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Big Sky

Big Sky’s Locally Owned & Published Newspaper

November 12, 2010 Volume 1 // Issue #2

GNFAC’s Annual Powderblast Featured Photographer: Pat Clayton Thunderblades Heat Up The Ice

Photo by Pat Clayton

Fall Fishing in Montana

Big Sky

Big Sky Weekly


November 12, 2010 Volume 1, Issue 2 On November 8th and 9th Big Sky Resort got nearly a foot of snow, and the forecast says it will keep coming down all week! We’re also blowing snow and getting ready to open Thanksgiving day... ski season here we come!


Thanks, Greer


Greer Schott

Public Relations and Special Events Coordinator | Big Sky Resort

ASSISTANT EDITOR Abigail Digel VIDEOGRAPHER Brian Niles CONTRIBUTING WRITERS & PHOTOGRAPHERS Yogesh Simpson, Ryan Hamilton, Kim Ibes, Katie Feris, Bill Buchbauer, Hunter Rothwell, Pat Clayton Editorial Policy Outlaw Partners LLC is the sole owner of The Big Sky Weekly. No part of this publication may be reprinted without written permission from the publisher. The Big Sky Weekly reserves the right to edit all submitted material for content, corrections or length. Printed material reflects the opinion of the author and is not necessarily the opinion of Outlaw Partners or the editors of this publication. No advertisements, columns, letters to the editor or other information will be published that contain discrimination based on sex, age, race, religion, creed, nationality, sexual preference, or are in bad taste. Paper Distribution Distributed every other Friday in towns across Southwest Montana, including Big Sky, Bozeman, West Yellowstone, Three Forks and Livingston. Corrections The Big Sky Weekly runs corrections to errors. Please report them to OUTLAW PARTNERS & THE BIG SKY WEEKLY P.O. Box 160250 Big Sky, MT 59716 (406) 995-2055 © 2010 The Big Sky Weekly Unauthorized reproduction prohibited

2 November 12, 2010

Photo by Eric Ross

Congrats Congratulations, Outlaw Partners, for a fine first issue of the Big Sky Weekly. Your coverage of timely material and interesting side stories made for a good read, as did the wonderfully clear print, font, style and layout of the paper. For an over 50 Montanan, it was easy

to read even without my glasses! I especially enjoyed your two features on “Etymology” and “Business Profile of the Week.” I also liked the advertisements on one page. They came through loud and clear. As a long time resident of Gardiner and a frequent visitor to Big Sky, having

a real asset in enjoyment and business focus. I look forward to many more interesting and informative articles by your staff and guest writers. Mauray Miller Gardiner, MT

a newspaper that covers the whole southwestern part of Montana will be

Letter to the Editor Parameters We print letters to the editor. This is a platform for readers to express views and share ways they would like to effect change. The Weekly will run letters of 250 words or less that are respectful, ethical, state accurate facts

and figures, and are proofread for grammar and content. We reserve the right to edit letters. Letters should include: first and last name, address, phone number and title. State

your position clearly on one issue, elaborate on the issue with supporting evidence, and recommend action for a unique resolution. Send letter to:

Big Sky Weekly

local scene Allegiant Air Adds New NonStop Flight for Winter Season

Montana Files Suit with Online Travel Companies

In addition to recently added daily direct flights from San Francisco and Los Angeles through United Airlines, Allegiant Air will offer a direct flight from Bozeman to Phoenix-Mesa beginning November 12, 2010.

On November 8, the State of Montana’s Department of Revenue sued more than a dozen online travel companies in the state district court in Helena. The state’s allegation is that these companies collect taxes calculated from retail hotel room rates, but only pay the state taxes on wholesale rates. The Department of Revenue says the industry is dealing with similar lawsuits in other states.

The new flights will operate twice weekly between Gallatin Field Airport (BZN) and Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport (IWA), with service Monday and Friday. Flights leaving PhoenixMesa depart at 2:40 p.m. and arrive in Bozeman at 4:50 p.m. Flights depart Bozeman at 5:30 p.m., arriving in Phoenix at 7:55 p.m. Allegiant Air also offers twice weekly nonstop service from Bozeman to Las Vegas.

YOUTH HOCKEY MONTANA THUNDERBLADES STARTS THE SEASON STRONG Last season, the Montana Thunderblades were National Champions in the 2010 Tier II USA under-16 hockey league. They are off to a strong start for 2010/11, with a double win against the Wyoming Ice Cats in Cody, Wyoming on October 30 and 31. This past week, the Montana Thunderblades traveled to Chicago for the Bauer International Invitational. They competed with 40 other Midget Minor U16 AAA teams. Luke Bing of Big Sky was the leader in points for his team in the tournament. The Thunderblades went home with 1 win, 1 tie, and 2 losses. Game 1: Montana Thunderblades vs. New Jersey Avalanche Amer (NJ) 1-2 Game 2: Montana Thunderblades vs. Indiana Junior Ice (IN) 2-5 Game 3: Montana Thunderblades vs. Houston Wild (TX) 4-2 Game 4: Montana Thunderblades vs. Grand Rapids Griffins (MI) 1-1 The team will be traveling to Colorado for the Littleton Tournament at the end of November.

This past summer, Governor Brian Schweitzer publicly addressed leaders of Travelocity over this issue. Montana revenue director Dan Bucks told in Great Falls that this lawsuit follows additional meetings with the companies—which include Expedia, Travelocity, Priceline and Orbitz. Bucks also told KRTV that if Montana wins this lawsuit, it could bring millions back to the state. Matt Gouras with the AP writes that “the state wants to get the taxes it is owed, make sure that the industry pays its share of taxes like others, even the playing field for other hotels and others that book directly with the consumers, and eliminate a ‘tax scheme’ that shortchanges the state.” The travel industry holds that lodging tax should be charged only to hotel operators. They claim the difference would only amount to an additional $100,000 for Montana. Andrew Weinstein, spokesman

for Interactive Travel Services Association, told the AP that Montana is wrong on the facts and the law, and that the state is wasting resources by suing an industry that brings tourists.

Big Sky Community Park Construction Underway After years of planning and fundraising, the Big Sky Community Corporation (BSCC) broke ground on the Community Park project this September. The Park quickly started to change form, with fences, trees, bleachers, skate ramp, and the storage building all relocated within a week. Project Manager from Langlas and Associates, Eric Baker, says, “The great weather during the month of October has really helped in keeping the progress of the park on track. With a couple more weeks of decent weather predicted for the first part of November, we should be able to achieve our goals for this fall and be ready to hit the ground running in the spring when the snow clears.” The current construction encompasses the necessary groundwork for the project. Excavation, water, sewer, and irrigation are not the most glamorous parts of park construction, but they are essential for a well-built foundation. The excavation to date has given the two ball fields, multi-use field, stage area and parking lot a general shape. The water system has been installed and passed the pressure test without a hitch, including the addition of a fire hydrant. The Park Project will increase recreational facilities and improve the quality of the current land – as most softball and Little League players will attest, the original field had soft spots, mud holes and uneven surfaces which were dangers to the players. The runoff from the hillside above was a yearly battle with erosion. Langlas and Associates addressed these drainage issues with

a well-engineered plan, which will improve the quality of the fields, and also diminish the environmental impact to the stream below. While activities have been limited due to construction, the BSCC has tried to keep as much of the park available as possible. The Disc Golf Course was modified, but playable, and the playground has remained busy throughout the project. This winter the Community Park will also continue to have the cross-country ski trail “dog loop.” “We are working closely with the BSCC and their contractors to establish a suitable loop that will allow for a groomed ski trail at the park this winter,” says Herb Davis from Lone Mountain Ranch “We are excited about the possibilities for a new loop when the construction is done.” The Community Park Trail expansion is also underway, which will provide an additional multi-use trail for the winter. If construction proceeds on schedule, the park will be up and by July. “A lot of the work ahead of us requires a degree of patience and finesse, so, we’ll keep our fingers crossed for some cooperative weather conditions this spring,” says Trever McSpadden, a representative from Morrison Maierle and BSCC Board Member. The BSCC, a 501(c)3 non-profit, has raised enough money for this major ground work. Additional funding is still needed to complete necessary components, including sod for the fields, landscaping and construction of a trash enclosure, basketball courts, a plaza, a stage and an updated skate park. For questions or donations, please contact Community Park Project executive director, Katie Morrison, at or 993-2112.

Calling all Big Sky Ice Skaters, Hockey Players and Broomball Players You’ve waited a long time for a hockey rink in Big Sky, and now is your chance to help make it happen. The Big Sky Skating and Hockey Association, Inc. (BSSHA) has made great progress over the past year to obtain the permits, build the site and install the necessary infrastructure for the rink, but it needs your help for the final components of the rink. BSSHA has received over $5,000 of donation commitments, a terrific

November 12, 2010 3

Big Sky Weekly

This is how Big Sky gets into hot water.

jump-start on to the needed $40,000+ for lights and equipment to maintain the ice. Donations have come from all over and include cash, professional services, pre-owned wooden boards and a warming hut. “With your help, we’ll be skating, shooting and scoring this winter,” says Ryan Hamilton, BSSHA manager. “Many thanks to all of you who have already supported the BSSHA!” For information about the capital needs for lights and other equipment necessary to build a rink and hockey and public skating program, contact Ryan Hamilton at ryan@bigskytowncenter. com or Brian Dolan at 406-993-5450

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All Saints in Big Sky welcomes community members to attend a Remembrance Day service honoring those who have served our country in all branches of our armed forces here or abroad. The event will be Sunday, November 14 at 9:30 a.m. at the Big Sky Chapel. All Saints asks service men and women to arrive at 9 a.m. to participate in the procession of the flags.

32,000 acres just over the border NELSON BRITISH COLUMBIA

Major General Barbara Fast will deliver the message. Major General Fast spent 29 years in commissioned service at home and internationally. A graduate of the Military Intelligence Officer Basic and Advanced Courses, the Armed Forces Staff College and the US Army War College, the Major General’s many awards and decorations include the Defense Superior Service Medal with one Oak Leaf Cluster, the Legion of Merit and the Bronze Star Medal. A social time will follow the service.

B A L D FA C E . N E T I N F O @ B A L D FA C E . N E T 250-352-0006

4 November 12, 2010

Faith and Freedom All Saints in Big Sky host a celebration honoring military members and veterans

Big Sky Ski Education Foundation Turkey Trot Thursday, November 25, Big Sky Bring a canned good for the Gallatin Valley Food Bank Registration at Gallatin Alpine Sports 8 a.m. to 8:45 a.m.

• • • • •

Prizes for wackiest costume . 5K begins at 9 a.m. Kids fun run begins at 10 a.m. 5K ($10 entry fee) 1K Fun run (no charge)

For additional information closer to the race, please visit:

Big Sky Rotary Club Holiday Project The Rotary Club of Big Sky will be sponsoring the Holiday Giving Tree this year. As in the past, the tree will be in the Post Office entrance. On the tree will be Angels with suggested gifts for some members of the community. Please take an Angel and return the unwrapped gift to either American Bank or First Security Bank by December 1.

the word from Big Sky Resort Big Sky Resort Snowsports School is offering the Master the Mountain program again this year. The ski program, in its 14th season, is designed to focus on skiing powder, moguls, glades and ungroomed terrain. The six-week program was designed for Big Sky residents and folks spending extended time in the area. Discounted prices are available for the complete packages if purchased on or before December 24, 2010. Big Sky Resort will host a military appreciation weekend December 17-19, offering free skiing for active, reserve and retired military personnel as well as deals on lodging. Half price skiing will be available for military members’ immediate families. This program is in its ninth year, and also provides discounts on rentals and snowsports school instruction. “This is Big Sky’s way of saying ‘thanks’ to all the men and women and in the armed forces,” says Meg O’Leary, director of sales and marketing for Big Sky. Military officials should present ID to ticket sales to collect their free lift tickets. The Resort is committed to supporting students and educators, especially within Montana. Big Sky offers discounts and programs to local schools, including free season passes for Ophir students, discounted passes for Lone Peak High School students, as well as discounted passes for local teachers. For students in the Bozeman

Big Sky Weekly

school district, Project Excel is a Big Sky program that will provide a free Frequent Sky Card to kids with a high GPA who have completed at least 10 hours of community service over the last semester. Students can apply for this card at school. “We want to encourage these kids to work hard so they can play hard,” says Big Sky general manager Taylor Middleton. The Junior Has A Fit Program works with the above opportunities, giving skiers and riders ages 2-14 access to inexpensive, quality ski and snowboard gear that can be exchanged for credit toward a new set-up the following year. Big Sky will also host the fourth annual Educator Appreciation Weekend December 10-12. All employees working in the education field at any level with proof of employment can ski for free skiing, if staying in the Huntley Lodge for a discounted $125 rate. Half price skiing will available for family members. Educators should show

ID or a pay stub to ticket sales with a room portfolio and collect a free lift ticket. Educators not staying with Big Sky Resort will receive a discounted ticket rate.

The Nutcracker in Bozeman WHAT: Montana Ballet Company’s (MBC) 27th annual presentation of The Nutcracker, set to Tchaikovsky’s beloved score. Generously sponsored by Tim and Mary Barnard. WHEN: Saturday, December 4 at 7:30 p.m., and Sunday, December 5 at 2:00 p.m. WHERE: The Willson Auditorium in Bozeman. All seating is reserved. *On Saturday, December 4th at 10:30 AM, there will be a dress rehearsal that is free of charge to all children ages 12 and under. Tickets for those over 12 are $10 and will be sold at the door on a first-come, first-serve basis for general seating.

WHO: MBC, a local non-profit arts organization under the direction of Elizabeth DeFanti and Amy Lynn Stoddart, welcomes back Principal Guest Artists Nicole Trerise-White as the Sugar Plum Fairy and Ethan White as her Cavalier. Soren Kisiel, director of Broad Comedy, will again dance the role of Drosselmeyer. In addition to over 50 talented local dancers, this year’s production will also feature professional dancers Tobi Brokke and Kaci Westlake. The Bozeman Symphony Orchestra will provide live musical accompaniment, conducted by guest artist, Maestro Kyle Pickett, Music Director of Juneau and North State symphonies. MBC’s 27th annual production of The Nutcracker promises to be dazzling! HOW: For tickets contact the Bozeman Symphony at (406) 585-9774 or online at All seating is reserved. Tickets prices are: $45/$35/$23/$15. There will be a $2.00 service fee added for “day of show” sales.

SELLERS Wanted BUYER102 - LOOKING FOR SKIIN SKI-OUT DIAMOND HITCH HOME. Older couple from Florida, who have come to Big Sky multiple times and are looking for a family vacation home at a great price

BUYER304 - BUYER LOOKING FOR GLACIER / YELLOWSTONE / SILVERBOW CONDO. 2 couples, one from Wisconsin now have a Son and Daughter-in law in the area and they want a place to get together in Big Sky another from SD looking to relocate to Big Sky BUYER106 - BUYER LOOKING FOR TAMARACK CONDO (preferable not on Ousel Falls Rd). Couple relocating to Big Sky looking to settle down and get out of the rental market. BUYER003 – BUYER LOOKING FOR 3 TO 4 BEDROOM HOME IN MEADOW, CANYON, GATEWAY. Couple from Bozeman looking to be closer to Big Sky, qualified and ready to buy.

BUYER146- BUYER LOOKING FOR MEADOW SWEETGRASS HOME. Couple that currently owns a condo in Big Sky and is looking for a larger property.

BUYER222 - BUYER LOOKING FOR INCOME PRODUCING 2 BEDROOM CONDO multiple cash investors if you’re seeing good occupancy with your units. We also represent sellers who would like to trade out of the following properties: • • • • •

Mrs. Big Sky 2011 Contest The Mrs. Montana Pageant is seeking applicants for the title of Mrs. Big Sky. “Once selected, the lucky lady will advance to represent her community in the 2011 Mrs. Montana Pageant,” says Sheree Channel, executive director of the pageant. The event will be February 5, 2011 at the Petro Theater in Billings. Local titleholders will compete to win an $8000 prize package, including an allexpenses paid trip to the national Mrs. America Pageant. Applicants must be at least 18 years old (no age limit), married at the time of competition and a Montana resident; no performing talent required. In its 35th year, the Mrs. America Pageant is the only nationally televised pageant dedicated to recognizing married women.

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November 12, 2010 5


[ West Yellowstone, MT ]

Big Sky Weekly

Get First Tracks at the Yellowstone Ski Festival The Yellowstone Ski Festival is all about first tracks. “Whether ‘first tracks’ truly means just the corduroy and you, it’s your first time on skis this season, or it’s your first time on skis period, we invite you to the Yellowstone Ski Festival,” says festival director Sara Hoovler. Since 1978, ski teams and clubs from across the U.S. have gathered annually in West Yellowstone during Thanksgiving week. Regional skiers travel from Colorado to Washington and spend their holiday on the Rendezvous Ski Trails.

Most evening programs are free. Trail pass are $10/one-day, $25/threeday $45/month of November. These include access to the On-Snow Demo.

“On-snow training is the keystone to the Yellowstone Ski Festival,” says Hoovler. Open to skiers of all levels including beginners, the festival has never been canceled due to low snow. Presented by the West Yellowstone Chamber of Commerce and now sponsored by the Holiday Inn, this year’s festival lineup includes clinics for all abilities, an on-snow demo, an indoor gear expo, evening presentations and a Thanksgiving buffet dinner. Keynote speaker this year will be Bozeman author and athlete, Kevin Michael Connolly. “The one-day lesson was the most fun I have ever had on skis,” said local skier Gayle Gavagan. “I learned so much and would definitely do it again.” Gavagan was a Nordic ski clinic participant in 2009.

For parents, the Montana Outdoor Science School will offer daily kids’ programs that coincide with ski clinic schedules. There will also be a free adaptive cross-country clinic the four days before the Festival (November 19-22.) New this year for West Yellowstone, the USSA SuperTour Sprint Showdown is scheduled for Wednesday, November 24. Racers choose to ski one discipline or both in a back-to-back interval start sprint. Big guns Holly Brooks, Chris Cook, Brian Gregg and Bryan Cook are guests for 2010. All were ranked in the top 4 in overall USSA SuperTour points at the end of last season. The Junior National

Nordic clinics range from $90 for one day to $375 for three days. Race entry is $35 for a SuperTour race, $20 for Biathlon and $15 for junior race. The indoor expo, keynote speech and s’more roasting are free. The try-biathlon clinic is popular and free of charge. It is a great way to introduce biathlon, experience shooting, and learn the ropes in a non-competitive setting. Kid programs: K-2: $40/half-day. 3rd-6th grade: $75/full-day. The Yellowstone Ski Festival will sponsor one spot for each session. On a regular sheet of paper, draw what winter and skiing mean to you. Drop off at the West Yellowstone Chamber or mail to P.O. Box 458, West Yellowstone, MT 59758. Winners will be announced Nov 15.

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[ www . yellowst oneskif esti v al.or g ]

Big Sky Weekly

Biathlon Team and representatives from all the major cross-country ski companies also plan to attend the 2010 Yellowstone Ski Festival. Yellowstone Track Systems only needs four inches of snow to transform the Rendezvous trails into a nordic playground. The South Plateau, just outside West Yellowstone, is significantly higher in elevation. In low snow years, part or all of the Ski Festival has been relocated there.


WE’RE COMMITTED TO HELPING YOU MOVE IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. Sisu Skiers presents the West Yellowstone Kuzzy Kids Camp! Join CXC skier and 2010 US Olympian Garrott Kuzzy for an afternoon of skiing, ski games, and fun relays at the 2010 West Yellowstone Ski Festival. This free, low-key, fun event will be held from 3:00-4:30pm in the Biathlon Stadium on the Rendezvous Ski Trails on Saturday, November 27. It will be an opportunity for youth skiers ages 6 – 12 from around the country to get together and play on skis. Can’t wait to see you there!

At First Security Bank, we know that you have individual goals, and our products and services are designed to help you reach them – faster. And, with a friendly staff of experts always willing to lend a hand, you’ll never feel like you’re alone in the wilderness. Stop by the branch in Meadow Village or call us for more information.

Contact Mike Nightengale with Sisu Skiers: to learn more.

(406) 993-3350 Member FDIC

Southwest Montana’s Snow and Avalanche Community is Strong By Brandy Ladd

International Snow and Science Workshop Snow scientists and avalanche practitioners gathered this October at Squaw Valley, California for the nineteenth International Snow and Science Workshop. Every two years, this conference is held in a different location in North American, and focuses on “merging theory and practice.” ISSW provides a venue which allows regular exchange of ideas throughout the avalanche community. Until the 1950s, no formal exchange of snow and avalanche information was available. The increasing number of winter recreationalists and economic users throughout North American mountain ranges spurred the need for an organized and regular forum to increase safe practices. In 1976, Canada held the first ISSW, with 120 participants from four countries and 35 presentation papers. In 2010, the ISSW hosted over 900 participants from more than 20 coun-

tries, presenting 105 papers. “Participation continues to grow, as does the number and variety of presentations,” says Randy Spence, Moonlight Basin ski patrol director. “This stresses the importance of interaction and exchange between practitioners and researchers.” 2010 presentations covered snow stability tests, snowpack modeling, instrumentation and measurement, avalanche eduction, forecasting, risk management and case studies. Snow and avalanche professionals from Southwest Montana presented informative lectures covering a range of topics. Daniel Miller from Montana State University presented a paper on explosive airblast implications. From the Forest Service National Avalanche Center, Karl Birkeland discussed effects of changing slope angles on extended column tests. Doug Chabot, representing the Gallatin National Avalanche Center

(GNFAC), explained several case studies on recent Montana events such as the Saddle Peak avalanche. “We are fortunate to have an excellent concentration of people who are interested in working in the both practical and research fields of the snow community,” said Karl Birkeland. “The nature of the industry drives the population to work well with one another.”

Powderblast Closer to home, the Southwest Montana snow and avalanche community is also connected. “The GNFAC uses public backcountry observations in combination with our own field work, to create a focused and structured avalanche advisory,” says avalanche forecaster Eric Knoff. This October, the Avalanche Center held the 12th annual Powderblast, a party and fundraiser. Over 200 people attended the event this at

the Emerson. The evening included a locally grown meal prepared by Bountiful Table Catering, a silent auction and music from Holler N’ Pine. In all, it raised over $10,000 for the Avalanche Center. “The level of community support is amazing. Some folks have been to every Powderblast,” says Jay Pape, who is with Friends of the GNFAC. “They come out year after year to kick off the season. It’s THE best party of the year.” All funds raised support the Avalanche Center in the form of weather stations, communications and computer equipment and web hosting. This year, the GNFAC installed a new weather station in Hyalite. Data from that station is “crucial to providing good avalanche advisories for that area,” says Doug Chabot, Avalanche Center director.

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Big Sky Weekly


Fall Fly Fishing in Montana By Bill Buchbauer

This time of year you may be chasing deer and elk up in the hills, or drinking away the days until ski season arrives in the bar. What many fail to realize is that amazing fishing opportunities exist in Montana during October and November. Beautiful crisp mornings combined with clear cool water conditions and brilliantly colored vegetation make fall fishing my favorite season to chase large brown trout. Guide boats filled with summer tourists are long gone, and I find peace and solitude on the water.

Focusing on side channels and getting out of the boat for some wade fishing also offers opportunities to catch big browns: they look for slow to medium speed riffles and runs below and over gravel bars. Fishing right over spawning beds is frowned upon. Anglers should be wary not to step on the lightly colored deposits in the gravel known as reds. Fishing just behind obvious reds in the deeper water however, often produces fish that are staging for spawning and feeding on the eggs from the spawning fish.

During their fall spawn, brown trout turn beautiful colors to match the landscape. These large fish also become more aggressive and move out of reservoirs and into smaller streams and side channels on larger rivers. The shift in location makes the big browns more available to fly fisherman. Fall fishing for big browns is a lot like hunting. To succeed, you must first find the right water, then locate the fish and finally, present your flies properly.

The browns exhibit an aggressive territorial response this time of year and often chase streamers, especially on cloudy days. Small baitfish such as sculpins and crawfish steal eggs from the reds and provoke attacks from the big browns. Egg patterns fished right

Fall is also great time to explore sections of rivers that are too warm to fish during the summer and too high and muddy in the spring. With cooling water temps that drop into the low fifties, rivers like the lower Madison, Jefferson and Missouri can come to life and give anglers a chance at truly large fish. Fishing sections of rivers above lakes and reservoirs in the fall is also a good bet. Large fish living in the still water will journey into the rivers to spawn and feed. 8 November 12, 2010

on the bottom can be very effective this time of year. Small mayfly nymphs and midges will also take fish if presented properly. Fish will concentrate in the same places year after year. Finding these hot spots is part of the challenge and discovery of fall fishing here in Montana. Chances are, no one will tell you about their secret spot. Once you’ve located a run, it’s worth spending time staging fish. First, try swinging a streamer through the run such as a Zonker, a JJ Special or your favorite bugger. Often this method will attract the most aggressive fish. Next, try dead drifting a San Juan or an egg pattern with a small nymph dropper such as a Copper John or Lightening Bug under an indicator. Use plenty of weight placed four or five inches above the egg

pattern to get the fly down on the bottom. In the cold water, sometimes fish will not move very far to take the fly. It’s important that the fly is right on the bottom and moving slowly with a drag-free drift. Don’t give up after just a few casts. Often a fish will suddenly take, even after multiple presentations. Takes can be very subtle, so set the hook on any hesitation of the indicator. Strong tippets and heavy gauge hooks may be necessary for landing a big, hard fighting fall brownie. Fall fishing is a great way to pass the time until the ski lifts open. Take advantage of the nice weather and beautiful scenery, and head out to the river. You’ll probably be the only one around, and you just might hook into that fish of a lifetime.

Big Sky Weekly

bozeman ski swap

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Big Sky Weekly

from the early years

By Ryan Hamilton

The Simkins family remains committed to the Big Sky Town Center Bob and his father Glen Simkins started a lumberyard in West Yellowstone in 1945, and another in Bozeman in 1950. Over this time, Bob became familiar with the beautiful Gallatin River canyon and the northwest corner of Yellowstone Park. For decades, thousands of tourists had passed through this area on the way to Yellowstone. They departed the train in Gallatin Gateway and passed through the mountains, seldom stopping. Due to the slow pace of transportation, a handful of dude ranches and lodges established themselves throughout the canyon. In 1970, NBC newscaster Chet Huntley realized this area could be a destination itself. The magnificent Lone Peak would make a dramatic backdrop for a ski hill, and the surrounding private land had potential to become a world-class resort. Huntley, a Cardwell, Montana native, announced his dream and embarked on his project. Simkins, a savvy businessman, thought it wise to buy land near Huntley’s proposed resort. He approached the owners of the 3,680acre Sappington Ranch. They were willing to part with the property but needed replacement land for their livestock. Through a complicated series of negotiations and trades, Simkins secured replacement land for the Sappington ranch, found a financial partner, and acquired nearly six square miles of land in the area that would become the Big Sky Meadow. The deal was inked on the hood of a truck in the middle of a Montana snowstorm, and the signatures on the original deed are smeared and barely legible. That spring, Simkins and his partner made a trip to Big Sky. They stood at the edge of their land, barred by a chain across the dirt road (now Lone Mountain Trail) and winter conditions. As they surveyed what they could see of the property, Gallatin National Forest district ranger Ross MacPherson happened along. MacPherson was on a snowmobile mission that day to “see if there’s a decent ski hill” on

The Simkins start a lumberyard in West Yellowstone



NBC Newscaster Chet Huntley proposes resort, Bob Simkins forms partnership and purchase 6 sq. miles of land near proposed resort

10 November 12, 2010

Andesite Mountain. He opened the gate and offered the partners a ride deeper into the ranch. The two were dressed in gabardine slacks and wingtips, so politely declined the offer. Later that day, MacPherson made what may have been the first ever ski run down Andesite Mountain. He reported back to the Forest Service that he thought it would “work as a ski hill.” Andesite is now an integral part of Big Sky Resort. Big Sky Resort opened for business in fall of 1973 under the direction of Huntley, and after Huntley’s death in 1974 the resort was sold to Boyne USA. As Big Sky grew, small housing developments, condominiums and shops were built in two distinct areas: the Mountain Village centered on the ski resort, while the Meadow Village centered on a golf course. Over the next two decades, the Simkins family used their property for weekend adventures. When Simkins passed away in 1993, he left his family a thriving lumber business, various land holdings, and his dream of making a difference in the Big Sky area. In 1995, the partnership began thinking about development. Their vision was to give Big Sky a central core for shopping, dining and housing that could act as a nucleus for the community. Unlike traditional resort towns, Big

Big Sky Resort opens Simkins passes away, for business leaves family legacy

1973 1974


Resort sold to Boyne after Huntley’s death

1995 Partnership begins town planning

2003present Partnership dissolves, Simkins family continue to develop Town Center and community

Big Sky Weekly Sky was still a scattered group of houses, condos and small commercial developments. During the Town Center planning process, the partnership also pursued housing development projects. But by 2003, it was clear the Town Center would require complete devotion and effort. The partnership initially created to purchase the ranch land back in 1970 dissolved, leaving the future of the Town Center in the Simkins’ hands. Since that time, Big Sky’s Town Center project has steadily moved forward. Building a town center is a monumental project though, and it will take years to complete. The Simkins have let market forces dictate the pace of development. Today, the Simkins still ski at Big Sky most winter weekends. Jean, the family matriarch, gave up skiing several years ago in her late seven-

ties. She still stays abreast of the family business in both the lumberyard and the Town Center. Bill Simkins, 59, still skis 40 days a year, but the Town Center is his full time job. His older brother, Tom, 62, is also an avid skier and devotes his workweek to the lumber business. Their younger brother, Mitch shares the responsibility of running the lumber yard. Sister Jan is an avid skier and also weighs in on the Town Center development. The family feels it is important to be a part of the community. Tom was an active participant in drafting and implementing the Gallatin Canyon/ Big Sky zoning regulations, a five year process that included countless public meetings. Bill has served on the Big Sky Zoning Advisory Board for several years. Recently, the Simkins donated $20,000 and some materials for construction of the Spur Road Trail.

They’ve given land to the Morningstar Learning Center, a preschool/ daycare. This spring they built Center Stage and Town Center Park, which held the Arts Council’s popular Music in the Mountains free summer concert series and the Big Sky Farmers Market. They recently established the Big Sky Skating and Hockey Association. The Simkins believe these amenities, community

services and events will help transform Big Sky from an isolated ski resort to a sustainable, livable, world class resort community. Ryan Hamilton is the project manager of the Big Sky Town Center. For more information, visit

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Big Sky Weekly

health & wellness

Seasonal Influenza and the “Flu Shot” By Katie Feris, R.N. B.S.N. Cold and flu season is upon us. Influenza, aka the flu, is a contagious respiratory illness caused by influenza viruses. The flu causes unpleasant—if not torturous— symptoms like fever, chills, runny or stuffy nose, headache, body aches, cough, sore throat, fatigue vomiting and diarrhea. The illness can range from mild to severe to death. Young children, older people and people with special health condition are at high risk for serious flu complications. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the United States, five to 20 percent of the population gets the flu each year, and over 200,000 are hospitalized by flu-related symptoms. The flu is commonly spread by droplets that come out of human mouths or noses when they sneeze, cough or talk. These droplets land in the mouths or noses of unsuspecting victims. Another mode of transmission is when a person touches an object or surface that has a deposit of flu virus on it and then puts his hands in his nose, mouth or eyes. The CDC has suggests three steps to protect yourself and others against the flu.


Take time to get a flu vaccine

2010-2011 flu vaccine protects against influenza A, influenza B and H1N1.

Everyone six months age and older should get vaccinated.

People at high risk of serious flu complications include young children, pregnant women, people with chronic health conditions like asthma, diabetes or heart and lung disease, and people 65 years and older.

Caregivers are at high risk, including those who care for children less than six months old.


Take preventative action to stop the spread of germs

Wash you hands with soap and water and use alcohol-based hand sanitizers.

Cover you mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.

Don’t put your hand in your nose, mouth or eyes.

Avoid close contact with sick people.

If you are sick with flu-like symptoms, the CDC recommends you stay home for at least 24 hours after your fever is gone, except to get necessary medical care.

If you are sick, limit contact with others.


Take flu antiviral medication if your doctor prescribes them.

Costco and Target both offer flu shots, as do all pharmacies and health clinics. The cost out of pocket ranges from 20 to 50 dollars, with options for uninsured and children. Most pharmacies and clinics will bill insurance companies. For more information visit:


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Big Sky Weekly

Are You Ready?

Train for Ski Season By Emily Nedved

Mother Nature has recently reminded us that ski season is just around the corner. To set ourselves up for a successful and healthy ski season, we should start building our foundation now. The four key fitness elements for this foundation are endurance, strength, quickness and flexibility.

next piece is strength. One of the best ways to build core strength and develop the muscles needed for skiing is through plyometric training. Plyometrics are exercises designed to produce fast and powerful movements. They are used to increase speed or the force of muscular contractions.


I suggest adding a plyometric routine three days a week, starting with three different plyometric exercises at two repetitions of 10. There are tons of exercises out there, but here are a few examples:

First, begin the training process with a good base of endurance. Skipping this essential stage can be costly, as it can lead to more injuries down the road. Building endurance consists of at least 30 minutes a day and a four-day a week commitment. My personal choice is trail running, because not only am I building up my cardio endurance, but I am also using my lower leg muscles to balance and react to the various terrain changes trail running provides.

Strength Once you have established a good base through endurance training, the


Stair Jumps – Use two legs, one leg and increase the number of stairs jumped.


Lateral Jumps – Set a weight bench up in a spaced area and side step up and down laterally to stimulate the muscles needed for skiing.


Tuck Jumps - Standing stationary, jump up while pulling your knees up to your chest, repeat 10 times.

stay warm & save money: winterization at your fingertips

By Abbie Digel | photo by eric ross

It’s getting colder outside. If you haven’t taken that box of winter clothes and accessories from out of the closet, it’s about time. While we like to keep warm and comfortable in the cold months, we shouldn’t have to wear down jackets in our homes, worry about skyrocketing heat bills, or stress about how much energy the house is using to pump heat into our homes. There are ways to ensure a warmer, cheaper winter.

Along with plyometrics, there are other exercises that are great for developing strength in the areas needed for skiing. For example, squats on a balance ball, utilizing a balance board, and work with a medicine ball. Every two weeks, increase the number of times you go through a repetition, and vary the choice of plyometrics from week to week.

Agility The next phase of the program is agility, training your reaction time. One way to do this is through a simple agility pattern. These are short sprints designed to develop your ability to change direction quickly. I set a pattern in a 10yd by 10 yd grid, with many direction changes, and obstacles to jump over. To begin, set up one to two agility patterns and run through each pattern three times for one minute, two to three days a week. As you improve your agility, add more patterns and more direction changes.

Do-it yourself projects: recommends having your furnace serviced to make sure it is running safely and properly, and installing a permanent furnace filter to save waste and keep your air clean. You can trap heat inside of your home by keeping your attic floor and ceiling insulated, as well as by adding insulation around windows and doors where air escapes. Consider using green alternatives for insulation, like cellulose and spray foam, as opposed to the traditional versions. Still feeling chilled? Try baking bread or roasting a chicken—the heat from the oven will warm the house right up. Local Pros: Local organizations can also offer help with sustainable winterization. The Montana Weatherization Training Center is an extension of MSU and partner of the Montana Department of Health and Human Services. The Center provides practical advice and training for professionals in the industry, as well as community members, on smart, timesaving, weatherization tactics. The center’s goal is to improve the energy efficiency of homes while ensuring the health and safety of community members. The training center utilizes over 2000 square feet in a simulated home to train people on air sealing, furnaces, doors and windows and insulation. They also have a classroom and a kids’ center, and will bring training offsite, on request.

Flexibility The last piece to the puzzle is flexibility. This is one of the key components to having a healthy season. After every work out, take the time to stretch and build up the elasticity in your muscles. Stretching is the longterm maintenance of the muscles that allows us to stay healthy. Emily Nedved earned a degree in Communication Studies from the University of Iowa, where she also competed on the field hockey team. After two years coaching field hockey at the University of Massachusetts, Emily moved home to Colorado and began her skiing career. She is now a PSIANRM Examiner and helps run the Big Sky Children’s Snowsports School.

NorthWestern Energy’s tips on saving energy and cost: •

Make sure your clothes dryer is located in a heated part of your home. Dryers in an unheated area must warm incoming air, using more energy.

Turn off and safely store extra refrigerators, especially if they are older than 10 years. Older units use about three times as much electricity as new models.

Consider installing motion sensors or timers on exterior lighting. Indoor occupancy sensors automatically turn off lights a short time after you leave a room and turn them on when you enter.

Change your thermostat setting in winter months to the lowest comfortable setting- 68° F for most people during the day and 60° F at night or when no one is home.

Skip the dry cycle on the dishwasher when possible. Open the door slightly so dishes dry naturally. This measure can save about one-half the power consumed in a normal cycle.

Plant shade trees and shrubs on the sunny side of your house to cool it naturally. Plant coniferous (pine) trees on the north side to serve as a wind break.

November 12, 2010 13

Big Sky Weekly

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slice of life

Big Sky Weekly Tax return preparation Tax planning Payroll Services Bookkeeping Financial Statement preparation Business Consulting

The hunt for orange November

Business Valuation

By Jill Pertler It is an orange time of year. The leaves go from greens to goldens before falling to the ground like discarded candy bar wrappers on Halloween. Outside, the leaves litter the earth; inside Reese’s and Kit Kat wrappers crinkle underfoot. It is a separate but equally orange-ish situation.

They wear orange, perhaps accented with a bit of camouflage; we carry green, perhaps accented with a hint of plastic. They eat lunch out in the woods; we eat lunch out at a restaurant. They wake up at 4 a.m. so they can be in their deer stand by dawn; we do not, because sleeping in is okay when you have all day to shop. With any luck, they come home with a carcass; with any luck we come home with a car full.

In my family, we observe the separate but equal equilibrium in other ways during the fall months. Take hunting, for instance. My whole family likes to hunt. We enjoy the challenge of tracking our quarry. We know the thrill of finally seeing the The boys return from their weekend desired target in our site. And, we in the woods with beef jerky on their understand breath and the the anticipaneed for a shower tion required everywhere else “It’s all a matter of seto wait… on their body. mantics. We scope out Their clothes are wait… wait… bebargains; they scope out mud-laden and fore – at last I take pity on – pulling the Bambi. We wait patiently them by going trigger. to the laundry for an item costing small and throwing in Everyone bucks; they wait patiently a load of orange. at my house They are exhilahunts: some rated and tired. for the big bucks.” choose to Spent, but happy. do it in the woods while wearing orange. OthWe girls return from our hunt with ers – myself included – pursue our the essence of Caesar salad pita desired prey in a different manner. wrap on our breaths and eau de free perfume samples on our wrists. We In my family, we have hunters, and are laden with shopping bags and we have hunters. The girls are in the boys take pity on us by carrying one group, the boys in another. No them into the house. We are exhilaone planned things this way. No one rated and tired. Our money is spent, was forced into either group against but we are happy. his or her own better judgment. We do not see hunters as an engendered Later, we will exchange hunting species. It’s just that the boys in my stories over Kit Kats and Reese’s family like to hunt outdoors, while Peanut Butter Cups left over from the girls prefer the indoor version. Halloween. Since our expeditions are once-a-year events, we always It is a separate but equal situation: have tales to tell – and next year to My boys hunt for deer in the woods. look forward to. Our men will wear My daughter and I hunt for deals orange; we will not (unless it is the wherever we can find ‘em. trendy fashion color of the season). It’s all a matter of semantics. We scope out bargains; they scope out Bambi. We wait patiently for an item costing small bucks; they wait patiently for the big bucks. They sit high up in a tree and dream about killing deer; we sit in our minivan and dream about killer deals. They carry semi-automatic rifles; we carry semi-designer purses. My husband explains the significance of a 10-pointer; I explain the significance of a 10-percent-off sale.

It is a fair and just world, this separate but equal hunting thing. At my house, everyone is happy (well, except the deer). Jill Pertler is a syndicated columnist and author of “The Do-It-Yourselfer’s Guide to Self-Syndication.” Email her at; Follow Slices of Life on Facebook, or check out her


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Big Sky Weekly



man and Montana, but by default, this is the only place I can afford to live. Powder magazine ranked this place number one to ski and live. There are better places to ski and there are better places to live. But for both of them, this is it.

I lived in Jackson for eight years. I owned a little trailer on the Village Road across the street from Dick Cheney’s house. They didn’t like trailer parks anymore, so they tore it down. I lost my home, which I paid $125 a month for. That started me on a seven-year odyssey.

A lot of local artists think they can make it in this market. There are only 70,000 people here. You need to have a regional presence. A website and Facebook page don’t cut it. I do the art show circuit in Colorado, Wyoming and Oregon. I have a booth and I sell big prints and frames.

I worked at a heli ski company on Thompson Pass in Alaska guiding dishes from the dish pit into the dishwasher.

Underwater photography wasn’t possible before digital. It takes like 10,000 photos to get a good one of a fish.

I worked as a carnie in California and Oregon. I sold pumpkins, fireworks and Christmas trees, and ran rides for kids. I worked 10 weeks a year and played the rest of the year.

This summer, at an art show in Colorado, a guy told me which drainages had pure genetic strains of Colorado Cutthroat. I found those places, and then worked twenty 16-hour days above 10,000 feet in the headwaters of little creeks to get the photo I wanted. The valley I found had

When I started this photo thing I needed a home base. I love Boze-

Originally from Seattle, Pat Clayton has been shooting photos since high school. “I really only got serious six or eight years ago, though,” he says. With a sarcastic wit and a self-deprecating sense of humor, the



creates astounding images of fish.

[ [ never been planted with rainbows, and the creek dropped into 10 miles of waterfalls. That protected the genetic diversity of the Cutthroat population—at the bottom there’s a bunch of rainbows. When trout are swimming upriver to spawn and they run into a barrier, you end up with a 30 or 40 in a pool. When I find a spot like that, I have a chance at shooting a photo of a fish. After working five weeks for that one photo last summer, I quit. Now I’m shooting scenic stuff and crazy, long exposures at night.

The Crazy Mountains aren’t that photogenic because they’re so gray. I shoot them in spring, when there are snow ribbons. My friend Joe makes a cornice cutter called the Backcountry Bomb. The tool is tiny and screws onto the end of a probe. We go down the Bridgers south of Saddle Peak and cut cornices. He’s got video footage of knocking off class four slides in the Tobacco Roots with this thing.

When someone tells me what to shoot, it melts my artistic vision. I like the Madisons because nobody goes there. Everyone’s too scared of the bears.

There are all kind of cool artists out there, like Ryno, who do cool and fun stuff and sell it for reasonable prices. This is why Altitude Gallery is so awesome. She niched herself into that affordable market, so locals support her. She just won best art gallery in Bozeman.

You can tell a grizz track from a black bear by drawing a line along the toes. With a black bear, the fifth toe is behind the line.

I have my resume in my folder right now. I’m looking for a job. I want to wash dishes or bus tables. I want a night job. November 12, 2010 17

Big Sky Weekly


MUSIC By Hunter Rothwell

The great jazz musician Herbie Hancock once said, “music happens to be an art form that transcends language.” A truer statement relating to our passion for music might be hard to uncover. Most people either like a certain musical offering, or they don’t. Hard to explain sometimes why we have an affinity for one style over another. Certainly age, where we come from, peer groups and lifestyle contribute to personal tastes. Music is a very personal interest. Preferences aside though, like or dislike, some music can be appreciated for craftsmanship and faultless execution. 2010 has not been earth shattering in the music industry, as far as creation of really good new albums. Some of the most celebrated albums this year have been reissued classics from artists like Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones and Bruce Springsteen. However, there have been a few new releases, scattered among different genres, which deserve our attention.

For lovers of hard rock music in the garage rock tradition, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers offer us Mojo. A formidable songwriter, Petty told Rolling Stone magazine he wrote all the songs “for the band to play.” And play they do. These guys have been performing together for thirty years, and their familiarity creates a tight sound. The album is upbeat with catchy rock and roll.

Another band blessed with talent tuned to the art of shredding are The Sword. This metal quartet hailing from Austin, Texas offers Warp Riders. Comparisons to Black Sabbath, mixed with Metallica, are not far from the mark, except the Sword offers a twin guitar onslaught. This album, like Snakes for the Divine, is served up with fiery fury that will not let up and looks to pulverize. If a great metal album is defined as sounding epic, then these two accomplish the task with triumphant affect.

Jamey Johnson is the next great country artist. On his fourth album, The Guitar Song, Johnson finds his own voice that is something quite different from the contemporary country played on popular radio and CMT. This is outlaw country in the tradition of Waylon Jennings, George Jones and Merle Haggard. Even more impressive is that there are 25 tracks over two discs. Very ambitious, but the album does not let up at all. There are timeless sad ballads and honky-tonk jams.

Speaking of “tight” sounding music, playing an instrument in a heavy metal band requires great ability and precise speed. Two albums released this year deliver with all the raucous energy metal enthusiasts applaud. High On Fire’s Snakes for the Divine is tour de force from start to finish. This is very HEAVY metal. With blistering guitar, growling lyrics and demonic bass lines, this power trio keeps the banner of metal flying high.

Other Albums of Note from 2010: The Big To-Do, Drive-By Truckers; Country Music, Willie Nelson; God Willin’ & the Creek Don’t Rise, Ray LaMontagne and the Pariah Dogs; Recovery, Eminem; Brothers, The Black Keys; Come Around Sundown, Kings of Leon

Everybody who likes rock music likes Led Zeppelin. No exceptions. A huge reason for the band’s enormous success was the persona and vocal skill of Robert Plant. On his latest solo release, Band of Joy [named for Plant and John Bonham’s first band together], the rock-god took a new approach and found great success. His 2007 album, Raising Sand, a collaboration with bluegrass artist Alison Krauss, won five Grammy awards including Album of the Year. Plant grew up on the blues and rockabilly, and this folk/americana style suited him, and in the latter stage of his career, he has focused on these early roots. All the songs on the album are covers, but Plant brings new life to old favorites and other songs that should never have been forgotten. With rumors a year ago of Led Zeppelin reunion tour, it’s refreshing that this great artist is conquering new horizons instead of resting on past accomplishments.

Key tracks for your downloading consideration “Lonely At The Top”, “Can’t Cash My Checks”, “Dog In The Yard” Jamey Johnson; “Angel Dance”, “You Can’t Buy My Love” - Robert Plant; “How I Got Over”, “Dear God 2.0”, “Web 20/20” - The Roots; “Monkey Suit”, “Jimmie Rodgers’ Dream”, “Hey Ahab” - Leon Russell & Elton John; “Candy”, “I Should Have Known It” - Tom Petty & The Heartbreakers; “Snakes For The Divine”, “Ghost Neck” - High On Fire; “The Warp Riders”, “Lawless Lands”, “Tres Brujas” - The Sword “Rebel Within”, “Lookin’ For A Mountain”, “Lost In Oklahoma” Hank Williams III

Leon Russell and Elton John return to the Seventies on their collaboration entitled, The Union. This release is really Elton John returning to the roots of his successful early albums. Leon Russell never left his roots, and while this is to be admired, not changing with the times sentenced this great artist of country-rock to obscurity. Elton John has never left the forefront of popular music. However, two of his best albums are the honky-tonk and boogie infused Honky Chateau and Tumbleweed Connection from the early seventies. These two all time great pianists work wonderfully together, with T. Bone Burnett, to produce new songs that bring us back to that old time. A mixture of ballads and piano-funk creates in a memorable sound. Fans of Elton John will thoroughly enjoy this latest arrival and all will have the privilege to be introduced or reintroduced to Leon Russell.

18 November 12, 2010

Big Sky Weekly

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Antelope Satay Ingredients: 1 lb. Antelope Loin, cut into Strips and Pounded Thin. Weave onto Bamboo Skewers 1 C. Hoisin 1/4 C. Oyster Sauce 1 T. Chili Garlic Sauce 2 T. Soy Sauce 2 T. Fresh Ginger, Chopped 1 t. 5-Spice Powder 3 T. Brown Sugar 1/2 C. Sake 1/4 C. Rice Wine Vinegar Method: Combine all ingredients. Skewer antelope medallions and brush with marinade. Char-Grill both sides very quickly on a hot grill. Serve with Peanut Sauce.

Peanut Dipping Sauce Ingredients: 1 13.5 oz. Can of Coconut milk 1/4 C. of Peanut butter 1/2 tsp. Thai Red Curry Base 1/2 tsp. Thai Green Curry Base 1 T. Chili Garlic Sauce 1 tsp. Chinese 5 Spice 2 T. Sesame oil 2 T. Fresh Cilantro, chopped Method: Blend all ingredients together. Do not cook

Big Sky residents can pick up a copy of the 2010-2011 3 Rivers Communications phone book in our local office located at 12 Skywood Road Monday - Friday • 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. 995-2600

Chuck Schommer began his culinary career in his mother’s kitchen and his father’s smoke house. He moved west in 1982, and is currently a managing partner and Food and Beverage Director at Buck’s T-4. Chuck and his wife Kris live in the Gallatin Canyon with their two daughters, Lindsay and Kaela.

November 12, 2010 19



Big Sky Weekly


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Business Profile of the Week

Removing Dead and Infested Trees

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By Megan Paulson

For Big Sky Tree Removal owner Tom Newberry, cutting trees comes second nature. So does professional football. Retired from 10 seasons in the NFL, Newberry played with the Los Angeles Rams for nine years and the Pittsburgh Steelers for one year. He was a starter for the Steelers in Super Bowl XXX, a two-time Pro Bowl and NFL All-Pro offensive guard, and a three-time “All Madden Team” member. So how do tree service, infested tree removal, and selling firewood in Big Sky fit into the mix for this ex-pro football player? “I spent my whole life cutting trees with my parents, and I taught my twin boys to do the same,” says Newberry. “Now that they’re freshman red-shirt football players at MSU, clearing trees, cutting and selling firewood [to-

20 November 12, 2010

Big Sky Weekly


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gether] is a good way for me to do what I enjoy, for them to make some extra money for college, and for all of us to help keep the forest clean around Big Sky.” Newberry has lived in Big Sky for the past seven years, officially establishing Big Sky Tree Removal in February 2010. Newberry notes that most of his business focuses on beetle kill and implementing fire suppression techniques. Big Sky Tree Removal is an approved RC&D Hazardous Rules Reduction Contractor, and works with the Gallatin County Extension in partnership with Northern Rocky Mountain Resource Conservation and Development to clear trees along roads and near homes in an effort to fireproof residential areas.

Property Visits Property valuation staff may be visiting your property during the upcoming tax year to conduct an on-site review for property tax purposes. You or your agent may want to be present. For an appointment or further information, contact the local Department of Revenue office.

“We’re seeing more and more beetle kill, and it’s a big fire hazard. When people need any tree debris removed from their property, they call us,” says Newberry. “None of the trees we remove go to waste—everything we cut is either chipped or turned into firewood. It’s cold here, people need lots of firewood in the winter.” Newberry’s tree removal season runs May - November, but firewood is available year-round. For pricing, delivery or more information on Big Sky Tree Removal services or firewood options, contact Tom at or 406-995-7852.

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November 12, 2010 21

Big Sky Weekly


value. A weaker U.S. dollar makes the products and services we export cheaper for purchasers in other countries.

S e cu r iti e s By hunter rothwell Ben Bernanke and the Federal Reserve governors have been taking a very proactive stance in the continuing recovery of our economy. Interest rates remain at an all time low due to the Fed Funds Rate holding steady at 0.25%. This rate is set by the same fore mentioned group and changes are considered on a monthly basis during their meeting. This historically low target rate has stayed 0.25% since being set lower in January of 2009. This helps to keep interest rates across the economy low and helps to stimulate borrowing [at low interest rates] to increase consumer and commercial spending and thus energize the economy. This, however, is not the Feds’ only tool to help steer the direction of economic activity. Well, these priests of high finance certainly cannot lower the Fed Funds

rate much more, so what to do? Their answer is to print money. This brings us back to our initial question. The U.S. Treasury issues U.S. Bonds, Notes and T-Bills and sell them to the Federal Reserve Bank. How does the Fed pay for these securities? They print U.S. currency [dollars] and essentially “pay cash” in their transaction with the Treasury. On Thursday, November 4th of this year, Ben Bernanke announced that the Fed will purchase $600 billion in U.S. Treasuries. When they pay for those securities, $600 billion of new money will be added to the economy, essentially out of thin air. Increasing and decreasing the money supply can, sometimes, have a desired effect. What the Fed is trying to accomplish by buying these Treasury securities is twofold. First, decreasing the number of U.S. bonds [$600 billion]

from the already outstanding supply and new issues available causes bond prices to increase and the corresponding yield to decrease. This is simple supply and demand: the less there are, the more one will pay. So, this should help lower mortgage rates due to the fact these rates float in the same direction as bond yields. Lower bond yields can also push money that has been sitting in treasuries and money markets back into the economy [stocks, real estate ... etc]. Investors are motivated to begin taking more risk to achieve a better return on their money. Second, more money in the system creates more opportunity for business and overall stimulation of economic activity. It also has the side effect of lowering the value of the U.S. dollar. Again, simple supply and demand, more dollars added to the system means that the currency that has already been in the system takes a hit in

So will all this have the desired effect? Only time will tell. However, this review of monetary policy has been laid out to issue one warning; inflation. Putting more currency in the system does not necessarily lead to inflation, but it certainly has the potential. The more dollars the Fed prints, the less the dollar in your pocket is worth. More dollars can chase fewer items and shazaam: inflation. The Fed, before this latest announcement, had a balance sheet of $2.2 trillion worth of assets. Up from $800 billion in the early part of 2006, that was a lot of buying and printing -- although needed to avoid a great depression]. So, burying your money in the backyard or leaving it under the mattress is not a smart strategy. If you have long term money, it should be invested for gain and yield in a mix of investments with which you are comfortable. The views expressed here are only those of the author. Please contact your certified financial planner or money institution for personal financial advice.


Thanksgiving GROCERY STORE


• Amazing Selection here in Big Sky

• Open Daily from 6:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Open Until 2:30 p.m. on Thanksgiving T: (406) 995-4636 Located in the Meadow Village

22 November 12, 2010

Big Sky Weekly

sustainable living

Refuge Sustainable Building Center M o ntan a’ s G r e en B u i l ding R esource Prov i des Su s tain a b l e an d En v i ron me n tally Fr i e n dly Bui l d ing S u pp li e s By Kim Thielman-Ibes Since she was young, Alexa Calio’s passion was to work in a field where she could make a positive impact on the environment. Armed with a degree in Wildlife Biology, Calio moved west to conduct research in Yellowstone Park. As it turned out, the first habitat she worked on was her own. “I went into the wildlife field for several years and got sidelined building my log home,” says Calio. “We felled, peeled and set the logs. When it came to chinking, I did it all myself.” After this experience, Calio started Roche Jaune, Inc., Chinking and Plaster Specialists, which she has owned and operated for twelve years. “When I found out Refuge was for sale, I saw it as an opportunity to tie my experience in construction with my degree in ecology. It’s a good segue between my education and experience.” Calio bought the business from partners Dave Schaub and Steve Bruner. Schaub spent ten years as a teacher specializing in environmental education and was a do-it-yourself environmentally aware home remodeler. It was this background that propelled him to start Refuge in July 2004 after moving from Seattle to Bozeman. Old college roommates, Bruner and Schaub reconnected at a sustainability fair in Livingston. Bruner’s M.B.A., his laid back attitude and shared values made for the perfect partnership. Schaub’s family moved to Spokane, Washington and the partners decided to sell the business to Calio in 2010.

Calio closed on the business on June 1 and by June 14, Refuge was open in its new, 2400 square foot location at 1203 North Rouse. Calio moved the business from its original building on Mendenhall to increase exposure and thanks to the eco-friendly mindset of the developers, they’re in Bozeman’s green zone. Refuge is now surrounded by other environmentally friendly companies, creating a buzz and energy all their own. Refuge focuses mostly on interiorbased products that are on the leading edge of sustainability like American Clay (a natural earth plaster), Paperstone Countertops (a solid surface countertop produced from multiple layers of recycled papers), Deco-Paz (an inexpensive mock concrete resurfacing material), low VOC paints and sustainable flooring. They also carry recycled denim and recycled foam insulation, along with window packages from Sierra Pacific, a window manufacturer that manages the forests they use and in the process produce more energy than they consume. “I think the biggest misperception we have is in terms of product availability and cost,” says Calio. Refuge’s goal is not to compete with building warehouse stores, but to provide a range of quality products produced through sustainable manufacturing at a reasonable cost. Under Calio’s leadership, the company also plans to grow their product line and explore expanding their retail locations beyond Bozeman.

“We all have a personal commitment to the environment, which motivates us to find the best products available and be knowledgeable about the industry.”

Refuge is also an education depot for sustainable product knowledge and education. First Calio and her staff make it their business to develop their own knowledge through LEED green building certifications, the National Association of Home Builder’s green building program, and eco-friendly manufacturers’ product seminars. “We all have a personal commitment to the environment, which motivates us to find the best products available and be knowledgeable about the industry.” The retail store offers workshops on products and installation, including American Clay and Deco-Paz. They’re also involved in promoting eco-friendly products to the building and interior design communities through educational seminars. “Refuge is a current member of SWMBIA, Southwest Montana’s Building Industry Association,” says Anders Lewendal, chair of its green building committee and owner of Sustainable Building Solutions, Inc. and Anders Lewendal Construction. Lewendal says Calio’s insights are valuable to the Association and to the green building committee. Calio and her staff are earnest in their desire to help their customers know that they can make the right choice to use a product that is recycled, sustainably harvested or sourced locally, and that it doesn’t mean it has to cost more than a standard-quality building product. Refuge Sustainable Building Center in Bozeman has changed ownership and location, but its commitment to the local green building industry is stronger than ever. For more information of Refuge Sustainable Building Center call 406.585.9958 or visit Kim Ibes grew up in eastern Montana. Armed with an unrelenting curiosity, a love for the outdoors, an MBA and a wagon full of books, she lives and writes in Bozeman.

November 12, 2010 23

Big Sky Weekly


People on the street This year’s fall season was beautiful and long. We asked a few people on the street if they like the season and why.

BY ERIC LADD Fall is a time for traditions like hunting, Sunday afternoon football or crock-pot cooking. For many, it’s also the time to gather firewood. For years, my wife and I have taken an annual pilgrimage to a hidden ‘stash’ of trees where we gather, cut and split our wood. Over the years though, the tradition has evolved. Our chainsaws are getting more powerful, our axes more durable, and our trucks and trailers more burly. The amount of firewood we’ve collected has also grown, as the pine beetle has become more prevalent. Note - The Forest Service recommends only using beetle-kill trees that are totally dead or ‘red,’ as firewood. When beetle-kill wood is used as firewood during a warm season, the beetles can spread. Once a tree is completely dead, the pine beetles move to another food source. For more information on pine beetles:

Bret Engel Bozeman “I do like fall. It seems redundant to say the weather. I like the colors and the air.”


The only legal unit measurement of firewood is the CORD. It is defined as, “a loosely stacked pile of split firewood measuring 4 ft. wide x 4 ft. high x 8 ft. long.”

A cord of wood weighs over 4,000 pounds and does not fit in a pickup truck—the average pickup truck can only haul half a cord of firewood at a time.

Owen and CJ Rohler Just moved to Bozeman from Pennsylvania

When wood is freshly cut, it contains a lot of water. ‘Season’ wood by properly splitting, stacking and storing it. Always store firewood off the ground in an area that receives both sun and prevailing winds. Cover wood with a roof, a thin tarp, or pieces of to repel rain and moisture, but always leave the sides open. The sun and wind evaporate the water.

Today’s wood stoves are very economical and are more than 50% more efficient than fireplaces. A fireplace uses warm air from the room to feed the fire while drawing cold outside air through cracks and drafts to replace the air in the room.

Hardwood trees provide the best firewood, but many northern and western climates burn pine and other softwoods. Easily available and sustainable, pine has many benefits: it seasons faster than hardwoods, it is easy to split, it starts easily, it is lighter than hardwoods and it has a pleasant aroma. Pine’s drawbacks include: creosote buildup in chimneys, and it has low BTU’s. Dead pine is often full of insects, can have exploding sap pockets, and it is very fast burning.

“Yes, we like fall because the leaves change color.”

Jacob Miller Missoula “I like the season changing and the light in the sky. I like hunting and camping and the weather change. It’s just a pleasant time of year.”



Good for getting rid of beer gut

Good for supporting your beer gut



Not “green”


Need to wear eye protection

Need to wear hearing and eye protection


Good way to burn off some steam

Good way to use leverage


Random splits of the wood

Precise splits of the wood


Not good for green wood

Loves green wood


Replacement cost is cheap

Buy insurance if you rent it


Endorsed by Rocky

Endorsed by Exxon


Two cords of wood= 4 days

Two cords of wood= 2 days


Overall Winner....

The Axe - this simple tool is thousands of years old and still gets it done. Go for the new fiberglass handle axes and make sure it’s sharp. Happy splitting!

24 November 12, 2010

Big Sky Weekly

Big Sky Weekly


home of the


Classified! $10 with photo

Each Classified can be up to 4 lines (Maximum of 30 words). Additional lines are $5 per line, Maximum of 8 words per line. Email classifieds and/or advertising requests to: 406-995-2055

HELP WANTED Engineering Tech (Part time) The successful candidate will possess basic maintenance skills as they relate to the maintenance and upkeep of household and condominium environments. The ability to diagnose and repair common maintenance items such as simple plumbing issues, heating problems, small appliance repair, are required. Any experience with satellite TV repair or troubleshooting is a plus. Candidate must be able to use simple hand tools and lift up to 50 pounds. The successful candidate will be a self-directed and active problem solver able to work under pressure with tight deadlines. Candidate must live in the Big Sky area and be able to fulfill on-call duties as needed. Submit cover letter and resume to: employmentinfobigsky@ EEO

sonnel -full or p/t positions - day, evening & night shifts available. Apply in person at the River Rock Lodge, 88 Big Pine Dr, Big Sky. Call Susie at 995-4455. --------------------------Resort Property Management at the River Rock Lodge is taking applications for an Assistant Reservations Manager, year-round, full time position with benefits. No experience necessary. Apply in person at the River Rock Lodge, 88 Big Pine Dr. Big Sky. Call Susie at 995-4455. --------------------------Reservationist (Part Time) Successful candidate will have reservations experience selling lodging over the phone for hotel or condominium properties. Ability to verbally communicate features and benefits of different properties to sell inventory is required. Familiarity with the Big Sky area is a plus. Must be able to learn and use computer software to book reservations. A high level of professionalism is required for this position selling luxury accommodations. Please send cover letter and resume to: EEO Local, environmentally conscious cleaning service is seeking detail oriented, part-time help in Big Sky. Must be able to pass a background check and have a valid driver license.  Please email resume and references to, subject Cleaning Assistant. --------------------------Need help eating pizza for an entire year? For $100 you get a season pass to our pizza – 1 pizza every month for 12 months + other amazing benefits (value of $400+) – call 995-7175 for details. MUST reply and join prior to Nov 30th.

Big Sky Condo Rental - 2bd/1ba condo on golf course south facing new wood burning stove/pool/hot tub/$800/mth for yr lease Call Kene at 406.581.2574



Want to own a lot in Big Sky? We are willing to trade our amazing Lot at the award winning Spanish Peaks Community in Big Sky for a home, condo or lot elsewhere. Bring ideas and options. We will also consider owner finance. Call Roger at 303419-1263 – Brokers welcome.

For rent 1 Bedroom Cabin Available Now Dogs welcome. Located in Dudley Creek area; Call Jim McEnroe at 995-2777 or 580-6615 --------------------------2 Bedroom Cabin with Loft Available Dec. 1 Dogs welcome. Located in Dudley Creek area; Call Jim McEnroe at 995-2777 or 580-6615

Commercial Office Space – private offices suites within Big Sky’s finest office building. Shared use of 2 conference rooms, kitchens, storage, lobby space, central copier and central location in Big Sky Meadow Village. Each suite has private key access. Only 3 spaces remain. Lease terms can vary from month to month to long term. Prices vary depending on lease terms. Call Eric for details – 570-0639


--------------------------Commercial Space in Town Center – owner is prepared to make deals happen for lease or ownership. Amazing spaces range from 1200sq/ft to 2000sq/ft. Owner, Sam Sammis - (PH) 802-522-8500 ---------------------------

Happy Birthday Justin Miller 30 years of skiing! And may the next 60 be full of powder and all downhill!


FOR SALE Southfork, 3 Bedroom, 3 1/2 bath plus office $1600 a month furnished or non NS but 1 dog ok Please contact Shana at 406-580-0113 ---------------------------

--------------------------Need some extra money? Come share your passion for the Big Sky area as a Driver for Shuttle to Big Sky & Taxi. Must be at least 25 yrs of age w/ clean driving record and able to lift 50 lbs. FT & PT positions avail. Please submit resume to EEO. The River Rock Lodge is now taking applications for front desk per-

191 CM Goliath Skis built by Movement. With Marker bindings. Skied less than 15 times. Amazing big mountain skis. $500 – 570-0639

TYM Tractors--the only tractor with the standard5 YEAR WARRANTY, starting at $13500 Yellowstone Tractor Co. 406-3882423 “Your snow removal headquarters”

Want to advertise in this newspaper or our other publications? Contact Outlaw Partners at 406-995-2055 or

Need Help with your dirty work? Big Sky Fire Prevention Can Help! Resource Management, Fuel Reduction, Beetle Mitigation, Firewood, and More. Call Justin Miller 406-570-9226 November 12, 2010 25

Big Sky Weekly

ily Stif ler

Dating back to the late 19th century, daylight savings is “the practice of advancing standard time by one hour in the spring of each year and of setting it back by one hour in the fall in order to gain an extra period of daylight during the early evening.” ( “Spring ahead” means clocks are wound ahead one hour at 2:00 a.m. local standard time (becoming 3:00 a.m. local daylight time). “Fall back” means clocks are set back one hour at 2:00 a.m. Hawaii and most of Arizona do not observe daylight savings time. As of November 7, daylight

According to the U.S Naval Observatory, the railroads established standard time and time zones in the U.S. and Canada in 1883. Standard time became U.S. law under the Act of March 19, 1918, also called the Standard Time Act. This act

Winston Churchill, a proponent of daylight savings time, claimed it helped grow “opportunities for the pursuit of health and happiness among.” It is also known colloquially as “Daylight Slaving Time”






also established daylight saving time, which was a controversial idea at the time.



savings time (DST) has ended for 2010. It is not clear who first came up with the modern concept of DST, but the idea is credited to several people including Benjamin Franklin and New Zealander George Vernon Hudson. In Franklin’s satirical 1784 essay “The Economic Project,” he said with his old age and his love for late-night chess games, the early morning summer sun woke him too early. Near the end of a long term as an American delegate in Paris, the 78 year-old Franklin proposed moving clocks an hour forward to save Parisians “an immense sum” of candle wax. In jest, he also suggested a tax on window shutters and a legal rationing of candles.

In 1919, Congress repealed daylight time, but left standard time as the status quo. Daylight time, which was observed regionally, went back into national use during World War II. The Uniform Time Act of 1966 again appointed new dates for the clock change. Then during the ‘energy crisis’ in the 70s, with efficiency in mind, Congress changed daylight savings dates for two years: In 1974, DST began in January and in 1975 it began in February. The dates moved again in the mid-80s. Since 2007, by order of the Congress’s Energy Policy Act of 2005, DST in the U.S. has begun on the second Sunday in March and ended on the first Sunday in November. Daylight savings benefits retail business and sports, but can be problematic for farmers and evening entertainment businesses. Many countries follow a similar summer clock change, but they do not all observe the same dates as the U.S. Countries near the equator typically do not change clocks, as their days remain the same length yearlong.

Take the

this fall. NorthWestern Energy customers have already saved over 5 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of electricity through the Bright Future Challenge. Now you can take the challenge and help reach the goal of saving 10 million kilowatt hours!

1. Install ENERGY STAR® CFL light bulbs. 2. Help save 10 million kilowatt hours of electricity. 3. We’re giving away $10,000 in gift card prizes!

Use your CFL Instant Savings coupon before November 14. Don’t forget to use the NorthWestern Energy coupon you received in the mail and save $2 instantly when you purchase ENERGY STAR® compact fluorescent light (CFL) bulbs. Limit 10 CFLs per customer. Use your coupon at this participating Montana retailer before November 14, 2010:

To take the challenge, just visit Contest is open to NorthWestern Energy residential electric customers. Visit for official contest rules. If you do not have Internet access but would like to participate, call the NorthWestern Energy Customer Contact Center at (888) 467-2669.

Big Sky

Mountain View True Value

Visit for a complete list of retailers or call (800) 823-5995 for more information. Offer limited to qualifications listed on your coupon.

Join us on Facebook!

- Bright12, Future Challenge-Fall Follow Up_Weekly Ads_Big Sky Weekly • 10” x 7.6” • BW 26NWE530 November 2010

Big Sky Weekly

The Weekly’s fresh perspectives section is an opportunity for young adults from schools around Southwest Montana to share stories and opinions about local community events. For more information, or to contribute, please have your teacher contact us at:

The Big Timber After School Program By Joseph LoPiccolo Enders One Big Timber event I participate in is helping out at the After School Program. During my off-season of soccer, I go five days a week. I head over to the church near the grade school right after the school day gets out. The kids walk over to the church in a group with the head of the organization. A variety of snacks are put out from which I can eat and so do the kids. Then, as a mentor, I help kids in grades Kindergarten through about fifth with homework, reading, and then we have music, art, cooking, or free time outside. For special occa-

their friends as they go by and throwing candy. For Halloween, we had a costume party after school. The kids dressed up and came to the church, and were allowed to bring one friend who doesn’t usually come. The mentors also have the option of dressing up! I volunteered last year, but at the end of my first year, I was offered mentoring as a job. I received 44 hours of volunteering last year from going about one day per week. Mentoring is a great way to

SGHS Homecoming By Mark Garrard Recently, Sweet Grass High School in Big Timber had its homecoming football game. The school spent the weeks before the game planning for the homecoming parade. Each class planned their own float. The morning of the game was spent building the floats and the parade was in the afternoon. The band and the cheerleaders of SGHS were also in the parade, leading the floats through the town. The student body voted on the classes’ floats to decide whose was the best. The Seniors won, followed by the Freshmen and the Sophomores, with the Juniors in last place. The game went well for SGHS. With the huge support given by all of its fans, the football team was able to pull off an amazing 47 to 6 victory. Much of the town of Big Timber showed up to support them. The band and cheerleaders performed a half time show. In addition, to celebrate

the football team’s wonderful job, the school song was played after every score and the cheerleaders led the audience in singing. In addition to all of this, we had a school dance after the game. Queen and King nominations were made several weeks before, and on the morning of Homecoming, were chosen by a school vote. The winners were Lane Cremer as King, and Shawna Watton as Queen. This Homecoming shows that, though the citizens of Big Timber are few, they show great spirit in supporting their team. Garrard is a 10th grade student at Sweet Grass County High School.

“Mentoring is a great way to be involved in the community and help out with younger kids.” sions, such as Halloween or Thanksgiving, we have parties with a ton of fun games. Outside, we play with volleyballs, soccer balls, and other outside toys. At the end of the parents’ workday, they come to pick up their kids by about six. During the Homecoming parade, the After School Program makes a float to go down Main Street with the other club floats and the high school floats. The kids have so much fun seeing

be involved in the community and help out with younger kids. Many of the kids I help say hi to me when they see me elsewhere. I have so much fun and look forward to going so much! I work with one other high school student and a couple of adults most days. A few other students volunteer at this program on occasion.

Big Timber

Enders is a 10th grade student at Sweet Grass County High School.

The Gardiner Speech and Drama Team never stops working By Rose cote Since 1987, the Gardiner Speech and Drama Team has placed 1st, 2nd or 3rd at State every year, and for the last three years they’ve placed first in both Speech and Drama. This year, with a record 40 participants, the team hopes for continued success. Paul Krish, a third year debater, participates because “It’s a lot of fun. You get to hang out with your friends and sometimes even win.” Last week at Belgrade, he and his partner Morgan Smith placed first in Policy Debate.

While the veterans of the team welcome the beginning of the season, the nine incoming freshman seem nervoust this year. Freshman Katie Hunter expresses her anxiety: “I am excited because Speech and Drama is really cool, and it gives me a chance to act, but I’m nervous about messing up or forgetting my lines.” Fellow freshman Courtney Loeffelholz says, “I am nervous because it’s just my first time actually performing.” Despite the team’s nervous participants, they will still enjoy their time together and work hard to win in the end. With a win in Belgrade this past weekend, now they’re headed to Shepherd, Montana for another meet, and hopefully another trophy. Cote is a 10th grade student at Gardiner High School, Home of the Bruins.

November 12, 2010 27

Big Sky Weekly

Noun: wild or rough terrain adjacent to a developed area Origin: shortened form of “back 40 acres”

For the Big Sky Weekly, the Back 40 is a resource: a place where we can delve into subjects and ask experts to share their knowledge. Topics include regional history, profiles of local artists and musicians, snow and avalanche education, and how-to pieces for traditional or outdoor skills.

Unknown Legend at the Filler // By Yogesh Simpson L i k e D y l a n a n d S pr i n g -

teller. The 41-year-old Minnesota native got his start as a drummer playing with punk and hardcore bands until starting to work on his solo career in 1998.

s t een , D o n d er o h a s a n

Like Dylan and Springsteen, Dondero has an acute awareness of the human condition and an ability to merge big ideas with the gritty details of his own experience. This makes his songs both universal and intensely personal. Here is a verse from his song “The Living and The Dead:”

a c u t e awa reness o f t h e human condition and an a b i l i t y t o m er g e b i g i d e a s w i t h t h e g r i t t y d e ta i l s o f h i s o wn e x per i ence . Listen up people. I’m guessing you haven’t heard of this guy, but if you appreciate brilliant songwriting and/or indie folk music in general, you owe it to yourselves to check out David Dondero at the Filling Station Thursday the 18th. I first heard Dondero this summer, when I was listening to an NPR music podcast while driving on a dirt road in the Tobacco Roots stuck behind a horse trailer. As he introduced a Dondero song, the host of the show, Robin Hilton, off-handedly mentioned he included Dondero in his top-10 list of greatest living songwriters. His list that also included obvious heavy hitters like Bob Dylan, Tom Waits and Bruce Springsteen. Naturally, my curiosity was piqued. I had some listening to do. When I got home, I looked up Dondero. After hearing to only a few songs, I could see how he made the list. Dondero is a masterful wordsmith and story-

Chose an easy rhyme to fill these moments of your time I tried to keep between the line, looking forward and behind I studied highway archeology, poetry and written As it’s happening before me this moment of expression It’s evolving and dissolving, connecting and exploding, Building up and then eroding It’s the endings I keep blowing I played a skinny, indie white boy blues in a scuffed up military style shoes I’m a convenience store connoisseur On a broken shoestring budget tour Initially, I thought Dondero was borrowing his whole sound from Conor Oberst (of the band Bright Eyes), but I got it backwards. Oberst has cited Dondero as his biggest influence, yet somehow Dondero has achieved far less commercial success. He addresses this fact directly on his eighth studio record, Zero With a Bullet, which was released in August. In a recent interview he talked about how disheartening it is to sing to an empty room after dedicating his life to his music for so long. This man’s talent deserves to be appreciated, so don’t miss your chance to help fill the Filler for this stop on his tour. Yogesh Simpson is a freelance writer, photographer and graphic designer living in Bozeman. He also sings lead vocals and plays rhythm guitar for the band Holler n’ Pine.

David Dondero w/ the moaners at the filling station // thursday, November 18th, 9 p.M. // $7

28 November 12, 2010

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