Sports | April 2024

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featuring three local female athletes to watch

april 2024 | Activities + Guide SUMMER 2024
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4 april 2024 EZOB M A N Tuesdays, 5-8 p.m. June 18 - September 10, 2024 East Side of Lindley Park in Bozeman BOzeman FARMERS’ MARKET BOGERT FARMERS’ MARKET June 7-September 27, 2015 Tuesdays, 5-8pm Bogert Park’s Pavilion, South Church Avenue, Bozeman Fresh Produce. Food Vendors. Arts. Family Activities & Live Music Volunteer,  Sponsor  or  vendor info: Life’s a garden…dig it! Fresh Produce. Food. Art. Music & More Volunteer, Sponsor and Vendor Info: 22nd Anniversary

JUNE 2 4:30 P.M.

JUNE 2 4:30 P.M.


Guest Artists

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 5 Yellowstone Ballet Co mp any Presents:
P i nocc h i o P i nocc h i o
& Elizabeth
Costume Contest! Come as a Pinocchio character - Prizes at intermission
Milwaukee Ballet Principal Dancers:
april 2024 Activities + Guide SUMMER 2024 Sports Lessons Beyond the Game 12 Positive Coaching Alliance 14 From Seeds to Trees 16 The Role of a Child Athlete’s Parent 17 Lifelong Learning through Dance 18 Getting Back to Sport 19 Fueling the Feedback Loop 20 Saving Our Old-Growth Forests 23 Helping Your Kids Get Grounded 24 page 27 What’s Up? Bozeman 42 Keeping it Real 46 Monthly Giveaway: I-Ho’s Korean Grill Gift Certificate 47 ON THE COVER: Meet KyLee, KyLee started her wrestling journey in 6th grade. She volunteers in the middle school wrestling room, hoping to inspire young girls, like her sister, to continue wrestling. She is a two-time state champion and a two-time Fargo All-American. KyLee is currently ranked 17th in the nation. As a
at Belgrade High School, KyLee is also a Varsity Cheerleader. PHOTO ADP STUDIO
:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 7 Kids Summer Camps Fun - Games - Gymnastics & More Visit for more information or call 406.991.1005 At Hybrid Motion Summer Camp kids stay active and have fun! We play games, use our equipment to increase strength, try out new skills or improve existing ones, build forts, have dance parties, get crafting and more! No gymnastics or dance experience is needed but for those wanting to work on skills our coaches are there every day to work with interested kids. Don’t like gymnastics? Not to worry, our group games and trampoline are a hit! Ages 5+ You can find our Summer Camps listed under “Classes” on the Parent Portal or Hybrid Motion App. June 10th - August 30th
This institution is an equal opportunity provider. 1.800.433.4298
Find fresh and healthy choices for the family. Stock up on fresh produce using WIC benefits
use the WIC Shopper App for yummy recipes and cooking tips to help you stretch your benefits each month.













* Montana Parent strives to provide accurate information and entertainment to our readers. Some content may be based on opinion of the author and may not represent our views. We want all voices to be heard, so we all can be educated on both sides of important issues.
photos are from event social media pages if not supplied by the organization

Montana Ballet Company • 2024 Summer Programs

Cinderella Summer

Ages 4 - 6

Monday - Thursday 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

• June 10 - 13

• June 17 - 20

• June 24 - 27

Ages 7 & 8

Monday - Thursday 1:00 - 4:00 pm

• June 10 - 13

Daily ballet class, arts and crafts, choreography, and performance!

Dancing Under the Big Sky

July 22 - August 3 | 9:00 am - 5:30 pm

Ages 12+ | Special Guest Faculty

Holistic curriculum - technique, artistry, health and wellness with special performance opportunities.

Mini Dancing Under the Big Sky

July 15 - 26 | 9:00 am - 2:00 pm | Ages 7 - 11

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 9
To learn more and register: | 406.582.8702

I’m down to one child athlete in my house. This is both a joyous and sad statement to make. Joyous because the financial obligations of supporting three youth athletes was intense. The Tetris-like scheduling for practices, competitions and races was often overwhelming. And the pressure of trying to have at least one family member at important events – even when there were multiple conflicts – was nothing short of performing magic and didn’t always work out. One of my kids was stuck with the short end of the stick sometimes.

At the same time, it’s sad because I miss supporting my older girls in their athletic endeavors. Even more sad because it’s a painful reminder of just how “old” my kids are getting.

And then there was one. The baby of the family (now 15) is a barrel racer. And while she took the hit for many years of being denied extra attention and funding because the resources had to go around, she is now reaping the benefits – and taking complete advantage of them.

So, while she now has the focus of the family, she did not last year, which led to one of those occasions when she had to take one for the team. I was out of state at a cheer competition with her sisters and she was in Joliet for a race. She had driven down with a friend and their family and they were staying in her friend’s

living quarters (a horse trailer with a camper attached) at Cottonwood Arena where they were racing and boarding the horses for the weekend.

We were trading videos of cheer and barrel racing and Face Timing regularly. All was right with the universe…until it wasn’t.

My phone rang early Sunday morning and on the other end was complete and utter chaos. The panicked screaming and crying coming from my winded child made it difficult to even understand her. So, here’s what I got:

“Warrior got out!”

“He’s running around…no one will help…he’s going to DIE!”

OK, good news was my child was not the one going to “DIE.” Rather, it was the expensive lawn ornament which was currently running amok through hundreds of trailers, cars, people and other horses in a parking lot.

She hung up on me (of course, because why wouldn’t you call your mother in a complete panic and inaudibly scream broken English about death and then hang up). About 20 minutes later she called back with the full story. So, here’s what happened: She had gone out to Warrior’s stall that morning, about one hour before she had to race, and found his two front legs lodged in his hay feeder. Apparently, he

had the equivalent of an equine panic attack and tried to jump out of the stall window. She released him from the current situation and went back to the task at hand…cleaning out his stall, mucking manure. As she stood by the door (which was being blocked by a very large manure receptacle) and went about her business, Warrior began pacing around the stall. He backed into the corner, took a good long look at her and bolted…knocking her down and jumping over the manure can. He then went on a run-about with my child trailing behind, screaming for help. He almost made it to the road at one point but, for some reason, changed his mind and ran over to the outdoor pen where people finally helped wrangle her wild quarter horse. She quickly saddled him up, raced and then gave me the follow up call. Props for still making it to the race, by the way!

Warrior now receives UlcerGard prior to trailer travel. We have learned how to direct a quarter horse on the run (and have done it, successfully). And, as with most stories that start out badly, we can now have a good laugh about it.

10 april 2024
Meets at Rhythm Drums at The Emerson | 406.580.8229 Rhythms World Drum Camp African! Cuban! Egyptian Drumming! Storytelling, Games, World Culture! Ages 5-12 • Monday-Friday – 9 a.m.-noon Bozeman Camp Dates: June 10 - 14; June 24 - 28; July 8 - 12; July 22 - 26 With Award Winning Teacher Chet Leach


Taya Emmert is a 4th grader from Bozeman who LOVES gymnastics. She started gymnastics when she was 4 and decided to join the competitive team when she turned 6. She now competes as a Level 4 gymnast for Lone Mountain Gymnastics. Her favorite memories from gymnastics are competing alongside her friends and coming in first place at the state meet for her level 3 floor routine in 2023. Taya is a very active kid who can be found at home creating her own routines on her trampoline, cruising the neighborhood with her friends and working on arts and crafts projects for her family. She also participates in softball, basketball, and volleyball and is a genuine sweetheart beloved by her friends and family.

Meet Zhanna Belt, an 8-year-old figure skater who started on a local cattail pond, progressed through learn-to-skate sessions and now thrives as a member of the Bozeman Figure Skating Club. Zhanna’s dedication to her craft is unparalleled; she trains six days a week, including early mornings before school. She finds her stride on the competition stage, having showcased her skills across Montana, Arizona and Utah. Watch out for this rising star as she prepares to shine at the State Games of America in San Diego this July. Beyond the ice, Zhanna cherishes school, time with friends and a variety of hobbies including skiing, gymnastics, math, drawing, biking and swimming.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

Lessons Beyond the Game:

Nurturing Life Skills Through Youth Sports

As a coach with 10 years’ experience across three sports, I’ve witnessed firsthand the profound impact that youth sports can have on our children. Beyond the wins and losses (and interlaced with the thrill of competition) lies a wealth of valuable life lessons that shape our young athletes into resilient, empathetic and accountable individuals. From my experiences as a parent and a coach, I’d like to share my insights on the importance of developing essential life skills through team sports.

Teamwork is the cornerstone of success – both on and off the field. In the world of youth sports, teamwork goes beyond mere cooperation; it’s about collaboration, communication and camaraderie. As young athletes learn to work together toward a common goal, they start to embody what it means to be a team. They become supportive of one another through difficult times, they unite when facing a shared adversity and they learn to communicate through more than just words. In essence, they develop crucial interpersonal skills that are essential for maintaining real world, complex relationships. The very skills that brought them together as a team will also help them become better citizens and contributors in their community. These ties are fragile though, and must be constantly reinforced by

coaches and parents alike. Any doubt put into a young athlete’s mind about a teammate can cause the foundation that has been built to crack and, with that, all that was built on that foundation can come down with it.

In the face of adversity, setbacks and defeats, young athletes can learn to pick themselves up, dig a little deeper and forge ahead with renewed resolve. Through the highs and lows of competition, they develop the resiliency and determination to overcome obstacles and emerge stronger on the other side. Every missed shot, every strikeout and every lost game becomes an opportunity for growth and must be treated as such. Most sports are games of failure. Michael Jordan’s career shooting percentage was 49.7%. That means the player who is arguably the greatest to play the game missed more shots than he made. He once said “I have failed over and over and over again in my life, and that is why I succeed.” Our young athletes need to be allowed to fail with grace because these mistakes are the keys for future success in the face of life’s inevitable challenges.

At the heart of sportsmanship lies respect. On the field, respect manifests itself in many forms: respect for teammates, opponents, coaches, officials and the game itself. Youth

sports provide a platform for children to learn the importance of fair play, integrity and mutual respect. Today’s opponents can easily become tomorrow’s teammates in small communities. Maintaining respect across team lines is critical to our future teams’ successes. Respect for oneself and others also fosters a culture of inclusivity, empathy and understanding that goes beyond the boundaries of the playing field. As adults, we should strive to uphold these principals, as this trait—more than anything else listed here—is an emulated behavior.

In youth sports, accountability means owning up to one’s mistakes and striving for continuous improvement. As coaches, we instill in our young athletes a sense of accountability for their effort, behavior and commitment to the team. Resiliency can only come from the results of accountability, but blame is its enemy. Allowing our young athletes to blame others for their mistakes completely negates the ability to grow from that mistake. By holding themselves and their teammates accountable, young athletes learn the importance of discipline. The discipline that is learned on the field can be paramount to their success in all aspects of life.

As parents, it’s essential to recognize the transformative power of youth sports in shaping

12 april 2024

our children’s character and values. Beyond the physical and mental benefits of exercise, youth sports offer a wealth of opportunities for developing crucial life skills and character traits that extend far beyond the confines of the playing field. Even from the sidelines, we play a direct role in shaping our children’s perceptions of the lessons and, in turn, that affects how much they will get out of it.

As coaches, we have the privilege and responsibility to foster an environment where young athletes can thrive, learn and grow not just as players, but as individuals. Through teamwork, resiliency, respect and accountability, young athletes learn the essential values and skills that will carry them on their journey toward adulthood. Let us embrace the profound potential of youth sports and our role in them to shape the next generation of leaders, innovators and changemakers who will make a positive impact on the world, both on and off the field.


:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 13
Wilz is a local youth coach with
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AGES 3-5 Monday-Friday • 8:30am-12:30pm (no camp July 1-5) RIDGE KIDS SUMMER CAMP SUMMER CAMP 4181 Fallon St., Bozeman, MT 59718 • (406) 586-1737 JUNE 10 TH -AUGUST 16 TH For more information visit WEEKLY PRICING: Members $175 | Non-Members $225 QUESTIONS/REGISTRATION: Email Call (406) 582-4452 or Scan
At Ridge Kids Summer Camp for children ages 3-5, kids will swim, participate in games,
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For more info or to make an appointment, call 406.222.3541 or visit

As soccer season approaches, I look over my team roster, practice drills and rule books, and find myself thinking about the bigger picture. What are my goals for this team? Can we go undefeated? Can we do better than .500? Are these even the right questions to be asking? Maybe we should just have fun and not care about the win-loss record? What skills do I want my players to learn? Do I want them to learn “life” skills above and beyond the specific athletic chops they’ll learn—skills such as discipline and teamwork?

I’ve been coaching soccer for 14 years now for Montana Surf and am the current varsity boys’ soccer coach for Belgrade High School. I’ve coached both genders and various age groups from 12 to 18. Over this period of time, I’ve noticed that my goals as a coach have changed. I’ve moved from a “gotta have a winning season” coach to a “gotta use the sports experience to help teach my players ‘life lessons’ that will help them succeed in every aspect of their lives” coach.

Most of the kids I coach won’t pursue competitive sports after they graduate from high school. In fact, only 1% of all youth athletes play sports in college. So I ask myself whether it is ultimately most beneficial to focus my time teaching kids a skill that they’re rarely going to use after eight to 10 years? Sure, they need to know how to dribble, pass and shoot a soccer ball, but why not concentrate more of my effort on helping them develop into successful individuals who know how to work

hard, cooperate with those around them and who respect others?

I’ve become familiar with an organization that shares and promotes many of these objectives called Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA), and it’s part of Stanford University’s Department of Athletics. This nonprofit organization has been around since 1998, and its mission is to “transform youth sports so sports can transform youth.”

PCA includes three main Positive Coaching themes. They are:

1. To redefine a “winner,” so that a winner is an individual who’s given maximum effort, continually learned and improved, and is not afraid of mistakes.

2. To honor the game by respecting the rules, officials, teammates, opponents and self.

3. To fill players’ emotional tanks by giving them more positive feedback than criticism.

I now consider myself to be a “Positive Coach.” I have two goals for this season, and for every season: To try our hardest to win, and to help my players use their soccer experience so that they can be successful in every aspect of their lives. If my team and I can accomplish these objectives, then we’ll have had a winning season.

Let’s play ball!

14 april 2024
SUMMER THEATER DAY CAMP The theater camp is being presented by Camp Equinox. Bozeman Summit School serves only as the venue for the event and is not responsible for any content of any part of the event or programming. Session I: June 10 - July 3, 2024 Session II: July 15 - Aug. 8, 2024 Please visit our website or call for brochure. 406-522-7623 Acting! Comedy Improv! Musical Theater! Playwriting! Main Camp: Entering Grades 3-8 M-F 8:30-3:30 Double Sessions Available! MaskPuppetry!Making! Shakespeare! Held at Bozeman Summit School — 3001 West Villard Street camp equinox! “The only way I can explain it is this is my Hogwarts. You know when Harry found it and he didn’t want to ever leave? Like that.” — from a camper In Our 29th Year! “Minispots” Program: Entering Grades 1 & 2 M-F 8:30-Noon “This is our second year and we’re more impressed than ever. You create a living, breathing cocoon of creativity. The way Camp develops self-esteem, confidence, social skills and fun is miraculous in our eyes!” Find out more about our programing at Mo ntanaLearning.o rg Montana’s Premier Science Camp for Kids Summer Camps Y E A R S
where they are going, but we know
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From Seeds to Trees

Growth, Guidance and Everything in Between

While many people have happy, blissful memories of being in a field full of flowers, what I recall most from my childhood was never wanting to pluck one and leave it isolated. Although the gROw player development program works with kids and basketball, not flowers, the gifts I developed over the course of my life (through various ups and downs) were meant to be shared, and I do so through gROw clinics. The fact that we are all planted in different places and have many different gifts should not distract us from the fact that all our roots connect to each other one way or another.

My name is Ro Wiggins. My roots began in Louisiana, where I lived for the first 21 years of my life. Growing up in the south gave me the social skills to truly never encounter a stranger. gROw player development campers are often shy when I first meet them, but once I interject with my southern approach, you can just see a weight lifted from them. As a kid, I gravitated toward good male influence, because I didn’t come into the world with it. I believe numerous kids are robbed of the opportunity to show who they are when authority figures don’t establish that “bond bridge.” The best compliment parents can give a child is for that child to know that they are “seen,” even when in a gym full of others. Over the years I have gravitated toward the idea that every kid deserves to feel seen and thus become determined to plant seeds elsewhere.

The seeds of gROw were planted in Wyoming in 2017 when I attended Central Wyoming College. Post-graduation I worked as a bag boy at Smiths and after my shift I’d go to the Wind River Indian Reservation to run skills clinics with the youth there. The interest of

the program grew with reviews from families, community members and parents expressing that gROw clinics had far more to do with the overall character of their kids, and not just their basketball abilities. I wanted to expand these gifts to Big Sky country because I saw Montana as a person that felt familiar when we met for the first time.

Over the past three years gROw has positively impacted thousands of kids in more than 25 towns across Montana. To someone with a child who is nervous to attend I’d say, “Come as you are.” My wife and children have been warmly accepted by Montana whenever they travel to camps with me. We are treated like family. The work ethic of these kids that I get the opportunity to work with speaks volumes to the examples being set at home. From working out of my trunk in Louisiana to 28 states and counting is a testament to the same work-ethic foundation set by my mother who was a single parent. Watching her work three jobs to support us allowed me to realize I could truly make anything of myself if I put in the work.

Allowing myself to branch out and plant positive seeds within numerous communities has given me the chance to continue to show up and watch these kids grow. There have been so many nonbasketball feel-good stories that have come from the trust and bond-bridges that are built from these basketball camps. I hope every child is afforded the opportunity to experience a gROw camp at least once. You’ll come to see that there is a stranger who is truly rooting for you to win, while only being your best self in the process. gROw, together we can.

(Socials/Facebook - Ro Wiggins/GROW TRAINING/ Instagram@growtrainingpage)

16 april 2024
don't know
Wellness, Growth, and Community All Through Sports
get there.
sports PHYSICAL THERAPY SERVICES INCLUDE: Pediatrics Early Interventions (birth - 3) Strider Bike Early Learning and Inclusive Learning Certified Instructor Dynamic Movement Intervention Torticollis Foot Management: orthotic prescription, serial casting, night splints Gait training Developmental delay WE BRING THE CLINIC TO YOU. ALL SERVICES PROVIDED AT YOUR HOME/DAYCARE 406.318.5055 Call or text Dr Hannah Haugen, Physical Therapist

The Role of a Child Athlete’s Parent

A child’s journey and exploration into sports could begin as young as 2 years old. This does not mean all kids showing interest at an early age will continue to begin competitive sports as soon as they enter grade school. Most children begin to grasp the concept of competition around the age of 10. And often, it takes years to learn that sometimes you lose even when you give it your best.

Physical activity, and the love for a particular sport or even sports, can positively affect a child’s personal development, self-esteem, goal setting and even leadership skills. This begins with the development of social-emotional skills in preschool.

As a parent of a multi-sport athlete and one who has learned many things through my experiences thus far, I can tell you that heightened expectations from a parent can negatively affect a child’s mental health and overall enjoyment of the sport.

When a sport seems like “work,” a child is not going to look at it the same way and will likely

push back from the process. Yes, being a youth athlete is challenging work, but when your kiddo genuinely enjoys their sport, their dedication comes naturally. It’s only then, when your child has the mentality of “dedication,” that you will understand the level of love for a sport. It then becomes “hard work and dedication,” and this dedication will follow your child into becoming an athlete.

As parents we alone cannot make a young child confident. However, there are important steps we can take to help kids build their own self-confidence. Let us look at things this way: Children believe in themselves when we believe in them first. As parents, we cannot control the outcome of winning or losing, but we can control how we encourage our kids to practice and play. We can help them believe in themselves, their ability to learn through improvement and their drive to hustle. Once they believe in themselves and how they can control their efforts and dedication, they will begin to believe in their ability to win when the opportunity presents itself.

They will also believe in the concept of working harder to improve themselves. Trust me when I say this must be their choice, not ours. The number one and most important piece of advice I can give to parents is this: Your kiddo showing interest in and playing sports is their path, their dream. It is not ours. What can be labeled as ours are those moments of joy we get to share with our child after the big game, being a positive role model for our child and a respectful spectator. Confidence builds when a child sets goals and therefore overcomes a challenge. Our job is to offer those opportunities for them to practice just that. Staying humble is great, but it is also great to be proud of the hard work, dedication and the win. Our job is to encourage pride.

The more comfortable kids are confiding in their peers, coaches and parents, the sooner they will learn that it is OK to talk about their fears and doubts, and work through those strong feelings. Our job is to encourage open communication and teach them how to talk things out. Confidence is not a lack of fear, but a strong drive to continue to try and press on even when fear is present. Redirecting fears and taking control of those negative thoughts is the skill of a champion. It is our job to support our kids in redirecting their negative thoughts and focus on the positive outcome. Even when things get tough, working through those times is a skill we can teach.

Every moment and opportunity that a child takes part in sports provides a learning experience. The experiences can then be taken into everything else they do in life. As a parent, we must accept our child’s sports abilities and not place too high expectations on them. We must remember this is our child’s time. Not our glory days. Our role is the most important of all, and we must never forget this. We need to help our children bounce back from disappointment. We need to be there for the celebrations and those times when there are no words to heal the wounds of a loss. No matter what, no matter how old our kids are, our role in their athletic journey and their love for the game is to be their biggest fan and to love them unconditionally through all their sporting developments.

Judith Ehret is a Coach at Child Care Connections, where they support families and the local economy by encouraging quality child care and safety.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 17

Lifelong Learning through Dance

“Oh, my goodness, I always wanted to try ballet! I only wish I had done it when I was younger.”

I glanced up at the barista who was looking at my Montana Ballet Company vest as she handed me my latté. I smiled, took my drink and prepared to launch into my usual: “It’s never too late!” The number of “would have, should have, could have” comments I get when I’m about town wearing MBC apparel never ceases to amaze me:

Ç “I always wanted to start but never did.”

Ç “I took ballet when I was young but then I quit.”

Ç “I wish my daughter could take dance but she has Down syndrome.”

Ç “My son really wants to try ballet but boys don’t dance.”

Ç “I’m way too uncoordinated to take ballet.”

Ç “I’m too old and not flexible enough to take class.”

Too often I think people have a perception that dance (and ballet in particular) is only for the select few, or that there is a limited window of opportunity, one which – if missed – means ballet is out of reach forever. And yes, if you’re hoping to perform Swan Lake at Lincoln Center this may in fact be the case. But what most people don’t realize is that ballet is in fact accessible to everyone, at any time of their lives.

Why ballet for life-long learning?

There is a reason that professional ballet dancers, even those who have reached the very pinnacle of their chosen career, take ballet class pretty much each and every day. The benefits and lessons that ballet teaches reach far beyond the mirrored walls of the dance studio.

The physical benefits are obvious: strength, flexibility and coordination come to mind. Personally, I know first hand that the body awareness instilled in me from years of ballet has definitely saved me from major injury in many a “yard sale” on the ski hill.

The mental benefits are just as numerous: focus, discipline and the forging of new neuro pathways (neuroplasticity, to get all fancy). The introduction to and mastery of new skills increases learning, memory and comprehension, skills which carry over into all aspects of life.

Lastly, it’s just plain fun and a tremendous confidence-building outlet for self-expression and creativity. Community, teamwork and social skills are all essential parts of ballet classes.

In the greatest of equalizers, these benefits of ballet classes – physical, mental and joyful –are the same whether you are a professional dancer, a 2-year-old just beginning a love affair with dance, a dedicated student hoping for that illustrious dance career, a 6-year-old hoping to perform in The Nutcracker, a 12-year-old in an Adaptive Dance class or an adult ballet weekend warrior. The community, exhilaration, dedication, attention to detail, the thrill of mastering a new skill and the determination to conquer an elusive movement are the same no matter your age, skill or level. So, no, it’s never too late and it’s never too anything; you don’t have to be a swan to fall in love with ballet!

Karen Smith is an instructor with Montana Ballet Company. She has experience teaching students of all ages and abilities, including with MBC, the Ballet Academy of Texas in Coppell, TX, and as a Dancing Classrooms Teaching Artist in Residence in Dallas/Fort Worth Elementary Schools. She was formally trained in Adaptive Dance at the Boston Ballet and is head instructor for MBC’s Adaptive Dance Program. Karen is a licensed Progressing Ballet Technique teacher with a B.A. in English from Montana State University. After exploring, living, working and dancing around the world, Karen is happily back in Bozeman with her husband of 31 years, two kids, two cats, a hedgehog, and a pug named Percy. MBC offers a full range of classes and summer programs for ages 2 through adult at all levels.

18 april 2024

Getting Back to Sport

Women’s athletics has a rich and long-standing tradition in Montana and is a point of pride for many in our state. With 2,172 points, Shannon Schweyen (formerly Shannon Cate) scored more than any woman or man in Montana basketball history. Alice Ritzman of Kalispell earned more than $1 million on the LPGA Tour between 1978 and 1998. Most recently, Billings Skyview’s Breanna Williams repeated as Gatorade Montana Girls Basketball Player of the Year. These examples illustrate the caliber of athletes coming up in our Montana communities. However, for every tale of glory, there is one of injury—of what might have been. As women’s athletics in Montana continues to grow, so does, unfortunately, the number of significant injuries. The most common include tears to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). The ACL is a vital ligament of the knee that provides stability under stress. It can also be vulnerable to injury, and when that happens, it can sideline an athlete both on the field and in daily life for months.

Billings Clinic marketing and development strategist and former Montana State University Billings soccer player, Lexie Bloyder, was fortunate throughout her athletic career. Her father, Joe Bloyder, is a physical therapist at Billings Clinic, and, from an early age, she began learning the fundamentals of sound form in her movements and techniques.

“I’m super thankful for the guidance and expertise I received from my high school weightlifting coaches and athletic trainers,” Bloyder said. “I was able to utilize that knowledge throughout my college career. I attribute not having any significant or career-ending injuries to this training – not everyone is so fortunate.”

This approach defines Billings Clinic’s goals as a statewide health system when it comes to meeting athletes’ needs. In the Gallatin Valley, Billings Clinic Bozeman is the heart of health care for western Montana while providing sports medicine services tailored to athletes’ individual needs. The expert local team provides athletes from across the region with comprehensive and streamlined care. Billings Clinic Bozeman Orthopedic Surgeon, Emily Harnden, MD, specializes in sports medicine and ACL treatment and understands the unique challenges facing female athletes. She strives to get them back in the game and minimize the risk of injury and/or reinjury.

“One of the most important things I consider and strive to understand when I treat an athlete is their personal goal in getting back to sport. This allows me to design a specific treatment plan to give that athlete the best chance to achieve their goal and have a successful outcome from their injury. When treating female athletes, it is paramount to understand the unique anatomic, physiologic and psychologic

factors that contribute to their injury and recovery. Recognizing and addressing these appropriately through a multidisciplinary approach gives her the best chance to return to her desired level of sport,” said Harnden.

Dr. Harnden works alongside skilled pediatric and orthopedic teams at Billings Clinic Bozeman to provide a wide range of services. In addition to treatments for ACL, they treat a comprehensive list of shoulder, hip, knee and spine conditions. Treating injuries is just one part of the equation for the skilled team. It places equal importance on protecting young athletes through proactive and preventative work while collaborating with other regional expert teams, consulting and referring when appropriate.

To the east, in Billings, the Billings Clinic sports medicine team provides the latest innovations in sports medicine to keep active athletes on the playing field while providing comprehensive diagnosis and treatment plans for various injuries and conditions. Athletic trainers at Billings Clinic work with middle and high school student athletes who train in the summer months. Billings Clinic also offers sports-specific training, which provides progressive training tailored to each athlete’s needs. The aim is to create faster, more agile and explosive athletes through teaching proper movement patterns for running, changing direction and jumping.

Everyone hopes to avoid injuries and, whether you’re a competitive or amateur athlete, daily quality of life is so important. But injuries can still happen. Montana gives us ample opportunity to get out, explore and play. Many people have children, grandchildren and even great grandchildren they want to keep up with for as long as they can. The good news is there are proactive measures that can be taken to reduce the risk of injury. The best potential outcomes come out of training with care, developing good habits and technically sound movements and techniques while relying on the expertise of medical professionals in our communities when they’re needed the most. No matter where you are across Montana, the Billings Clinic team is there to help with that. Learn more at sportsmedicine.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 19 sports

Fueling the Feedback Loop:

How Inspiring Young Athletes Has Inspired Me

For as long as I can remember, I have always gone out of my way to coach or teach anything to anyone who would let me. My high school football coach referred to me as a “coach inside the huddle.” In college, I taught friends how to weight train and classmates how to do electromagnetic theory. During that time, I also started coaching youth sports.

My coaching career started off with football at Sacajawea Middle School in Bozeman. The position was brought to my attention by a friend of mine, and I took it for selfish reasons. It only took one day to find the inspiration that would change all the reasons I was coaching. During gear hand-out on our first day, a person who, based on size, I would have suspected was a parent, walked in. He handed me his physical card and introduced himself to me as Jack. I looked down at his physical card and then back up at him. Jack was a 6’1”, 205-pound seventh grader. I was instantly inspired to help make this kid the best football player he could possibly be. Kids like Jack with an extreme physical advantage will usually go one of two ways: They will either learn skills to complement their physical attributes, which will help carry them further into their athletic careers, or they will rely on only their physical abilities too much and then fall behind later because they have never learned proper technique. I did not want Jack to be the latter. He was kind, respectful and loved the game. Jack inspired me to coach not for myself but for others. To serve my athletes to the best of my ability to make them the best players they can be.

After a couple of years, I stopped coaching, and it wasn’t until my first child was ready to play sports that I found my way back. My oldest, who is now 10, is actively involved in sports. He inspired me to get back to coaching, and he continually inspires me to continue to be the best dad and coach I can be. The first sport he tried, as many kids do, was T-ball... which meant that my first time getting back into coaching was with 4-year-olds... and baseball bats. Two things that 4-year-olds can inspire you to do: have patience and have fun. It was a far stretch from coaching middle school football, but that season taught me to find joy in the little victories.

A few years later I was back on the football field coaching my second season of youth flag football. We had some outstanding players on our team; we also had a couple of kids who had never played before. One of my players was still figuring out his own bodily spatial awareness and his movement in space. He was a fun-loving kid who liked to goof around, but at practice he was ready to listen. He worked day in and day out to make himself and his teammates better. He had given his all to his team over the course of the season. On the final day, we had a double header and, because of his dedication, I wanted nothing more than for this kid to get a touchdown. All of his hard work came to a head on one play and he got himself that touchdown!

This kid broke through a couple of defenders and scored a touchdown. The whole team rallied around him in celebration. That specific instance with that specific kid inspired me to look for the wins beyond the column that reads W on the stats sheet.

20 april 2024

Now, I sit here 15 years after my first coaching gig with two kids of my own, trying to start a youth sports company. So, how did I get here? That is an easy question to answer. I was inspired. I was inspired by those who I set out to inspire: The kids I was coaching. These stories are just a small fraction of many in which I have been inspired by my athletes. The summation of all those stories has led me to start For the Future Sports, a youth sports organization that looks to expand the offering of sports in Gallatin Valley and improve our athletes’ lives with a “person-before-player” coaching approach. Through it, I hope to continue to inspire and be inspired by coaches, players and parents in our community, so that looking back, the stories I have today are just a fraction of all the stories I have to look back upon.

Mack Wilz is a local youth coach with over a decade of experience. He recently started For the Future Sports, a youth sports organization, to inspire children to find individual wellness, personal growth and a sense of community through sports.


AGES: 8 - 14 years old

DATES : June 10th - August 17th

LOCATION : Showdown Montana



YMCA Members: $350

Non-Members: $380


YMCA Members: $700

Non-Members: $760

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 21

Presented by Gallatin Valley Earth Day ~

Earth Day Festival

Saturday, April 20 |10 am - 3 pm

Gallatin County Fairgrounds, Bozeman

Exhibits ~ Talks ~ Music ~ Food ~ Children’s Activities

Children's Activities:

Earth Day passport - win prizes!

10 am "Magic Monster Show"


Petting Zoo

Face painting

11 am: “Is Your Property at Risk for Wildfire?” with Gallatin County Emergency Management

12 pm: “Create Your Own Backyard Food Forest!” with Broken Ground

1 pm: “Trees for the Gallatin Valley” with Cashman Nursery

1:30/2:30 pm: Live Raptor presentation MT Raptor Conservation Cntr

2 pm: “Get to Know the City’s Forestry Division!” with City of Bozeman Forestry & Gallatin Watershed Council

22 april 2024

Saving Our Old-Growth Forests

Joan Maloof is passionate about protecting America’s last remaining old-growth forests, which face threats from logging, wildfire and climate change.

To save some of the oldest living things on Earth, Maloof knows she’ll need help from some of the youngest – today’s children.

Founder of the nonprofit Old Growth Forest Network, Maloof has won some battles to save forests near her home. But she says such protections won’t last unless the next generation understands their importance.

“When we visit old-growth forests so many of us feel it’s a beautiful experience and spiritually uplifting. Those are the emotions we want to recreate. Those are the places we want to bring our children … so they will preserve it,” she said. “We can protect all the forests we want, but if we don’t have the next generation after us, it will all disappear.”

Maloof, 67, is a retired biology and environmental studies associate professor from Maryland’s Salisbury University. She is also the author of five books, including Nature’s Temples: A Natural History of Old-Growth Forests

She will be giving a free talk in Bozeman on April 11 at 7 p.m. at the Museum of the Rockies (reception at 6 p.m.), sponsored by Gallatin Valley Earth Day. It will also be livestreamed. Her topic is “Old-growth forests

in Montana—Where are they, why are they important, and what can you do to save them.”

Old-growth forests are not only refuges where stressed-out humans can feel healthy and happy, Maloof said. They provide vital habitat for diverse wild creatures, at a time when many are threatened.

Old-growth and mature forests also do a tremendous job fighting global warming –removing about one third of the carbon dioxide we release by burning fossil fuels, she said.

“Nothing is doing more” to fight global warming, Maloof said, “and they’re doing it for free.”

Recent scientific studies have challenged old assumptions, she said, finding that older forests capture far more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than young trees.

Twenty years ago, scientists believed old forests reach a steady state, but new studies have found that the older forests get, the more carbon they suck from the air, turning greenhouse gases into tree trunks, branches and roots.

Timber industry groups often argue that logging is necessary to thin old forests and prevent wildfires. Maloof pointed to scientific studies that found that when forests are thinned, they can burn more quickly because they’re drier and the wind can move through them faster.

“I do believe we can log some places and have wood products,” Maloof said. “I’m doing a renovation of my house – I love wood. We should also have some places that are off limits.”

Wild Montana’s website lists a few hikes through old-growth forests. Closest to Bozeman is the hike to Grotto Falls above Hyalite Lake.

The Biden administration has taken steps toward protecting federal old-growth forests. On Earth Day 2022 and 2023, it ordered the U.S. Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management to inventory and propose ways to protect old-growth forests. The Forest Service has proposed to amend forest management plans nationwide.

However, the proposals won’t be final until January 2025, when a new administration may take over. Hundreds have asked the administration to act sooner.

Still, Maloof said, “It’s very exciting. I’m very hopeful.”

To educate the public, the Old Growth Network has set a goal to identify and protect an oldgrowth forest in every county. So far it has identified 233 old-growth forests in 34 states, but none in Montana. She’s hoping to engage Montana volunteers.

Maloof said she hopes to save places that are easily accessible, where, “Grandparents can take their grandchildren.”

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 23

Ground your kids — not in the “You’re in trouble” type of way, but in the, "I know how to release stress from my nervous system, feel connected to the earth, feel gratitude and can simply enjoy being type of way."

In fact, getting grounded is equally as important for parents as kids. Our kids pick up so much from us, so hopefully this can be a reminder for all of us parents to practice, and invite the kids in on the fun.

We are constantly bombarded with so much information nowadays. No one nervous system was meant to carry this much, all the time. Constantly processing endless new information. We must find a way to turn it off, to move from that state of fight and flight, and into a deep state of rest and digest. And as kids are feeling more and more stress and anxiety, depression, food intolerances and discontent, I’d say they’re in need of a major dose of chill too.

So much of what we do when we say we’re relaxing, is not actually rejuvenating to our bodies. I’m not saying it’s not worth doing, but we must also carve out time to truly replenish, to tune into the body and not simply partake in mindless distraction (which has its time and place).

Helping Your Kids Get Grounded

This can actually feel really scary to start if we’re not used to slowing down. Because as soon as we do, all the thoughts and feelings we’ve kept at bay coming racing in and can feel suffocating.

But we don’t do anyone any favors by holding it in and continuing to resist it, thus shoving it down further. Not our kids, not the earth, least of all ourselves.

We need to find ways for healthy release, ways to feel that deep, deep exhale that feels so good to finally take. We need ways to feel joy and gratitude as they’re with us, instead of them always feeling so fleeting. We need to be OK with some internal discomfort, for the sake of long-term replenishment.

So how do we do this? We get grounded and give our bodies spaces and ways to release. And the beautiful part is that, in my eyes, this directly benefits the earth! When we’re carrying around stressed, anxious, heavy toxic energy all the time, feeling isolated and alone, we completely close ourselves off. But when we can learn to ground and release that energy, we become better stewards of the earth. We’re more in alignment with our values, we’re rushing less and we’re more conscious of our decisions.

Maybe we make time for more whole foods and enjoy cooking, or perhaps we do less stress shopping and consuming. We relish our time here on this planet and start to treat ourselves and the earth more reverently when we don’t feel like the world is out to get us quite so much.

So that being said, here are some of my favorite tips for getting grounded with your family and celebrating Earth Day.

» Start a garden. So simple, but get your hands in some organic dirt. Even just a pot or two of fresh herbs can be simple and do wonders. Let your kids pick something fun and have a hand at growing something too. And no guilt if the plants die, just start again! It changes our bioenergetic rhythm and connects us to our roots.

» Hang outside barefoot. No rubber or plastic between you and the earth. For at least 30 minutes. Do what you can with a Montana spring, but keep at it. Feel that warm sunshine on your face. Leave the electronics inside. Perhaps find some things in nature to make some art with or give your kids a paintbrush and some pinecones. Do this especially if it’s a bit uncomfortable. Eventually you will notice

24 april 2024

a huge release from this earthing, as it’s called. You could also eat a meal with your hands while outside! Make it wild!

» Take Epsom salt baths. This does wonders for helping our bodies to release. Picture the bath or even a shower washing away any unwanted, old or toxic energy. This is a phenomenal way for pregnant mamas, kids and all humans to release, ground and nourish.

» Learn how to breathe deeply and focus on the exhale. In and out of the belly, with deep, open mouth exhales. Make it fun with your kids, make animal noises. Shout, sigh, cry, laugh. Maybe add in a stretch or two. I mimic this for all the mothers, students and kids I work with and am around. You practicing this instantly helps whoever is around you to feel more grounded and relaxed too.

» Give your kid a mud kitchen. Let them find dirt and things around the yard, buy some kitchen items at the thrift store and let their creativity soar. My daughter has been doing this for years and is still endlessly entertained by it.

» Partake in ceremonies and celebrations. If we’re constantly striving for what’s next, we’re never enjoying what’s right now. Ceremonies, rituals and celebrations allow us to slow down, anchor in and have a regular cadence to sink into. Make it your own, you could use any of the above practices. Light a candle and say something you’re thankful for. Thank the earth. Don’t overthink it. Let it be something you can come back to monthly, annually, weekly, seasonally.

Earth Day should be a time of awareness and celebration. And if we really want to change the world, we start by changing ourselves. Freeing pent-up stress and starting to embody a released and settled nervous system is the best way to start.

Happy Earth Day!


Saturday, APRIL 6, 2024 10:00am - 3:00pm at the Gallatin Valley Mall Find us on FB (Babes in Bozeman-Baby

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 25
Jessica guides women to build a new sense of home within through retreats, private yoga, energy healing, workshops and cacao ceremonies. She is a doula and Ayurvedic specialist and mother to daughter Bella.
Expo) BABY EXPO Bozeman Bozeman Babes in PEDIATRICS

Serving children from 6 months through 9 years of age through our Nido (infant class), Pre-Primary (Toddler class), Primary (3-6 year olds) and Elementary (6-9 year olds)


in our Lower Elementary Program for children in 1st - 3rd grades

+ UNIQUE and BEAUTIFUL learning environment and community

+ Currently accepting applications and touring our school

26 april 2024
CONTACT US TODAY! (406) 600-8098
to fill out an expression of interest
Lead Elementary
Where the community comes together in support of
Be Brilliant. Services Include: General/Family Dentistry Oral Surgery Cosmetic Dentistry Laser Dentistry Dentures Clear Aligners Dental Implants In-house Crowns 1125 W KAGY AVE, STE 303 BOZEMAN, MT 59715 406.587.2201 HELLO@SHINEDENTALMT.COM
We offer complete dental care for you and your family in a warm, welcoming atmosphere. Our team of dental professionals are dedicated to providing you with the most comprehensive care, because good overall health begins with good oral health.



Acting Out: Summer Camps at Verge!


Ç (406) 404-9000




Join Verge for productions of classic stories and devised works at Verge Theater. Their half-day camps include acting, learning music, choreography and everything it takes to put on a production. Every camper will have a part. Along the way they will learn about teamwork, boost their confidence, make friends and have a great time being part of a mini-production at the end. Teens will take a deeper dive into theater making with Devised Theater where the performance is created collaboratively by its participants using different theatrical theories, tools and improv.

Adventure Day Camp for Teens Team Leaders (Counselor in Training)

Gallatin Valley YMCA


Ç (406) 994-9622




Teen summer camps provide older campers more significant opportunities to spread their wings and experience new adventures. Campers are encouraged to make their own choices, build relationships and develop essential life skills through YMCA character values. The teen camp offers a more challenging range of activities for experienced campers. It provides a safe place where teens can be themselves, participate in activities and go on field trips specifically tailored toward teens’ evolving interests.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 27
Plan your kids' summer fun here for
information about these camps, visit our interactive Summer Camp & Activities Finder at Bozeman

995 Carousel Way

Helena, Montana 406.457.1800


June and July — grades 3-8


Spring and Fall — grades 3-12


K-12 Academic Enrichment


Ç (406) 312-1558

Alpengirl Camp


Ç (406) 570-6312


Ç AlpengirlCamp

Ç alpengirlcamp

Alpengirl is a multi-adventure traveling camp for girls in grades six to 11 that takes campers across the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rocky Mountains. Horseback riding in Yellowstone, surfing the Oregon coast, climbing in the Cascades and more – Alpengirls get to try a range of activities and to explore some of the most amazing places in the country. These summer camp trips bridge the gap between a traditional sleepaway camp and a rigorous wilderness expedition like NOLS or Outward Bound, creating confidence and a skill set that can take each camper through adventures for years to come.


Big Sky Tutoring is happy to offer summer tutoring in both small-group and individualized formats. Individual tutoring can be tailored to your exact needs, while small group tutoring offers quality instruction at a lower hourly rate. Big Sky Tutoring does not have an exact schedule planned for their summer small group tutoring courses. They plan to build this schedule around YOU and your schedule preferences! Please contact Big Sky Tutoring for more information. Bozeman


Ç (406) 219-7463


Ç bozemanchildrenstheatre

Ç bozemanchildrenstheatre

Bozeman Children’s Theatre has recently transitioned to a nonprofit organization and is in their fourth year of putting on fun and exciting theatrical summer camps. BCT takes students from auditions on day one to a full musical performance by the final day of camp.

28 april 2024
Children’s Theatre
Scholarships Available !



Bozeman Sports Camp


Ç (406) 661-5496


Ç bozemansports


Bozeman Sports Camp is an active summer sports camp for kids entering grades K-6. They provide fun and engaging activities, games and instruction in various sports of all kinds. Instructors give quality coaching of sports skills, strategies and sportsmanship while providing an active setting for kids to spend their summer.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 29



Camp Equinox Summer Theater Day Camp


Ç (406) 522-7623




Bozeman’s premier summer theater day camp! Since 1996 Camp Equinox has been an exciting place for kids to learn all about the theater and to explore their own creativity. From musical comedy, comedy improv and scene-work to mask-making, puppetry and playwriting, Camp Equinox’s goal is to give students the opportunity to meet challenges, build self-confidence and see their success in final performances, all in the environment of a supportive community. It’s a month of challenges, friends and intense fun.

Camp Gold Rush

Ç Gallatin Valley YMCA


Ç (406) 994-9622




Camp Gold Rush is a first-of-its-kind overnight camp for kids ages 8-14. Combining traditional camp activities and experiences with programming that develops a passion for stewardship of our wild spaces, Camp Gold Rush is the perfect place for youth to begin their journey toward independence and to discover a love of nature. Campers will stay in covered wagons, engage in a variety of activities, share stories around the campfire and make lasting friends and memories.

Camp Lightning Creek


Ç (406) 586-9690




Camp Lightning Creek offers middle schoolers an overnight experience in comfortable cabins in the Taylor Fork drainage near Big Sky, Montana. Join us to learn more about the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, explore and play in the outdoors, and cook group meals together while unplugging and connecting to nature. Participants will build self-confidence and a stronger sense of place and belonging through individual and group activities. Camp will take place at the edge of the Lee Metcalf Wilderness within Crosscut’s beautiful 640-acre Lightning Creek property.

Camp Pinspiration


Ç (406) 219-3786




Join Pinspiration Bozeman for a pin-spirational art camp that’s sure to entertain your kids. Offering children ages 6-12 the opportunity to learn and grow as they explore their creative spirit, each week of camp has a unique theme so your child can enjoy multiple sessions and walk away with an armful of creations, learned techniques and long-lasting memories. Campers will make two or three themed projects per day, and also enjoy themed activities, games and crafty snacks. Choose which camp theme speaks to your child or enjoy them all.

30 april 2024


Cedar Ridge Equine Horsemanship Camps


Ç (530) 263-3433



Cedar Ridge Equine offers summer horsemanship day camps for youth of all ages and abilities. In all CRE Summer Horsemanship Camps, they teach life skill development and personal growth as an intricate component of the horsemanship program. CRE has found horses to be very effective in teaching youth about responsibility, relationships, communication, leadership and team work. Campers will spend time participating in on-the-ground horsemanship, riding, crafting and journaling each day.

Circus Camp


Ç (406) 475-2513


Step into the magical world of 406Cirque Circus Camp. This vibrant camp is a haven for aspiring circus performers: Campers learn unicycling, juggling, acrobatics, aerial arts, stilt-walking and more. With expert guidance from seasoned local and international circus artists, campers discover their unique talents in an inclusive, fun and whimsical atmosphere. Located in one of the best facilities in town with integrated AC and more than five acres of scenic outdoors, each day promises a spectacle of joy and discovery. Join 406Cirque for a summer of laughter, learning and pure delight.


Cooking and Baking Camps Orders Up Delivery


Ç (406) 662-1262

Ç www.bozeman.

Ç ordersupdelivery

Ç ordersupdelivery

Chef Dani and her team love spreading their passion to the next generation for all things food. Have your littles and teens spend some time in a professional kitchen learning how to be confident in making things delicious. Each junior chef will come home with food, recipes and knowledge to share with their family.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::
SUMMER 2024 K-12 Summer Academic Enrichment 113 S 19th Ave Ste C Bozeman admin@bigskytuoring info 406-312-1558 bigskytutoring info Start School Strong Prepare for the ACT/SAT Recover Credits or Graduate Early Earn College Credits Fast by studying with a tutor for a CLEP exam by taking an accredited online high school course with a tutor by studying the Official Prep Books with a tutor by enrolling in a K-8 Math or Reading Bootcamp designed to ensure mastery of all previous grade level content Scan Here to Inquire Ninja Camp Dance Camp Swimming Campapalooza Gymnastics Camps & Classes K E E P Y O U R K I D S B U S Y & A C T I V E A L L S U M M E R ! A c t i v e l e a r n i n g p r e s c h o o l E N R O L L I N G N O W F O R F A L L ! C a l l 4 0 6 - 5 8 7 - 1 1 8 0 t o s c h e d u l e a t o u r camps SUMMER l o n e m o u n t a i n . b i z



Creative Arts Summer Camp





Creative Arts Summer Camp is an art- and nature-based school that operates year-round. They incorporate art, dance, music and nature exploration into daily activities. All summer long, kids get outside to enjoy our beautiful Montana surroundings and create art projects that focus on all the natural beauty we see each day.

Dancing from Stage to Sky: Aerial and Dance Camp

Mountain Air Dance


Ç (406) 595-0909




This fun and unique day camp challenges students physically and mentally with classes in aerial arts, dance technique, choreography, yoga, Pilates, hand balancing, flexibility training, arts and crafts and more. Experienced instructors will guide students through their day in small groups based on age and skill level. Join the fun and learn to FLY! No experience required, for ages 6 to 16 years old.

Emerson Art Camp


Ç (406) 414-0019




Emerson Art Camp offers eight individual weeklong camps running Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Each week dives into creative exploration, education and experimentation through various themes. Emerson Art Camps aim to stretch the traditional boundaries of how children see art and give them experiences that provide unique perspectives. Days are spent outside as participants create, play, laugh and learn, with an art show on Friday afternoon for loved ones to come admire the children’s work.

For the Future Sports Camp


Ç (701) 391-3301




For the Future Sports Camp is a series of weekly, coed sports camps held from 7:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. on weekdays at Sacajawea Middle School. Camp sessions run from June 10 through August 9 with no camp on July 4 or 5. The camp is for students going into grades K-eight. Each week focuses on one major sport and two minor sports (e.g. basketball, kickball, ultimate frisbee). Along with learning and participating in the weekly sports, campers will participate in age-appropriate fitness activities to promote overall athleticism and a healthy lifestyle.

32 april 2024

Gallatin Valley YMCA Adventure Camps


Ç (406) 994-9622




Adventure Camps focus on youth development and learning through various activities, field trips and opportunities. Activities and trips are intentionally planned to promote development/ learning while providing campers with new experiences and challenges. All campers leave their site every day, swim, slip n’ slide on a giant slide, hike once during the week, visit multiple parks, and attend two field trips related to the weekly theme. Each camp will participate in arts and crafts, daily reading, games, singing and social-emotional learning.

GirlSing Five-Day Music Camp

(Singing, Songwriting, Art & Outdoor Fun with Music Kate)


Ç (406) 570-2839


GirlSing Music Camp is a five-day program, held Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., for ages 7 to 11, with optional early drop-off and late pick-up for an extra fee. GirlSing empowers girls to explore their creative spirits through singing, songwriting, journaling and self-expressive art projects. Camp celebrates the beauty in every personality (introvert, extrovert, in between, etc.) and honors the gifts that make each girl unique. This indoor/outdoor camp offers engaging activities (daily hikes/outdoor play, picnics, drumming/rhythm-making and creative art projects). Campers get individualized attention with 15 girls maximum per camp. Families will enjoy a Thursday night program with songs and art.

Greater Gallatin United Way kidsLINK Summer Camps


Ç (406) 587-2194






Embark on a summer of growth and friendship at Greater Gallatin United Way's KidsLINK Summer Camps, offering enriching experiences for every child.

» Big Sky Preschool Camp: Fosters friendships and kindergarten readiness.

» Bozeman Rising Kindergarteners to Fifth Graders: Features diverse activities from music to science while fostering growth and meaningful connections.

» Belgrade Rising Kindergarteners to Fourth Graders: Learn, play and create with new friends while exploring math, science, coding, music and more.

» Belgrade Middle School Camp: Opens doors to new friends and learning experiences.

Heart and Hand Center

Summer Day Camps for Kids and Adult Renewal Retreats


Ç (406) 587-4036


Ç www.heartandhandcenter@fb


Kids and adults will love learning and relaxing at the mountaintop ranch. Campers can play with horses while learning horsemanship skills, make art beneath pine trees, hike along tree-lined trails with majestic views, drum in the large tipi, relax with yoga and make crafts in the barn.

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 33



Hybrid Motion Summer Camps


Ç (406) 991-1005




At Hybrid Motion Summer Camp kids stay active and have fun. Campers will play games, use equipment to increase strength, try out new skills or improve existing ones, build forts, have dance parties, get crafting and more. No gymnastics or dance experience is needed but for those wanting to work on skills, the Hybrid Motion coaches are there every day to work with interested kids. Don’t like gymnastics? Not to worry, group games and trampoline are a hit. For ages 5 and up.

Ignite’s Wilderness Skills Camp


Ç (406) 599-6298




Welcome to Ignite’s Preteen (9-15 years of age) Wilderness Skills Camp—an exciting and educational adventure designed to ignite the spirit of exploration in young minds. This camp is the perfect blend of outdoor fun, team-building activities and hands-on learning that will empower preteens with essential wilderness skills while fostering a deep appreciation for nature. Two sessions will be offered, each capped at 20 students per session.

Kit Comedy Summer Camp

Last Best Comedy


Ç (406) 219-3933


Last Best Comedy’s Kit Comedy Camp offers children an immersive introduction to the world of performance. Throughout the camp, kids will learn about teamwork, improv skills and gain confidence on the stage—all while having fun with new friends. The camp spans four weeks, with each week dedicated to a different comedy discipline. With flexible enrollment options, parents can choose to enroll their kids in the full four weeks or any of the individual weeks. Each week concludes with a showcase, giving students the chance to shine on stage at LBC.

Language and Culture Camps

World Language Initiative


Ç (406) 414-6419



WLI will offer three weeks of dynamic and engaging Language and Culture Camps for kids entering grades kindergarten to fifth. This year they will offer camps in Spanish, French, German and Arabic, which will leave your child dreaming of traveling the globe! Camps are filled with fun games, art, cooking activities, storytelling, songs and more – all led by experienced language coaches. Camps are held Monday through Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Pilgrim Congregational Church, with activities both indoors and outdoors.

34 april 2024

Lone Mountain Summer Camps and Classes


Ç (406) 587-1180




Lone Mountain offers a fun variety of summer camp options. Everything from KidVentures camp for little ones to Campapalooza (an all-around fun day camp offering swimming in the afternoon sessions). They have Trampoline Camp and Combo Camp (highlighting gymnastics and overall sports agility) and don’t forget about swimming lessons! Lone Mountain also offers camps for Tiny Dancers (preschool dance) and Ninja Camp. Lone Mountain can keep your kids active, engaged and having fun this summer. Camp offerings vary by week, so check out the website or call for details.

Montana Ballet Company Summer Programming


Ç (406) 582-8702




This summer, Montana Ballet Company will offer open ballet classes for all ages, Cinderella Summer for ages 4-8, Dancing Under the Big Sky (DUBS) for ages 12-18, Mini DUBS for ages 7-11 and Shape-Up for Nutcracker for ages 9-18. Visit www. for class descriptions, dates and times.

Montana Surf World Cup Camp


Ç (406) 600-8146



Montana Surf Soccer Club is bringing the excitement of the World Cup tournament to the Bozeman area with the second annual Montana Surf World Cup Camp. Players ages 4-14 will have the opportunity to train with Surf’s “best of the best” coaching staff during a weeklong camp session that will culminate with the Montana Surf World Cup tournament. All players will receive a jersey and a Montana Surf World Cup medal.

MOSS 2024 Summer Camps


Ç (406) 219-3899


Since 1994, MOSS has provided children with the opportunity to learn outdoors in a spirit of adventure that stimulates their natural curiosity. Their much-loved, weeklong programs focus on various outdoor topics, which include insects, fossils, nature photography and more. Each program offers a different natural science topic, completely outdoor-based activities, daily nature hikes, interaction with scientists from our local community, and highly qualified and enthusiastic instructors.

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MSC Science Summer Camps

Montana Science Center


Ç (406) 522-9087




Join MSC for exciting, interactive science camps all summer long. Camps will stimulate minds, spark curiosity and introduce something new about the world of science and technology. Camps are held outside, inside on the exhibit floor and in the high-tech STEAMlab each week. Summer of Science camps combine unplugged outdoor activities, creative STEM activities and learning new skills while encouraging collaborative learning and interaction.

Nature Camp

Crosscut Mountain Sports Center


Ç (406) 586-9690




Crosscut’s experiential nature camps inspire curiosity, confidence and gratitude while encouraging a reciprocal relationship with our natural world. Using a place-based approach that encourages a sense of wonder, nature camps blend science and art, play and education, and community and solitude. Join Crosscut for a safe, fun and welcoming summer outside exploring the place we call home.

one. Soccer Schools Summer Camps


Ç (805) 845-6801




one. Soccer Schools offers elite day (ages 3-16) and residential (ages 9-16) camps for field players and goalkeepers. Camps provide advanced training in a fun and engaging environment, challenging athletes to achieve their potential. Innovative and enjoyable (fun) curriculum is designed to support the modern day athlete in his or her quest to become an elite soccer player and the best they can be. These positive tools are the building blocks in our ‘Fail Your Way to Success’ philosophy and are crucial for the individual player's maximum growth and development, on and off the field.

Peaks and Potentials Camp

Montana State University


Ç (406) 994-6633


Peaks and Potentials camp allows high-potential students to come to the MSU campus and explore special topics of interest while working with experts in various subject areas. Instructors are MSU faculty members, students and experienced professionals from the area. University students and professionals act as directors and counselors throughout the week. All workshops emphasize personal instruction, small group interaction and a hands-on experiential approach. In addition, academic, recreational and social activities offer students a chance to interact with their peers and sample campus life.

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Pet Pals Summer Day Camp

Heart of the Valley Animal Shelter


Ç (406) 388-9399 x223




Join Heart of the Valley for seven weeks of Pet Pals Summer Camp. Each week campers get to interact with the shelter dogs and cats while learning to be responsible animal stewards. HOV hosts a variety of guest speakers and will provide daily enrichment to shelter pets. Pet Pals is for ages 6-12; and needbased scholarships are available.

Rhythm World Drum Camp


Ç 406.580.8229

Rhythm World Drum Camps are held in Bozeman at the Emerson. Children ages 5 to 12 are invited to join Chet Leach (aka Mr. Chet) for weeklong drum camps that include drumming from Africa, Brazil, Cuba and Egypt. Your child will learn about world culture through storytelling, games and, of course, lots of DRUMMING!

Ridge Kids Summer Camp


Ç (406) 582-4452


At Ridge Kids, children build the foundation for a healthy and active life! Choose full summer (nine weeks) or individual week enrollments. Rates vary depending on membership status.

Spire Summer Climbing Camps


Ç (406) 586-0706




Spire summer camps are a great way for children ages 5–16 to enjoy rock climbing in an a fun, structured environment. In Spire's summer camps, beginners learn the essentials of the sport while kids with prior climbing experience take their skills to the next level. Summer camps are half-day, weeklong camps, with tons of climbing time, as well as plenty of fun and games for your child. Experienced summer camp instructors engage campers in fun and challenging activities designed to improve strength, confidence, focus, trust and teamwork.

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Tinworks Art Camp





Tinworks welcomes young artists to explore the world of art through all their senses. Art is an integral part of building a healthy, enriched and creative community, and Tinworks is excited to contribute to Bozeman’s expanding artistic horizons. Kids will partake in art-making sessions with professional art educators, learn about Tinworks 2024 exhibition and showcase the art they make. Activities will include painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, fiber, storytelling, photography and movement-based projects inspired by the themes of Tinworks’ exhibition. 16 max per camp.

UnCamp at Rockhaven


Ç (406) 451-7092




Rockhaven UnCamp is an innovative summer camping program where free play and nature play are front and center. Rockhaven is a spectacular environment where creativity, curiosity and imagination can flourish through child-led exploration. Rockhaven focuses on helping campers of all ages connect with their camp community through natural curiosity and genuine play. Staff are equipped with tools and resources to help campers explore safely, listen to the world around them, make new friends and create together.

Wheat Ridge Outdoor Education Summer Camp


Ç (410) 246-5544




The true Montana farm camp experience! Located on more than 1,000 sprawling acres of Wheat Ridge Farm, Wheat Ridge Outdoor Education Summer Camp offers students the opportunity to enjoy gardening, hiking, baking, farming, choring, farm equipment, farm animals and much more. Whether hiking through the forest, learning about farm equipment and the planting and harvesting cycle, identifying animals and their markings or building forts, campers will explore the farm and beyond.

Windhorse Equine Learning Summer Horsemanship Camp


Ç (406) 522-3906




Windhorse Equine Learning offers a unique camp experience where kids learn horsemanship and riding skills, while also learning how to be good leaders and fair partners for their horses and each other. The relationship they develop with the horse and the skills they learn to handle them safely and communicate with them effectively give kids confidence, build self-awareness and teach valuable lessons about respect, trust, empathy and communication.

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Writing Camps

Montana State University


Ç (406) 994-6633



The Yellowstone Writing Project (YWP) offers a Youth Writing Camp and Young Writer’s Camp. The Youth Camp is a multiday “unschooled” writing workshop for youth entering grades five through 12. Campers will write in multiple genres and share their work within a supportive community of peers and licensed educators, the YWP teacher consultants. The Young Writer’s Camp is a four-day writing workshop for kids entering grades three and four. Campers will be immersed in creativity and engage in activities to encourage writing across genres, writing in the community and building up writing stamina. Licensed YWP teacher consultants will provide feedback, encouragement and a few of their favorite writing tricks.

Yellowstone Alliance Adventure Camp


Ç (406) 763-4727


YAA runs a variety of youth camps for first-12th graders. Whether this is your camper’s first time or they are a seasoned summer camp pro, there is bound to be something amazing for them at YAA. This camp offers dynamic, age-appropriate programs for campers packed full with activities, lasting friendships, delicious food and more fun than you will believe!

Youth Mountain Bike Camps

Crosscut Mountain Sports Center


Ç (406) 586-9690




Crosscut’s mountain bike camps build independence and confidence in biking. Seasoned instructors know how to motivate and encourage kids to build mountain biking skills and navigate trails safely. Learning together in a positive team environment, campers in the half-day bike camps will ride Crosscut’s 14 miles of trails, which are a mountain biker's dream. To help campers of all abilities, identities and backgrounds, multiple camps are offered for youth ages 10 and up.

Helena ExplorationWorks Summer Camps


Ç (406) 457-1800




Spend the summer as a scientist and explore the world around you!

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Montana Learning Center at Canyon Ferry Lake


Ç (406) 475-3638




The MLC is a camp like no other, where students are empowered by learning and creating together. Daily camp life includes STEM immersion experiences, building new friendships with likeminded peers and recreation at Canyon Ferry Lake. Evening options include a traditional campfire or exploring the night sky with their world-class observatory. MLC is small and personal; camp staff is composed of certified teachers, many of whom are award winning. The staff to camper ratio is 1:6 or lower. Each of the instructors and counselors are CPR and first-aid certified.

Stonetree Climbing Camp


Ç (406) 543-0325




Stonetree Climbing Center offers day camps for ages 6 to 18. Younger campers enjoy weeklong camps that encourage kids to be active, build confidence, play creatively and foster new friendships. Campers spend the day climbing,


challenging their comfort zones, playing games on and off the climbing walls, doing arts and crafts and having a blast. For kids over 12, Stonetree Climbing Center holds outdoor, roped climbing camps on Mount Helena. Campers learn about Leave No Trace, risk management and decision making, climbing techniques and belaying, and how to develop a safe, knowledgeable relationship with a lifelong sport.

Summer Library Program

Lewis & Clark Library


Ç (406) 447-6684



The Lewis & Clark Library and its branches in East Helena, Lincoln and Augusta provide high-quality, engaging and fun activities at no cost throughout the summer. Check out the website to learn more about what's coming up.

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Submit your camp listing for the May issue at submit-your-summercamp-info Learn more about camps, clinics and events at cedar ridge equine horsemanship camps, clinics & lessons Owner/Trainer Amy Prechter email phone 530-263-3433 K Beginner to Advanced Riders K Ages 5 and up K Life Skill Development Workshop K Speed/Rodeo Events K English/Western Riding K General Horsemanship "NO HOUR OF LIFE IS WASTED THAT IS SPENT IN THE SADDLE." -Winston Churchill SUMMER 2024 CAMP & CLINIC REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN! W I N T E R F A R M E R S ’ M A R K E T BOZEMAN EVERY SATURDAY* Gallatin Valley Fairgrounds Exhibit Building 4 9AM TO 12:00PM September 23, 30 October 7, 14, 21, 28 November 4, 11, 18, 25 *December 2, 16 January 6, 13, 20, 27 February 3, 10, 17 March 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 April 6, 13, 20, 27 May 4, 11, 18, 25



Earlier this year, Bozeman School District received school board approval to greatly expand its early childhood offerings. The district’s early childhood programming is targeted toward preparing children to be ready to read in kindergarten.

Bozeman Reads Early Learning Center

BSD7 is thrilled to announce the opening of the Bozeman Reads Early Learning Center which will be housed at Morning Star Elementary. This program is for students entering kindergarten in the fall of 2025.

Admission to the program is based on an early literacy screener. Children whose performance indicates that they would benefit from early literacy instruction will qualify for the program.

Early Literacy Focus: Aiming for Success by 2025

The Bozeman Reads Early Learning Center is committed to the district’s early literacy goal: Ensuring that 85% of incoming kindergartners possess the requisite literacy skills by 2025. This ambitious target underscores the district’s dedication to providing a solid foundation for academic success from the very start.

Community School Model: A Collaborative Approach

Embracing the Community School Model, Bozeman Reads Early Learning Center will work with community partners. By bringing local organizations into the fold, the district aims to enhance the overall learning experience for children and create a symbiotic relationship with the broader community.

» MSU Partnership: A Beacon of Excellence The Bozeman Reads Early Learning Center will operate as a model demonstration site for MSU. This partnership ensures that the center remains at the forefront of educational innovation and research, and provides preservice teachers with real-world experience.

» GGUW: for Out-of-School Time Enrichment Bozeman Reads will collaborate with the Greater Gallatin United Way (GGUW) to provide enriching out-of-school time experiences. This partnership not only expands learning opportunities beyond traditional classroom hours but also accommodates families who need full-time childcare.

» HRDC Collaboration: Leveraging Federal Dollars

Through a strategic partnership with the Human Resource Development Council (HRDC) Head Start, Bozeman Reads will offer extensive wrap-around services to students and families.

» Thrive: Engaging Families for Success Recognizing the pivotal role of family engagement in a child’s education, Bozeman Reads is teaming up with Thrive to implement intensive family engagement and parent education programs. Thrive’s expertise ensures parents are active partners in their child’s learning journey.

Curriculum Aligned with Best Practices

Bozeman Reads employs a robust curriculum based on the Science of Reading, emphasizing evidence-based practices that promote literacy and language development. The curriculum is not only developmentally appropriate, but also incorporates STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics) elements.

Research-Based Classroom Environment Design

The learning spaces at Bozeman Reads are meticulously designed based on the latest research in early childhood education. The aim is to create a rich environment that is conducive to learning, exploration and creativity.

Bilingual and Inclusive Environment

One of the key highlights of the Bozeman Reads Early Learning Center is its commitment to creating a bilingual and inclusive environment. The center will be comprised of four Language and Literacy Classrooms, designed to cultivate strong reading and language skills. Additionally, the center will house two Special Education Classrooms catering to the unique needs of every child and foster an atmosphere of acceptance and celebration of differences.

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F A R M E R S ’

9AM TO 12:00PM

September 23rd- May 25th

Gallatin Valley Fairgrounds

Exhibit Building 4

September 23, 30

October 7, 14, 21, 28

November 4, 11, 18, 25

Bozeman Winter Farmers Market

*December 2, 16

January 6, 13, 20, 27

February 3, 10, 17

March 2, 9, 16, 23, 30

April 6, 13, 20, 27

May 4, 11, 18, 25

What began 10 years ago as a small group of farmers huddled together outside selling their winter veggies is now a successful, thriving market with a bounty of local vegetables and farm products. The Bozeman community’s demand for a direct producer-to-consumer experience has grown, and so has the Bozeman Winter Farmers Market. You will find a lot more than traditional winter staples like potatoes and onions. Area farmers have worked hard to drastically increase the number of fresh greens and the variety of vegetables they can offer. The market is held from 9 a.m. to noon at the Gallatin County Fairgrounds in Exhibit Building 4.

Winter Farmers Market Dates:

» APRIL 6, 13, 20, 27

» MAY 4, 11, 18, 25

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Earth Day Events in bozeman

Old-Growth Forests in Montana:

Where are they, why are they important, and what you can do to save them

APRIL 11, 2024

Joan Maloof, author and founder of the Old-Growth Forest Network, will host a talk on Thursday, April 11 at the Museum of the Rockies at 7 p.m., with a reception at 6 p.m. This event is free and will be live-streamed and recorded for those who cannot attend in person.

The reception will include free food and drink from Fork & Spoon and exhibits. Joan’s latest book, Nature’s Temples: A Natural History of OldGrowth Forests, will be available for sale and signing. (Books supplied by the Museum of the Rockies bookstore.)

During the talk at 7 p.m., Dr. Joan Maloof will discuss the importance of ancient forests for the health and stability of our planet. She will describe what is currently happening, on a broad political level, to both monitor and preserve our forests. She will also talk about what is happening in Montana and how you can get involved in making a difference. There will be time for audience questions and comments. If you love trees and forests you won’t want to miss this talk.

Register for the live stream at WN_8SC-2mA0QEyl2pcs-cQm6Q. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Outside Workshop: Explore the ecology and wonder of Riparian Forests

APRIL 12 OR APRIL 14, 2024

The Outside Workshop with Ashley Marten will be held on April 12 or April 14 from 2-4 p.m. at Gardner Park. Cost is $30 each and there is a limit of 12 participants for each workshop. Sign up at form_engine/s/CjCoLUqFrALR8BpXd1DzIA or

Wildfire: A Century of Failed Forest Policy

APRIL 18, 2024

Join Gallatin Valley Earth Day in partnership with Gallatin Wildlife Association and George Wuerthner to learn about wildfire ecology and the role of wildfire in the ecosystem. Ecologically speaking, large high-severity blazes are ecological gifts that create essential habitats for many plants and animals. Common practices like thinning and prescribed burning are largely ineffective at slowing or halting the largest, extreme weather-driven blazes and have many negative ecological impacts. Wuerthner will cover how homeowners can learn to live with fire. This free talk will be held on Friday, April 18 at 6:30 p.m. at the Museum of the Rockies, Hager Auditorium.

Gallatin Valley Earth Day Festival

APRIL 20, 2024

The Gallatin Valley Earth Day Festival will be held on Saturday, April 20 at the Gallatin County Fairgrounds - Exhibit Buildings 1-4, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. This free event will include exhibits, talks, children’s activities, music and food.


10 a.m.: “Magic Monster Show” with Random Acts of Silliness, Exhibit Bldg #4

All day:

Ç Earth Day passport education program with prizes

Ç Petting Zoo

Ç Face painting


Ç 11 a.m.: “Is Your Property at Risk for Wildfire?” with Jay Pape, Gallatin County Emergency Management

Ç Noon: “Create Your Own Backyard Food Forest!” with Kareen Erbe, Broken Ground

Ç 1 p.m. “Trees for the Gallatin Valley - Advice and Tips from Cashman Nursery” with Jerry Cashman

Ç 1:30/2:30 p.m.: “Live Raptor presentation” with Keaton Thomas, Montana Raptor Conservation Center

Ç 2 p.m.: “Get to Know the City’s Forestry Division” with Alex Nordquest, City of Bozeman Forestry and Lilly McLane, Gallatin Watershed Council

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Oliver! ™

APRIL 12 & 13, 2024

Anderson School continues its tradition of exceptional performances with the heartwarming production of Oliver!. With its memorable music and dramatic scenes, the show will entertain the whole family.

Based on Charles Dickens' novel Oliver Twist, Oliver! first premiered in London in 1960 before becoming a Broadway hit and Academy Award-winning film in 1968. This timeless musical follows the journey of young orphan Oliver as he navigates the gritty streets of 19th century London among an eccentric cast of characters. The Education Tony Award-nominated program at Anderson School brings this multifaceted tale of struggle and redemption to life.

Performances will be held at the Emerson Cultural Center’s Crawford Theatre. Show times are Friday, April 12 at 7 p.m. and Saturday, April 13 at 12 p.m. and 7 p.m.

All seating is reserved. Tickets are available online at, and at the door. Cost is $12 for the main floor and $10 for balcony seating.

The Little Red Schoolhouse production of Oliver! will be led by Anderson School veterans, Stephani Lourie and Laurie Kinna. The Anderson drama team brought you recent productions of Seussical, Matilda, and Fiddler on the Roof. The production team is in its 29th year of producing full-length, high-quality performances with 60 to 70 student actors. Whether you're revisiting an old favorite or discovering this gem for the first time, you won't want to miss Anderson School's production of this award-winning classic!


APRIL 19, 2024

Montana Ballet Company (MBC) is delighted to announce CONNECTIONS 2024 ~ featuring American Ballet Theatre Studio Company to be held one night only on Friday, April 19 at 7 p.m. at the Willson Auditorium.

ABT Studio Company is made up of 12 to 18 rising stars of the ballet world who will perform masterworks of the classical and neoclassical canons alongside contemporary works. The group commissions a wide variety of choreographers to create new, custom ballets on the dancers each season, with a special focus on female choreographers.

The highly mobile ABT Studio Company serves as an ambassador for American Ballet Theatre by touring to venues large and small. In recent years, ABT Studio Company has performed internationally in London, Athens, Manila, Hong Kong, and St. Petersburg, and in a wide variety of U.S. performing arts centers, college campuses, festivals, and galas. MBC looks forward to welcoming the company to Bozeman.

MBC Artistic and Executive Director, Elizabeth DeFanti created CONNECTIONS in 2019 to provide an opportunity for Montana Ballet Company and its valued audiences to “connect” with the larger national and international dance community.

CONNECTIONS 2024 will captivate its audiences once again with impressive professional artistry and talent.

For tickets contact the Montana Ballet Company at 406.582.8702 or online at www. All seating is reserved. Ticket prices range from $30 - $85.

Fourth Annual Downtown Bozeman

Restaurant Week

APRIL 22-28, 2024

The Downtown Bozeman Association and participating downtown restaurants, pubs and cafes are excited to bring you the Fourth Annual Downtown Bozeman Restaurant Week from April 22 to 28. This seven-day event will be filled with good eats and drinks, off-menu specials, exclusive dining experiences, plus chances to win some fabulous prizes from local sponsors.


JUNE 2, 2024

Pinocchio, the classic tale of a wooden puppet who yearns to be a real boy, leaps into the 21st Century and onto the Willson Auditorium stage with Yellowstone Ballet Company on Sunday, June 2 at 4 p.m.

Yellowstone Ballet Company, joined by professional dancers from the Milwaukee Ballet, presents a dazzling adaptation in which Pinocchio faces the challenges of our times. Guided by Jiminy Cricket, Geppetto, Figaro and the Blue Fairy, Pinocchio must grow in wisdom, love and strength, and convince his Pleasure Island friends to leave their video games and help him save the earth. Thus he earns a heart and becomes a real boy.   YBC welcomes a talented group of dancers as dolls, toys, festival entertainers, puppets, acrobats, video game dancers, robots, donkeys, sea shells, sea horses, and more.

One child can attend for FREE with each adult ticket purchase. Children can dress up as one of the story characters and be included in a costume contest with prizes held at intermission. Tickets are available online at

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Swan Lake Odette Variation featuring Aleisha Walker PHOTO BY ERIN BAIANO

Keeping it Real

I have entered a new phase of parenthood, which feels akin to navigating uncharted waters, a journey filled with excitement and trepidation due to fear of the unknown.

I’ve found absolute joy in each stage of my children’s growth. Those sweet newborn moments, the smell of fresh baby. The breastfeeding sagas, the losing my identity only to come through the fire a stronger woman with a better focus on life’s real priorities, my babies.

I’ve even written about the preteen journey we are entering, but what escaped me at the time was that the span of my children’s ages now range from preschool to preteen, and I find myself living in two different worlds. We’ve been in this same age gap forever, but the difference between having a kid and a newborn didn’t seem as foreign to me as having a kid and a tween.

In one conversation, I asked one child to wash her hands after finger painting while telling another for what felt like the millionth time that they absolutely needed to put on deodorant.

I’m jumping between talks about puberty and playing Barbies. In these moments, my brain needs a hot minute to figure out why we just went from accessorizing Barbie’s dream house to talking about body hair in weird places.

Dinner conversation is like a minefield as I try not to overcommunicate messages too big for a 5-year-old while being transparent and clear on issues so my oldest knows he can trust me for the truth.

And remember when we had landlines as kids? We should bring those back so my phone is no longer hijacked by my son to talk to other kids all evening about Roblox, Patrick Mahomes and whatever else these kids are into at the given moment.

My daughter is still in the carefree, innocent childhood phase, while her brother stands on the cusp of manhood, grappling with questions of identity and belonging.

As my son grows taller and more independent, I find myself struggling with the realization that he no longer needs me in the same way he once did, but cherishing what I know is the little time I have left before the other two reach that same stage.

As we navigate these waters together, I find myself leaning into the uncertainty, embracing the challenges as opportunities for growth and connection. I may not have all the answers, but I am learning to trust in the wisdom of my own intuition and the unwavering love that binds us together.

And yet, despite the bittersweet nature of this transition, there is also beauty to be found in the journey. I marvel at the unique individuals my children are becoming, each with their own dreams, passions and quirks. There are moments of frustration, of course. The eye rolls and exasperated sighs that come with the territory of parenting tweens can be enough to test even the most patient of souls. But beneath the surface lies a new vulnerability that tugs at my heartstrings and allows me to see that no matter what phase they are in, they will always need their mom.

Blair Fjeseth is a working professional and proud Montana mom. You can reach her at Follow her Instagram @blair_mt for more adventures.

46 april 2024

How to enter:

Look for this post on the Montana Parent Facebook and Instagram page starting April 1.

1. Like the post and Tag one friend

2. Follow Montana Parent magazine on Facebook and Instagram (if you don't already!)

3. Follow I-Ho’s Korean Grill on Facebook and Instagram too!

Other info:

Winner will be chosen at random and announced May 1. Must be 18 years of age to enter. Win

Please bring paper gift certificate to your reservation. Link to make reservation will be posted on both Facebook and Instagram.

*Guests would pay for drinks and gratuity

:: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM :: april 2024 47
Korean BBQ for 4 ($152 value) from I-Ho’s Korean Grill!
some delicious
Come and enjoy
Korean food!
ENTER TO win I-Ho’s Korean Grill Gift Certificate MONTHLY GIVEAWAY April 2
To learn more about I-Ho’s Korean Grill, visit:

A life�me of healthy choices starts with the ones you make today.

Health Pediatrics partners with families, providing the building blocks they need to ensure bright futures for their children. From birth to adolescence, we offer comprehensive care to form healthy habits at every stage along the way.

48 april 2024
today to schedule a same-day appointment! Belgrade + Bozeman 406-414-4400
Here for all student athletes.
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