May 2022 | The Mental Health Edition

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may 2022 |


Mental Health edition


summer camp listings

and much more...

Accepting New Patients Pediatrics Billings Clinic Bozeman Pediatricians and Pediatric Endocrinologist provide high-quality, comprehensive medical care in a comfortable and compassionate setting.

• Pediatric cardiology

• Same day appointments

• Pediatric orthopedics

• Walk-ins welcome

• Pediatric pulmonology

• Complimentary “Meet the Doctor” appointments

• Pediatric neurology

These can be done before baby comes or at anytime if you have older children. We can schedule in-person or virtual visits.

For more information or to make an appointment, call (406) 522-KIDS (5437) or visit Monday - Friday: 8 am to 6 pm Saturday: 8:30 am to 11:30 am 1819 S 22nd Ave. Ste. 100 To talk to a registered nurse about health questions after hours, call HealthLine at (406) 255-8400 or 1-800-252-1246, available 24/7. 2

Billings Clinic’s pediatric specialists also provide care right in Bozeman.

may 2022


• Pediatric urology

Gardening starts with location. Place your garden in a part of your yard where you’ll see it regularly. That way, you’ll be more likely to spend time in it! You also need to find a spot that gets at least 6 hours of sunlight during the day and is close to your hose spigot.

We prefer raised garden beds because they are easier on your body to maintain (less time bent over) and they can be built anywhere. You’ll need to fill it with nutrient-rich and well-drained soil. We reccommend putting a layer of mulch on top to keep the soil healthy and moist. Kenyon Noble has everything you need from wood and screws to soil and seeds.


It’s important to select plants that match your growing conditions. Do your homework and pick varieties that will grow well where you live. Figure out how much space each plant will need in order to succeed and what will grow well around each other.

Planting too early or late in the season can spell disaster for your garden. You need to know the last average spring frost date for your area so you don’t accidentally kill plants by putting them out prematurely. We use the Almanac planting calendar to learn when to start seeding indoors, transplanting, or seeding outdoors. Check out the breakdown of dates for your crops at!

Water and sunlight are essential to the growth of plants. When watering, make sure to soak the stem of the plant instead of the foliage. It is best to water your plants in the morning since photosynthesis occurs during the day.

Try different canning methods to preserve your home grown foods or donate them! The reason you started your garden in the first place is so you can eat, enjoy, and share your bounty. Invite your friends and neighbors over and enjoy a dish made with fresh home grown crops!

Visit our G arden Cent er for all your g ardening n e eds this season . Our exper t staff is ha ppy to shar e all the knowl edge you n eed to succeed in this years harvest!

1243 W Oak St, Bozeman, MT 406-586-2384 Garden Center 406-577-1819 :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022


may 2022 keeping it real 14 coaching for life 16 family life on the Ranch 18 facing fears and anxieties 20 i have a daddy, right? 22 the resilience project 24 are all kids introverted? 25 supporting mental health 26 motherhood is... 27 SUMMER 2022

+ Activities 28

GUIDE What’s Up? Bozeman 50 What’s Up? Butte 55 What’s Up? livingston 56 What’s Up? helena 58

Regular Columns Ask Flora 60 Monthly Giveaway: MBC 62


may 2022


Family fun travel guide


travel guide

back by popular demand

will be on stands

from June until September

or locals a travel guide f

and tourists

distributed in bozeman, butte, Helena, livingston and big sky and the Entrances to Yellowstone: west Yellowstone chamber, Gardiner chamber and

summer 2021

com | mtparent.

visitor centers and other popular areas around southwest montana


Family-friendly ACTIVITIES


tana and Yellow

in Southwest Mon

Events Recreation

If you would like to reach

summer tourists and Local travelers,

Educational Centers

ADS DUE MAY 19 | view our media kit at

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purchase an ad in this exclusive seasonal resource!

Contact or your account represenative for more information

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

may 2022


Be Brilliant. 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. Services Include: General/Family Dentistry Cosmetic Dentistry Dentures 6 may 2022 Dental Implants

Oral Surgery Laser Dentistry Clear Aligners In-house Crowns


We Bees Poison-Free Lawn Care

PEOPLE, PET, AND PLANET FRIENDLY Organic Lawn LLC :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022


montana parent

check out our


for more information, resources and fun things to do with your kids this spring visit

montana parent magazine montana parent magazine of helena montana parent magazine of butte





* 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. CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS: KELLY KUNTZ PHOTOGRAPHY THE FJESETH FAMILY TYSON KRINKE OF BRIGHTSIDE PHOTO DARLA TYLER MCSHERRY AND FAMILY MIKAELA OF WANDER BIRTH PHOTO ADP STUDIO CROSSCUT SUMMER CAMPS INSPRIRE PHOTO ART

• What’s Up? photos are from event social media pages if not supplied by the organization




may 2022



y r a ers





v i n An

BOzeman FARMERS’ MARKET Tuesdays, 5-8 p.m.


June 21 September 13, 2022 June 7-September 27, 2015 East Side Tuesdays, of Lindley Park in Bozeman 5-8pm

Bogert Produce. Park’s Pavilion, South Church Avenue, & Bozeman Fresh Food. Art. Music More Fresh Produce. Food Vendors. Arts. Family Activities & Live Music

Volunteer, Sponsor and Vendor Info: Volunteer, Sponsor or vendor info:

Life’s a garden…dig it!

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

may 2022


YOU ARE NOT ALONE The Gallatin Valley has many professional resources to help local families on their journey into parenthood. We hope this issue provides support, guidance and resources for families who may need it during these changing times. We're here to help. If you fear you may hurt yourself, your baby or someone else: • Call 406-586-3333, the Help Center’s 24-hour Crisis Hotline • Call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room For more information about Perinatal Mood and Anxiety Disorders (PMADs) or how to help a loved one, please reach out: • Nadine Grayl at 406-548-4675 or Suzanne Bendick at 406-570-0738, local Postpartum Support International (PSI) volunteers • for local resources • for national resources • 1-800-944-4773, Postpartum Support International’s Warmline


may 2022

WHO’S YOUR FARMER? Summer Vegetable and Flower Subscriptions available now! Weekly shares available for pickup or delivered to Bozeman, Big Sky, Livingston and outlying towns. Visit for more information and to subscribe.


Ali Gearhart, APRN, PMHNP-BC, PMH-C NOW ACCEPTING NEW PATIENTS Insurance Accepted (406) 551-2699 3950 Valley Commons Dr., Ste. 2 Bozeman, Montana 59718 :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022








Booking locations must be within: Bozeman, Belgrade & Gallatin Gateway


Make Big Memories With

Ready. Set. Celebrate! 406-219-5500| FB: @signgypsies bozeman IG: @signgypsies_bozeman

Rentals are for 24 hours. They will be installed and picked-up by SG Bozeman.

Another World of Children’s Dentistry Pediatric Dentistry • Braces

flat screen televisions on the ceiling • game boys • movie theater • digital xrays • mercury free Improving & Maintaining The Oral Health of Infants, Children, Adolescents & Young Adults 12

may 2022

Doctor Todd Steinmetz 3502 Laramie Drive, Suite 1


Bozeman, Montana 59718



Mental Health edition

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

may 2022


Mental Health


We spent a glorious week in Hawaii for spring break this year. Our kids had never swum in the ocean before and this was our youngest’s first plane ride. We had been planning this trip since 2019, but thanks to #Covid, we delayed until this year. I decided beforehand that I was going all in on the “fun and engaged mom” version of myself on this trip. After the past few years, my children and husband deserved an undistracted and de-stressed version of me, and that was what I intended to give them. What ended up transpiring, though, was much, much more. I gave them all of me and, in the middle of that, I found the very best of myself and real insight into the person I want to be more—all the time, not just on vacation. Usually, I am the one to sit on the side of a lake or river, watching them splash, swim and have fun. I sit behind my lens as they live their lives, and I take on the burden of planning and executing “all things fun.” But this time, for a week, I let go. And here is what I found.


may 2022

I took fewer photos. I usually take hundreds of pictures of my children doing any given activity, and on this trip, I spent an entire week in paradise and only took a whopping 160 photos. Here’s the kicker: What I didn’t take in photos, others did. That notion of “If I don’t document the moment, no one will” was utterly incorrect, and guess what? I’m finally in the photos. Imagine that. I had to give up control and the desire to document and be in the moment worth being documented. I stopped caring about how my body looked in a swimsuit, what my face was like without makeup, and I embraced my usually fluffy hair that turned into an insane head of curls thanks to the humidity. I stopped caring, and that bred confidence. I know it’s unrealistic to keep that mindset in the work world, but I’ve learned that confidence is contagious and something I definitely want my kids to catch. I took on PDA. You heard me – PDA. Public Displays of Affection. I’ve never been big on the mushy stuff in public with my spouse, but I intentionally reminded myself to grab his hand on walks, kiss him on the lips when a

chance arose. And suddenly, I stopped needing reminders, and the natural desire to hug him and put my arm around his waist kicked in. Heck, I think I even slapped his tushy a time or two. I learned a lot. It’s funny what happens when you put all the electronic distractions away or when your kid sees you watching them and not a screen; when they cuddle up to you at night rather than asking to watch a show. I saw my children in a different light, one not in the glow of an iPhone. I laughed more than I have in years. I laughed because I was present. I laughed when the kids said, “Can we jump in the pool in our fancy clothes?” I said, “Heck yes!” and laughed because my soul needed to laugh uninhibited. So, whether it’s Hawaii or Helena, I’ve learned to jump in. I know vacation isn’t the same as day-to-day reality, but within each of these lessons is a little piece of wisdom I can incorporate into the mundane to be a better person for my kids, spouse and myself.

M-F | 8:30am-4:30pm | Ages 6-11 (half or full day) M-F | 8:30am-12:30pm | Ages 3-5 (half day only) Starts June 13 Join us for Ridge Kids Summer Camp where kids will have an active summer engaging in group fitness classes, gym play, swimming and Play Zone fun. Camp counselors and fitness instructors are trained and qualified to give your child a safe, exciting summer and will help build a foundation for a healthy and active life! Sign up for the whole summer or individual days.


Members $60 full day/$35 half day Non-Members $75 full day/$45 half day


Members $260 | Non-Members $335 Sibling discounts available

Register on Schedulicity or call (406) 582-4452

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

4181 Fallon St., Bozeman, MT 59718 • (406) 586-1737 • :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022


Mental Health

Coaching for Life: Building Social Emotional Skills Through Youth Sports WRITTEN BY CATE WRIGHT | PHOTOS TYSON KRINKE, BRIGHTSIDE PHOTO

“The only constant is change.” Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, coined this phrase more than 2,500 years ago and it feels more relevant now than ever. With exponential technology, a shifting natural environment and the reality of a pandemic in our day-to-day lives, it feels as if the rules are always changing. Parents everywhere are wondering how to prepare kids for this new world where we must always expect the unexpected. Youth sports provide an accessible, local solution for building the social-emotional skill base kids will need to thrive in this new, whirlwind world. “Living through the COVID-19 pandemic has put into focus the skills that children and adolescents need to survive and thrive through big challenges and rapid changes. Words like resilience, adaptability, compassion, courage and hope come up over and over," said Emily Danza, a mental health, sports and performance therapist at Lotus Counseling in Bozeman. "From my experience and knowledge as an international athlete, ski coach and mental health therapist, I have seen that a solid social-emotional foundation sets kids up for success during difficult times. One of the best ways to develop emotional IQ can be through participation in sports, which provides a variety of life skills and emotional building values.” While kids are focused on the scoreboard when they step onto the playing field, the wins are also the developmental gains. “Only a small percentage of youth athletes go on to play collegiate or professional sports. Knowing 16

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that, one of our goals is to make great humans through life lessons learned on the field. We develop specific learning opportunities for our players, emphasizing social-emotional skills along with excellence, because giving your best effort is also a life skill,” said Vanessa Davis, Competitive Director for Montana Surf Soccer Club. We asked Danza, Davis and Headwaters Lacrosse Boys’ Program Director, Todd Thesing, to share the most significant social-emotional skills kids are learning through participation in youth sports:


We live in a polarizing time when adults with opposing viewpoints struggle to find middle ground. Good sportsmanship is about respecting your opponent, giving your best effort, bringing your highest level of competition and shaking hands after a game well played. “Developing a sense of sportsmanship and a respect for the other team helps kids to grow into empathetic adults who are able to honor opposing viewpoints and seek common solutions,” said Davis.


By definition, competition means facing off against an adversary, and as a result, experiencing adversity. Game-day losses, missed plays, injuries and hardship are all part of sports. “The playing field is a safe, low-consequence environment for kids to

experience adversity and to practice working through it. With each missed goal, last place finish, failure and skinned knee, youth athletes experience hardship, learn to work through it and develop confidence in their ability to overcome. They become resilient,” said Thesing.


“Team practices offer an opportunity to try out situations and outcomes. Drills and scrimmages play out differently each day and offer kids chances to try something, fail and make a new decision the next time,” said Davis. “Coaches are there to evaluate a choice with the athlete, ask the athlete what they would change next time and guide them toward a different, more effective solution. Doing this over and over on the playing field develops confidence and enables kids to make solid choices off the turf.”


Sport is governed by rules and regulations designed to create enjoyable experiences and great competition through mutual understanding. Integrity is the moral imperative to adhere to those rules and regulations. “Our athletes are taught from the start to follow the rules, to play fair and to be honest. Doing so shows respect for an opponent and results in the most satisfying wins,” said Davis.


“Whether you’re a part of a team or you are an individual competitor, empathy is a true pillar of being an athlete. It can fuel your need and desire to excel, or let you take a step back and help others in need. Because we feel so deeply

Spring and NEW CAMP THIS SUMMER Summer CampS when something positive or negative happens to a teammate or opponent, we learn how to empathize because we know ‘exactly’ how the other person is feeling. We develop this natural ability to home in on others’ emotions and use them to help (good sportsmanship) and also, most importantly, create the best version of ourselves,” said Danza.


“Responsibility is the moment an individual steps up and decides to take ownership of their life. Sports fulfill many areas of selfresponsibility, but also teach how to give others an equal amount of responsibility, leading to positive leadership. By owning our performance, and wanting to become the best versions of ourselves, sports help us measure whether we are taking enough responsibility for our physical, emotional and cognitive selves. It is usually one of those skills that has pretty immediate feedback, and will show up on and off the field,” said Danza


It takes time and commitment to develop athletic skill. Athletes repeat drills, fine tune plays and build physical fitness over weeks, months and years. While they are building skills, they are also developing work ethic. “Studies have shown that athletes perform better in the classroom than other students. Athletes have seen that hard work over time builds mastery and they approach classwork with patience and dedication,” said Thesing. Our quickly changing world requires citizens who are emotionally prepared to tackle unprecedented challenges. Participation in youth sports offers kids the opportunity to hone their social-emotional skills along with their athletic capability, developing qualities like resilience, empathy, sportsmanship and a strong work ethic that will ensure they flourish in our fast-changing world. Cate Wright is a mother of two, volunteer and member of the Montana Surf/Blitzz FC Board of Directors. Her work with the Montana Surf Annual Fund is focused on ensuring that all children have access to the mental and physical benefits of sports, regardless of income.

All StAr SportS CAmp Ages 7 - 12 5 day camp $350.00 or 2 for $500 June - August 8am - 430pm Great introduction to sports and athletic training!

World Class karate instruction right here in Bozeman Ages 6+ Our Camps Build • Focus • Confidence • Athletic Coordination

Campers Experience • Fun & Challenging Campers will play a NEW sport Activities every day! • A safe environment • Setting goals & achieving them advanCed/elite

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Ages 12-17 Speed/Agility Camp Strength/Power Camp $599 unlimited days June-August 3 hour day camps Mon-Fri

Camps start June 13 Full Day 9am - 3pm or Half Day 9am - 12pm All campers receive a FREE karate uniform!

Register now or call 406-312-5751 (Parisi) or 406-624-2900 (MKA) 31842 Frontage Rd Bozeman, MT 59715

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

may 2022


Mental Health

family Life on the Ranch

Addressing Mental Health Issues Difficult but necessary for farm and ranch families WRITTEN BY REBECCA COLNAR | PH0TOS PROVIDED BY DARLA TYLER MCSHERRY AND FAMILY

Mental health issues often remain hidden in farming and ranching, and the perceived stigma of having difficulties often precludes someone from seeking help in agricultural communities. However, for Darla Tyler McSherry, addressing mental health issues is essential. Darla grew up on a family wheat farm in Big Sandy. “My dad was born on the farm during the Great Depression. He was literally born on that farm, as his parents didn’t have enough money to go to the hospital. He was very proud that he was a part of the farm and led the harvest for 71 years. Even when he was 82 years old, he was farming full-time. He didn’t need to keep farming, but he loved it.” Darla’s brother started farming more and more as her father developed health issues, especially with vision, that eventually didn’t allow him to be part of the harvest. “He had vision issues his entire life, but it took him to a place mentally that none of us close to him ever realized, and it blindsided us when he took his own life on the family farm.” A few days after his death, Darla talked to one of her father’s friends, who said, “Your dad would stop and ask in earnest, ‘How are


may 2022

you doing?’ He sincerely cared about how someone and their family were doing. That phrase stuck with me as I thought about how we need to prevent any family from going through what my family has gone through. My professional background is in health and fitness work, so I took that concept and developed a website and mission to raise awareness for mental health, especially suicide.” Two of the common reasons farmers and ranchers generally experience mental health issues are that agriculture has a minimal worklife balance and it’s extremely unpredictable. Darla noted that, if she has a bad day at her job at MSU-Billings, she can leave her job and come home. “If you have a bad day at the farm or ranch, you don’t get to leave. The crop burning up, the drought, the brokendown combine is outside your door. When dealing with wheat, you can’t get the crop out of the hail, and you can’t reach that calf or lamb in a spring snowstorm. Disease outbreaks in crops or livestock add to the stress. In addition, if one person can’t work because of an illness, it puts a huge kink in the system. If a farmer gets sick, there might

be not be anyone to pick up the workload. Add to that input prices like fertilizer and feed are skyrocketing. When you farm or ranch, weather, commodity prices and input costs are completely out of your control.” In addition, the culture of farming or ranching promotes the idea that if you’re from tough stock, you won’t ask for help. “Farmers and ranchers are very self-sufficient. If you have a flat tire three miles from the farm, you fix it. You withstand pain, weather and long hours. It’s not in their culture to say, ‘I need help.’” Persevering through hard times is admirable, but you need to take a step back and say, ‘I’m hurting when it comes to mental health issues. I need help.’” As for communicating hard times to children, Darla says kids are more intuitive than we think. “Bring kids into the conversation about what’s going on, even if it’s the drought, grasshoppers eating your crop or low cattle prices. Be proactive and holistic in your mental health and stress management.” She added that eating healthy meals and exercising as a family are essential.

Experienced midwifery for the birth and care you desire.




“Research has found that a diet of fried food and junk food can lead to symptoms of depression. Having a healthy diet can prevent depression,” Darla said. “A body that is stressed is prone to depression. Stay hydrated, and remember to exercise as a family, even if it’s walking to the mailbox or checking your cattle.”



Call 406-414-5150 today to schedule your appointment with one of our wonderful midwives.

Youth Biathlon Camps

In addition, Darla urges parents to consider how essential good sleep is. “Make sure the environment is quiet, cool and conducive to sleep. Try to make a good transition in the last hour before the end of a busy day and sleep. Listen to music, do some stretches and read for pleasure. Then do that old-fashioned lights out.” Several websites regarding mental health include: Darla McSherry’s Askinearnest. org, Montana State University’s Farm and Ranch Stress Clearinghouse, Farmers’ Angel Network (Facebook), the Farm Aid Call Center 1-800-FARM-Aid, and American Farm Bureau’s Rebecca Colnar is Director of Public Relations for Montana Farm Bureau and a freelance writer from Custer, Montana.

Experience biathlon in a safe and supportive environment 4-day Camps for 10 & 11 Year Olds | Transportation Provided

June 20 • July 18 • August 15

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may 2022


Mental Health Facing

Fears and Anxieties: A Normative Part of Growing Up WRITTEN BY SARA SILVA

At some time or another, we have all felt a quick, LOUD thump of our heart when something surprises us and triggers a feeling of fear or the sick-to-the-stomach sensation when we are confronted by something that worries us and makes us nervous. Many of us have also experienced times when a worrying thought goes around and around in our head until it seems to grow bigger and bigger—taking up all the space in the room and sucking all the air out of it. Feelings such as fear, anxiety and nervousness are all part of the human experience and very much a part of growing up. These feelings are such an integral part of growing, that children universally tend to fear similar things at similar ages:

Ç Infants tend to fear separation from their loved ones, strangers, loud noises and changes to the familiar (like daddy shaving off his beard).

Ç Toddlers tend to fear little and really BIG things (to them) such as bugs and animals. They also tend to fear loud noises (especially those they do not make themselves), costumes and the dark (particularly if they are left by themselves in the dark).

Ç Preschoolers begin to fear imaginative things such as monsters, witches,

ghosts and other imaginary and supernatural beings. They may fear masks, costumes, storms, fire and bad guys. They also may fear being alone, especially in the dark…We may also begin to see some of these themes popping up in their play.

Ç School-age children begin to fear more real things, such as accidents and death. They may fear something happening that would cause harm to themselves or their loved ones. They may also begin experiencing social anxiety and worry about being rejected by their peers.

Validate My Feelings

Fear is there to keep us safe. Let your little one know that it is OK to feel afraid or worried sometimes. These are feelings like all of our other feelings, and they come and go throughout the day. We can support our children by coming alongside them and sitting with them in their experience at that moment, with compassion and empathy. We can reflect back to them what we see and what we hear – validating their feelings and experiences. We can also reassure them that they won’t feel like this forever, that feelings come, and they go and that we are here to help keep them safe. We can be bigger and stronger than their worries and fears and we can speak honestly to them about these feelings.


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Explore My Fear Safely with Me

These big feelings are so new and they can feel so very overwhelming. Our children need our help to explore them in a safe way. We can share lighthearted stories about when we were little and the fears that we experienced. We can reassure our little ones that we are there to help them stay safe. We can read story books that explore fears and worries at a safe distance and talk about the feelings of the characters in the books. We can even tell stories about our little one’s past experiences with fear and anxiety and how these feelings went away again. We can also pretend play with our little ones, exploring these feelings through play. Just remember to follow your child’s lead and keep a finger on their comfort level so that it doesn’t become too big or too much. With older children, we can explore their worries by talking to them about, “What might happen then?” and helping our children plan what to do if that did happen. This way we help their confidence grow as they face the “what ifs” of their worries. And with their growing confidence, their anxiety proportionally gets smaller and smaller.

Encourage Me to be Brave, but Don’t Force Me

It can sometimes be helpful to encourage your child to do things that they may feel anxious about. Sometimes they may even surprise themselves by how much they ended up enjoying the experience after all. Even if they take just a tiny step toward facing their anxiety, shower them with descriptive praise such as, “You were feeling anxious about meeting Rosy, and then she gave you a big lick that tickled and you laughed and laughed! Now you’re not as afraid of Rosy as you were.”

JULY 20-24, 2022 // BOZEMAN, MT

Join us for family fun!

Concerts // Ranch Rodeo // Motorsports // Food // Carnival and more! 4H Livestock Barns open ALL WEEK!

When Fear and Anxiety Grow Too Big

Remember, you know your child best. If it seems that their fears and anxieties have grown bigger than you and they can face together, reach out for help. A qualified mental health professional who specializes in working with children and families can be just the ticket to putting those worries and fears back in their proper perspective. Sara Silva is a STARS Coach at Child Care Connection, where their work s is all about quality child care. Visit CCC online at or call 406-587-7786 for information on our services for families and early childhood professionals.


Bigger Fun, Bigger Smiles :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022


Mental Health

I Have a Daddy,


“I have a daddy, right? My daddy is Andrew, right? My daughter casually asked me recently over dinner. I stopped in my tracks, kneeled to her level, looked her straight in the eyes and reassured her that, yes, she does have a daddy. Daddy’s name is Andrew. He wanted so much to be here with us, but his body stopped working and he died. I reassured her about how much he loves her, and that he will always love her. This marked the first time our daughter has ever asked about her father directly. It was the week of her third birthday. Her dad, (my husband) Andrew, died from colon cancer when our daughter was 6 months old, just shy of his 40th birthday. I talk about her daddy a lot in a casual way, “Your daddy loved that song,” “You made a face that looked just like daddy,” and “Your daddy loved salmon, too.” But this question and the casual way in which she asked me caught me by surprise. For our daughter, daddy is an ethereal mystery. He is someone she knows about but recognizes is not here physically. He is in pictures sprinkled throughout our house, and he is in our conversations. He is in paintings she creates, and he is in videos on my phone, which she adores watching. He is in my memories, which I recount to her. She knows he is not here, and I wonder what she must be thinking, as she is too young to understand the concept of death. She sees daddies pick up their kids at school; she hears stories of her peers’ daddies and, when we’re out with friends and their kids, her friends’ daddies are often there.


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“You want my daddy, too,” she said to me, as tears welled in my eyes while I delicately explained to our toddler that her daddy died. Soon, she was offering to wipe my tears and was consoling me. She now associates me crying with yearning for her daddy. “You miss daddy,” she will say, even if I am crying about something else. I explain to her that I miss him dearly and I again reassure her how much he loves her. As she grows and matures, I will make sure she gets to know him in the best way that I can. My heart aches so much in these moments. What I would give to see my daughter interact with her daddy. To see her run up to him. To see them play around and be silly together. To hear her say “Daddy!” in excitement as he walks into the room, the way she does with me. To have him be a part of our mornings and our night routines. To be able to eat family meals together. To have him experience the privilege of watching her grow. To hear them laugh in unison. What I would give to have his help and parenting support. Especially on the tough days. To have his involvement in the decision making that surrounds our daughter. To talk to him about what she did at school that day, and decide together what sports or arts to sign her up for in the summer. To have him sit next to me as I watch her in school programs.

Unfortunately, I’ll never know what this feels like. He died when she was an infant. I am grateful for the time the three of us had together. Time stopped. It was sacred, everything I ever wanted in one room. And I hate that he’s not here anymore. I expect that during those milestone moments, like when she graduates college, I will be filled with dual feelings of pride for our daughter and yearning for her dad to be here. It’s lonely. I miss him terribly. Friends and even family don’t fully understand. And, of course not; you can’t know unless you’re in it. I try to focus on honoring my grief journey, to practice self-compassion and self-love, to show up for myself and for our daughter. To surround ourselves with caring people who make us feel good. I envision giving our daughter the life that he and I dreamed of, the best way I can. That is a life full of wonder, beauty, culture, joy and a great education. Yes, my precious daughter. Yes, you do have a daddy. He wanted you so much before you were born, and your arrival gave him the greatest source of joy. He gave everything he could to be here with us. He wanted nothing more in the world. His greatest desire was to live to see you grow. You are so much of him: your vibrant personality, your smile, your laugh, your intelligence, your determination and strong will, and your empathy for others. Your daddy is so very proud of you.

Every mother is unique— so is every delivery. While our job is to ensure you have a healthy delivery, we want to do it your way. Let our team of experts provide you with award-winning care at our BabyFriendly® birth center. Make an appointment today! Call 406.222.3541 or visit

Alexis Brill is a solo Mom and a native of Montana. She would love to connect with other widowed parents, and started a group called Widow Warriors for local widowed women. She can be reached at

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

may 2022


Mental Health

The Resilience Project Greater Gallatin United Way offers free mental health workshops Suicide rates have increased by 30% in the United States since 1998, according to the CDC—and Montana consistently has the highest rates across the nation. While mental health advocacy and awareness have been gaining popularity in American culture, the stigmatization of mental health continues to make people feel alone in their behavioral health struggles. Greater Gallatin United Way has been offering free mental health workshops and trainings since 2016. Through a program called The Resilience Project, the organization is aiming to normalize conversations about mental health and, especially after COVID-19, offer the idea that sometimes there is no way around feeling bad and it’s not your fault. Using questions from experts in the field of early childhood adversity, Ellie Martin, Behavioral Health Consultant for The Resilience Project said, “I wanted to shift the conversation from, ‘What’s wrong with people?’ to ‘What happened to people?’ and how can we help them move forward.” This mentality laid the groundwork for one of the workshops that Greater Gallatin United Way offers on a quarterly schedule. The workshop, called Toxic Stress and Resiliency, uses framework from the ACEs study (adverse childhood experiences) whose research proves that childhood trauma can have major effects later in life on an adult’s physical health, as well as how they process and cope with stress.


may 2022

Martin uses this scientific evidence to bolster her workshops, providing participants with realistic and effective mechanisms for coping and dealing with everyday stress. “I want to normalize that feeling better might not always be possible, but feeling less-bad could be,” Martin said. Tori Sproles, Executive Director at Child Care Connections, has attended multiple workplace trainings hosted by The Resilience Project. “It brings you to a place where it feels OK to be vulnerable and work through things,” she said. “It’s a reminder of all the things that can be done to reinforce self-care.” These workshops and trainings are designed to be accessible, easy and informative. To provide helpful information to everyone who attends, the workshops remain broad in their scope and provide skills that have proven helpful to a wide array of individuals. However, the experience is not personalized and everyone’s relationship with mental health is unique. Greater Gallatin United Way’s, The Resilience Project is offering two free online workshops in May. The first, Toxic Stress and Resiliency, is on May 18. The second, Well-Being in a Time of Overwhelm is on May 19. To register, visit www.

Mental Health

Are All Kids


I think in some ways they are. We all need more decompression time than we tend to give ourselves credit for—kids included. One definition of introversion is: “A person who prefers calm environments, limits social engagement, or embraces a greater-thanaverage preference for solitude.” My daughter fits that definition to a T. While I know my daughter is fairly sensitive, I also believe all kids are to some extent. We all need unplanned downtime. We all need refuges and calming environments to reset the nervous system. We all need to learn to be comfortable in our own company, and enjoy it even, so that we don’t have to turn to outside sources for validation or a sense of worthiness and fulfillment. So as a mama to a now 6-year-old (!!) introvert and owner of a family yoga studio, here are some helpful things I’ve learned along the way that I believe can benefit all children, and especially the introverts in our lives: Arrive early (this one is a killer for me). As my daughter’s Montessori teacher informed me, shy kids don’t like all eyes on them when they walk in. They like to get there first, get a lay of the land and feel confident in their environment before being bombarded by a lot of other energy. (I am late to almost everything, so this has been a challenge for us, but I realize when we do this that my kiddo is less clingy because she feels more confident, so I really try to prioritize it when I can.)

Ç Regularly block off whole mornings or

afternoons for unstructured downtime regularly.

Ç Spend time in nature without

expectations – it’s so unbelievably grounding!

Ç Get friend time on your own, so you can fill up without draining your kiddo.

Know that sometimes you will push it too far. When you do this, your child may melt down and freak out. It’s OK. There’s no exact science,

and it happens. Over time we get better and better at setting up expectations and knowing what’s too much.

upset, she can point to the emotion she’s feeling, name it, then choose an activity to help move through it.

If you have big events, be sure to schedule plenty of downtime after. When I say plenty of downtime I mean lots, so they can recover, let out any pent-up feelings or emotions and simply unwind (hello holidays and birthdays). Expect some meltdowns. Give extra cuddles.

Honor their need for smaller interactions with friends. Or know if you go to something with a bigger group, they will need extra attention and physical support from you to thrive and not feel super drained (this one can be hard for me). Again, get there earlier when you can.

Shut the curtains an hour before bedtime in the summer. Create a cool, calming space. Run a diffuser with essential oils (I love orange and lavender or peppermint/ylang ylang in warmer months). This is something I find myself craving too, especially with the busyness of a Montana summer and wanting to do all the things during the never-ending days.

Teach them boundaries. Early. If they don’t feel good or safe around someone, honor that. If they need space, teach them to state it. Model and share with them how to ask for their needs. It matters.

Create a cozy corner. We did this when my daughter was around 2 and it has been a GAME changer. It’s a space in their room or somewhere in the house that they can fill with things that soothe them. Pillows, books, a cozy rug or blanket. Let them help set it up and explain this is a space just for them. When our daughter’s upset, she runs there to process and feel soothed. It’s pretty amazing. Teach them how to name, express and move through their emotions. There are so many ways to do this. In a kids’ yoga class, through a Time In Toolkit. We have these tools in our cozy corner so when she’s

Refrain from using the word sensitive. Instead, I’m reframing it as strengths, i.e.: “To honor her strengths, we need lots of downtime.” Because being sensitive, as I hope we all know by now, is anything but a weakness and I don’t want her to have any negative connotations with it. To be honest, every person’s nervous system needs these tools. So, let’s do it for ourselves and our kids by finding a better balance between giving and receiving, creating safe spaces to unwind for all of us, and raising a generation that has overflowing energy from self-awareness. We’ve got this! Jessica Cartwright is a mama, birth doula and co-founder of Our Yoga, Yoga for The Whole Family. She is a certified yoga instructor who specializes in prenatal, postpartum and baby yoga. She is also a featured writer for Elephant Journal, So Much Yoga and BOHO Daily.

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

may 2022


Mental Health

Gallatin Valley YMCA


Mental Health

in our Community


The YMCA has been around for nearly two centuries – changing and evolving through many an era to better serve its communities. Each YMCA community has its own unique challenges and characteristics that affect the programs and services offered. The Gallatin Valley and its local YMCA are no different. Established in 2000 and relocated to a new facility in 2017, the Gallatin Valley Y has grown and adapted to help its community manage and overcome current events and challenges. The Y strives to be a beacon for the community during the difficult times people face, both independently and as a collective. The Y provides services that offer healthy outlets and help for people struggling with various mental health issues. They support our community by tapping into services that aid our local youth in developing positive mental health practices. The Gallatin Valley YMCA is focused on helping kids grow into their best selves. They do this by offering programs that teach social-emotional learning, confidence, teamwork and the process of creating/reaching personal goals. As the youth in our community grow, so do the Y’s strategies and programs that help them progress through their next stage of life. When a child starts their Y journey at the Early Learning Center, they are introduced to the essential first stages of socialization – learning, sharing and kindness – even before speech begins. The Y additionally offers opportunities for younger kids to participate in Small Fry sports that introduce kids to team play and teamwork – allowing them to further develop important social skills. At the next stage, elementary-aged kids who get involved in the Y’s Youth Sports programs learn teamwork and have the opportunity to practice processing difficult emotions.


may 2022

Additionally, the kids who attend Y Summer Camps also have the opportunity to learn and practice social-emotional skills that will help them progress and thrive in the next school year. Kids in Y camps are not the only ones learning more about their emotions. This year, the YMCA has partnered with the amazing Compassion Project team to train our camp counselors. “The Compassion Project cultivates compassion through the tools of art and mindfulness. Mindfulness, or awareness of the present moment, is an incredibly powerful tool.” Partnering with the Compassion Project team to train staff helps to ensure kids attending summer camp will have the best experience as well as prevent staff burnout. Finally, after a child has outgrown their early learning and youth programs, the YMCA offers the Y Strong Program to kids looking to become more confident in the gym. The Y Strong Program not only helps guide pre-teens and teens around gym equipment and how to use it, but it also teaches them why exercise is essential not only for their body but also for their mental health. This program aims to give teens a healthy outlet where they can gain confidence and knowledge that will help them as they enter adulthood. The Gallatin Valley YMCA is for everyone—it’s a place where community members of any age can learn essential skills that help them grow physically and mentally. It’s a place where the community can come together to support each other and be supported. It’s a place where everyone can be open with who they are and be welcomed. Finally, it’s a place where you belong. Written by Lacey Enos, Marketing Coordinator at the Gallatin Valley YMCA.

Mental Health

Motherhood Is…

(The Truth, The Whole Truth and Nothing but the Truth) WRITTEN BY LORI JO BERG

I once read a quote that said the greatest gift you can give to another mother is your honesty about what motherhood really is.

Ç Motherhood is thanking God for the mute

Ç Motherhood is feeling like your

Ç Motherhood is eating breakfast, nursing

Ç Motherhood is surrendering, letting go

I couldn’t agree more.

Ç Motherhood is wondering if you are good

kids’ birthdays in a timely manner, only to have the receptionist at the doctor’s office wonder if they’re really yours.

Ç Motherhood is finally understanding why

Ç Motherhood is realizing your hair can only

Ç Motherhood is getting up at 5:30 a.m.

Ç Motherhood is wrestling with the ugly “g”

Ç Motherhood is looking at your husband

Ç Motherhood is talking to yourself in the

Our mental health is at stake when we’re told we should feel a certain way (the rainbow and butterfly version of motherhood) and actually don’t feel that way at all. The more I personally didn’t fit the “happy baby, happy mom” version of motherhood with my first child, the worse I felt.

So, three kids later, here’s to all the things I feel like motherhood really is: Ç Motherhood is eating the scraps off your kids’ plates and calling it a meal.

Ç Motherhood is walking into a room and

then asking your kids why you entered in the first place.

Ç Motherhood is happiness and sadness, all at the same time.

Ç Motherhood is crying for no apparent reason.

Ç Motherhood is waking up at 3 a.m.

remembering at least five things you forgot the day before.

Ç Motherhood is not wanting your kids to

be able to read so you can continue to use that as a tool against them.

Ç Motherhood is doing things you swore you’d never do – like the things your parents did.

button on your phone. At least the person on the other end has no idea about the chaos happening all around you. a baby and singing the ABCs with your older child – all at the same time, of course. enough, fun enough, tough enough.

your parents did what they did and said what they said. JUST to experience your allotted 10 minutes of silence for the day.

and wishing you could have one complete 10-minute conversation with no interruptions.

Ç Motherhood is messy, emotional, lonely

and the best thing you’ve ever been a part of.

Ç Motherhood is usually nothing like

you’d imagined it would be. You know, the images of a perfectly-put-together, beautifully decorated nursery filled with the sound of lullabies while your child sleeps soundly as the smell of lavender fills the air.

Ç Motherhood is the constant 24-hour around-the-clock job that makes you wonder how long you can keep it up.

Ç Motherhood is unpredictable. It

requires flexibility, adaptability and the willingness to let go of the need to control everything.

Ç Motherhood is feeling like you’re on

superwoman, only to find it hard to admit that you’re really not and that you may need some help. OK, a lot of help. and accepting the season of life you’re in.

Ç Motherhood is not remembering all your

take so many days of dry shampoo before you actually have to wash it.

word - GUILT for every darn thing you do or don’t do. grocery store and hoping no one else notices.

Ç Motherhood is giving yourself a pep talk just to get out of bed and face the day.

Ç Motherhood is taking deep breaths. So. Many. Deep. Breaths.

Ç Motherhood is answering “she’s not here” when your name is said for the 40th time that day.

Ç Motherhood is trying to remember what your life was like prior to kids…but you can’t because your memory is gone.

Ç Motherhood is wondering if anyone else feels this way.

Ç Motherhood is knowing, hopefully, that you are NOT alone.

Lori Jo is a Montana Native, mother of three and freelance writer who enjoys writing about the tougher side of life and connecting with her audience on a deeper level.

a hamster wheel with all the cooking, cleaning, laundry and groceries.

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

may 2022



+ Activities




Plan your kids' summer fun here for more information about these camps, visit our interactive Summer Camp & Activities Finder at


Adventure Day Camp Gallatin Valley YMCA

Ç Ç 406-994-9622 Ç Ç Ç This YMCA camp focuses on youth development and learning through creativity, play and exploration of the environment. Activities and trips are intentionally planned to promote physical, cognitive and emotional-social development and provide campers with memorable experiences and friendships that last a lifetime. All campers will have the opportunity to leave their site every day, swim, slip n’ slide on the camp’s giant slide, hike once during the week, visit multiple parks and attend two field trips that relate to the weekly theme. 28

may 2022

Alpengirl Adventure Camp

Ç Ç 406-570-6312 Ç Ç Ç Alpengirl is an overnight summer adventure travel camp for girls ages 11 to 16. Their one- or two-week outdoor camps are held in the Pacific Northwest and Northern Rocky Mountains: Washington, Wyoming, Oregon, Idaho and Montana. Trips are multi-adventure and include a variety of activities such as backpacking, horseback riding, whitewater rafting, sea kayaking, rock climbing and more. Daily camp life includes tent camping, self-esteem development, friendship-building, leadership opportunities, yoga and delicious camp food.


XY Learning Center is offering limited spots in our school-age summer camp program. Each week kids will experience learning opportunities which include: community experts presentations, hiking, swimming, field trips, team building activities and more!

SUMMER CAMP REGISTRATION IS NOW OPEN FOR KIDSNow! AGES 5 to 12 Enrollment Open 11 weeks starting June 13th 8:30 am - 4:30 pm Ages 5 - 12 ( 5 yr olds must be entering 1st grade) $250 per week Located in beautiful downtown Bozeman 202 South Willson Ave, Bozeman, MT 59715 406.577.2554 WWW.XYLEARNINGCENTER.COM :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022


register today online at DAY CAMPS

YAA CAMP l 2022

1st & 2nd Grade 6/20-6/24 3rd & 4th Grade 6/27-7/1 “Fire” Day Camp 7/11-7/15 “Water” Day Camp 7/18-7/22


Senior High 6/12-6/17 Trailblazer 6/19-6/24 Pioneer 6/26-7/1 Rookie 7/5-7/8 Boys & Girls Base Camp 7/5-7/8 Archery Camp 7/5-7/8 Explorer 1 – 7/10-7/15 Explorer 2 – 7/17-7/22 Outbound Adventure 7/25-7/30

FAMILY CAMP • Labor Day 9/2-9/5 YAA is permitted for outfitting and guiding in the Gallatin National Forest.


your child will enjoy time outside + inside, make friends, build confidence, develop new body awareness + learn new relaxation techniques during an extended, restorative savasana! | 406.209.9954 30

may 2022

prenatal. postpartum. baby. kids.

Summer Art and Nature Camp for 3-9 year olds

ART • DANCE • MUSIC • NATURE EXPLORATION Full Day 9 a.m.-3 p.m. or Half-Day 9 a.m.-12 p.m. Options - Monday through Friday


346 Gallatin Park Drive, Bozeman (406) 579-7692 :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022



+ Activities


Bozeman Sports Camp Blitzz FC Spring Recreational Soccer

Ç Montana State University Ç Ç 406-600-8146 Ç Ç It’s time to register for another fun-filled spring soccer season with Blitzz FC! Blitzz has been kicking grass in the Gallatin Valley for 36 years and counting, and along with their parent club, Montana Surf, they were just voted Bozeman’s Best Sports Team. Blitzz Rec provides a fun, lowkey introduction opportunity for players ages 4-14 and is designed for those players and families who want to play soccer in a local, fun setting without out-of-town travel. Games are played Sundays throughout May and June.

Ç Ç 406-661-5496 Ç Ç Ç 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 sports of all kinds. Instructors are Bozeman-area teachers and college students studying education who provide quality instruction of sports skills, strategies and sportsmanship while providing an active setting for kids to spend their summer.

Camp Equinox Summer Theater Day Camp

Ç Bozeman Summit School, 3001 W. Villard

Boost Your Child's Learning This Summer! Sage Learning Center

Ç 406-582-9570 Ç Ç Sage Learning Center sees so much success in their fun, interactive summer learning sessions. Sessions at Sage are held in a one-on-one setting with individualized instruction for children ages 4-18. They offer flexible weekly sessions throughout the summer months. Offering both in-person and virtual zoom sessions.


may 2022

Ç Ç 406-522-7623 Ç Ç

Ç Bozeman’s premier summer theater camp is now in its 27th year! It’s a thrilling and welcoming place for kids to learn all about the theater and to explore their own creativity. From musical comedy, Shakespeare and film acting to mask-making, puppetry, playwriting and comedy improv, it’s a month of challenges, friends and intense fun! Equinox offers two four-week sessions for kids going into first through eighth grade. “What a magical, magical place. You guys really have a gift.”




3:30 - 5:30 pm!



SENSE OF PLACE (sens ev plees) noun 1. A bond or attachment felt towards a familiar place. Cultivated through experiences that lead to meaning, memories, and feelings about the place. Often becoming part of one’s identity.

Inspiring a love for the outdoors since 1994.

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

may 2022



+ Activities


Circus Summer Camp 406Cirque

Ç Ç 406-475-2513 Ç Ç Ç A group of circus and theater performers with more than 35 years of combined experience bring to Bozeman a unique and unforgettable experience. A place where kids are welcome to bring their most authentic self; where they are challenged in healthy ways and encouraged to go beyond their own limits, and unleash the true potential of their imagination and physicality. In the words of a parent: “Our daughter had the most magical camp experience with 406 Cirque! Well run and organized. Thoughtful and supportive. And she learned great skills. Most importantly, she was thrilled to go every day. Thank you!”

Creative Arts Summer Camp

Crosscut Summer Camps Crosscut Mountain Sports Center

Ç 346 Gallatin Park Dr. Ç erin.creativeartspreschool@

Ç 16621 Bridger Canyon Rd. Ç Ç 406-586-9690 Ç

Ç 406-579-7692 Ç Ç




Ç creativeartsbozeman

This is an art- and nature-based school that operates year-round. They incorporate art, dance, music and nature exploration into their daily activities. All summer long, they get campers outside to enjoy the beautiful Montana surroundings and create art projects that focus on all the natural beauty campers see each day.

Sport and Play, Inclusivity and Education Whether your child seeks grit or grace, effort or leisure, adventure or comfort, Crosscut meets them wherever they are. They believe in supporting body and mind, so all campers can wholeheartedly pursue that which fulfills them. The thrill of high-performance efforts, the personal expansion of learning and growth, and the freedom of spontaneous play are each important, and equally boundless in possibility.

Rhythms World Drum Camp African! Cuban! Egyptian Drumming! Storytelling, Games, World Culture! Ages 4-12 • Monday-Friday – 9 a.m.-noon Bozeman Camp Dates:

June 13 - 17; June 20 - 24; July 11 - 15 With Award Winning Teacher Chet Leach Meets at Rhythm Drums at The Emerson | | 406.580.8229 34

may 2022


+ Activities


Dancing Under the Big Sky (DUBS)


Camp Roundup

Montana Ballet Company

Dancing From Stage to Sky: Aerial & Dance Camp

Ç 346 Gallatin Park Dr. Ç Ç 406-595-0909 Ç Ç mountainairdance

Ç This fun and unique day camp challenges students physically and mentally with classes in aerial arts, dance technique, choreography, yoga, Pilates, hula hooping, juggling, hand balancing, flexibility training, arts and crafts.

Ç 2304 N. Seventh Ave., Ste. C-3 Ç Ç 406-582-8702 Ç Ç

Ç 111 S. Grand Ave. Ç Ç 406-587-9797 Ç Ç Ç

Ç Montana Ballet Company’s Annual Dancing Under the Big Sky (DUBS) two-week Summer Dance Intensive is an enriching, educational program featuring exceptional guest teachers and a full curriculum. DUBS 2022 (for ages 8 and up) will be held July 25 through August 6. Classes run from 9 a.m.–5:30 p.m., with short breaks and a lunch break each day. The Dancing Under the Big Sky Intensive curriculum exemplifies MBC’s belief in nurturing the “whole dancer” – mind, body and spirit.

Improv! Acting! Comedy ywriting! Pla er! eat Th Musical

Puppet ry! Mask Making ! Shakespear e!

Weeklong summer camps for ages 5-12 explore different movements in art. Each week will include 2D, sculpture and mixed media projects. Camps will conclude on Fridays with an artists' reception.

“Minispots” Program:


w warts. You kno is this is my Hog .” I can explain it leave? Like that “The only way ’t want to ever d it and he didn when Harry foun per cam a — from

Emerson Summer Camps


camp equinox! ! In Our 27th Year


Entering Grades 1 & 2 M-F 8:30-Noon

Main Camp:

ssions Double Se ! le b ila va A

Entering Grades 3-8 M-F 8:30-3:30

Session I:

June 13 - July 7, 2022 Session II:

July 18 - Aug. 11, 2022

Please visit our website or call for brochure. 406-522-7623 “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!”

Held at Bozeman Summit School — 3001 West Villard Street 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.

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

may 2022



+ Activities


Explore! Summer Day Camps

bozeman parks & Recreation

Ç Story Mill Community Park Ç 600 Bridger Dr. Ç Ç 406-582-2293 Ç Ç Ç

Flying Lion Cubs Summer Day Camp Four Corners - 2022

Ç 80085 Gallatin Rd., Ste. D Ç Ç 406-600-2740 Ç Flying Lion's Summer Day camp offers your child a little bit of everything in each session: art, science, nature, dance, music and of course, flying in the air with aerial hammock yoga. $149 per session.

It is tough to find the variety, adventure and affordability of Bozeman Parks & Recreation camps anywhere else! Run by leaders who truly care about your children and implementing quality programs, Parks and Recreation Summer Camps create a safe and fun camp environment that is spent mostly outdoors where kids will play, laugh, create art of all kinds, learn about their local ecosystem, meet new friends, get a little dirty and challenge themselves by engaging in new activities daily.

GirlSing Music, Singing, Songwriting and Art Camp

(with Music Kate)

Farm Camp

Bodhi Farms

Ç 13624 S. Cottonwood Rd. Ç Ç 406-201-1324 Ç Ç Ç Bodhi Farms’s outdoor summer kids' camp runs July through August and focuses on yoga, art, outdoor education, homesteading and farming skills. This camp is geared toward elementary aged-kids entering first through fifth grade in fall 2022. 36

may 2022

Ç Pilgrim Church, 2118 S. Third Ave. Ç Ç 406-570-2839 Ç Ç Ç The GirlSing summer camp (for girls ages 7-11) empowers girls to explore their unique, creative spirit through music, singing, songwriting, journaling and self-expressive art. Engaging indoor and outdoor activities, interactive play time and hikes/walks. On Thursday nights, campers host a family and friends music and artsharing event (optional) All-day, 5-day camp (9 a.m. 5 p.m.) with early drop off/late pick up option.


+ Activities



Heart and Hand Summer Day Camps & Retreats

Ç 20010 Bridger Hollow Rd. Ç Ç 406-587-4036 Ç Ç Heart and Hand Center is again presenting awesome summer day camps for kids as well as adult weekend retreats this year. Activities include hiking in the beautiful mountains at the K-J Ranch, making music and art in the Heart and Hand Center tipi, playing games and spending time with horses, drumming, yoga, crafts and much more.

A Bozeman summer camp for elementary aged kids with yoga, outdoor education, homesteading & farming skills. Learn more & register at


Karate and Sports Camp - Montana

Karate Academy in Bozeman

Ç 31842 Frontage Rd. Ç Ç 312-823-0110 Ç Ç For ages 6-15. New to Bozeman is Montana Karate Academy, led by two world-class coaches who train current junior and senior national team members. Your child will be introduced to the sport of karate in a fun and safe environment. Kids participate in halfday or full-day programs that will keep them active, build sports coordination and skill sets while learning karate and self-defense. Karate uniforms included! Family member and multi-week registration discounts are available.


Sa g eLearnin g Center.c om


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

may 2022



+ Activities


Leadership Through Horses

Gallatin Valley YMCA

Ç Windhorse Equine Learning, 3477 Johnson Rd.

Kids Yoga Summer Camp

Our Yoga Family

Ç Ç 406-209-9954 Ç

Ç Ç 406-994-9622 Ç Ç Ç Campers work daily with horses to learn important aspects of leadership, communication and partnership skills, as well as horse behavior, nonverbal communication and how to safely approach, halter, groom, lead and ride a horse. By earning the respect of a horse, participants gain confidence and learn how to be compassionate, focused, honest and responsible leaders. The curriculum is offered by Windhorse Equine Learning. Classes are taught by instructors certified by PATH (Professional Association of Therapeutic Horsemanship).

Ç ouryogafamily

Let your child shine and spend quality time being themselves this summer learning social skills, gross and fine motor skills as well as emotional wellbeing. Together the group will enjoy a yoga circle each day, time to free-play, opportunities to learn practical skills – like putting on our shoes, walking in a group, sharing with and helping others or using your breath to help you, how to relax, share and be confident —along with special age-appropriate songs, crafts and projects. Offered Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, 9 a.m.-noon for ages 3-5 OR 9 a.m.3:30 p.m. for ages 5-11.

Lone Mountain Summer Camps

Ç 1237 N Rouse Ave. Ç Ç 406-587-1180 Ç Ç 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). There’s Trampoline Camp and Combo Camp (highlighting gymnastics and overall sports agility), Ninja Camp and Tiny Dancers Camp. And don’t forget about swimming lessons! Lone Mountain can keep your kids active, engaged and having fun this summer. Camp offerings vary each week, so check out the website or call for details.


may 2022


+ Activities




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

Montana Ballet Company Summer Ballet Programs

Ç 2304 N. Seventh Ave., Ste. C-3 Ç Ç 406-582-8702 Ç Ç Ç

Learn more about camps, clinics and events at

cedar ridge equine

horsemanship camps, clinics & lessons

Please visit for more details on summer ballet programs for dancers of all ages and the two-week summer intensive, Dancing Under the Big Sky, for ages 8 and up.

Owner/Trainer Amy Prechter email phone 406-282-3355


EMPOWERING GIRLS Through Singing, Song Writing and Self-Expressive Art!

Montana Conservation Corps Youth Expedition Program

Girls Ages 7-11

Ç Ç 406-587-4475 x106 Ç Ç Ç

5-DAY CAMP @ 9 AM to 4:00 PM

with opt-in Early Drop Off & Late Pickup Thursday Night—Family Concert & Art Show

Build new relationships, learn meaningful skills and explore Montana – ignite your summer with the Montana Conservation Corps Youth Expedition Program. Expeditions are for Montana high schoolers ages 14-18 and run as two- or four-week sessions during the summer months of June-August. Embark on 11-day trips around the state for conservation work including trails, habitat restoration and recreation improvement. MCC cultivates communities of young people inspired to build a brighter future. Benefits include 72 volunteer hours, leadership, communication and technical skills, and a summer of fun.

3 Date Options July 20-24 August 15-19 August 22-26 :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022



+ Activities


Peaks & Potentials

Montana State University

Montana Regional Ballet Intensive

Yellowstone Ballet Academy

Ç 109 S. B St., Livingston Ç Ç 406-222-0430 Ç Ç YBA offers a cutting-edge ballet intensive for intermediate and advanced students (June 13-26) focusing on classical ballet technique, pointe, variations, repertoire, pas de deux, contemporary, conditioning/stretch and Pilates. An advanced beginner intensive (June 13-17) will offer classes on ballet technique, pre-pointe, repertoire, folk dance, contemporary, conditioning/stretch and Pilates. Guest teachers include: Arcadian Broad, principal dancer, Orlando Ballet and Top Ten on America’s Got Talent; Tricia Sundbeck, former principal dancer with the Sacramento Ballet and Cincinnati Ballet; Thomas Bell, ballet master, University of Cincinnati; Taylor Sambola, certified Pilates instructor and professional dancer, Orlando Ballet and Sarasota Ballet.

Ç Ç 406-994-6633 Ç Peaks and Potentials 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. Academic, recreational and social activities offer students a chance to interact with their peers and sample campus life.

Pet Pals Summer Day Camp Heart of the Valley

MOSS Summer Programs

Ç Ç 406-582-0526 Ç Ç Ç MOSS summer programs offer fun, engaging and educational explorations of the natural world in and around the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. MOSS believes that inspiring a love for nature helps children become aware of—and want to care for—the unique environment in which they live. Camps fill quickly, so registering early is recommended.


may 2022

Ç 1549 E. Cameron Bridge Rd. Ç Ç 406-388-9399 x223 Ç Ç Ç HOV’s seven-week summer day camp is for children (6-12 years old) who love animals. Campers learn the importance of compassionate animal care through time with animals, games, crafts, humane education lessons and a wide variety of guest speakers. Each week children will have the opportunity to interact with a variety of animals. The camp is held Monday-Friday with drop-off between 8:30-9 a.m. and pick-up between 3-3:30 p.m. Scholarship applications are available upon request. The weekly cost of camp tuition is $250.


+ Activities


Ridge Kids Summer Fun Camps

The Ridge Athletic Club is hosting a great summer camp for kids ages 5 to 12 that will include swimming, kid-specific group exercise classes, crafts, gym play and fun in the Play Zone. Ridge counselors and fitness professionals are trained and qualified to keep your kids safe during their exciting camp days. They offer halfday morning and afternoon sessions or give your kids the full-day fun that they will love. If you’re enrolling multiple children or if you need more information, call 406-582-4452.




Ç 111 S. Grand Ave. #215 Ç Ç 406-580-8229 Ç Children ages 4 to 12 are invited to join Chet Leach (a.k.a. Mr. Chet) for weeklong drum camps. These summer camps will include drumming from Africa, Brazil, Cuba and Egypt. Your child will learn about world culture through storytelling, games and, of course, lots of DRUMMING!


C A M P S Rockhaven UnCamp

Ç Gallatin Gateway Ç Ç 406-586-9194 Ç Ç rockhavencamp

Ç rockhavencamp

Rhythms World Drum Camps



Ç 4181 Fallon Ç Ç 406-582-4452 Ç Ç


Rockhaven “Un”Camp is an innovative summer day and overnight camping program where free-play, nature-play and childled independent play are all front and center. It’s a safe environment where creativity and imagination can flourish, and kids can just be kids and get a little dirty playing like kids are meant to play. Rockhaven takes the schedules, expectations and rules out of summer and puts back genuine play, natural curiosity, epic messes, muddy faces, sticky fingers and awesome memories. Sessions for kids 4 to 15 years old.


helena Join LEWIS & CLARK LIBRARY for a summer of play and activities! This year's theme is Oceans of Possibilities

The Summer Library Program and Summer Reading Challenge will begin on June 1 and end July 31.

Download our Summer Library Program booklet with fun activities for all ages by visiting SERVING HELENA AND LEWIS & CLARK COUNTY VISIT



406.447.1690 AUGUSTA

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may 2022




+ Activities


Spire Climbing + Fitness Rocky Creek Farm Camp

Ç 34297 Frontage Rd. Ç Ç 406-599-2361 Ç Ç Join Rocky Creek Farm this summer for an opportunity to explore connections between farming and nature. Weeklong sessions give campers the chance to be farmers, explorers, chefs, scientists and artists while growing a sense of connection to the land. The mission is to engage campers with local agriculture and landscapes by inspiring connection to the land, sense of place and confidence as members of the natural community. The education staff is committed to experiential teaching, connecting with nature, working cooperatively and intentional play.

Ç 13 Enterprise Blvd. Ç Ç 406-586-0706 Ç Ç Spire summer camps are a great way for children ages 5–16 to enjoy rock climbing in 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 in Spire’s south Bozeman facility, as well as plenty of fun and games for your child.

Starlite Kids

Snow White Summer

Montana Ballet Company

Ç 2304 N. Seventh Ave., Ste. C-3 Ç Ç 406-582-8702 Ç Ç Ç Learn all about the Snow White ballet with a daily ballet class, dance-related arts and crafts, choreography, a performance and more. Held Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m.-noon: June 13-16 (ages 4-6), June 20-23 (ages 7-9), June 27-30 (ages 4-6) and July 11-14 (ages 4-6).


may 2022

Starlite Bozeman

Ç 622 E. Tamarack St. Ç Ç 406-551-2220 Ç Ç Starlite Kids camps are back for 2022! Choose from three amazing themes featuring unique experiences and adventures that will grow into a lifelong appreciation of the world around us. Each camp features small class sizes to guarantee lots of individualized instruction, amazing friendships and healthy kids.


+ Activities


State of Play Art Camp

Ç 221 E. Oak St. Suite 1-C Ç 347-603-2242 Ç Ç Ç Ç State of Play, Bozeman's first intentional and modern play and art space, is offering a drop-off summer camp for 3 to 5 year olds. Join State of Play educators as they lead your child through an exploration of different art materials each week in their state-of-the-art, creative and educationally-informed space. Children will learn skills and techniques specific to each medium as they investigate offerings and invitations connected to a specific concept through group activities and projects. Outdoor lunch and water play will be enjoyed daily in the Cannery Courtyard steps away from SOP.

STEAM Learning Using LEGO® Bricks Snapology of Helena

Ç Ç 406-438-7241 Ç

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Ç Ç Snapology is a mobile business that brings engaging STEAM activities to communities by partnering up with other organizations that serve kids. Snapology will be in Bozeman and Helena this summer offering a variety of camps at a variety of locations. They have LEGO® robotics, motorized LEGO® engineering builds, themed LEGO® building, K'Nex, and stop motion animation movie making. Teachers are highly qualified and your child will have a blast but shhhhh....don't tell them they're learning! Keep your little ones brain working this summer with this award winning franchise.

Summer of Science Camps

Montana Science Center

Ç 2744 W. Main St. Ç Ç 406-522-9087 Ç Ç Ç Discover science and technology all summer long. Five different themes – including Spy Camp, Inventors Workshop, engineering challenges, learning to code and color discovery – are included in the Summer of Science camps at Montana Science Center. Grades K-2 and 3-5 can join for hands-on, interactive camps including outside time, experiments and high-tech makerspace activities.

Teen Camp

Gallatin Valley YMCA

Ç 3673 Love Ln. Ç Ç 406-994-9622 Ç Ç Ç YMCA’s 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 important 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 their evolving interests.

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may 2022



+ Activities


World Family School Day Camps Windhorse Leadership with Horses Camp

Ç 3477 Johnson Rd. Ç Ç 406-522-3906 Ç Ç Ç Windhorse Equine Learning offers a unique camp experience where kids learn horsemanship and riding skills, and 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 to communicate with them effectively) gives kids confidence, builds self-awareness and teaches valuable lessons about respect, trust, empathy and communication. Camps are offered in partnership with MSU College of Agriculture and the Gallatin Valley YMCA.

Ç 115 E. Dickerson St. Ç Ç 406-581-4823 Ç All summer long World Family School Day Camps will be honoring the cycles of the moon and the elements of nature during their magical summer camps for kids ages 4-7 and 7-10. These Waldorf summer camps will engage head, heart and hands through creative and dramatic arts including storytelling, puppetry, theater, music and rhythm. Let your child's imagination run free in a wild playscape and nearby "magic forest" where wonder can be found among the elements and tender toes dipped in the cool creek. Windy Moon, Thunder Moon and Lightning Moon campers will create and share puppetry theater on Fridays for all to enjoy!

World Language & Culture Camps World Language Initiative

World Cup Summer Soccer Camps

HappyFeet Bozeman

Ç Ç 602-820-5333 Ç Ç Ç At HappyFeet Legends Bozeman, the approach is simple: to introduce soccer in a way that opens up doors of possibility for young kids both on the field and off. The goal is for kids to not only learn the wonderful game of soccer, but to have fun, build social skills, improve selfconfidence and instill a brave, creative “go for it” mentality that can help provide the right foundation for the rest of their lives. 44

may 2022

Ç Story Mansion, 811 S. Willson Ç Ç 406-414-6419 Ç Ç Ç WLI offers four, weeklong sessions of dynamic and engaging language and culture camps for kids ages 5-12 in a variety of languages that will leave your child dreaming of traveling the globe. Camps are filled with fun games, traditional art and cooking activities, storytelling, songs and more, all led by experienced language coaches. Camps are held Monday through Thursday, 9 a.m.-3 p.m. at the Story Mansion, with the majority of activities being held outdoors. Language camp offerings vary each session, so please check the website for more details.


+ Activities


XY Learning Center Day Camp Yellowstone Alliance Adventures

Ç 13707 Cottonwood Canyon Rd. Ç Ç 406-763-4727 Ç Ç Ç YAA is all about maximum fun and maximum adventure. From riding the zipline and experiencing archery to climbing to the top of the tower or participating in a meaningful chapel or fireside experience, everywhere you turn is an opportunity to build friendships, learn about Jesus and have fun. After a week of camp at YAA, you will have memories to last a lifetime and a desire to come back for more.

Ç 202 S. Willson Ave. Ç Ç 406-577-2554 Ç Join XY Learning Center for yet another exciting, educational and adventurous day camp. With weekly camp sessions, you can explore Montana through hikes, field trips and guest speakers as well as exploring art and science with creative projects, experiments and, of course, swimming. Weekly sessions will foster all kinds of kiddos’ interests from space exploration to animal care and crafting. Camp runs Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m., with 11 weekly sessions starting June 13 for ages 5-12 (5-year-olds must be entering first grade in the fall). Weekly cost is $250 per week.


ExplorationWorks Summer Camps Yellowstone Soccer Experience Camp

Ç Bozeman Sports Park, 4600 Baxter Ln. Ç Ç 406-600-8146 Ç Camp week will include quality instruction and personal attention with an approximate 1:10 ratio of staff to campers. Players will engage in a variety of activities and games, appropriate to their developmental level, while strengthening existing skills. Campers will work on technical, tactical and mental aspects of the game.

Ç Ç 995 Carousel Way, Helena Ç 406-457-1800 xt.1 Ç Ç Ç Spend the summer as a scientist and explore the world around you! Camps begin the week of June 13th and run through the week of August 22nd. ExplorationWorks offers camps for kids ages 4 and up. All-day camp combos! Pick a morning and afternoon camp to create your personalized all-day learning adventure! Your scientist will experience one exciting morning camp, break for a supervised lunch, then start the science fun again with an afternoon camp! (Lunch not provided.) There's sure to be a combo for your budding scientist! :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022



+ Activities


Grandstreet Summer Theatre School

Ç 325 N. Park Ave. Ç Ç 406-442-4270 Ç Ç org

Ç Grandstreet’s Summer Theatre School expands student skills in character development, improvisation and playmaking while providing practical experience in rehearsal techniques. Class work is aimed at building character – both on and off the stage. Take halfday mini camps in stage combat, musical theater or performance or join the all-day, two-week camp.

…inspiring people of all ages to


Montana Learning Center at Canyon Ferry Lake

Ç 7653 Canyon Ferry Rd. Ç MontanaLearningCenter@

Ç 406-475-3638 Ç Student-Programs



The MLC is Montana’s science camp for kids. It is a place for students to come together to solve problems, create and be empowered. Camp life includes STEM-immersion experiences, friendship-building and recreation. Campers enjoy fishing, kayaking, boating and swimming at the lake. The MLC’s staff is composed of certified teachers, many of whom are award winning. The student-to-staff ratio is 8:1. Each of the MLC’s instructors and counselors are CPR and First Aidcertified.

HAC Skills Camps

Helena Athletic Club

Parties & Performances Summer Camps After School Classes Private Lessons Teen/Adult Classes & More!


may 2022

Ç 3340 McHugh Ln. Ç Ç 406-442-6782 Ç Ç Ç Half-day camps perfect for beginning to intermediate level students. Choose from morning or afternoon sessions of gymnastics, cheerleading, tumbling and trampoline or ninja sport. Each week wraps up with a friends and family showcase.

STEAM Learning Using LEGO® Bricks Snapology of Helena

Ç Ç 406-438-7241 Ç helena

Ç snapologyhelena


Ç snapology

Snapology is a mobile business that brings engaging STEAM activities to communities by partnering up with other organizations that serve kids. Snapology will be in Bozeman and Helena this summer offering a variety of camps at a variety of locations. They have LEGO® robotics, motorized LEGO® engineering builds, themed LEGO® building, K'Nex, and stopmotion animation moviemaking. Teachers are highly qualified and your child will have a blast but shhhhh....don't tell them they're learning! Keep your little ones brain working this summer with this award-winning franchise.

+ Activities


Summer Reading Program Lewis & Clark Library

Ç 406-447-1690 Ç Ç


Ç www.Lewisandclarklibrary Join Lewis & Clark Library for a summer of play and activities! This year's theme is Tails and Tales. Each week, celebrate a different animal with a themed take-home activity kit for grade-school kids, reading adventures and much more!

Stonetree Climbing Camp

Ç 1222 Bozeman Ave. Ç Ç 406-534-0325 Ç Ç stonetreeclimbing

Ç climbing

Join Stonetree all summer long for the best day camp in town. Weeklong camps 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. Experienced instructors make sure that every climber leaves having learned something new and with a smile on their face. These camps fill up fast, so register early!

Tree House Preschool Camps

Pilgrim Preschool

Helena Athletic Club

Ç 3340 McHugh Ln. Ç Ç 406-442-6782 Ç Ç Ç A perfect preschool/pre-K half-day camp for youngsters ages 3-5 years and just getting into the summer camp experience. Tree House campers enjoy time at the many centers in two classrooms including imaginative play, letters and literacy, fine motor works, arts and crafts, numerical and math literacy plus all the standard pre-K lessons like shapes, colors, weather observation and more. Of course, gross motor skills get plenty of use in the gym during semi-structured gym time.

Enrolling Now For Fall 2022-23 Classes For over 50 years Pilgrim Preschool has been helping children grow and develop socially, physically, emotionally, and academically through creative play, art, music, science, language, and math.

Visit our website or call to enroll your child. 406.586.6060

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may 2022


2022 Summer Camps Montana State University - Bozeman

Rural Journalism Camp, July 10-15, Grades 9-12

The Yellowstone Writing Project’s Rural Journalism Camp is a weeklong residential experience that immerses rural high school students in the theory and practice of daily journalism.

Youth Writing Camp, July 11-15, Grades 5-12 Young Writer’s Camp, July 12-15, Grades 3-4

The Yellowstone Writing Project’s Youth Writing Camp and Young Writer’s Camps are multi-day “unschooled” writing workshops.

Except for the Young Writer’s Camp, all camps offer a residential option where campers stay in a supervised residence hall room and have meals in the dining hall. For more information about summer camps at MSU, please call 994-6550 or visit

Peaks & Potentials Camp, June 12-17, Grades 5-7

Peaks and Potentials summer enrichment camp gives high potential students the opportunity to explore special topics of interest and work with experts in various subject areas. Academic, recreational and social activities offer students a chance to interact with their peers and sample campus life. Students may stay on campus or commute each day.


MAINTENANCE 406.599.1160



may 2022




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may 2022


Kenyon Noble’s

Junior Carpenter Mother’s Day Workshop May 7, 2022 Join Kenyon Noble in celebrating the amazing women in our lives. The Junior Carpenter Mother’s Day Planter Project will take place at all Kenyon Noble Lumber & Hardware locations on Saturday, May 7 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Kids and parents work alongside each other while creating a planter out of wood and nails, then planting a flower (in your mother’s favorite color, of course). Kenyon Noble will provide the wood, nails, hammer, soil and flowers for each Planter Project Kit. Aprons will also be available for the kiddos. The Junior Carpenter Mother’s Day Workshop will take place at 4949 Jackrabbit Ln. and 1243 W. Oak St. in Bozeman and 100 Washington St. in Livingston.

Kenyon Noble’s Garden Center

Spring Expo May 7, 2022 Celebrate the season opening of the Kenyon Noble Garden Center in Bozeman, located at 1243 W. Oak St., on Saturday, May 7 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The Garden Center Spring Expo will have booths where you can try out outdoor power tools, see new products and learn about Montana plants and wildlife. The Gallatin Empire Garden Club will be grilling hot dogs for donations along with their legendary bake sale—so come hungry! Visit or for updates.


may 2022

2022 Big Sky Country

State Fair

is here with Bigger Fun and Bigger Smiles July 20-24, 2022

Need a dose of fun? Indulge in your favorite fair foods, experience the thrill of the carnival and take in live entertainment. Enjoy family fun starting Wednesday, July 20 when the fairground gates open at 11 a.m. and close at 11 p.m. daily (6 p.m. on Sunday). With more than 20 food vendors on the roster, fairgoers can expect the best in culinary creations with items like handdipped corn dogs, homemade ice cream, shaved ice, funnel cakes, huckleberry drinks, BBQ, Mexican- and Asian-inspired food and more. Make sure to visit the NEW food vendors Portable Pizza Palace, Corn Shack and The Corndog Company. Night shows on July 20, 21 and 22 will feature nationally recognized talent, T.I. with special guest Willie Jones, RUSELL DICKERSON with special guest Eddie Montgomery of Montgomery Gentry, and BRANTLEY GILBERT with special guest Ashland Craft. On the Silver Bullet Stage, swing by for nightly, live performances by local bands: Blue Belly Junction, Groove Wax, Band of Drifters, and Sam Platts and the Great Plainsmen. Shake Rattle and Roll – Scott Bruce will be on The Treasure State Stage as well.

Make sure you check out the commercial vendor booths along A gate road and in the Fair Market Building with the Fair Market Stage, where the Grand Illusions by the Blooms will be performing daily. With more than a hundred years of tradition, the Bozeman Roundup Ranch Rodeo will be held Saturday, July 23. Come back Sunday, July 24 for the Barnyard Brawl: Mutton Bustin’, the calf scramble and the chicken chase for kiddos. The fair will also feature several fun-filled activities in the Morrison-Maierle Pardners Corral: Freckle Farm petting zoo with pony rides; Reptile Adventures; Extreme Dogs; Great American Duck Races; Flying Fools High Dive Show; Dale K - Master Hypnotist; Chicago Dancing Honey Bear Dancers; competitive exhibits; workshops; blacksmithing demos and more.

Animals are the number one reason visitors come to the fair in the United States. This is the last place you can get up close and personal with your favorite goat or pig without living on your own farm. The First Security Bank Livestock Barns will be open all week and make sure to visit the Northwest Farm Credit Services Livestock Show Tent to see the animal show. Last but not least, don’t forget to head over to the motorsports area for Big Sky Ninja Roundup, The Mud bog and the Hill ‘N Hole, to name just a few. NEW this year is the Monster Truck Show on Sunday, July 24. Admission tickets and bundles go on sale May 27. For more information, visit or call 406-582-3270.

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may 2022


MBC Presents


Starring Principals and Soloists from New York City Ballet ONE NIGHT ONLY! FRIDAY, JUNE 3, 7 p.m. Montana Ballet Company (MBC) is delighted to announce CONNECTIONS 2022, proudly presenting Stars of American Ballet, starring principals and soloists from New York City Ballet. CONNECTIONS 2022 will be held one night only on Friday, June 3rd at 7 pm at the Willson Auditorium. Stars will perform a brilliant, evening-long program including iconic works by New York City Ballet co-founder George Balanchine, considered the most notable contemporary choreographer in the world of ballet. Montana Ballet Company Dancers will open the program. Founded by New York City Ballet Principal Dancer Daniel Ulbricht, Stars of American Ballet currently tours around the world performing, offering master classes, pre-performance lectures and community outreach programs. The mission of Stars of American Ballet is “to one day see all parts of this country entertained, educated, lifted up and inspired by the art of ballet and great dancing, delivered to anyone, anywhere who wishes to share this experience.” MBC Artistic and Executive Director, Elizabeth DeFanti, notes that decades ago MBC Founding Director, Ann Bates, created a program called NY Connection where artists from New York City Ballet worked with MBC both teaching and performing during the summer months. DeFanti debuted CONNECTIONS in 2019 to honor the NY Connection legacy and provide an opportunity for Montana Ballet and its valued audiences to “connect” with the national dance community. CONNECTIONS 2022 promises to captivate audiences once again with world-renowned dancers and choreography. For tickets contact the Montana Ballet Company at 406.582.8702 or online at All seating is reserved. Ticket prices range from $25 - $75.


may 2022

Make their happily ever aſter come true...

Princess Party Pals

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Every little girl can answer the question, “Who is your favorite princess?” Princess Party Pals is a children’s birthday party entertainment service where your favorite princess comes to life to make your little one’s special day extra magical. Princess Party Pals’ dazzling founder Jesi is a local esthetician at Just For You and a mom of two sweet girls, ages 2 and 5. With her contagious enthusiasm and positive energy she will have your guests enamored from start to finish. She loves to go all out for her daughters’ birthday parties, and is excited to bring this fun, unique service to the valley. If your little one would love to meet her favorite princess, host an enchanting party your little princess will remember forever. Whichever princess you select will arrive in her signature gown and have all the poise and personality of real-life royalty. Choose from a variety of party packages and entertain your guests with the perfect party from once upon a time to happily ever after. For more information, please visit

Girls' Stories Girls' Voices Share Your Story • Learn Dances • Write Poetry Find Your Voice • Practice Yoga • Make Friends!

July 25 - 29th Girls entering 6th - 8th grade Register today! 406.587.3840 •

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may 2022



Connections Program Bozeman Health’s mobile health unit, HealthCare Connections offers free health screenings, immunizations and services to adults across southwest Montana. Access to health care services remains a top need in southwest Montana. The program connects patients to community resources for immunizations, obesity, heart disease, stroke, diabetes, hypertension, cancer and social services. Additionally, the program currently offers Pfizer shots to those ages 12 and up (first, second and booster shots available) and Johnson and Johnson to those ages 18 and up (first and booster shots available). HealthCare Connections includes a collaborative, interdisciplinary health care team consisting of nurses, providers, pharmacists and public health officials. Their creative approach has resulted in more than 6,000 clients receiving access to health care and 24,000 free preventative screening services aiming to improve access. The program specifically focuses on health equity and providing services to high-risk populations. HealthCare Connections reaches people who might not otherwise receive preventative health care services. Fifty-two percent of clients in 2021 did not have a primary care provider, 46% of clients did not have health insurance, 35% reported needing medical attention and 17% of clients reported difficulties in accessing transportation. Survey results showed a 98% satisfaction rate with the HealthCare Connections program. The program creatively connects the work from the hospital, the health department and other social service providers to get clients access to health care services and other social support programs. For a schedule of upcoming locations, please check the website www. 54

may 2022


Montana Clean Energy Fair August 13, 2022 The Montana Clean Energy Fair is the goto event of the year for renewable energy education. It will feature a series of 45-minute workshops on topics including: renewable energy policy, solar electricity and solar heating, batteries and energy storage, financing and incentives, large-scale solar and wind, offgrid living and much more. The workshops are for those who are new to these topics, those with experience and everyone in between.


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The fair also features an electric car and bike show with cutting-edge vehicles. Local, Montana-based renewable energy businesses will be on hand to showcase their offerings and answer questions. For kids, activities include the ever-popular model solar car races, solar oven construction, a bouncy castle, face painting and more. Raffle prizes and a local solar home tour will round out the event. The Montana Clean Energy Fair will be held at the National Center for Appropriate Technology, 3040 Continental Dr. in Butte, on August 13 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. For more information, visit clean-energy-fair.

Comprehensive Therapy Services for Independence and Growth ✦ Occupational and Physical Therapy ✦ Speech and Language Therapy ✦ Breastfeeding and Nutrition Services A warm and comfortable environment serving: Infants, Children and Women 300 N Willson Ave Suite #2005, Bozeman


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may 2022


Dolly Parton’s

Imagination Library Coming soon to Park County Dolly Parton may be a national treasure for her singing and entertainment career, but she’s also paving a path for early childhood literacy through her book-gifting program, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library (DPIL).

Planning local trips and beyond. Let me help craft your next experience. Designed to save you time and money.

Greater Gallatin United Way, a local nonprofit, adopted the program in 2019 and since then has provided more than 40,000 free books to kids in Gallatin County. With their sights set on expanding the program to more counties across the state of Montana, Greater Gallatin United Way has acquired all the funding necessary to launch DPIL in Park County. The opening of the program is still in the works; you can visit for updated enrollment information. DPIL provides free, brand-new, high-quality, age-appropriate books to kids under the age of 5. Bozeman local Sierra Canfield has two kids in the program and said they are always excited when the Imagination Library books arrive in the mail. She explained that the books they receive are often different than titles their family would normally purchase. “We’ve really enjoyed getting the new books, and like the variety,” Canfield said.

Call or email to book today!

Christina Dear



may 2022

Reading to children on a regular basis can be a bonding time for parents and a special memory they’ll have when their kids are grown, but it’s also an important component of early childhood learning. In the same way that kids learn language skills before they can speak, they also learn literacy skills long before they are able to read. Ensuring that every child has an opportunity to be exposed to reading before their school career begins is a noble cause, but it’s also a critical one. Right now, 28% of elementary school students in Montana are falling behind

their peers in reading, according to the Smarter Balance Assessment. Jana Cashman, a current Kindergarten teacher and an educator for more than two decades said, “One of the most important things you can do for your child is read to them and speak to them.” Reading to young children, even babies, teaches them valuable behaviors and skills they’ll need when they enter school. Cashman said it’s important for early reading development that kids come to school already aware of how reading works. “Parents aren’t teaching kids who are only 18-months-old how to read but giving them foundational skills that they’ll need in order to learn how to read,” Cashman said. These foundational skills include knowing how to hold a book, which way the letters are right side up, that sentences go from left to right, and then down. Children who are read to at home have a much more developed vocabulary than kids who are not. Plus, the DPIL books are often hardback block books, which are better for small hands than paperback titles. These skills may sound small, but they drastically benefit a child’s preparedness in learning how to read. “If we don’t instill early literacy skills at the very early level, those kids will be behind from the start,” Cashman said. As Dolly Parton says, “You can never get enough books into the hands of enough children.” Check the Greater Gallatin United Way website for more updates on the program.

The Heart and Hand Center Summer Day Camps & Retreats

Horses, Hiking, Arts & Crafts, Yoga, Music, Meditation Are you and your kids maxed out with COVID19, anxiety about getting the virus, social distancing, isolation and masks? WE CAN HELP!


FESTIVAL of THE ARTS JULY 2, 3 & 4, 2022 Livingston Depot Center’s Festival of the Arts assembles over 100 skilled artists and craftspeople each year and attracts many thousands of enthusiasts. Held in Livingston’s Depot Rotary Park, this impressive collection of fine art and craft talent from around the entire Western region spans photography, painting, sculpture, woodworking, metal and blacksmithing, jewelry, furniture, glass, fiber arts, drawings and prints, ceramics and more.

Our summer day camps offer kids time to come to our beautiful mountaintop ranch where they will enjoy being with other kids in a safe environment as they learn more about themselves and how to have healthy relationships. Campers will enjoy playing games with horses, making arts & crafts together, making music together, hiking, relaxing with yoga & meditation and sharing their stories. Our well trained staff will help your kids learn to have more self-confidence, manage anxiety & depression, deal with anger in healthy ways, set appropriate boundaries, and plan for a bright and positive future as they come to understand their unique place in our crazy world more fully!

Join us at Heart & Hand Center Ranch just 15 miles East of Bozeman & let this be th BEST summer of your kid’s life and your life!


June 28-July 2: Kids’ Camp (ages 8-12) July 12-16: Teen Camp (ages 12-16) August 2-6: Back to School Camp (ages 10-14) — 2021 ADULT ZOOM RETREATS —

August 27-29: Adult Trauma Repair Retreat September 17-19: Adult Discover Your Life Purpose Learn more at: IG: heartandhandcentermt FB: heartandhandcenter Offices: 111 Grand, Suite 275 – Emerson Cultural Center in Bozeman Ranch: K-J Ranch, East of Bozeman 406.587.4036 Email:

For more information visit www.

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may 2022


@ montana parent




May 2022: Mental Health

December 2022: Winter Fun in Southwest Montana

Ads due 4/19-Prints 4/23 Addressing both parent issues and childhood issues

Don’t Fence Me in

Ads due 11/16-Prints 11/20 Ideas, events and activities to get your family enjoying winter fun both indoors and out

Southwest Montana Family Travel Guide Memorial Day-Labor Day Ads due 5/17-Prints 5/21 We write the book on family-friendly events, activities and recreation in southwest Montana

Ads due 12/5-Prints 12/10

January 2023: New Baby/Pregnancy

August 2022: Back to School

May 7, 2022

Ads due 12/19-Prints 12/23 The pregnancy journey and life with your baby during the first year

Ads due 7/20-Prints 7/24 Summers are short in Montana, we’ll help you get yourself and your family ready to get back to school ~ from kindergarten to college

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March 2023: Summer Camp & Activities

Recreation Fall/Winter Program Guide


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» 2022 Halloween Costume Swap » TBA

Spring/Summer Activity Guide insert

April 2023: Sports

November 2022: Holidays

Ads due 3/20-Prints 3/24 Sports are serious these days and we will help you navigate the channels of participation for your family in SW Montana.

Ads due 10/20-Prints 10/24 Previewing holiday events, activities and more

» 2022 Holiday Bazaar » TBA January 2021 |

october 2021 | march 2021 |

april 2021 |

May 2021 |


This iconic event has something for everyone; whether pushing through the 30K dash, scrambling through hills and trees with the 5K or 12K races or taking time to smell the wild roses in the noncompetitive 5K Dog Walk, all are invited to celebrate Helena’s local wild lands and our connection to them.

Ads due 2/20-Prints 2/24 Everything you need to know about camp and more ~ featuring our Summer Camp and Activity Guide

October 2022: Family Adventures/halloween


This race began 22 years ago as what started off as a small gathering aimed at growing support and excitement for local open space and is now a major recreation event for people of all ages.

Ads due 1/20-ONLINE 2/1 Preview summer camp options in SW MT and read a few of our favorite columns!

Ads due 8/20-online 10/1 All about children under 5: childcare, health, development, activities and more

Camp + Activities

IN-PERSON for the first time in two years, the Don’t Fence Me in Trail Run is back bigger and better than ever.

February 2023: summer camp preview online only

september 2022: Early Childhood ONLINE ONLY

february 2021 |

Trail Run

2023 Root’s Wellness Guide


september 2021 |


Camp + Activities


november 2021 |


After-School & PIR-Day

After-School & PIR-Day

and more...

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Stick around afterward for a party in the park with food, live music and family-friendly fun. Activities





Camp + Activities


december 2020 |


Winter family fun + holidays and more...

and more... SUMMER 2021

+ Activities

Pregnancy &


Sneak peek

May is

MENTAL HEALTH Awareness Month

early childhood all about children under 5

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Funds from the race support ongoing projects like the Mount Ascension and Mount Helena land acquisitions, South Hills trail maintenance and Tenmile Creek Park. It’s all about coming together, celebrating our unifying love of fresh air and just letting off some steam and running wild. Register now for the 30K, 12K, 5K races or the 5k dog walk ( DONTFENCEMEINTRAILRUN). Kids under 13 run for free!

Project Sunshine Celebration June 23, 2022 Florence Crittenton is delighted to announce the launch of a capital campaign named Project Sunshine to raise $4,500,000 to renovate the historic Cooney Property and transform it into a true campus for their programs serving young families in the Helena community and across the state of Montana. In December 2021, Florence Crittenton purchased the Cooney property with funding from the county through a Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) – CARES Act fund, as well as county ARPA funds and contributions from private individuals and foundations. Florence Crittenton has been working closely with Slate Architecture and engineering and construction firms in Helena to clearly define the scope of the renovation and ensure it meets the needs of the organization’s growing programs. Crittenton offers residential treatment programs for women and children, outpatient clinical services and home visiting programs for families, and early childhood education programs. Until now their programs have been operating in three different facilities across Helena, and the organization and the families they serve will greatly benefit from co-located services with this new campus. Throughout Florence Crittenton’s history, they have evolved time and time again to meet the changing needs of Montana’s parents and children. When they first set eyes on this property, they envisioned the next 120 years where hundreds of families would come to heal, learn and create new dreams of their own. This new campus will provide the appropriate space and amenities needed to serve more families when they need it most. This capital campaign is affectionately referred to as Project Sunshine. When Florence Crittenton’s leadership team first toured the facility, it was flooded with sunshine and fulfilled so many dreams for the organization whose goal is to provide healing and bright futures for families. For more information on this transformational project for the Helena community, visit www. Florence Crittenton’s Executive Director, Carrie Krepps, said, “This project has been one that at times has felt like divine intervention. The opportunity came at a time when we started to see an exponential rise in the need for these services in our community and across the state. We are so grateful for the public and private partners that have come along aside us to get us to this point. Now the real work begins! We are so excited for what the future holds for this property and our organization and look forward to working with the community to make this a campus for all families to heal, grow and build a bright future.” :: calendars, blog & more @ MTPARENT.COM ::

may 2022


New Column

Ask Flora

“Ask Flora,” where you can ask your parenting questions (about kids between ages 2 and 10), to Flora McCormick, Licensed Counselor and creator of the Sustainable Parenting Mentorship.


Question 1:

So, I was pretty sure my 5-year-old son was extremely well behaved because I’m super mom and I’ve got it all figured out (I’m joking, but I’m a pretty firm parent). Now I have a 10-month-old, and he is the total opposite and already more defiant than my 5-year-old has ever been. How do you START disciplining from a young age? Where do you begin, so you set up a good foundation? Alex K.


I appreciate your openness and honesty, Alex. I see this happen often in families (mine included!). When my second child was born, it made me realize that our children’s personalities can be so very different, strictly based on their inborn nature. It’s humbling, to say the least. The good news is that discipline can start at a very young age. In fact, the very word discipline means “to teach,” so of course we are teaching our children in so many ways, even when they are babies. Ten to 12 months is often the starting point of when our children begin being wonderful little scientists, with several lagging skills (see explanations below):

1. 60

As “little scientists,” our kids are constantly testing rules and boundaries to see what happens when they do. Also, they are

may 2022

experimenting with weight, sound, taste and touch in almost every way imaginable. That’s how their brains are primed to learn. The more we can see that they are exploring and experimenting, instead of being bad, we will respond to these challenges as teachable moments.


Having lagging skills means they have skills that are not-yetdeveloped. These skills include how to communicate their needs, how to manage their emotions and how to effectively have power and control in the world.

To help young children in both of these areas, we’ll want to establish kind and firm boundaries alongside strategies to redirect curiosities and build their lagging skills. What does this tangibly look like with a 1-year-old?

Distract and Redirect: The key is to focus on what he CAN do, instead of talking about what he can’t do. Examples: 1.

When your child wants to throw a harmful object, replace the item with pom-poms, a balloon or squishy ball, saying, “This is what we can throw.”


When he is stuck on something in the house he can’t have, redirect toward something he can play with. The more enthusiasm you show for the appropriate object/activity, the more likely he will follow. For example, when he wants to have the remote, say “Look at this cool shaker over here!” Instead of, “No. I told you, you can’t have the remote!”

Use Sign Language to help them communicate needs: “Help,” “More,”

“Please” and “All done” were the foundation signs we used with our kids between 8 and 18 months. When you notice your child trying to communicate something, give them the sign as a replacement for screaming or resisting. ( Help the child learn the sign by taking their hands and making the sign motion. [Image – “Understanding Calm” (Etsy)


My 9-year-old has been sassing, interrupting and pushing boundaries more and more. Especially with her stepdad (my husband). Hormones may or may not be involved, but the disrespect and tension continue to escalate. How do I begin to navigate this? -Ashley H.


Thank you for this question, Ashley. I know there are likely many readers who can relate. Our elementary-aged children, nearing the tween years, can have a lot of emotions and challenging experiences each day. These experiences can range from peer conflicts, social-media pressures, extracurricular team expectations and more. And all packed into a body that is just slightly passed early childhood. This is why I recommend getting curious, not furious. Another way to think of this idea is to connect before you correct. I wonder what ways your young daughter may be having a problem, rather than trying to be a problem, when she appears to be acting rudely. It’s counterintuitive to see back-talk or ignoring as a sign that there is hurt under the surface. However, when you do strive to listen and be curious, you often find the key to more cooperation and solutions.

Use “When… Then…” statements as often as possible. » This is a very effective way to help your little scientist to learn cause and effect.

When she is seeming distant, snappy or rude, try to start your response with, “I notice... (you seem upset)... Tell me about that.” This often leads the interaction into one of vulnerability, to uncover the hurt or upset that is likely underneath her rude behavior. And after some connection, you can move into correction.

» “When you have your shoes on, then we get to go to the park.”

» “When you get in the stroller, then you can have your snack on our walk home.”

» “When you use a calm voice, then I’m happy to

Flora McCormick, LCPC is a parenting coach of over 10 years, who supports to families in Bozeman and across the country. Learn more in her FREE Facebook community: Sustainable Parenting, or on Instagram: Sustainable_Parent_Coach. Questions for the next issue can be submitted to

help you.”

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

may 2022





Four Tickets to CONNECTIONS 2022,


Stars of American Ballet



How to enter:

Look for this post on the Montana Parent Facebook page starting May 1.

1. Like the post and Tag one friend 2. Follow @MontanaParentMagazine on

Facebook (if you don't already!) 3. Follow @montanaballetco on Facebook too!

Montana Ballet Company is delighted to announce CONNECTIONS 2022, presenting Stars of American Ballet on June 3 at 7 p.m. Stars will perform a brilliant, evening-long program including iconic works by New York City Ballet Co-Founder George Balanchine, considered the most notable contemporary choreographer in the world of ballet. Montana Ballet Company Dancers will open the program.

Enter for a chance to win Four Tickets ($260value)!

Other info:

Winner will be chosen at random and announced May 16. Must be 18 years of age to enter.

Photo: Stars of American Ballet in George Balanchine’s Who Cares? 62

may 2022

Photo: Stars of American Ballet in George Balanchine’s Apollo

For more information about Montana Ballet Company, visit:

Photo: Stars of American Ballet in George Balanchine’s Diamonds


Since the early pioneers first made their way west, Montana has earned a reputation for producing first-quality wheat and grains packed with nutrients and bursting with flavor. That’s why we established Wheat Montana here years ago, and we’re glad to share Montana’s natural goodness with friends and neighbors like you.

:: calendars, & more @ MTPARENT.COM WHEATMONTANA.COM • 800-535-2798 • blog • Montana Born &::Bread

may 2022


Here from the start. Bozeman Health Pediatrics

A lifetime of healthy choices starts with the ones you make today. Bozeman 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.

Call today to schedule a same-day appointment!

Belgrade + Bozeman


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