekend. Available at Shipton’s Big R Ariat button-up: $55 Say I Won’t T-shirt: $25 Tuff Jeans: $95

Gentleman’s jewelry Wrap your wrists in subtle hand-crafted accents, like these tribal-inspired bracelets. Available at Buckaroo’s $70 Tribal print $16 Braided

The Duke Fellas, step out in these brown and white work-or-play boots by Ariat™ Available at Shipton’s Big R $200


Flip your lid Top off your favorite western look with this brown Stetson by Tony Lama™ Available at Shipton’s Big R $65

Tip TH N O M • 76.3% Improved Skin & Coat • 75.1% Improved Digestion • 55.5% Improved Body Weight • 54.4% Reduced Itchiness • 40.6% Able to Reduce Medications

It’s a cinch Accent your favorite pair of blue jeans with this tooled leather belt with silver accents. Available at Shipton’s Big R $70

See the difference in your dog today! The Honest Kitchen is available exclusively at Lovable Pets.

Spurs and latigo These sterling silver-embellished spurs complete the look of the quintessential cowboy. Available at Buckaroo’s $469

Visit us on the web at: Ask us your pet nutrition questions anytime on Facebook!


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special feature

your health


“Today, consumer expectations are so high and the pace at which new products are introduced is so fast that Mrs. Homemaker usually doesn’t know what it is she really wants – until some enterprising company creates it and she finds it in a retail store.” -Charles Mortimer, CEO, General Foods, 1965

The mantra of convenience ruled Charles Mortimer’s 11 years at the helm of one of America’s food goliaths. Sales skyrocketed, earnings soared and America’s diet changed irrevocably. Almost 40 years later, the “enterprising” processed food industry largely controls what – more to the point, how much – Americans put in their mouths, and waistlines have grown in proportion to profits.

by julie johnson rollins MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 117

Obesity rates have tripled since 1980 with more than one third of American adults and nearly one in five children at risk for, or already suffering from, obesity-related diseases, including type II diabetes, heart disease and stroke, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Unsurprising, concludes award-winning investigative journalist, Michael Moss, whose new book “Salt, Sugar, Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us” delves behind the scenes into the research and practice of major multinational food corporations. Coupling science with marketing savvy, the processed food giants, Moss asserts, have made a “conscious effort” to get us hooked on cheap foods loaded with salt, sugar and fat, altering the molecular makeup of these natural elements to override our bodies’ “fragile controls” on overeating. Calculated bliss

Fructose, one of two molecules in table sugar, has been crystallized into a ubiquitous food additive, increasing the allure of packaged foods ranging from soups and salad dressing to cereals. Yogurt, an icon of healthy eating, has become a veritable dessert, while one half cup of Prego™ Traditional spaghetti sauce delivers the sugar equivalent of three Oreo™ cookies. Moss explains how food scientists enhance sugar to amplify its sweetness, sometimes 200-fold, to achieve what industry insiders call the “bliss point,” the scientifically determined optimal sweetness to deliver greatest pleasure. Exhaustive taste testing reveals children achieve bliss at twice the level of sweetness as adults. Breakfast cereals reflect these findings. We are wired for sugar. Receptors for sweetness sit on each of our 10,000 taste buds, and sugar receptors light up on our palate, esophagus and stomach, feeding reward centers in our brain.

Rats can’t stop eating Fruit Loops™. Humans won’t stop drinking soda. The average American guzzles 44 gallons of high-fructose corn syrup-sweetened beverages each year, according to a recent industry report. That’s almost 70,000 calories. The rise in soda sales, Moss points out, parallels the growth in Americans, who now face an estimated $147 billion a year on weight-related medical problems, according to the CDC.


Fat knows no bliss point. Deploying brain mapping science, food giant Nestlé™ discovered that fat makes us happy. Moreover, Moss reports, food scientists have found an infinite capacity for pleasure with increasing fat content. Fat delivers “mouth feel,” that smooth, moist, sticky texture which may be as important as taste in perpetuating appetite. Industry alters the distribution of these globules in their products,

fructose the average american guzzles 44 gallons of high-fructose corn syrup-sweetened beverages each year, according to a recent industry report. that’s almost 70,000 calories.


affecting absorption rates to maximize appeal. Such manipulations, asserts Moss, led to synthetic trans fats, those artery-clogging culprits implicated in heart attacks. Fortunately, fat owns a bad public image. In 2008, nutrition researchers discovered the hidden fat phenomenon. If people don’t see visible fat–butter baked into bread versus butter spread on bread, oil emulsified into soup versus oil floating on soup–they underestimate the fat content and eat 10 percent more. Industry has countered by, well, hiding the fat. Convenience-based products like Kraft Lunchables™ cloak fat-laden processed meats and cheese in colorful trays full of choices for children and ease for parents, often with more than half the daily recommended intake of sodium along for the ride.

Salt in the wound

Salt drives “flavor burst.” Cargill, the industry’s leading sodium supplier, plays with its shape, size and composition to dish the biggest bang for the buck as taste hits the tongue. A common additive for flavor enhancement, salt supplements a myriad of products. Reluctant to use the word addictive, Cargill readily acknowledges the power of peoples’ salt cravings, says Moss. Witness the showering of salty snacks. Potato chips are the number one weight-gaining food according to a study of diet, lifestyle and weight published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2011, beating out red meat and sweets, adding 1.69 pounds a year to regular consumers. This has been attributed to something Frito-Lay™ knew long ago. “Betcha can’t eat just one.”

With this catchy slogan, Lay’s™ made a safe bet on their potato chips, having loaded the dice with fat and, perhaps more importantly, salt. With growing health concerns over salt’s relationship to hypertension, heart failure and stroke, the processed food industry countered with salt substitutes. We feel great about eating less sodium, but that same salty taste keeps us coming back for more. These fabricated foods override our satiety signals and crank up our crave, delivering far more calories than we need. Our brains may be primed to bask in these pleasure signals, but biology need not be destiny.

Cumulative effects

Weight management is the most common referral for Stephanie Selzler, registered dietician with the Pediatric Specialty Clinic at Billings Clinic. This reflects the rise in childhood obesity and the type of “adult” health problems like type II diabetes and hypertension she now sees in her pediatric population. Selzler has witnessed firsthand how the food industry continues to shape our eating habits by funneling millions into research and marketing campaigns. We can learn from their investment. The Coca-Cola™ Retailing Research Council found that 60 percent of grocery store shopping is impulse buying. Ergo, the end of aisles and the checkout line are loaded with prominently displayed bags of snacks and coolers of sugary drinks. The solution? Skip processed and pre-made products in favor of fresh ingredients, Selzler said. “Shop the perimeter,” she advises, where produce and whole foods

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15th & Broadwater MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 119

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are found. Also prepare and stick to a grocery list. Food scientists at the Monell Chemical Senses Center in Philadelphia learned our taste buds become re-sensitized to lower levels of salt after about 12 weeks on a low-salt diet. Study participants required much less salt to experience its pleasures, unhooking themselves from unhealthy intake. Selzler sees this in her patients who successfully kick their taste for convenience food. “People will say, ‘When I eat fast food now, I don’t feel very good. It doesn’t even taste as good.” Moreover, she notes they feel more energized.

Brain food

A leading industry consultant, Howard Moskowitz, studied and coined the term “Sensory-Specific Satiety.” Food with big, complex flavors satiates more quickly, making us feel fuller on less. “Salt can be quite boring,” contends Selzler, who recommends cooking with spices, herbs and lemon juice to maximize satisfaction. As for the hidden fat phenomenon, for starters, Selzler recommends reading labels. “People are always surprised at portion distortion,” she says. “Often people will eat double the serving size. They think, ‘Oh, it’s only 250 calories,’ but no, it’s really 500.” Better yet, eat whole foods, she suggests. If your meal comes in a wrapper, box or bag, chances are you can’t truly know what you are putting in your mouth. Family meals are also extremely important, says Selzler. “Eat at the kitchen table without TV and allow a good half hour–not this fiveminute stuff.”

And role modeling by parents is critical. “If Dad doesn’t want to eat his vegetables and participate,” says Selzler, “Kids say ‘Why do I have to?’” Selzler recalled a mother scolding her daughter for drinking four Pepsis™ a day. “Well, Mom,” retorted her daughter, “you drink more.” Parents must show children what’s healthy, Selzler asserts. Involving children in meal planning and preparation is an opportunity to learn what fruits, vegetables and healthier foods they will eat, giving some ownership in their lifestyle. Moreover, when the entire family is on board, everyone benefits. Seek out local resources, Selzler suggests, like Bountiful Baskets, the Yellowstone Valley Farmers’ Market and community gardens for affordable fresh foods. Frozen fruits and vegetables provide a healthy option. Additionally, Selzler recommends a good breakfast. Cereal with a cartoon character on the box whose second ingredient is sugar doesn’t qualify. A piece of whole wheat toast with peanut butter or an egg and low-fat milk, Greek yogurt and fruit, or Cheerios™ and a banana are easy, healthy alternatives. Summer is a great time to develop healthy habits, with “habit” being the key word. The processed food industry understands this all too well. Planning and preparing food, weaning from sugary drinks and salty snacks and reading labels may sound costly and time-consuming. Processed food manufacturers are banking on this. The dollars spent, however, on cheap, accessible convenience food are no bargain. We ultimately pay with our health. The choice is ours.

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Mediterranean Beef and Veggie Wraps 122 I MAY 2013 I MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE

special feature

your health

The benefits of following traditional food patterns from countries surrounding the Mediterranean have been known to Western world for decades. However, a research article recently published in the “New England Journal of Medicine” has compelled dieters to drop

Eating Heart Smart in Cowboy Country their forks and take notice. Fresh fish, lean meats, fruits and vegetables hallmark the plan, but the question on every Montanan’s mind is “where does my Ribeye fit into this picture?” The good news is: following the Montana Mediterranean diet means having your steak and eating it, too.

BY d a y L E H AY E S , M S , RD


Recent Mediterranean Research Summary In brief, here are the details of the recently published Spanish study on the Mediterranean diet.

More than 7,400 high-risk adults (overweight, smokers, already taking medications for heart disease, etc.) were assigned to follow a Mediterranean diet or a lowfat one (which very few subjects actually followed).

There were two Mediterranean diet groups: one which consumed at least 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil a day and another that ate combination of nuts (walnuts, almonds and hazelnuts, about a 1-ounce per day total).

Both groups, who already ate a basic Mediterranean diet, were told to eat three servings of fruit and two servings of vegetables per day; to eat both fish and legumes at least three times a week; to eat white meat instead of red; and, for those accustomed to drinking, to have at least seven glasses of wine per week with meals.

They were also counseled to avoid soft drinks, commercial baked products (pastries, cakes, cookies, etc.), spread fats (butter, margarine, etc.) and processed meats.

The reported results were dramatic–a 30 percent reduction in their risk of stroke, heart disease and death. As has been frequently reported, the results were so impressive that the research trial was stopped earlier than planned–and the researchers themselves started following a Mediterranean diet.

• •


Moroccan Beef and Sweet Potato Stew

This is an eating style, not a diet

The traditional Mediterranean eating style, by necessity, is local, fresh and seasonal–with lots of “fruits of the sea,” olive oil from prolific local trees, cheese, yogurt and fermented milk beverages from cows, sheep, goats and even camels. It has also included plenty of wine from local grapes. There is, in fact, no one Mediterranean diet, but rather many cuisines with a wide variety of flavors layered with food influences from Europe, Asia and Africa. None of these traditional eating styles are anything like what Americans think of when we hear the word “diet.” Eating Mediterranean-style is about food and beverage choices–and also about a very social way of eating, one that often involves extended mealtimes with extended family units.

Montana-grown Mediterranean

While Montana doesn’t have olive orchards, local vineyards or a seacoast, we do have plenty of local, fresh and seasonal products that can fit simply and deliciously into our kitchens. First, think summer Farmers’ Markets–thankfully sprouting up very soon. These are packed with vegetable variety that any Spanish, Greek or Moroccan cook would love to have in their kitchen: tomatoes, peppers, green beans, eggplant, squash (summer and winter), garlic and greens, like kale, chard and arugula. And, then there are the fresh herbs–parsley, rosemary, basil and dill. Montana’s backyard gardens are also hyper-local sources of a cornucopia of vegetables and fruit, like apples, cherries and berries. Let’s not forget Montana’s “hidden health treasures’’–our legumes and grains. We are major producers of Mediterranean staples like chickpeas (garbanzo beans) and lentils, which are both trendy and nutrient-rich. These legumes (dried beans and peas) are the only foods that can be counted in two groups–protein and vegetables–since they have the positive nutrition attributes of both. Montana is also famous for its amber waves of grains–wheat and barley–as well as some “ancient grains” with deep Mediterranean roots, including splet, einkorn and Kamut®.

While Montana doesn’t have olive orchards, local vineyards or a seacoast, we do have plenty of local, fresh and seasonal products that can fit simply and deliciously into our kitchens.

Cookbooks Mediterranean Diet Cookbook For Dummies by Meri Raffetto, RD, and Wendy Jo Peterson, MS, RD Two dietitians published this easy-touse combination cookbook and guide in 2011. There’s a great “cheat sheet” with portion sizes and how to stock

Spice and variety

The tasty nutrition news is that you don’t have to live in Greece, love seafood or be a serious foodie to enjoy the benefits of a Mediterranean eating style. All you need is a combo of Montana locavore choices, plus some reasonably-priced, store-bought items (especially good olive oil) and the willingness to be a little adventurous with your eating. The really delicious news is that it’s incredibly easy to find recipes–and cookbooks–about eating like a Mediterranean these days. A simple Google™ search is always a good place to start. Search successfully for the obvious (Mediterranean Diet); for ingredients you have on hand (Mediterranean + chicken + yogurt + mint); or for almost any of the words in this article (Moroccan + eggplant + barley). To prove that you can live in beef country and eat Mediterranean, we’ve also included three recipes from “Beef It’s What’s For Dinner” as well as a short selection of recommended cookbooks. Bon appétit!

your pantry the Mediterranean way.

The Cooking Light Food Lover’s Healthy Habits Cookbook by Janet Helm, MS, RD While not strictly Mediterranean, it includes many tips about cuisines from that part of the world. Eating seafood twice a week is one of the healthy habits she discussed, so this is a delicious way to increase your seafoodcooking confidence.

The DASH Diet Eating Plan by Marla Heller, MS, RD Also written by a dietitian, the DASH diet been ranked as the best diet, healthiest diet, and best diet for diabetes, by U.S. News and World Report for three years in a row. While also completely Mediterranean, it is based on scientific research and features lots of fruits and vegetables, as well as whole grains, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy.

Bistro-Style Filet Mignon with Champagne Pan Sauce


Recipes Options for Local, Fresh Produce: Independence Hall Veterans Farmers Market

Starting in July; proceeds support garden growth Location to be determined 259-5368 or

Yellowstone Farmers’ Market

First bell rings at 8 a.m., starting July 20 Downtown Billings under Skypoint 697-5295 or 855-1299

Healthy by Design Gardener’s Market

Every Thursday (weather permitting) 4:306:30 p.m. starting June 13 Parking lot of RiverStone Health on 1st Ave. S. and S. 27th St.

Danly Farms

Community-supported agriculture (CSA) 628-6290 or

Courtesy of The Beef Checkoff

Mediterranean Beef and Veggie Wraps Mediterranean Beef and Veggie Wraps Ingredients 12 ounces cooked beef (such as steak, roast or deli roast beef), thinly- sliced 4 medium whole wheat flour tortillas (8 to 10-inch diameter) Hummus, any variety or Garlicky White Bean Spread (recipe follows) Fresh salad greens (such as baby spinach, arugula or thinly-sliced Romaine) Vegetables Grape tomato halves, shredded carrots, red bell pepper strips, thinlysliced cucumber, thinly-sliced red onion Instructions Spread each tortilla evenly with hummus, as desired, leaving 1/4inch border around edge. Top with equal amounts salad greens and vegetables, as desired. Top evenly with beef slices and roll up tightly. Garlicky White Bean Spread: Combine 1 can (15-1/2 ounces) great Northern or cannellini beans, rinsed, drained, 2 tablespoons water, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon olive oil, 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar, 1 small clove garlic, minced and 1/2 teaspoon salt in blender or food processor. Blend until smooth.

Good Earth Market

3024 2nd Ave. N. 259-2622 or

Mary’s Health Foods

2564 King Ave. W. Billings 651-0557

Natural Grocers

304 S. 24th St. Billings

Superior Garden Veggies

Master Gardener Tom Kress sells all summer, into the fall 628-6921

Bountiful Baskets

Weekly co-op program

Moroccan Beef and Sweet Potato Stew Ingredients 2-1/2 pounds beef for stew, cut into 1 to 1-1/2-inch pieces 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons ground cumin 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon salt 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground red pepper 1 pound sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces (about 3 cups) 1/2 cup regular or golden raisins 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) diced tomatoes with garlic and onion Salt Hot cooked couscous Chopped toasted almonds (optional) Chopped fresh parsley (optional) Instructions Combine flour, cumin, cinnamon, salt and red pepper in 3-1/2 to 5-1/2-quart slow cooker. Add beef, sweet potatoes and raisins; toss to coat evenly. Pour tomatoes on top. Cover and cook on low 8 to 9 hours or on high 4 to 6 hours or until beef and potatoes are forktender. (No stirring is necessary during cooking.)


Season with salt, as desired. For smaller slow cookers, it may be easier to combine ingredients in a separate bowl before adding to

slow cooker. Serve over couscous. Garnish with almonds and parsley, if desired.

Bistro-Style Filet Mignon with Champagne Pan Sauce Ingredients 4 beef tenderloin (filet) steaks, cut 1-inch thick (about 5 ounces each) 1/2 teaspoon coarse grind black pepper Risotto: 1 tablespoon olive oil 3/4 cup quick-cooking barley 1/2 cup brut Champagne or sparkling wine 1-3/4 cups reduced-sodium beef broth 1 cup diced butternut squash 4 cloves garlic, minced 1/2 cup frozen peas Salt

Champagne Pan Sauce: 1 tablespoon olive oil 1-1/2 cups assorted mushrooms, such as shiitake, cremini or button, sliced 2 cloves garlic, minced 3/4 cup reduced sodium beef broth 1/2 cup brut Champagne or sparkling wine 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme 1 teaspoon cornstarch 1 tablespoon water Instructions Heat oil in 3-quart saucepan over medium heat until hot. Add barley and cook 3 to 5 minutes or until golden brown, stirring occasionally. Stir in 1/2 cup of Champagne. Bring to a simmer. Cook and stir 30 to 60 seconds or until liquid is almost absorbed. Add 1-3/4 cup broth, squash and garlic; return to simmer and continue cooking 10 to 15 minutes or until barley is tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in peas, cover and remove from heat. Let stand 5 minutes; keep warm. Meanwhile, press coarsely-cracked pepper on both sides of beef steak. Heat large nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Place steaks in skillet; cook 10 to 13 minutes for medium rare (145°F) to medium (160°F) doneness, turning occasionally. Remove to platter; season with salt, as desired. Keep warm. Heat oil in same skillet over medium heat until hot. Add mushrooms and garlic; cook and stir 3 to 5 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and browned. Add 3/4 cup beef broth, 1/2 cup Champagne and thyme to skillet, stirring until browned bits attached to bottom of pan are dissolved. Bring to a boil; cook 4 to 8 minutes or until mixture is reduced to 1 cup. Combine cornstarch and water; stir into mushroom mixture. Bring to a boil; cook 1 to 2 minutes or until sauce thickens, stirring occasionally. Season with salt, Serve steaks with sauce and risotto.

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As the warmth

of spring melts into hot summer days, it’s time to get the skinny on how to look your best. Local experts share tips that will have you turning heads.

days, cool nights


It all starts with physical fitness. “Thirty

Sweat the small stuff

minutes of moderate exercise for at least five days a week is beneficial,”

Basic training

says Dr. Brian Rah, interventional cardiologist at Billings Clinic. “General fitness improves the health of people for those with or without heart disease, as

regular exercise decreases your risk of a heart attack by 20 percent.”

Dr. Rah gives hope to couch potatoes, as well. “The biggest

incremental gain is for people who go from little or no activity to some activity,” he said. Take a brisk walk for 15 minutes twice a day. “When it comes to exercise, worry less about the pounds and more about the muscles you’re

Sitting in a sauna for relaxation or to maximize the results of a workout is nothing new. “Many cultures over thousands of years have used profuse sweating to enhance health and cure sickness.” says Scott Prociv, owner of Montana Hot Springs Spa. This practice has taken a modern-day spin with the use of FAR infrared saunas. These models provide stress relief, help with arthritic pain, burn calories and remove toxins by expanding blood vessels and increasing circulation using infrared heat. Infrared heat provides all the healthy benefits of natural sunlight without any of the dangerous effects of solar radiation. FAR Infrared heat therapy uses the wavelength of the visible and non-visible light spectrum of sunlight that heats the body normally. “Studies show up to 300 calories are burned per session,” Prociv said.

strengthening – namely that one in the middle of your chest.

You’ll want a bronzed bod to go with that

dazzling smile. No worries with UV-free spray

No-worry tan

tanning. “It lasts five to seven days depending on your skin type,” says Julie Wegner, owner of Sun Haven Tanning, “and it takes only minutes to give you a natural looking golden glow.”

A bit of exercise puts a smile on your face. Show off those pearly whites with a few tips from Dr. Scott Manhart of Periodontal Specialists of Montana.


Svelte legs

“Limit the frequency of high-fructose summer drinks and don’t nurse a sugary beverage for three hours,” he advises. We live in a dry climate which “amplifies tooth decay problems,” he said. Dr. Manhart reminds us to drink plenty

of fluids and to practice good oral hygiene every day.

“Do the best you can to brush and floss every 24 hours,” he says. “Use a

high SPF lip protection to hinder any solar-induced cancer as well.”

As it turns out, a healthy mouth and healthy body go hand-in-hand.

Impeccable oral hygiene can improve overall health and reduce the risk of serious disease.

“Sugaring” is an ancient form of hair removal using an all-natural substance. The mixture, which is a combination of sugar, water, lemon juice, honey and other customizable ingredients, is applied by hand. The method works particularly well on finer leg and arm hair, around the bikini area and eyebrows. “It is not as abrasive to skin as waxing,” assures Dr. Rachel Day, naturopathic physician with the Oasis Spa at Yellowstone Naturopathic Clinic. Should you want a more “ahhhh-inducing” experience, try the naturopathic facial to treat fine lines, acne, large pores and more. “After a long winter, it’s important to rid the skin of dullness through cleansing, exfoliating and masking along with eye and lip treatments,” advises Dr. Day.

Sugar? Sure.

Do unsightly spider veins keep you from donning a bathing suit? No more! Dr. Anne Giuliano, owner of Big Sky Vascular, notes that there are two ways to eliminate spider veins. “We can use either injections or laser treatments,” Dr. Giuliano says. Patients will experience little to no downtime afterward, however it may take up to three or four months before the body re-absorbs the veins. “It’s like a bruise in that the body has to reabsorb,” she says.

Protected peepers

Your eyes need protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays. Pat Baker of Sun N Sport advises to carefully check the lens of the sunglasses you purchase. “You want 100 percent UV filter glasses,” she says. And just

because a pair of sunglasses is dark doesn’t necessarily mean it provides optimal UV protection, Baker said. “When you put on a dark pair of sunglasses, your pupils dilate which can expose you to more harmful UV rays without the 100 percent UV filter.” With an almost limitless number of fashionable frames, pick one that flatters the shape of your face and your skin tone – and pick out a second pair just for fun.

Coming Fall 2013

Granite will be introducing our

Early Education program!

Granite’s Early Education Program’s primary goal and purpose to provide an active learning environment in which teachers and students experience an enthusiasm for learning and accomplish successes. We promise to provide the children with ample opportunities to grow socially, physically, emotionally, intellectually, and creatively in our child centered environment.


Bright Beginners: Tuesdays & Thursdays, 12:30pm-3:30pm. Available to 3-4 year olds. LittLe Learners: Monday/Wednesday/Friday, 12:30pm-3:30pm. Available to 4-5 year olds. ACTIVITY: Both our Bright Beginners and Little Learners will have 2 swim lessons and 2 Gym Monkeys Classes each month on alternating weeks to keep Swim Instructor/ Student ratios low and safe for the kids. There will also be active play time daily

More information available by contacting Program Director Jenn Thompson at 406-690-8680 or

1323 Main Street, Ste A, Billings, MT 59105 • 406.252.7737 3838 Avenue B, Billings, MT 59102 • 406.294.5040 MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE I MAY 2013 I 131

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“Think of it as a skin refresher that sheds the winter layer,” says Kris Carpenter, owner of Sanctuary

Spa. When the weather turns hot, Carpenter suggests trying an uplifting rosemary-mint polish with body cooling properties.

Sculpt your physique

Ditch the muffin top and beer belly with CoolSculpting™, a non-invasive way to rid yourself of stubborn fat cells. “The treatment works well for someone who has lost most of their excess weight,” says Dr. Kathleen T. Baskett, medical director of the Weight Management Clinic at St. Vincent Healthcare. “It’s ideal for men and women who want to lose that last 10 to 15 pounds.” CoolSculpting™ technology targets, cools and eliminates fat cells gradually and naturally, reducing the layer of body fat by 20 percent after a single session. There’s no down time, and areas that can be sculpted include the abdomen, flanks or “love handles,” inner thighs, upper back and arms, said Dr. Baskett.

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Watch out soccer, move over baseball— there’s a new game in town


sweeps billings Ball down! Poke ‘em! Release! Here’s Your Help! This is the language of the fastest-growing team sport in Montana, perhaps the nation. A game of Native American origin, lacrosse was originally used to resolve conflicts, develop strong, virile men and even prepare for war, according to U.S. Lacrosse, the national governing body of this competitive sport. As such, it is truly a North American original—older even than baseball. Yet most Montanans have not watched a game, much less really know how the game is played. Enter Billings Scorpions Lacrosse Club. A growing, keenly competitive club of boys and girls, ages 9-18, who talk incessantly about their method of cradling or how they just re-strung their stick. Again.

High schooler James Schendel looks to pass at the recent Billings Scorpions Lacrosse Trailhead Jamboree.



“If hockey married soccer and had a child, it would be lacrosse, Basketball would be a close cousin.” — Blake Wahrlich, youth boys coach, billings Scorpions

Thinking man’s game

Brynn Schwartz, coach of high school-aged players, notes that for the past century or so, lacrosse was played only at Ivy League colleges and was considered “a thinking man’s game.” That exclusivity is rapidly waning. Today’s lacrosse is played on a field similar to football, with 10 players—three attackmen (offense); three midfielders (middies); and three defensemen, plus a goalkeeper. Similar to both hockey and soccer, the object is to move the ball up the field and score a goal in the opponent’s net—all using a stick with a basket-like end to carry, pass and shoot the In 2011, the Billings Scorpions baseball-sized hard rubber ball. Lacrosse Club started a team with Shots from high school-aged about 20 boys. Like a burning fire, players can average 75 miles per lacrosse has caught the attention hour. of males and females; those “If hockey married soccer numbers have tripled. Today more and had a child, it would than 100 Billings-area kids, ages be lacrosse,” explains youth 9-18, play lacrosse including a new boys’ coach, Blake Wahrlich. girls’ team. Wahrlich expects to “Basketball would be a close have enough kids next year for two cousin.” high school teams and an expanded Plays from basketball and girls’ team, with the potential for soccer, such as a pick-and-roll or an indoor league during the fall and triangle offense, are common. winter months. Those who know hockey will recognize moves usually seen For more information, see on the ice. In men’s lacrosse, the or physical demands are similar to

Rapid Growth


football and hockey—checking is allowed, even encouraged, and players wear helmets, padded gloves and chest protectors but few other pads. That physicality is part of the attraction for many boys. “There’s no doubt that for boys, hitting each other with a stick holds a certain allure,” Wahrlich points out with a quick grin. Logan Martin has been playing hockey since he was 6. Lacrosse is a natural extension of his first sport. Known as “Joker” on the team, this 14-year-old athlete finds great joy in physical competition. There’s a certain thrill to this sport, he says. “The hits aren’t as hard as hockey because you aren’t on skates,” he notes, “But it’s all action—it doesn’t slow down. Plus you can hit each other with your stick; you can’t do that in hockey.” Known as “poking,” a defensive player can two-hand check and poke at the attack player—basically he gets in the attacker’s face, attempting

Clockwise from top opposite page: The Billings Scorpions high school team looks from the sidelines at the recent Billings Lacrosse Jamboree. Ryan Wilson cradles the ball as he attempts to get by a defender. U15 year-old player Cade Ford is a lead scorer for the U15 Scorpions Lacrosse team. Lacrosse defenders often use a long stick like this one to increase their reach. Players raise their lacrosse sticks during a team huddle. Coach Blake Wahrlich speaks to the U15 Scorpions.

to loosen the ball from the pocket or otherwise prevent a shot on goal. Nick Hoffman, 13, plays middie and attack for the Scorpions. He likes how lacrosse incorporates his other favored sports—football and soccer. “Lacrosse has more body skills than football, depending on your position,” he says. “And, you use your hands more. It’s a lot of fun, but it really is a rough sport.”

Build it and they will come

Wahrlich has played lacrosse since he was in sixth grade, including when he was a student at California State University-Chico. He found life in Billings without lacrosse to be a difficult adjustment. “I moved from Redding, England, where I coached and played every day, to Billings, where my only teammate was my dog,” he says.

Yet, like-minds found each other. In 2011, Schwartz, Wahrlich and a handful of lacrosse enthusiasts joined forces and founded the Billings Scorpions Lacrosse Club with about 20 boys. Today, they have more than 100 kids on five teams, including a newly-started girls program. That’s over 300 percent growth in just three years in Billings alone. Lacrosse numbers doubled across Montana from 2011 to 2012. That popularity does not surprise lacrosse enthusiasts.

Instant draw

“Lacrosse has a certain ‘cool’ factor because it is new,” says Wahrlich about the sport’s rapid growth. “The kids import their personality into their sport by decorating their sticks—the stick is their baby—and even with their own style of socks.”


Wahrlich also cites lacrosse as being a perfect “off-season” sport for into youth sports. Words like “respect, role model” and “modest in victory and gracious football and hockey players—and all athletes in general—because of the in defeat” are taken very seriously. Game officials will call a penalty on required skill set. “Ice hockey, soccer, basketball and football players—all athletes, any hit to the head or other un-sportsman-like contact; even a swear really—make good lacrosse players,” he says. “But if a kid is torn, I tell word will earn a one-minute penalty. Clean play is the rule. Parents will them to play what speaks to them. This is not exclusive. We are just see and hear the coaches echo: Honor the game. And, lacrosse players rise to that challenge. trying to create opportunities to play and grow as individuals.” Salvator (Sal) Principe III, a senior at Shepherd High School, transitioned from hockey to lacrosse, including moving from a forward Grow the game to the goalie position, out of necessity on a burgeoning team. Yet he But rapid growth has created a few problems here in Billings. found a true home in the net. “We are in dire need of coaches,” says Wahrlich, who coaches three “That adrenaline rush that comes from playing goalie is incredible,” youth teams. “That is our biggest need, along with officials.” he says. “You are really in a position to make in difference in the outcome Another concern, according to many parents, is the start-up cost. of the game.” Players buy their own equipment, which can cost around $300 for boys. Principe was appointed to Montana Elite, an invitation-only team, However, as Schwartz points out, players use their equipment for several coached by Kevin Flynn of Missoula, which traveled to both Chicago years, until they out-grow it. And, a modern-day lacrosse stick will last and Seattle last season to compete at an even higher level. He found the years. culture and competition to his liking and feels that lacrosse has made Recently the BSL Board applied for, and received, a “Grow the him grow both as an athlete and as a Game” grant from U.S. Lacrosse, to person. educate and certify their coaches in “That trip, playing in that addition to equipping 20 players on culture, motivated me and made me a first-come, first-served basis. want to be even better,” he said. “We have 20 new players this That opens doors of opportunity. year who might not have been Principe recently accepted an able to play otherwise,” points out academic and athletic scholarship to Wahrlich. But, what it comes down play on the new men’s lacrosse new to, he says, is getting kids out, Christina Klekner, Head Coach of team at the University of Great Falls. playing a game they quickly learn to love. Billings Scorpion Girls Lacrosse, notes that girls lacrosse requires more “Lacrosse is more than a Honor the game skill than muscle. “With the game being non- contact and not having a sport to me; it’s the lifestyle that Beyond even the game, Wahrlich deep pocket, we are forced to cradle the ball in our stick and then check I choose,” he says. “I recently had and the rest of the BSL coaches the opponent’s stick to cause a turnover.” a mom tell me that her son didn’t along with the club’s board stress want video games for his birthday, integrity and sportsmanship. Klekner, who has played since she was a high school freshman, is he would rather spend his money Honoring a game that is centuries on lacrosse gear.” old, is both elemental and essential instrumental in growing girls lacrosse across Montana. “My favorite aspect Those are actions that speak in an excessively-competitive world of coaching is watching these girls, who have no understanding of the louder than words. that often bleeds from the sidelines sport or even know how to hold a lacrosse stick, learn to pass and catch a ball and get better every week” she says. “Knowing that I can share my love for the sport is the best reward I could ask for.” 138 I MAY 2013 I MAGIC CITY MAGAZINE

Girls: Absolutely Allowed


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By Jason Burke A quick tour around Billings reveals the popularity of pawn and antique stores in the Magic City. Perhaps not as well-known as the World Famous Gold & Silver Pawn Shop from reality show Pawn Stars, these small, often familyowned shops attract buyers and sellers from hundreds of miles away to trade the odd, unusual or collectible. Even casual customers can find unexpected treasures, with a leisurely downtown stroll turning into a history lesson for those willing to take a few minutes to peruse.


“I had an old music book I wouldn’t have given much thought to, but inside were a bunch of pressed love letters from World War II. Where else could you find something like that?” — Shelly Turk, Owner Marketplace 3301 Each shop has its own personality, range of merchandise and curious items. Whether pawn shop, antique store or military surplus, owners often try to get the stories behind their acquisitions. Pawn brokers and surplus dealers are always on the lookout for an interesting provenance, since they tend to attract a higher price. Antiques and collectibles draw their own clientele, and personal stories are an important connection for potential buyers.

Vast indoor market

Collecting the past

Even among antique dealers, Marketplace 3301 is special among similar shops in Montana. Its 44,000 square feet of space caters to vendors from all over the region and neighboring states, providing space to display and sell items. Owner Shelly Turk loves to hear the stories that come with the pieces and emphasizes that they are an important part of the physical object. “People crave these stories. Even younger people, who are looking for a connection to a simpler time, have been coming in more and more. People purchase the sentiment that goes along with a piece, even if it’s not the particular one used in their family,” Turk said. Buyers will often find a connection to a brand, a certain tool or even a smell. They are often looking for specific objects that their parents or grandparents used decades before. Among the more eclectic items to pass through her store is a Spanish table dating from the 1700s and a piano from a Butte brothel. Still on


display are a 1920s transistor radio from the Wibaux movie house, a gigantic tobacconist cabinet that has traveled across the country and architectural remnants from the original Northern Hotel in the 1940s. “A lot of times, people are buying a sentiment rather than an object,” Turk says, and notes that sometimes that’s just as significant. “People want that personal history.” Mike Gregory and his wife Alexandra, owners of Oxford Hotel Antiques, accept a variety of collectables, but certain items hold greater allure than others. Mike notes that while everything in the store has a story, his collections focus on Montana breweries, post cards, exterior signage and posters. The walls of his multi-level store – the former Oxford Hotel– sport huge neon and incandescent signs from Central Lanes Bowling and assorted fuel stations, as well as fairgrounds advertisements and other Montana artwork. After collecting brewery paraphernalia for more than 35 years, Mike is an expert when it comes to old beer bottles and cans. “The Billings Brewery only distributed cans for about six months. They are very rare and can run a collector hundreds of dollars,” he says. His personal finds sometimes come with their own stories. Mike points to some old pharmacy bottles on a high shelf. “Those originally came from Red Lodge and had been moved to a house here in town and stored for decades until the family decided to clean it

Counterclockwise from top left: Interior of Marketplace 3301. Owner Shelly Turk. Antique duck decoys. Interior of Oxford Hotel Antiques on Montana Avenue. Souvenier Montana teacups and saucers. Owners Mike and Alexandra Gregory in their store. Photos by Casey Page.

Counterclockwise from top left: Interior of Scary Larry’s. A beaded Native American doll. Owner Shawn Thiel. Photos by Bob Zellar. A military patch display at Billings Army Navy Store. Robin and Eddie Schmidt, owners of Billings Army Navy. 20mm ammo shells. Photos by Casey Page

out. They were throwing all this stuff into a dumpster, and I got a tip that I should stop by.” In addition to the bottles, he took a variety of other items back to his own shop. “It’s a shame; most of the stuff had already gone to the dump. They didn’t know what they had sitting there.” Years later, one of his favorite finds came out of a trash bin. “The best Navajo rug I ever found came out of a dumpster,” Mike said.

Not just a pawn

Somewhat part of Billings history themselves, both Scary Larry’s Pawn Shop and Billings Army Navy Surplus provide an ever-changing inventory of the unusual. Literally every surface of “Scary” Larry Theil’s store is covered; the tight confines reveal items from around the world, many collected personally by the owner himself. In business for more than 20 years, he has traveled around the globe collecting pieces he thinks will sell in his shop. In the “old days” he says he used to deal in firearms. “Too much paperwork now. Too much trouble,” he grumbles. Now, he can sell collectible flintlocks, but no modern guns. Despite the changes in both regulation and market demands, Scary Larry’s has stayed true to one core value: acquire anything that can be resold. From Chinese jade carvings to animal skulls and saddles to arrowheads, Larry regularly visits garage and estate sales, flea markets and online sources to fill his shop. Even so, customers still surprise him. “We had a guy come in the other day trying to sell his prosthetic arm,” he says. “People are desperate for cash, but we couldn’t buy it. What would we do with it?” Another came in looking for human skulls. “We have a lot, but we don’t have those,” Larry laughs. Dealing more in government-issued supplies from the days of metal and wood, Eddie Schmidt has an eye for military collectibles. Owner of Billings Army Navy Surplus, he not only travels and collects

artifacts from around the world, his store is also a destination for international customers. When asked what draws people in, he says, “They want a chance to find something different. You won’t find this stuff in the big chain stores where everything is the same.” Indeed. You would be forgiven for taking a quick glance and thinking this is just another workwear and outdoor shop. Inside is a different story, and most of the good stuff hangs from the ceiling: inert weapons, missile launchers, army supply sleds and military uniforms that look more like museum pieces. Due to their authenticity, Eddie has sold several pieces as movie props, but collectors are a big part of the 33-year-old business. “Surplus stores and used book stores seem to be big attractions,” he said. “I have customers coming from Europe making a visit part of their plans,” even though the store has an online presence. Plus, if you need to equip your ammunition wagon with bedpan steamers, parachutes or a Swiss pack saddle, Eddie has you covered.

Unlikely finds

Due to their alternative financing and high-interest loan practices, many shoppers avoid pawn shops and their special treasures. Similarly, military surplus is often overlooked by more traditional antique hunters. However, not only are they a source of hard-to-find items and collectibles, you never know what you will find on any given day. Turk highlights the value in really digging in and getting to know the objects. “I had an old music book I wouldn’t have given much thought to, but inside were a bunch of pressed love letters from World War II. Where else could you find something like that?” With around 40 such shops around Billings alone, there are plenty of chances to explore unique items that find their way into circulation, and learn a bit of history along the way.


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Your quick guide to kids’ summer activies I BY CHRIS RUBICH During summer break, kids’ complaints of “I’m bored” can drive even the most sane and patient mom or dad near the proverbial parental edge. Kids who are accustomed to school days that include mental, physical and social stimulation can quickly find themselves in the midst of The. Longest. Summer. EVER. Turn their time away from school into an adventure with this sampling of activities from archery to art, martial arts to music, raptors to robotics and more.

EDUCATIONAL Babysitting 101

Montana State University Billings Ages 11-14 $139; 9 a.m.-noon; June 17-21 896-5890 or

Children’s Summer Reading Program: “Dig Into Reading” Parmly Billings Library June 4, 6:30-7p.m. kickoff program: “Terrible T-Tex Lifestyles of a Mesozoic Legend” Register online or at library 657-8256 or

Junior Spy Camp I

MSU Billings Ages 8-11 $149; June 10-14 896-5890 or

Bricks 4 Kids Camps

Bricks 4 Kids Creativity Center in Alpine Village Various themes from super heroes to moviemaking Children of all ages welcome $95-225; a.m. & p.m. sessions available 252-4119 or

Spanish Language & Culture

MSU Billings Grades 3-5 $149; 9 a.m.-noon, June 10-14 or 12-3 p.m.; July 15-19 896-5890 or w

Junior LEGO Robotics

MSU Billings Grades 2-3 $189; 1-5 p.m. June 22 and 29 896-5890 or

LEGO Robots Level 1 MSU Billings Grades 4-8 9 a.m.-3 p.m.; July 15-19 896-5890 or

LEGO Robots Level II

MSU Billings Grades 4-8 $329; 2-6 p.m. June 10-14 896-5890 or

Camp Invention

St. Bernard’s Parish Grades 1-6 $230; 9 a.m.-3:15 p.m. June 10-14 861-1999 or

Putting Science in Real-Life Motion

MSU Billings Grades 4-6 $139; 9 a.m.-noon; June 17-21 896-5890 or Reading Rocks No fee; kids take a book home every day Starts at 12:15 p.m. June 17-July 25 Mondays & Wednesdays at North Park Tuesdays & Thursdays at Central Park Mondays at Crow-Arrowhead Park Thursdays at South Park 245-4133 or

“Dig Into History— Treasure Hunt”

Western Heritage Center Part of Parmly Billings Library’s Children’s Summer Reading Program 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on June 29 256-6809 or

Spanish Camp

YMCA Grades 2-4 $80-$120; 9:30 a.m.-noon; Aug. 5, 6, 8, 9 Full-day camp option for $45 more includes Aug. 7 field trip 248-1685 or

Sizzling Science Sampler

MSU Billings Ages 8-12 $159; 9 a.m.-noon; Aug. 5-9 896-5890 or


3-2-1 Blast Off

MSU Billings Grades 1-3 $139; 1-4 p.m.; Aug. 6-8 896-5890 or

“Girls’ Adventures in Math & Science”

Audubon Conservation Education Center Girls grades 2-6 $260 ($234 for Friends of the Center) 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.; Aug. 12-16 294-5099 or

ARTS & CRAFTS Little Picasso’s Art Camp

YMCA Grades K-1 $80-120; 9:30 a.m.-noon June 3, 4, 6 and 7 Full-day camp option with field trip on June 5 for additional $45 248-1685 or

Little Picasso’s Art Classes

YMCA Ages 3-5 $40-60; 1:30-2:15 p.m. Fridays, June 7-Aug. 2 248-1685 or

Kreative Kiddos

West End Granite Fitness $25-$30 per 4-week session Ages 3-6: 10:45-11:30 a.m. Mondays, June 3-24 and July 8-29 Ages 4-9: 9:30-10:15 a.m. Saturdays, June 8-29 and July 13-Aug. 3. Ages 6-12: 10:30-11:15 a.m. Thursdays, June 6-27 and July 11-Aug. 1 690-8680 or

DaVinci’s Bunch Art Classes

YMCA Ages 6-9 $40-60; 2:30-3:15 p.m. Fridays, June 7-Aug. 2 248-1685 or

Art Camp

YMCA $80-120 Grades 2-4; 9:30 a.m.-noon; June 10, 11, 13, 14 Full-day camp option for additional $45 more includes June 12 field trip 248-1685 or Summertime Art for Kids Billings Parks and Recreation $68 Ages 6-8: 9-10:30 a.m.; Mondays and Wednesdays, June 10-19 or July 8-24 Ages 9-11: 10:30 a.m.-noon; MondaysWednesdays, June 10-19, or July 8-24 657-8371 or

Open Studio Classes

Yellowstone Art Museum Ages 5-12 5-6; 10 a.m.-noon or 1-3 p.m.; Thursdays, June 13-Aug.1 256-6804, ext. 232 or

Summer Art Academy

Rocky Mountain College $275 for 3 daily classes; or $325 for 4 daily classes; June 17-21 Open studio for family friends at 3:30 p.m. on June 21 259-6563 or website

Kids’ Fiber Camp

Wild Purls Yarns Ages 8 and up $125; 10 a.m.-3 p.m. June 17-20 or July 15-18 245-2224 or

“Pirate Treasure Hunt”

Parmly Billings Library Age 3 – grade 5; June 21 & July 19 657-8256 or

Fashionista 101

MSU Billings Grades 4-6 $149; 8:30-11:30 a.m.; June 24-28 896-5890 or

From Trash to Treasure

MSU Billings $119; Ages 7-12; 9 a.m.-noon; July 8-12 896-5890 or

Digital Photography

Billings Parks and Recreation All ages $67; 6-8 p.m.; July 31-Aug. 2 657-8371 or

Art Camp

Yellowstone Art Museum $85-$95 Ages 6-8; 9:30 a.m.-noon; Aug. 5-9 Ages 9-12; 1-3:30 p.m.; Aug. 5-9 256-6804, ext. 232 or

DANCE & THEATER Cheerleading Camp

Zumba & Music Around the World

MSU Billings $149 Grades 3-5; 9 a.m.-noon; June 24-28 Grades 6-8; Noon-3 p.m. July 29-Aug. 2 896-5890 or

Theater Camp

YMCA Presented by Alberta Bair Theater and YMCA with performance at end of week at ABT $125-190; Full-day camp option for additional $45 Grades 2-6; 9:30 a.m.-noon July 8-13 248-1685 or

Little Cheerleaders

YMCA $80-120 Grades K-1; 9:30 a.m.-noon; July 15, 16, 18, 19 Full-day camp option for additional $45 includes July 17 field trip 248-1685 or

Kids’ Acting Camp

Billings Studio Theatre Ages 8-18 $275; $25 discount on tuition for each additional sibling 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.; July 15-26 with performances July 26 & 27 248-1141 or

Pee Wee Cheer Camp

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 6-9 $50; 8 a.m.-noon; June 24-28 or July 8-12 657-8371 or

Rocky Mountain College Various ages and pricing June 3-5 SummerCamps

Junior Cheer Camp

Hip Hop

Cheer & Dance Camp

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 9-14 $50; 1-5 p.m. June 24-28 or July 8-12 657-8371 or

YMCA $80-140 Wednesdays, June 5-Aug. 7 Kinder Hip: Ages 4-5; 4-5 p.m. Cool School: Ages 6-9; 5:15-6:15 p.m. 248-1685 or

YMCA Grades 2-4 $80-120; 9:30 a.m.-noon Aug. 12, 13, 15, 16 Full-day camp option for additional $45 includes Aug. 14 field trip 248-1685 or

Summer Theatre School Itty Bitty Program



Groovy Preschool Music Classes YMCA Ages 3-5 $40-70; 9:30-10:15 am.; Saturdays, June 8-Aug. 3 248-1685 or

Venture Theatre For incoming kindergarten-grade 2 Choice of theater and dates $125-300, depending number of programs 591-9535 or YMCA $80-$140 June 10-Aug. 8 Tiny Tappers: Ages 3-4; Tuesdays; 1:15-2:15 p.m. & ages 4-5; Thursdays; 1:15-2:15 p.m. Total Tap: Ages 6-9; Mondays 4-5 p.m. 248-1685 or


YMCA $80-140 Thursdays, June 11-Aug. 6 Pre-Jazz: Ages 4-5 at 5:15-6:15 p.m. Jazz I: Ages 6-9 or 6:30-7:30 p.m. 248-1685 or

Improv Camp

YMCA $80-120 Grades 2-4; 9:30 a.m.-noon June 17, 18, 20, 21 Full-day camp option available for additional $45 includes June 19 field trip 248-1685 or



Audubon Conservation Education Center Ages 4-6 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. June 17-21 294-5099 or

Kids’ Spike Club

Raptor Rapture

Basketball Camp

Audubon Conservation Education Center Grades 1-3 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. June 17-21 294-5099 or


Audubon Conservation Education Center Grades 1-3 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. June 24-28 294-5099 or

Forts, Shelters, Shacks & Shanties Audubon Conservation Education Center Grades 4-6 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. June 24-28 Optional overnight on June 27 294-5099 or

Celebrity Critters

Audubon Conservation Education Center Ages 5-10 $130; 8:30 am.-12:30 p.m. July 1-3 294-5099 or

Nature Girls

Audubon Conservation Education Center Girls entering grades 2-6 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. July 15-19 294-5099 or

Howls & Growls

Audubon Conservation Education Center Ages 4-6 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. July 15-19 294-5099 or

Scales & Cold-blooded Tales

Audubon Conservation Education Center Grades 4-6 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. July 22-26 294-5099 or

Bug Out!

Audubon Conservation Education Center Ages 4-6 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. July 29-Aug. 1 294-5099 or

Toddler Jams


Little Mozarts

YMCA Grades K-1 $80-120; 9:30 a.m.-noon; July 22, 23, 25, 26 Full-day camp option for additional $45 includes July 24 field trip 248-1685 or

Rocky Mountain College Fly Fishing Camp

Led by Magic City Fly Fishing Club Ages 10-14 $156; 9 a.m.-3 p.m. June 3-7 SummerCamps.php

Survivor, Norm’s Island

YMCA Ages 1-2; parent/child class $40-70; 11:15-11:45 a.m. Saturdays, June 8-Aug. 3 248-1685 or

With Yegan Golf Club instructor Ages 6-14 $75; 9 a.m.-noon June 5-7 SummerCamps.php

Blue Creek Sport Shooting Complex Ages 9-16 Various themes, dates, times and prices 247-4868 or

Musical Babies

YMCA Newborns-crawler; parent/child class $40-70; 10:30-11 a.m. Saturdays, June 8-Aug. 3 248-1685 or

Rocky Mountain College Golf Camp

Audubon Conservation Education Center Grades 1-3 $130; 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Aug. 5-9 294-5099 or


YMCA Ages 7+ $40-$90 per month ; June 3-Sept. 3 Beginners, 6-7 p.m. Mondays & Wednesdays. Advanced classes available 248-1685 or

YMCA Grades 2-4 (other age groups available) $80-120; 9:30 a.m.-noon June 3, 4, 6, 7 Full-day camp option for additional $45 includes field trip on June 5 248-1685 or

Youth Soccer Camp

MSU Billings Ages 5-13 $120; 9 a.m.-noon June 3-7

Youth Tennis Lessons

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 5-15 $50; Times vary. June 3-21, June 24-July12 or July 15-Aug. 1 657-8371 or

Gym Monkeys

Heights Granite Fitness Tuesdays, June 4-25 and July 9-30; Various times and ages $17-$22. 690-8680;

Lil Hoopsters

Ages 3-6 West End Granite Fitness: Tuesdays, 10:3011:15 a.m. June 4-25 and July 9-30. Heights Granite Fitness: Fridays, July 12-Aug. 2; 9:45-10:30 a.m. $17-$22 for 4-week session. 690-8680;

Skyhawks Sports Tiny-Hawk Soccer Camp

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 3-4 $55; 8-8:45 a.m. June 10-14 or Aug. 12-16 657-8371 or

Archery Camp

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 9-14 $50; 9-11:30 a.m. June 10-14 or July 15-19 657-8371 or

Skyhawks Sports Mini-Hawks Camp

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 4-7 $109; 9 a.m.-noon. June 10-14 or Aug. 12-16 657-8371 or Billings Parks and Recreation’s Kids’ Yoga in the Park

Veteran’s Park

Ages 7-11 $31; Mondays, 9:30-10:30 a.m.; June 10July 1 or July 8-29 657-8371 or

Youth Rock Climbing

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 8-15 $50; Noon-1:30 p.m. June 10-14 or 24-28 or July 15-19 or 22-26 657-8371 or

Battlin’ Bear Basketball Camp Rocky Mountain College Grades 1-8 $80; 9 a.m.-noon June 10-12 SummerCamps.php

Beginner Tumble I

YMCA Ages 6-10 $80-120; 5:30-6:15 p.m. Tuesdays & Thursdays, June 11-Aug. 8 248-1685 or

Kids’ Rimrock Picnic & Adventure Hikes

Billings Parks and Recreation Ages 8-12 $50; 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Wednesdays, June 12-July 13 or July 17-Aug. 7 657-8371 or

Battlin’ Bear Youth Football

Rocky Mountain College. 9 a.m.-noon July 9-11. Ages 6-13. $75. php.

Mustang Kids Camp

Dehler Park. 10 a.m.-noon July 20. Ages 6-12. Free. No registration. 252-1241

Junior Yellowjacket Volleyball Camp MSU Billings. 9 a.m.-noon July 22-23 Grades 4-6. $60

SWIMMING Swim Lessons

West End Granite Fitness Ages 6-12. 2-week sessions: 10:30-11:10 a.m. and 11:1511:55 a.m. Monday-Thursday, June 3-13, June 17-27, July 8-18 and July 22-Aug. 1. 690-8680;

Swim lessons

Billings Parks and Recreation. 10-10:55 a.m. or 11-11:55 a.m. Choice of 7 sessions: June 10-14, 17-21 or 24-28; July 8-12, 15-19 or 22-26 or July 29-Aug. 2. Ages 4-12. $55. 657-8371.

Scuba Camp

YMCA. 9:30 a.m.-noon July 22-26. Ages 8-12. Presented by Adventure Scuba and Y. Mandatory parent, camper orientation, 6:15 p.m. July 16. $200-$250. Full-day camp option, $45 more. 248-1685.

Aquanuts Camp

Billings Parks and Recreation partnered with Adventure Scuba. 8-5 p.m. Aug. 5-9. Ages 9-13. $110. 657-8371. or


YMCA Grades 7-9 $60-110 per week; 6:45 a.m.-6 p.m. June 3-Aug. 23 248-1685 or

Kids’ Spike Club

Blue Creek Sport Shooting Complex Ages 9-16 Various themes, dates, times and prices 247-4868 or

Let’s Make a Film!

MSU Billings Ages 12-15 $19; 9 a.m.-noon June 10-14 896-5890 or

Build a Robot

City College Grades 8-12 $149; 9 a.m.-noon; June 10-20 896-5890 or

Big Man Football Camp

Rocky Mountain College Grades 9-12 $80-130; 10 a.m.- 4 p.m. June 14-15 php

Track & Field Throws Camp

MSU Billings Grades 9-12 $250 or $160 for commuter camper; June 15-16

Elite Skills & Competition Volleyball Camp

Rocky Mountain College Grades 9-12 $125-195; June 17-19 php

Career Readiness, Session 1

MSU Billings Grades 9-12 $49; 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. June 17-21 896-5890 or

Seven Habits of Highly Successful Teens MSU Billings Ages 13-15 $139; 1-4 p.m. June 17-21 896-5890 or

Summer Speed & Power Camp Billings SportsPlex

Part of Billings Clinic Sports Specific Training Summer Program Grades 9-12 $225; Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, June 17-July 26 238-5497 or sportscamps

Master’s Class –Advanced Drawing Yellowstone Art Museum Ages 13-18 $49-55; 9:30 a.m.-noon June 18-19 256-6804 ext. 232 or

Junior High Speed & Power Camp

Billings Sports Plex Part of Billings Clinic Sports Specific Training Summer Program Grades 7-8 $125/session; June 18-July 18 or July 23-Aug. 15 238-5497 or sportscamps

USA Weightlifting Camp

Billings Sports Plex Part of Billings Clinic Sports Specific Training Summer Program Grades 7-8 $100; Tuesdays & Thursdays, June 18-July 25 238-5497 or sportscamps

High School Basketball League

YMCA Grades 9-12 $30-45; 5:30 p.m. Fridays, June 28-Aug. 9 248-1685 or

Institute for the Beautiful Voice

MSU Billings Grades 7-12; auditions required $525 includes lunches or $675 with dorm stay and all meals 8:30-4:30 p.m. June 24-28 896-5890 or

Summer Theatre School

Performing Artist Intensive Venture Theatre. Incoming grade 7 to high-school students. Auditions, June 4 and 5. Musical Theatre; Aug. 5-9; 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; $250. Advanced Acting; Aug. 12-16; 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; $225. Or $350 for both camps 591-9535,

SPECIAL NEEDS Social Interactions Camp

Pediatric Therapy Clinic Ages 4-7 at 9-11 a.m. Ages 8-14 at 1-3 p.m. $150; June 3-6 259-1680 or

Horsin’ Around Equestrian Camp

Intermountain Equestrian Center Easter Seals-Goodwill program in conjunction with Rocky Mountain College Ages 4-8; 9-11:30 a.m. Ages 9-13; 1-3:30 p.m. $250; June 24-27 657-9740

Handwriting Camp

Easter Seals-Goodwill Pediatric Therapy Services Ages 4-6 $175; 9-11 a.m. July 29-Aug. 1 657-9740

Kids Connect Social Skills Coaching for Kids

Easter Seals-Goodwill Pediatric Therapy Services Ages 9-14 $200; 9-11 a.m. Wednesdays, July 17-Aug. 14 657-9740

MORE ACTIVITIES Ahead of the Curve


Blue Creek Shooting Complex & Preserve 670-1183

Billings Gymnastics School

259-2237 Billings Parks and Recreation. 657-8371



Parmly Billings Library


Supporting Our Youth with Basic Elements of • Safety • education • enjoyment • competition Family Fun Archery Night Every Other Thursday in June 5:30 - 7:00pm At the Archery Course

Crazy Clays Family/Youth Night Every Tuesday June 2 - July 4 6:00 - 8:00pm Shoot a different venue each week: Sporting Clay, 5 Stand, Skeet & Trap, Kids under 18 - FREE Parents/Adults - $20

Youth Air Gun and Small Bore Rifle Instruction June 14 Ages 6 - 12.

2nd Annual Big Sky Youth Event All youth invited to come out and be mentored on Rifle Shooting, Archery, Trap

See our website for a list of our generous sponsors for all of this years’ events. Log on or call today to sign up for these events! 406-670-1183


1767 Bender Rd Billings, mt 59101 Let us host your next company picnic, party, or outing • CALL FOR DETAILS


SEEN AT THE SCENE MSUB Wine Studies “Exploring Wine & Food Pairing”

2 1

1] Char Crittenden, Vida Poling and Mary Pickett 2] Heidi Thometz, Karen Morgan and Jodie Hart 3] Connie and Eric Johnson 4] Mike and Lora Huston, Ed and Becky Garding 5] Lorilee Diaz

Billings Symphony Family Concert with Trout Fishing in America

3 4 5

6] Back row: Ezra Idlet (TFiA), John Beaudry Front row: Keith Grimwood (TFiA), Anne Harrigan and Aaron Mathis








“Comedy Because” at Alberta Bair Theater 7] Connie Meland and Louie Anderson 8]Melanie Schwarz and Molly Nichelson 9] Donna Huston

St. Patrick’s Day Parade 12

10] Jay Kister 11] The Kaufmans: L-R Kari, Kassi, Kristina, Brandon, Shawn-Ham Kaufman and Mark. 12} Conner and Alex Rudio

Photo courtesy of MSUB, Alberta Bair Theater and Kit Tambo



13 14

Northern Hotel Ribbon Cutting 15 13] Lynda White, Chris Nelson and Tom White


14] Sen. Jon Tester and Anna Biegel, Miss Montana 15] Tom Hanel, Andy and Heather Rio 16] L-R: Christine Marchant, Katy Webber, Hannah Nelson, Kathy Shacklett and Libbi Roe 17] L-R: Chris Montague, Bonnie Bargas and Duncan Pete



20. 21. 6


Purple 5K 18] Melanie Romero and James Moore 19] Vicki Andre 20] Jeff Junkert and Ziggy Ziegler 21] L-R Michaiah John, Bailey Sandefur, Brian and Hannah Leouhardt, Molly Lundby


22] L-R Gina Simonetti, Kelly Fessler, Jessie Obee, Lee Domeika, Lauren Bloomfield and Chelsia Davis



Bring your entire family to the 34th annual Heart and Hold Run on Saturday, June 15—the perfect kick-off to Father’s Day weekend. The 5K, 10K and 2-mile health walk begin at St. Vincent Healthcare with staggered start times beginning at 8 a.m. At the race finish located at Dehler Park, St. Vincent Healthcare and Billings Gazette Communications will host the Montana Active Life Festival featuring interactive booths, kids’ events and family fun from 8:30 a.m. to noon.

34th Annual Heart and Sole Run June 15


May 10 Bill Cosby Alberta Bair Theater 256-6052 Rimrock Opera Chorus for Kids ROCK Concert Venture Theatre 591-9535

May 10-25 “A Closer Walk With Patsy Cline” Billings Studio Theatre 248-1141

May 11 Montana Women’s Run Downtown Billings

May 14-17 Special Olympics Summer Games Various locations 256-2400

May 15-18

Magic City Rollers Montana Pavilion 256-2400

MSU Billings Foundation Wine & Food Festival 657-2244

May 31

May 16-18 Miles City Bucking Horse Sale Miles City, Mont.

May 17 Eagle Mount Family Fun Night Billings SportsPlex 839-9080

May 18 Heritage Home Tour Various locations Bike Bash by Billings BikeNet Upper Parking Lot MetraPark 256-2400

Jam at the YAM Yellowstone Art Museum 256-6804


June 1 SpringFest Moss Mansion 256-5100

June 7-23

June 14

“Is He Dead?” Billings Studio Theatre 248-1141

Huff’s Antique Show & Sale Montana Pavilion 256-2400

June 7 Live Country with Seth Turner Montana Chads 259-0111

June 8 Early Season Farmers’ Market Good Earth Market Parking Lot 259-2622

June 15 Montana Hope Project Banquet and Magic Show Shrine Auditorium 259-4384 Early Season Farmers’ Market Good Earth Market Parking Lot 259-2622

Red Neck Summer Nationals Grandstands MetraPark 256-2400 Early Season Farmers’ Market Good Earth Market Parking Lot 259-2622

June 4 Carson & Barnes Circus Upper Parking Lot MetraPark 256-2400

June 13

June 18-20

(and every Thursday through 10/3)

YVKC Dog Show Montana Pavilion 256-2400

Healthy By Design Gardeners’ Market RiverStone Health South Parking Lot 651-6444

Soroptimist of Billings “Wine and Roses at the YAM” Yellowstone Art Museum 294-1948

MAGIC CITY MARKETPLACE Cystic Fibrosis Walk ZooMontana 877-296-6610 Magic City Rollers Montana Pavilion 256-2400 Early Season Farmers’ Market Good Earth Market Parking Lot 259-2622

June 29 Holiday Circle Car Show Various locations

June 30 Symphony in the Park Pioneer Park

JULY July 13 Montana Brews & BBQs Chiesa Plaza at MetraPark 256-2400 Yellowstone Art Museum’s Summerfair Veteran’s Park 294-1948

July 20 Billings All Original Car Show Various locations

AUGUST August 2

HOME LOAN SOLUTIONS Purchasing • Refinancing g • Building • Remodeling g •

Happy Caddy Cup 2013 Lake Hills Golf Club 252-9244

Call Sam Van Dyke for your Real Estate Needs!

Home Loan Consultant

Artwalk Downtown Billings

August 9

248-1127 760 Wicks Lane • 2522 4th Ave. N • 32nd & King Ave. W

Magic City Blues Festival - Blues Traveler and more Downtown Billings Brantley Gilbert at MontanaFair Rimrock Auto Arena 256-2400

August 9-17 MontanaFair MetraPark 256-2400

Janice Scott

owner/ esthetician

Affordable, Reliable Local Service

August 10 The Offspring w/ Chevelle at MontanaFair Rimrock Auto Arena 256-2400

August 11 Hunter Hayes w/ Gloriana at MontanaFair Rimrock Auto Arena 256-2400

32nd Street W. & King Avenue | 656-4200

Take a look at the new, affordable group plans from Montana’s own... Call us for all your insurance needs!

Agent is independent of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Montana and offers its products only in the State of Montana.

Billings Office: Jessi Sawicki .

406-655-1711 . 2619 St. Johns Ave., Suite B

®Registered Marks of Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association Association, an Association of Independent Blue Cross and Blue Shield Plans Plans. ®LIVE SMART SMART. LIVE HEALTHY HEALTHY. is a registered mark of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Montana, an Independent Licensee of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association.

We CleAn for You

50+ Life Expo Shrine Auditorium 259-4384

residential Commercial bonded/insured regular one time Move outs

All SupplieS provided Gift CertifiCAteS AvAilAble

July 27 The Dirty Dash Billings 5K The Grandstands Infield at MetraPark 256-2400

Sam Van Dyke

SinCe 1997


Maid Service




THE LAST BEST CITY We all think Billings is great, and the rest of the America thinks so, too. Check out these staggering statistics reaffirming what most of us already know—that Billings truly is one of the last best places to live and raise a family.

We’re the #1 place to launch a business

We’re the #6 best place to retire in America in 2013

(Fortune Small Business Magazine, 2009)

(Forbes Magazine, 2013)

We’re the #3 best place to raise a family, just behind Honolulu and Virginia Beach (Best Life Magazine, 2008)

We’re the #4 green-

est “small” city in the U.S. In the heart of Big Sky Country, Billings has 2,600 acres of green space. (Gardening Magazine, 2008)

We were voted as one of the top 20 places to live the American Dream (American Cowboy Magazine, 2010)

We have the 6th lowest tax burden in the country (24/7 Wall Street)

We’re the #8 most safe and secure place to live, according to Farmers Insurance Group (Compiled by Sperling’s Best Places)

We’re ranked #37 as the most bike-friendly U.S. community with recent road construction projects (Shiloh and Rimrock) built to accommodate non-motorized travel (Bicycling Magazine, 2012)


Every Product Your Horse Needs!


Always... A Proud Supporter Over 100 Sizes of Jeans in Stock!


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With $75 Purchase

Classic Leather Tack Horse Lick Tubs We Sell Fishing Licenses!

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Profile for Billings Gazette

May 2013  

The 10th Anniversary Issue. Cheers: A Decade of Magic; Billings: The Last Best City; Tall in the Saddle: High School Rodeo Film Premiere; He...

May 2013  

The 10th Anniversary Issue. Cheers: A Decade of Magic; Billings: The Last Best City; Tall in the Saddle: High School Rodeo Film Premiere; He...