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Big Sky

Exploring life, land and culture from the heart of the Yellowstone Region

Big Sky Weekly

Aug. 24 - Sept. 6 Volume 3 // Issue No. 17

Second annual Spruce Moose Music Festival is Sept. 1

LPHS sports season kicks off schedules inside

Report: Outdoor industry provides 6.1 million jobs

Climb on:

BSCC boulder complete

Gallatin Speedway Business profile: tart

Skyline offers new bus service to West Yellowstone

Big Sky's locally owned and published newspaper

Publisher of the big sky weekly



Cover: This bull elk charged Richard Smith right after he shot the photo. Check out the Wildsmith Photography gallery feature on p. 20.

2011 big sky chamber of commerce

Business of the Year Aug. 24-Sept. 6, 2012 Volume 3, Issue no. 17 PUBLISHER Eric Ladd COO & SENIOR EDITOR Megan Paulson CREATIVE DIRECTOR Mike Martins MANAGING EDITOR Emily Stifler GRAPHIC DESIGNER Kelsey Dzintars

Antelope archery season has been underway since Aug. 15. This bowhunter was out scouting for big bull elk on Aug. 12. Photo by Emily Stifler

Distribution Director Danielle Chamberlain

Outlaw Partners moving to Town Center

VIDEO director Brian Niles

O’Connor new Weekly editor Outlaw Partners is moving from the Meadow Village to the Big Sky Town Center in late August. The new office space, which was once the Simkins-Hallin’s showroom, is on the main floor of the RJS tower.

videographer Chris Davis Operations director Katie Morrison WEB Developer/Designer Sean Weas

“This will be a great move for the Outlaw team,” said Megan Paulson, Outlaw’s COO. “We’re excited to base from Town Center and looking forward to having a more open, collaborative space.”

editorial assistant Renae Counter Staff Writer Tyler Allen CONTRIBUTors

Jamie Balke, Bill Bishop, Buscrat, Mike Coil, Maren Dunn, Roberto Gallardo, Marcie Hahn-Knoff, Kathy House, Craig Hergert, Brian Hurlbut, Denise Juneau, Mike Mannelin, Robin Brower-McBride, Dave McEvoy, Amber Miller, Joe Miller, Anne Marie Mistretta, Jessie Moore, Moses Namkung, Brandon Niles, Ersin Ozer, Kene Sperry, Richard Smith, Mary Stifler

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.

Letter to the Editor Parameters The Weekly accepts letters to the editor to give readers a platform to express their views and share ways they would like to effect change. These should not be Thank You notes. Letters should be 250 words or less, respectful, ethical, state accurate facts and figures, and proofread for grammar and content. We reserve the right to edit letters. Include: first and last name, address, phone number and title. Submit to:

ADVERTISING DEADLINE For September 7 issue: August 31, 2012 CORRECTIONS The Big Sky Weekly runs corrections to errors we’ve printed. Please report them to © 2012 The Big Sky Weekly Unauthorized reproduction prohibited

2 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

Town Center master developer Bill Simkins was enthusiastic, as well. “It should be a great partnership between Outlaw and Town Center,” he said.

Outlaw Partners also recently hired a new editor, Joseph O’Connor. Starting Oct. 1, O’Connor will work closely with managing editor, Emily Stifler, on all of Outlaw’s publications, particularly with the day-to-day operation of the Weekly.

“I’ve found a way to combine the mountains with writing, which I’ve been looking to do for a while,” O’Connor said about the job with Outlaw. “I’m ready to hit the ground running.” He cites fly fishing and skiing as major life influences. “I think that any community can be strong, and I think that it takes a lot of players,” O’Connor said. “I’m looking forward to being a player who brings the best out for the community and the area.”

O’Connor has worked as head writer at a weekly newspaper in Harrisonburg, Va., written a regular column at the Vail Daily, ski patrolled at Kirkwood Resort in California, fought wildland fires on a hotshot crew based in Minden, Nev., and taken journalism classes at Harvard.

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"Joe has a clean, concise writing style and a natural curiosity," Stifler said. "He will be a valuable addition to the Weekly."


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OUTLAW PARTNERS & THE BIG SKY WEEKLY P.O. Box 160250, Big Sky, MT 59716 (406) 995-2055

Table of Contents Community...4 Local News...7 Regional..10 Montana...12 Opinion...15 Sports..17 Galllery...20

Health...21 Business...22 Chamber News...27 Real Estate...28 Business Proflie...30 Classifieds...31

Outdoors...33 Gear Reviews...36 Events...38 Entertainment...40 Fun...43 Columns...45 Back 40...48





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Reckless Kelly concert benefited WMPAC

Big Sky Weekly

Used book sale raises nearly $900 for library By Kathy House

big sky weekly community library

BIG SKY – The Friends of the Library sold hundreds of used books at its annual sale at the Big Sky Country Fair this year, generating close to $900. Community members donated the books, and FOL board members organized, planned and worked the sale. Hours and hours of work go into this fundraiser.

photo by Kene Sperry/Eye in the Sky photography

Big Sky – If you've grown up watching Warren Miller ski movies or only seen one or two, chances are you've heard some of Reckless Kelly's music. About 1,000 people saw this band live on Aug. 8 at a free concert in the Big Sky Town Center. As part of their wedding reception, Sarah Phelps and Lee Griffiths opened the show up as a benefit for the Warren Miller Performing Arts Center. Anne Marie Mistretta, Secretary for Friends of Big Sky Education, reports that $453 was raised at the show for WMPAC. Lee Griffiths, owner of Landscaping for Less, underwrote the concert. “The new performing arts center is a huge addition to our community, and we were happy to have an opportunity to pair our celebration with raising money for this important community facility,” Griffiths said.

to Bozeman’s Ellen Theater. Other features of the flexible floor plan will include removable seating to add an orchestra pit, a stage that doubles as a classroom, a two-story lobby with galleries for visual arts exhibitions and an elevator for easy access to seats in the upper rows.

Watch for the ongoing FOL used book sale at the Farmer’s Market! Only two more left. The library will be closed Sept. 2 – 3 in recognition of Labor Day and resume regular hours on Sept. 4. A book drop is available outside the library doors for books and library materials that need to be dropped off during these closures. The next scheduled FOL meeting is Sept. 5 at 10 a.m. in the library. The meetings are open to the public and are a great way to meet locals. If you would like to volunteer in the library, call (406) 995-4281 ext. 205. If you would like to become a Friend of the Library, visit to and click on FOL. Big Sky Community Library hours Sunday 1 – 5 p.m. Monday 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; story time 10:30 a.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays 4 – 8 p.m.

Bears in Mountain Village

The Arts Center had planned to open two years ago, however it remains just shy of its fundraising goals in order to complete construction. The facility has walls, a roof, plumbing and mechanical, but the interior—from the seats to the stage curtain—still need to be purchased and installed. “We had definitely hoped to raise more money at the event,” Griffiths said. “Our hope [now] is that we were able to raise awareness and that we have opened the door for more donations.” For more information or to donate, email

When completed, the 282-seat WMPAC will be comparable in size

Bozeman Deaconess holds health screening in Big Sky Aug. 30 BIG SKY – Bozeman Deaconess Pharmacy at Big Sky is hosting its annual Health Screening Day in Big Sky on Thursday, Aug. 30 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Free services include blood pressure, body mass, glucose and bone density screenings. Health education materials will also be available, as will reduced-cost lab work. The Pharmacy is located across from the Big Sky Chapel in the Meadow Village Center. For more information call Bozeman Deaconess Health Information at (406) 522-1644 or go to


In the Aug. 10 issue of the Weekly we incorrectly attributed the article “Industry leaders to attend inaugural Big Sky Songwriters’ Festival.” The author was René Kraus.

4 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

This black bear was walking between the cabins at Moonlight Basin on the morning of Aug. 9, checking each porch and garage for possible food sources. Residents of the Mountain Village have also reported a black bear breaking car windows in search of food.

Historic Crail Ranch turns 110 By Anne Marie Mistretta crail ranch

BIG SKY – Happy birthday, baby! Our “baby” just turned 110. And the birthday party on Sunday, Aug. 26 from 2 – 5 p.m. at the Crail Ranch will be a blast, as we celebrate 110 years in the Meadow for the Crail Ranch. Come enjoy an old-fashioned Potluck dinner with a harvest stew cooked up by Chef Chuck Schommer at Buck’s T-4. Homemade side dishes and treats will accompany the stew. Enjoy music and relax in the company of friends and neighbors while the community celebrates one of its oldest traditions and oldest homes.

The Crail Ranch is located in the Big Sky Meadow on Spotted Elk Road. Parking is available at the Golden Eagle Lodge on Little Coyote near the Community Park. RSVP to or call (406) 993-2112. Join the fun, and bring your favorite dish to share with other folks. Shhh! Don’t tell Frank Crail. It’s a surprise! Let’s see if we can sneak up on him while he’s napping and yell, “We hear it’s your birthday! So, happy birthday to you!”

letters Coming together in time of need


Big Sky Owners!

Big Sky is such a wonderful, beautiful place that we all know very well. It’s even more beautiful when you realize how this town comes together in a time of need. I cannot thank everyone enough for everything that has been done for me after my husband Ashley Blake’s death. AshB would be so happy to know that I was taken care of by the people he also loved. I would also like to say thank you to all from AshB’s mother and family. They’re very grateful that Big Sky has helped me move forward. Sincerely and with love, Amanda Blake

Learning from tragedy As a teenager it’s important to learn from all of our experiences. The tragic incident that occurred at the Yellowstone Club a few weeks ago is no exception. If we as a community are going to move forward and learn from this incident, it’s important that the topic of drunk driving is discussed in households throughout the community.

Club at Mountain Lake Wine & Cheese Gathering Friday, August 31, 4-6pm

It’s important for every teen to have an adult in their life that they can trust to help them if they ever find themselves in a bind, such as making it home safely. I cannot imagine the pain felt by the family who lost their son who was so far away, and I think it’s important that we as a community not let this terrible tragedy go unforgotten. We must learn from it and talk about it to help prevent any such tragedy from occurring again in our community. - Stepper Hall, Haverford, Penn. Editor's Note: Parker Regan, 19, of Mendham, NJ was killed in an ATV accident at the Yellowstone Club Aug. 3. Alcohol was involved.

14 Swift Bear Residence - Cascade Highlands Open House Friday, August 31, 4-6pm

Winter & Company

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Shawna Winter 406.581.2033

Winter & Co. Welcomes

Aimee Gerharter


William Feher 406.600.0275

Lynn Milligan 406.581.2848

Lara Hobby Aimee Gerharter Marcie Hahn-Knoff 406.581.4243 406.599.4448 406.599.3530

community If you build it, they will come Big Sky now has a climbing boulder By emily stifler

big sky weekly managing editor

BIG SKY – Just ask Kevin Costner. As soon as the team at Stronghold Fabrication spread the final wood chips around Big Sky’s new artificial climbing boulder on Aug. 10, a crew of teenagers from the skate ramp walked over and swarmed up the 12-foot tall steel and cement structure. One even threw a back flip off the top. Since then, said Jessie Neal, executive director of the Big Sky Community Corp., families, kids, curious locals, and climbers out for an evening workout have all regularly visited the boulder. There is a non-technical route to the top that Neal said is perfect for young kids, and also vertical sides for intermediates and a steep overhang to challenge stronger climbers. The wood chips provide a soft landing, and a bouldering pad and climbing shoes are optional. The boulder, Neal said, should provide a way to get introduced to

rock climbing. “It’s not so scary and helps you develop the skills you need if you get out on the big rocks. It’s also a really good workout.” Big Sky local Nettie Bruener took her family to climb on the boulder after its completion. “What we totally loved about it was the different ability levels that it can accommodate,” Bruener said. The four of them do a lot of climbing together, from Gallatin Canyon to Moab, Utah, and they’re thrilled about the new rock. “Now we want to go over there all the time,” Bruener said. Stronghold Fabrication, the company that built it, also made five of the six climbing boulders in Bozeman. The Big Sky Rotary Club funded the entire boulder project, which cost $35,000. “The community actually funded it,” said Rotary President Jeff Strickler, explaining that while Rotary is paying for it, the community pitched in with fundraising events

Thank you to the Corral and staff I want to give a huge thanks to the Corral and their staff for giving me the benefit to help me start over. -Amanda Blake

Event Sponsors:

The Corral Devon White, Dave Houge Megan Gorder Karyn Mchoes The Cinnamon Lodge, Buck’s T-4 Mountain View Mercantile Big Sky Conoco The Hungry Moose M.R. Hummers Shana Langley Jewerly Grizzly Outfitters JuJu Country Market Lone Peak Cinema C&P Grocery The Halfmoon Saloon By Word of Mouth Cardinal Dixi The Woodlord Rainbow Ranch Corral Kitchen Staff Choppers The Cave The China Café Big Horn Boutique Black Bear Bugaboo Native Accents Mountain Haven Salon The Big Sky Weekly

6 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

The Korner Klub Mystery Ranch Wilson’s Video The Cabin Skylar Stakus (float trip) Scissor Bills Gereva Capital (MN Boys) Michael Haring

Silent Auction donors:

Big Sky Resort 320 Guest Ranch Mike Haring Photography Jackie Rainford J.P. Woolies Yellowstone Club.

Food Sponsors:

The Rainbow Ranch The Broken Spoke Sysco Montana Milkies Blue Moon Bakery The Corral Lone Peak Brewery Micheal Bokleman with Lone Peak Brewery The Halfmoon Saloon Lehrkins Coca Cola Harrington Pepsi M.R. Hummers

This photo was taken on Aug. 10, right after Stronghold Fabrication finished Big Sky's new artificial climbing boulder. Photo by Mary Stifler.

throughout the year. The group’s annual Gold Raffle and Auction raised $20,000, and the Rotary dipped into its reserves to cover the final $15,000, Strickler said. The Rotary has paid for other community projects in the past including a bus shelter at the bus stop in the Meadow Village and picnic tables at Kircher Park. “We wanted to do something for the community, and the park is obviously an active part of the community,” Strickler said. “The skate park was way beyond our means, and we didn’t want to fund just part of something. Jessie [Neal] suggested this.” The Rotarians are so pleased with the boulder they want to help BSCC make a boulder garden and are looking for funds to build a second, smaller rock for younger kids, Strickler said. He also wanted to credit Rotary members Dale and Gail Palmer from Nordic Hot Tub, who donated a hot tub that was raffled off at a 2011 farmers market. “That was really the seed money for this thing,” Strickler said.

The boulder, he added, looks “gorgeous.” Neal agreed. “It looks wonderful, like a big rock fell down the mountain and landed there.” She noted that BSCC plans to landscape the area and add picnic tables in the near future. Neal also repeatedly expressed gratitude for the partnership with the Rotary and its generous donation to the park. The Big Sky Rotary formed in 2003 and now has 21 members. Rotary is an international organization with more than a million members, based in Evanston, Ill. Through its local chapters, Rotary brings together citizens and business leaders to help the community. The boulder was one of two major projects this summer in the Community Park. Dreamland Skateparks is still constructing a $150,000 state-of-the art skate park a few hundred feet from the boulder that should be completed by October, Neal said. Follow BSCC and the Big Sky Rotary on Facebook at and

local news A "transformational” initiative Big Sky School District to double guidance office by barbara rowley BIG SKY – The Big Sky School District is poised to more than double the staff dedicated to guidance, professional and academic counseling services this fall, thanks to the strong conviction of the district that these are areas that have needed more attention in the past. “We’ve heard from parents and community members in our facilitated community meetings that better twoway communication between parents and the school, and more involvement of the community in the school, were strong priorities,” Superintendent Jerry House said. “Now, due to the board’s dedication and the creativity and generosity of several nonprofits, I think everyone will see us address these issues in very real, visible ways.” Starting this fall, the district has increased its budget to accommodate a full-time guidance counselor as well as a half-time coordinator dedicated to placing high school students in professional settings as part of their capstone projects. In addition, the Yellowstone Club Community Foundation is funding a half-time coordinator of the CAP Mentor program, who will coordinate the placement and matching of adult mentors with students during the school day. Finally, Women In Action, with support from the Rapier Family Foundation, will fund the Parent Liaison program in the district, a program that helps improve and streamline communication between parents, teachers

Enjoy life here!

and students. The Bozeman nonprofit, Thrive, hires and oversees the CAP and Parent Liaison coordinators; both positions are currently open. All told, the four positions more than double the guidance office staff, while only adding a little more than one halftime salary. “The additional positions will support the work our new guidance counselor Leah Johnson does with students’ academic, social and emotional lives, as well as better connect administration and teachers, and finally the community with the school,” House said. Because the new high school has a limited vocational curriculum, the Capstone coordinator will be able to fill this gap by placing students in real-world professional environments. CAP mentors will support teachers in addressing the needs of students during the school day. The Parent Liaison program will help keep teacher/parent/student communication and relationships healthy and strong. House believes the new programs and staffing will ultimately be seen as “a blessing” for all involved. By the end of next year, he predicts the school will see record involvement of community members and businesses, greater satisfaction with the school from teachers and staff, and a much-improved environment for students. “I believe in these programs,” he said. “I think this is going to be transformational.”

Where else would you rather be?!

New director of Big Sky Owners Association to start at the end of the month BIG SKY—Big Sky Owners Association announced that it has hired a new director, Suzan Scott of Helena. Scott, who is a Gallatin County native from the Gateway area, will be moving to Big Sky with her family. She will officially begin her position as director of BSOA on Aug. 29 and will be present at the BSOA meeting Friday, Aug.31 at 1 p.m. in the Talus Room of the Summit Hotel.

MSU student killed in car crash on Lone Mountain Trail BIG SKY – On Friday, Aug. 17, Karston Waarvik was killed when he drove his SUV off the road in Big Sky. Waarvik, 20, was a student at Montana State University in Bozeman. Waarvik was driving up Lone Mountain Trail near mile marker six when the accident occurred, said Trooper J.D. McMartin of the Montana Highway Patrol, who investigated the accident. Waarvik crossed the southbound lane and 47 feet of dirt shoulder before plunging off a cliff and striking a tree 70 feet below. He was declared dead at the scene.

The section of road where the accident occurred is a long straightaway; there is no guardrail above the steep embankment where the accident happened. There was no indication that Waarvik hit the brakes, and witnesses said he may have been exceeding the speed limit, according to McMartin.

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At press time, investigators were still waiting for toxicology reports to show if drugs or alcohol were involved. Waarvik was studying business at MSU and was a 2010 graduate of Glasgow High School. T.A.

Shawna Winter


William Feher 406.600.0275

Lynn Milligan 406.581.2848

Lara Hobby Aimee Gerharter Marcie Hahn-Knoff 406.581.4243 406.599.4448 406.599.3530

local news School board sets 2012/13 agenda Class is back in session Sept. 5 By renae counter

big sky weekly editorial assistant

BIG SKY – Hot topics at the Aug. 14 Big Sky School Board meeting included changes to the upcoming 2012/13 school year curriculum, refinancing the school building bonds, increase in enrollment, sports, and building progress the new Warren Miller Performing Arts Center. The school board is looking to refinance bonds on its buildings, which would consolidate the payments into one and save taxpayers approximately $300,000. The board passed a vote to have D.A. Davidson & Co. handle the bond refinancing. Enrollment at the school is up this year, with 237 students for the 2012/13 school year. With a steady increase in enrollment, the board predicted that number will grow to 270 within the next two or three years. Teachers have been hard at work this summer revamping curriculum on subjects such as English,

American government and history, chemistry, art, and the new environmental science program, which the board is “very excited about.” Some new classes include Graphic Design, American History and Film. Both volleyball and football are already underway. At the time of the meeting, the football team had 14 players with the anticipation of gaining two more. The volleyball team had 10 members and also anticipated gaining another two. This year the school will have a Spirit Week and Homecoming Dance following the Homecoming Football game on Saturday, Oct. 6. The game will be at 1 p.m., Big Horns vs. Hot Springs. Lastly, the board voted to resume construction on the new Warren Miller Performing Arts Center, which was halted in 2009. The next school board meeting will be Tuesday, Aug. 28 at 4 p.m. in the school library.

Big Sky Weekly

Big Sky XC is Aug. 25 – 26 By joe miller montana xc

BIG SKY – The West Hare Scrambles Championship won’t be decided until the checkered flag waves Sunday afternoon, Aug. 26, at the fourth annual Big Sky XC. Big Sky’s weekend long event is the final round of the Western Hare Scrambles, an off-road motorcycle racing series put on by the American Motorcycle Association. With 27 race classes competing, there will be plenty to watch all weekend. Leading into the pro race, Canada’s Cory Graffunder holds a slight points lead over California’s Justin Bonita. The recently crowned 2012 AMA East Hare Scrambles Champion, Jed Haines of Fairfield, Penn. also recently confirmed for the Big Sky XC Pro class. That means this is the first time in four years that top-level pro racers from the Eastern and Western hare scramble divisions are competing against each other. When the AMA split its Hare Scrambles Championship into two regions in 2008, it set up a “shootout” event that

same year in Oklahoma, where racers from across the country could go headto-head. But it only happened once, and since then, no hare scramble has hosted the top east and west racers. Now, the Big Sky XC is filling that gap, having become an informal revival of the AMA East/West shootout. Regardless of who’s leading the threehour pro race, many eyes will be on Jaines, Graffunder and Bonita. Look for Haines’s—his bike will have a red number plate with 1E, signifying his East region championship. The 2008 Shootout champion, Jason Raines of Travelers Rest, S.C. will also be in attendance. Raines won’t be racing, but instead will be focused on his duties as team manager for the Obermeyer Yamaha/Raines Racing University team, Haines’s sponsor. And when the checkered flag flies, the champion from each class will be decided—headed to the national championship ceremony at the year-end AMA awards banquet in Las Vegas. Whoever finishes first will have bragging rights.

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8 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

Creighton Block Rob Akey Greg Alexander Jim Barrett Susan Blackwood Diana Brady Lynn Cain Todd Connor Tom Dean

John DeMott Jerral Derr yberr y Flavia Eckholm Edd Enders Thomas English Howard Friedland Mark Gibson Don Grant

Mimi Grant Frank Hagel Ott Jones Harr y Koyama David Lemon Asha MacDonald Mike Patterson Paula Pearl

Jacqueline Rieder Hud Gar y Lynn Rober ts Daniel San Souci Deb Schmit Laurie Stevens Ezra Tucker Shirle Wempner


You are invited to an opening reception for well-known Texas ar tist, Jer r al Der r yber r y Fr iday, August 31 from 4:00 - 7:00 pm A RTIS T PROF ILE Jerral Derr yberr y grew up in small towns in Texas, Colorado and West Virginia. His formal education was in architecture, having earned his Bachelor of Architecture degree from University of Texas at Austin. The training he received in architectural illustration techniques, casein, gouache and watercolor gave him the means to work his way through college and also were the first steps toward his future as a fine ar tist. In the 80’s through the late 90’s, he relocated to Taos and Santa Fe New Mexico, where he concentrated his effor ts on studying the oil painting techniques of the great New Mexico impressionist masters. It was during this period that he began painting primarily plein air subjects and selling his paintings in galleries, juried

Jerral Derr yberr y “The Deadwood Stage”



shows and exhibitions.

4 0 6- 9 9 3 - 9 4 0 0


Ar twork also displayed at Outlaw Par tners and Lone Mountain Ranch Dining Room


Big Sky Weekly

Gallatin County sees rise in percentage of college graduates by Bill Bishop and Roberto Gallardo

adults had attained some post high school education without earning a college diploma. That level of education was close to the national average of 28.1 percent.

GALLATIN COUNTY – Gallatin County has experienced a brain gain in the last 40 years, joining the rest of the country in what has been a massive increase in the number of adults who have earned college degrees.

Only 4.0 percent of the adult population in Gallatin County had failed to graduate from high school in 2010. Nationally, 15 percent of adults had not completed high school; in Montana, the rate was 9.0 percent.

According to a report done by the Center for Rural Strategies, 20.8 percent of Gallatin County residents over age 25 earned college degrees in 1970. By 2010, 45.0 percent of adults in the county had completed college—a significantly higher number than both the statewide and national averages.

Mark Partridge, a rural economist at Ohio State University, says that regional differences in college graduation rates have increased in recent years. Through his studies, Partridge has found rural counties and counties with small cities in the South and West didn’t fare as well as those in the Midwest and Northeast in attracting college graduates.

The number of adults in the U.S. with college degrees has nearly tripled since 1970, when only 10.7 percent of adults had graduated from college. But the percentage of adults with degrees in counties with small cities, such as Gallatin County, while increasing, has generally fallen behind the proportion of college-educated residents in urban counties.

The problem of keeping college graduates in rural America is a national issue and one that is also enduring.

The loss of young, well-educated residents has posed a long-standing difficulty for rural communities, but the good news for rural America is that it has caught up in every other measure of education. In 1970, 7.8 percent of adults in rural counties had some education after high school, but less than a college degree. By 2010, 27.4 percent of rural

University of Missouri economist Judith Stallmann said this is a reflection of the kinds of jobs generally available in rural communities. If there are fewer jobs demanding college degrees in a community, there are likely to be fewer college graduates. Therefore, Stallman says, students don’t think about coming home once they leave for the university, and their absence diminishes the chances that additional higher-education jobs will be created.

Nationally, rural counties and counties with small cities have caught up with urban counties in the percentage of adults who have some post high school education. Stallmann sees this as a sign that “there are perhaps more jobs in rural areas that require post secondary education but not college.” Both Stallmann and Partridge said the data on college education rates told them that rural communities should consider the kind of jobs being created locally. “Rural communities may need to think about the types of jobs being created,” Stallmann said. “There are some communities that are doing things like getting local businesses to put an emphasis on hiring local kids who got a college education." “It really suggests that rural communities that aren't thinking about making themselves attractive to educated people are going to suffer,” Partridge said. Bill Bishop is co-editor of the Daily Yonder, an online news publication covering rural America published by the nonpartisan, nonprofit organization, the Center for Rural Strategies. Roberto Gallardo is an assistant extension professor at the Southern Rural Development Center at Mississippi State University.






B I G S K YA R T S . O R G 10 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012


Team Toon wins fifth annual Hebgen Lake trout cook-off HEBGEN – Kirkwood Resort and Marina hosted the fifth annual Trout Cook-Off Saturday, Aug. 18. The event was designed to showcase trout fishing and fun on Hebgen Lake. It also included live music by singer/ songwriter Suzi Ragsdale of Nashville, Tenn., lakeside yoga and Zumba, a sailboat regatta, fly casting lessons, kayak rides with Lava Creek Adventures, and beer tasting from Bozeman Brewing Company. The new Hebgen Lake Yacht Club also held its second annual Hebgen Cup Regatta the same day. As always, the highlight was tasting the trout entries prepared by competing chefs. The two judges, Ragsdale and the Kitchen Guy, Chef Jim Gray, were presented each of the entries to score before the tasting was opened up to the 250 people anxiously waiting to enjoy the variety. The winning team in both the judged contest and the people’s choice voting,

for the second year in a row, was Team Toon from Cameron, for their Pontoon Peppers. Second place again this year were the Burden Boys from West Yellowstone, with their Boneless Trout Nuggets. Additional entries included bacon, trout and pepper pizza; smoked trout; trout with green apple dill sauce; Jamaican spankin’; and baked stuffed trout with slaw. Most were made from fish caught in Hebgen this summer. The cook-off is held the third Saturday of August every year. Next year’s event will be Aug. 17. The prize money comes from donations for tasting and a dessert auction also held that night. Half the money goes into a fund for conservation projects on Hebgen Lake, and half goes toward increasing the prizes for the cook-off. For more information, contact Pam Sveinson at or Abby Majerus at abbymajerus@, or call Kirkwood Resort at (406) 646-7200.

Skyline and Karst Stage offer new bus line to West Yellowstone Service began Aug. 20 BOZEMAN – Skyline Bus and its operating partner, Karst Stage, are now providing a daily shuttle to Big Sky and West Yellowstone from the Bozeman and Belgrade areas, including the Bozeman airport. The service started Aug. 20. The new line—which runs twice daily, year round—will replace the once-daily trip Karst Stage offered to West Yellowstone during the winter only. The service will operate on a fixed schedule by demand-response. This means the bus will not run unless someone schedules a ride in advance, but if a trip is running, walk-ups will be accepted. Pick-up and drop-off will include many locations in Bozeman, Belgrade,

Big Sky and West Yellowstone. The primary pick-up and drop-off locations are the Rimrock Depot, most motels in Bozeman, motels and the airport in Belgrade, the Town Center bus stop in Big Sky, and the Chamber of Commerce in West Yellowstone. Skyline also runs the Link Express between Bozeman and Big Sky, and a local Big Sky service. Rides on the West Yellowstone service can be scheduled by contacting Karst Stage at (406) 556-3544 or online, at For more information on the schedule, fees and payment options visit

More Results Selling more real estate than any other firm in Big Sky for the second year running.

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Big Sky Weekly


Op-ed: The power of business and education partnerships By Denise Juneau

Montana Superintendent of Public Instruction

Helena– Last month, at the first-ever Graduation Matters Montana Summit, business and community leaders joined school districts from 30 communities to focus on improving student achievement and graduation rates in Montana. These business and community partners have stepped up because they understand that each of us has a role to play in supporting student success and that public education directly impacts Montana's economic future. Business leaders from State Farm Insurance, First Interstate Bank, Mountain West Broadcasting and PRO Outfitters discussed how educators and businesses can work together to support students and our economy. Businesses can help students make the connection between what they learn in school and the skills they need in the work force. They encouraged educators to tap into their local businesses for job shadowing opportunities, internships and classroom presentations. They also discussed the importance of educators and businesses working together to help make students aware of the variety of jobs available in our state. Our business leaders are looking for workers not only with academic skills but also critical thinking and communication skills, creativity, adaptability, resilience and the ability to work in teams.

In order for Graduation Matters Montana to be successful, entire communities need to work together. The economic future of our state depends on a quality public education system. As Montana citizens, we must get involved in supporting the students who will lead our state into the future.

The economic future of our state depends on a quality public education system. As Montana citizens, we must get involved in supporting the students who will lead our state into the future. Today's students are your future customers, employees, taxpayers, board members, parents and community leaders. If we don't provide them with a quality education, and opportunities to explore careers and seek out mentors, and encourage them to go on to college or skills training programs, we won't have the bright future that all of us want for our state. More and more, our kids are going to need training after high school to compete for jobs in the 21st century economy. By 2018, more than 60 percent of jobs are going to require training and education beyond high school. Compare that to 1973, when only 28 percent of jobs required

education after high school. Workers in Montana who didn't finish high school are making on average $9 per hour, while college graduates make on average $17 per hour. We cannot expect to have a booming economy on $9 per hour wages. The changing demands of our economy require greater collaboration between K – 12 schools, colleges and universities, and businesses. I commend the school districts who have signed on to become Graduation Matters communities. They’re committing to take a hard look at their data, be open with their communities about their challenges, open their doors to new partnerships, and embrace the hard work of graduating every student prepared for college and the work force. Montana students are capable of developing the skills necessary to succeed in a global economy. We need to challenge them, provide them with opportunities for relevant, engaging classes and work experiences, and allow them to rise to the challenge. Students are asking us for these opportunities and these relationships. I challenge Montana's business community to seek out ways they can be involved in local and statewide Graduation Matters efforts and continue to make a difference in the lives of students in their communities. For ideas of ways to support students and a list of current Graduation Matters communities, visit


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montana Senate hearing: Fire planning could learn from floods By deborah courson smith big sky connection

BOZEMAN – With fires burning in Montana and throughout the West this season, some researchers suggest that thinking about fires in the same way we think about floods could be helpful. Just as there are floodplains near rivers, some areas could be seen as "fire plains" for their wildfire risks. The idea—to either limit development in those areas or make sure it's done in the safest possible ways—was proposed on Aug. 15 at a U.S. Senate hearing at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Dr. Tony Cheng, director of the Forest Restoration Institute, offers this perspective:

"Whether or not we continue to build and live in the mountains just isn't the question. I think people are always going to want to do that. It then becomes, 'Well, how do we do that the way that minimizes the impacts?' " Cheng cautions that even with advance knowledge of fire-prone areas, wildfires aren't as easy to predict as are floods. "Fires can occur just about anywhere, and we don't know where the point of initiation is going to be. We don't know how it's going to spread. It's all going to be very weather-dependent." The "fire plain" research originated in Texas, another state that has seen its share of devastating wildfires.

Tourism e-marketing grants available for Montana tourism businesses HELENA – The Montana Office of Tourism is now offering e-marketing grants to help tourism-related businesses improve their marketing position within the industry. For fiscal year 2013, the total amount of funding is $150,000. There is no set number of grant awards that may be made in a fiscal year. The grant application deadline is Dec. 14, and grant awards will be announced on or around Feb. 1, 2013. For more information, contact Carol Crockett at (406) 8412796 or Applications are available at

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Big Sky Weekly

Coalition of NPS retirees oppose allowing more snowmobiles in Yellowstone Group submits letter to park superintendent in support of alternative to phase out snowmobiles The Coalition of National Park Service Retirees

WASHINGTON, D.C – Despite assurances by Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Dan Wenk and other National Park Service leaders that the park will be “cleaner and quieter,” the NPS has indicated that it will support a winter use plan that could more than double the number of snowmobiles currently operating in Yellowstone. “The NPS is proposing to make a bad situation at Yellowstone even worse,” said Maureen Finnerty, chair of the Executive Council of Coalition of National Park Service Retirees. “We are bewildered about this proposal after seven previous environmental reviews resulted in a major federal court decision ruling that NPS was not following its own legal and policy mandates in managing snowmobile use in the park in the winter.” Finnerty pointed out that Wenk acknowledged that the current average of about 200 snowmobiles operating daily in Yellowstone are “dirtier and noisier” than those five years ago. However, she said, “Superintendent Wenk, in a

complicated scenario of ‘transportation events,’ proposes to allow up to 480 snowmobiles per day to enter the park for the next five years—levels not seen there for nearly a decade.” The NPS proposal asserts that air quality impacts in Yellowstone would be “moderate” and air quality would improve relative to the “National Ambient Air Quality Standards.” However, the Clean Air Act, under which Yellowstone is designated as a “Class I Area” does not use NAAQS as its criteria—the act states that air quality will be “the best possible” in Class I areas. NPS’s plan does not meet that standard. Another CNPSR member, Deny Galvin, was deputy director of the National Park Service 10 years ago. At that time, Galvin says, the snowmobile industry promised to produce cleaner and quieter machines. “I can tell you that the trust has been broken. Instead of working to enhance the snowmobiles to make them quieter and cleaner, they’ve actually cut production of those that meet the existing environmental standards in the park.”

CNPSR asserts that the park service’s plan is more impacting on Yellowstone’s resources than any of the other three alternatives listed in the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement/winter use plan released on June 29, 2012. CNPSR supports Alternative 3, which would allow current levels of motorized oversnow vehicles to operate until the 2017-2018 season, after which all snowcoaches would have to meet “best available technology requirements and could increase to 120 per day with a corresponding decrease in snowmobile numbers to zero during a three-year phase-out period.” According to Finnerty, this is the only proposal that meets current NPS legal and policy mandates and is shown by scientific analysis and resource monitoring to reduce impacts on park resources. “Moreover, it is what 80 percent of the nearly 1 million members of the American public who have commented in previous environmental reviews have said about how they want Yellowstone to be managed in the winter.”

Delivering quality at a great

The park service’s own analysis shows that in emissions per visitor, snowcoaches in the current Yellowstone fleet are 2 to 5 times less polluting than current models of snowmobiles operating in the Park, Galvin said. “It confirms that Alternative 3 will phase to a “snow coach only” operation [and] is the cleaner, quieter, simpler course of action and can result in an increase in winter visitation to this wonderful Park. They should adopt it. Yellowstone deserves it.” The Coalition of National Park Service Retirees has more than 830 members, all of whom are former NPS employees. The group and its members speak out for national park solutions “that uphold law and apply sound science.” The Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement/winter use plan is now closed to public comment. Have a differient opinion? Send us a letter or an opinion column to


NorthWestern Energy is beginning construction on a multi-year, multi-million dollar project to upgrade electric transmission capacity and reliability in the Gallatin County. The company is replacing the existing 69 kilovolt transmission line between Four Corners and Big Sky with a 161 kilovolt line in order meet the growing demands of the local economy and customer base. The current line is operating at full capacity during peak times and the $35 million investment is necessary to improve reliability and plan for future growth in the area. Construction on the 35 mile project will be conducted in three phases. The first phase, a 12-mile stretch between the Four Corners Substation to just north of Spanish Creek will begin on August 20. The second and third phases will be constructed once the company receives the requisite approvals from the US Forest Service. At last notice, the federal government’s release of the draft Environmental Impact Statement has been delayed to May 2013. NorthWestern Energy appreciates the constructive relationship that it has established with participating landowners and pledges that its contractors will respect their property during and after construction. Minimal traffic disruptions may be possible later this fall between Four Corners and the mouth of Gallatin Canyon. As we move through the construction period, NorthWestern Energy will continue to provide more detailed and timely information to affected landowners and customers. To learn more about the project, visit the Utility Projects section at Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 15






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We have access to opportunities at Yellowstone Club, The Club at Spanish Peaks, Meadow & Mountain Villages, Moonlight Basin and the Canyon Tallie Jamison Ryan Kulesza 406.600.8081 406.539.4666 This information is based upon information which we consider reliable, but because it has been supplied by third parties, we cannot represent that it is accurate or complete, and should not be relied upon as such. These offerings are subject to errors, omissions, and changes including price or withdrawal without notice. All rights reserved. Sotheby’s International Realty is a licensed trademark to Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates Inc. An equal opportunity company. Equal Housing Opportunity. Each office is independently owned and operated.

Section 2:

sports, health and business

Big Sky Weekly

Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 Volume 3 // Issue No. 17

Football Sept. 1 - Home vs Augusta 1:00 pm Sept. 8 - Home vs Two Eagle River 1:00 pm Sept. 14 - Away @ St Regis 7:00 pm. Bus departs at 12:00 noon. Sept. 22 - Home vs Alberton 1:00 pm Sept. 29 - Away @ W Yellowstone 1:00 pm. Bus departs at 1:00 pm Oct. 6 - Home vs Hot Springs 1:00 pm HOMECOMING Oct. 13 - Away @ Lima 2:00 pm. Bus departs at 6:30 am (due to early start time of OMS Football game). Oct. 20 - Home vs Billings Christian 1:00 pm Senior Day Oct. 27 - First Round State Playoffs – location TBD Nov. 17 - State Championship Game – location TBD Nov. 26-30 - Awards Banquet week – day & time TBD

volleyball Aug. 25 - Away @ Sheridan Invitational 9:00 am. Bus departs at 6:00 am

Aug. 29 - Home vs White Sulphur Springs 4:30 pm (date & time change) Sept. 6 - Away @ Manhattan Christian 7:00 pm. Bus departs at 5:00 pm Sept. 7 - Home vs Harrison/Willow Creek 7:00 pm Sept. 13 - Home vs Bozeman 7:00 pm Sept. 14 - Home vs Sheridan (DOUBLE MATCH) 4:00pm Sept. 20 - Away @ Gardiner 6:00pm. Bus departs at 2:45 pm Sept. 22 - Home vs. Ennis 4:30 pm Sept. 29 - Away @ White Sulphur Springs 7:00 pm. Bus departs at 3:30 pm Oct. 5 - Away @ Twin Bridges 4:00 pm. Bus departs at 12:30 pm Oct. 6 - Home vs Shields Valley 5:00 pm - HOMECOMING Oct. 12 - Home vs West Yellowstone (DOUBLE MATCH) 5:30 pm Oct. 17 - Away @ Lima (DOUBLE MATCH) 5:30 pm. Bus departs at 1:15 pm Oct. 24-27 - 2013 Volleyball District Tournament, MAC Center, Butte Oct.29- Nov. 3 - 2013 Volleyball Divisional Tournament, location TBD Nov. 8 - 10 - 2013 Volleyball State Tournament, Bozeman MSU Nov. 26-30 - Volleyball Awards Banquet – day & time TBD Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 17 Photo by Mike Coil

Big Sky Weekly


Hillbilly Huckers win Big Sky Softball league championship

LPHS teams practicing on Aug. 21

Photos by Renae Counter

Lone Peak High football and volleyball preparing for the 2012/13 season By renae counter

big sky weekly editorial assistant

BIG SKY – The Lone Peak High School football and volleyball teams are hard at work preparing for their second season ever. Both teams are anticipating a competitive, exciting and fun year.

Photo by Mike Martins

Seed 1 Hucker 15-0 Seed 2 Country Market 12-2 Seed 3 Eye in the Sky 13-2 Seed 4 Black Bear 11-4 Seed 5 Scissorbills 10-4 Seed 6 Beavers 9-6 Seed 7 Milkies 8-7

“Football is off to a great start,” said Lone Peak athletic director Tony Beardsley. “Already they [the players] are five weeks ahead of where they were last season.” Volleyball is also off to a great start, with a “cohesive staff and group of girls,” Beardsley said. “They’ve really come a long way from last year.” Find the season schedule for both teams on the previous page, and don’t miss out on a thrilling sports season.

Seed 8 Cab Lizards 8-7 Seed 9 First Place/Cabin 6-9 Seed 10 Broken Spoke 4-11 Seed 11 Big Sky Christian Fellowship 2-13 Seed 12 Lone Peak Brewery 2-13 Seed 13 Big Sky Resort 2-13 Seed 14 Connecticut Softball Club 3-12

Congratulations to Dugout Daycare, the team for its second place finish in the co-ed C state tournament, Aug. 18-19 in Helena. The team’s sponsors were Big Sky Conoco, Big Sky Landscaping and A&W of Bozeman.

Domestic abuse in sports toward women? Perhaps in the cases of Bryant and Roethlisberger, the two stars were truly innocent. However, if public opinion can sway people over petty crimes such as stealing a laptop in college (Panthers QB Cam Newton), being arrogant and saying the wrong thing in press conferences (Seahawks WR Terrell Owens), or accepting gifts from boosters (Dolphins RB Reggie Bush), then why do we dismiss allegations of violence towards women?

By Brandon Niles

Big sky weekly sports columnist

The court of public opinion seems to be a little lenient in professional sports when it comes to domestic violence. Fans harshly criticize players for everything from drunk driving to academic integrity. Michael Vick is perhaps one of the most hated athletes in the world for his role in a dog fighting scandal in 2007. Yet, domestic violence is often brushed off. Other women’s rights issues are also often disregarded. NBA star Kobe Bryant still has a massive global fan base, despite being accused of sexual assault in 2003. Those charges were dismissed in 2004 and Bryant’s popularity seemed to suffer only slightly in the aftermath. Tiger Woods is arguably more chastised after being exposed for cheating on his wife consensually with multiple mistresses in 2009. NFL quarterback Ben Roethlisberger has twice been accused of sexual assault. Though Roethlisberger was never formally charged in either case, he has maintained his popularity despite the allegations. Is there something about sports stars that makes them immune from criticism when it comes to violence

After years of seeing star players such as Jason Kidd, Manny Ramirez and James Harrison become involved in domestic violence scandals with little to no public relations fallout, it’s difficult not to be saddened by the seemingly absent perspective of fans in regard to the issue. It’s because of this absence I currently applaud the Miami Dolphins, and most importantly, “Basketball Wives” star Evelyn Lozada. Recently, Miami Dolphins WR and former Bengal Pro Bowler Chad Johnson was arrested for assaulting Lozada, his wife of less than a month-and-ahalf. Johnson allegedly head-butted Lozada and was arrested Aug. 11 on a misdemeanor domestic violence charge. Since his arrest, the fallout has been remarkable. Johnson was hoping to reignite his career after a disappointing season with the Patriots in 2011. Additionally, he was a common sight on the HBO hit documentary “Hard Knocks,” which follows the training camp each year of an NFL team. Despite the opportunities in front of him, Johnson was released from the team shortly after his arrest. The Dolphins said that the release was due to a poor fit with the team, but it’s hard not to notice the timing of his departure.

18 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

Shortly after, Lozada filed for divorce. All of these events occurred over the course of a week, and now Johnson is left grasping for another chance in the NFL. Johnson has always been controversial due to his pranks with the media and in the locker room, his antics on the field, and his seemingly endless pursuit of media attention. He once changed his name to Chad Ochocinco, in honor of his jersey number 85. He has always been known as a loudmouth, diva receiver, especially during his Pro Bowl years in Cincinnati from 2001 to 2010. However, Johnson hadn’t been involved in previous criminal activity. Perhaps Johnson will get another chance, but the public perception of him has definitely changed dramatically. This could be because Lozada is a star, and because she moved swiftly to make a statement and file for divorce. This could be a result of the exposure Johnson has received on “Hard Knocks.” For whatever the reason, domestic violence has taken its proper place at the forefront of public opinion because of this incident. While I feel for Lozada and I hope that this was an isolated incident Johnson will never repeat, I’m encouraged by the attention this issue is getting in the wake of this horrible event. Hopefully this will be a turning of public opinion, and athletes who abuse women will soon be viewed in the dim light they deserve to be seen in. Brandon Niles has done online freelance writing about the NFL since 2007. His articles range from NFL news to team-specific commentary. A Communication Studies graduate student at the University of North Carolina Greensboro, Niles is also an avid Miami Dolphins fan, which has led to his becoming an avid Scotch whisky fan over the past decade.

Big Sky Weekly


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Wildsmith Photography

Big Sky Weekly

Richard Smith shot the cover photo for this issue of the Big Sky Weekly.

By emily stifler

big sky weekly managing editor

Richard Smith grew up on a dairy farm in New York and left home when he was 18. “The only thing I knew is that I didn't want to milk cows anymore,” he said. Richard landed at Rocky Mountain College in Billings and spent five years studying music. Since then he’s worked as a carpenter, a cabinetmaker, a timber framer, a folk singer and a naturalist. Now 65, Richard is an accomplished wildlife and landscape photographer. He lives in Four Corners with his wife Barbara and runs his business, Wildsmith Photography, with his son, the Emmy award-winning cinematographer Zebediah Smith. The two men will be filming in Montana for several days as the first part of a PBS pilot series that Zebediah is producing.

Confluence of the Lamar River and Soda Butte Photo by Richard Smith

The show, Journeyman, is an adventure documentary project that will follow modern pilgrims seeking “to live out the answer to a burning question,” according to its website. This first one will follow Zebediah on a pack trip into the Montana backcountry, and then through Yellowstone, where Richard will guide the film crew. “It’s about a renewal of his love for the West,” Richard said. Zebediah’s work for the PBS show Travelscope has taken him around the world, from South Africa to Easter Island to the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast in British Columbia. He told the Weekly last summer that Montana is as close to a home base as he has. “It’s one of the places I go back to find inspiration. When you go out in Montana to that true wilderness and can find peace of mind, the rushing world [fades] away. When I’m traveling I try to think back to those moments in those places where I’m centered.” Richard said their art has grown together. “It’s almost like we’re one person a lot of times.”

Words from Richard My uncle found an ad in a magazine for a little college in Billings, Rocky Mountain College. It was July and they still had some openings. My ears perked up, my eyes opened, up. I said ‘wow, Montana. I always wanted to go out West. I had a horse when I was a kid, and I thought it would be fun to work on a ranch. I worked as a cowhand east of Billings for a spell. I spent close to five years [at Rocky], majored in music, but never graduated because I failed to meet all the required courses. I took a lot of things that sounded fun, and when the guidance people informed me I wasn’t going to get a degree I up and left. I was married with a little baby girl. We went up into the Beartooths, went to Yellowstone, to Jackson Hole. We spent a lot of time wandering around down there, and then we went back East to live for a few years, then on to Colorado, and finally ‘home’ to Montana. Like the man said, "I wasn’t born here but I got here as soon as I could". [My wife Barbara] graduated from Naropa University [in Colorado] and became a Buddhist. I haven’t taken

my vows like she did, but if nothing else I’m probably [Buddhist, too]. Buddhism is not a religion. It’s just a way of living, thinking and seeing life. It's more spirituality than religion. One could be a Christian or a Muslim or have any other religious belief and still be a Buddhist. What I’ve found is that it’s really important to take time out even daily to just sit, and meditate by a river or out in a meadow or high mountain. That’s where I get my balance. [We] need that because we’re now more than ever so inundated and bombarded with information than ever, all day, every day. I have one photo of this bull elk, a 7-by-7 bull (the cover shot), during the rut in late September or early October. I’d been shooting him for several hours and actually got some images of him fighting with another huge bull. He was fully aware of me and was only about 150 feet away. I don't know what changed, but he was suddenly fed up with me. It was almost like he said, ‘dude, you’ve been here long enough. You got enough shots. Go away.’ He charged me, and I picked up my tripod and my lens and I ran behind a tree. I have the shot right before he charged. He was facing me, his front paw is up off the ground, his head is back, his ears are back, his nostrils are flared. If you stop, sit down and spend a couple of hours, you get to know a place. Sometimes I close my eyes and feel where the breeze is coming from. And there’s all kind of smells. If you dig around in the earth, there’s a musky smell. In the fall there’s rotting leaves—you can lie down in them and cover yourself. In spring, the high mountain meadows are [full of] flowers. Winter brings cold crisp days of soft snow like eider down covering the landscape. If you do that as a photographer, you experience your surroundings as a wild creature, it becomes part of who you are. You’re photographing from that place, as a participant not just a traveler wandering through. And people sense that when they look at a photo. Sometimes I don't even photograph, I just take it home with me. Photography is an outgrowth of the fact that I love to be out in nature—in the mountains, the meadows, out on the plains, and on farms and ranches where life is part of nature. I wanted to have some record of those experiences.

A cottonwood and grass meadow in summer that Smith loves to visit.

20 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

Photo by Richard Smith

health & wellness

Big Sky Weekly

Ask Dr. Dunn By maren dunn

big sky weekly health writer

Should I be worried about West Nile Virus? How will I know if I have it? West Nile Virus, named for the location of its initial identification in Uganda in 1937, has become alarmingly prevalent in recent years in the U.S. So far this year, 43 states have reported a total of 693 cases of illness in humans, 26 of which have resulted in death. However, only two cases have been reported

in Montana, and these were Phillips and Sheridan counties in the eastern part of the state. The virus is transmitted primarily by mosquitos, and it can infect birds and other animals, as well. Warm and wet conditions, especially in the southern U.S., are considered the culprit for this year’s increase in cases. West Nile Virus has three outcomes in humans: 80 percent of infections cause no symptoms; 20 percent

cause flu-like symptoms of fever, headache, body aches, nausea, vomiting, enlarged lymph nodes and sometimes a rash; and less than 1 percent cause severe symptoms like weakness, numbness, confusion, paralysis, headache and neck pain. These severe symptoms can lead to life-threatening neurologic complications that require immediate medical attention. The milder symptoms usually clear on their own in a matter of days to weeks. Ultimately, a blood test can confirm if West Nile Virus is the offender. The best way to protect against West Nile Virus is to prevent mosquito bites. Using insect repellent is helpful. Also, staying indoors or wearing long sleeves and pants at dawn and dusk is a good idea. It’s extremely important to drain or change water from places like bird baths, tire swings, wading pools, animal dishes and flower pots where mosquitos could breed.

West Nile virus (WNV) activity reported to ArboNET, by state, United States, 2012 (as of Aug. 14, 2012)

If you’re concerned you may have West Nile Virus, see a medical provider as soon as possible for evaluation.

Maren Dunn, D.O., is owner of Gallatin Family Medicine, a medical clinic in the Big Sky Meadow Village. Have a question? Email her at courtesy of

New wellness center opening in Big Sky Combines various healing practices under one roof By renae counter

big sky weekly editorial assistant

BIG SKY – Wellness and healing are essential to maintaining a life balance, especially in Big Sky, where many live an active and fast-paced lifestyle. Callie Stolz is opening a new wellness center in Big Sky to address this need. Located above Gallatin Alpine Sports, Santosha Wellness Center will offer acupuncture, chiropractic, Ayurvedic healing, massage therapy and various classes such as yoga, dance, pilates and a drum circle. Santosha will be a place for “like-minded practitioners who are geared toward some aspect of healing to practice under one roof,” Stolz said. Stolz, who has lived in Montana for 16 years, found her passion for yoga and holistic healing after a snowboarding accident and winning a battle with cancer. She has since studied yoga, massage and other healing methods around the world, including in Thailand and India. Most recently she became certified as a Clinical Ayurvedic Specialist at the California College of Ayurveda. Ayurveda is the oldest form of written natural medicine, Stolz said. A holistic healing process, it

focuses on an individual’s specific needs through small lifestyle changes, diet and herb medicines that can result in a big shift in overall health. To approach this type of healing, Stolz said, “someone would come in [to Santosha] for a two-hour initial consultation. History, [daily] activity, how they sleep, what they eat, how their body functions on a day-to-day basis would all be discussed to create a report of findings to illustrate where their imbalances are originating and try to correct those imbalances.” Stolz would then give recommendations about natural medicines, herbal supplements, vitamins and lifestyle changes to help make a patient healthier and “make the changes stick.” Along with Ayurveda, Stolz will also provide yoga classes and massage therapy, including Thai Massage, which is a combination of yoga and massage that encourages energy movement throughout the body. Several other health professionals will also work at Santosha. Carissa Hill is a licensed acupuncturist, Chinese herbalist and licensed massage therapist. She uses a Japanese technique utilizing

smaller needles to clear the body and get energy moving, combined with a more aggressive approach targeted toward people with orthopedic problems, Stolz said. Chiropractor Mark Nimmo, a third generation chiropractor with 10 years of experience, uses many different modalities to work on an individual’s specific needs. Linda Wilton is a licensed massage therapist uses a variety of techniques and especially enjoys working with athletes. Locals Jill Jackson, Jolene Budeski, Anna Holder, Linda Wilkens, Callie Stolz, and Hannah Johansson will all teach a variety of classes including a wide selection of yoga classes. More teachers and classes are yet to be announced. There will also be workshops on subjects such as meditation, yoga and nutrition. Stolz also plans to sell herbs, supplements, books, vitamins and local artisan products. Santosha Wellness Center will be open for business Aug. 27, and a grand opening on Sept. 9, with an open house, yoga classes, and a taste of the center’s offerings for the public. Find more information at Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 21


Big Sky Weekly

Planning to plan Resort tax board makes strategic plan By tyler allen

big sky weekly staff writer

BIG SKY – The Big Sky Resort Tax Board has a big responsibility to the community it serves, and it spent two days in August identifying how to make the most of that. The board met on Aug. 8 and 9 to strategize ways to better serve the Big Sky community and allocate resort tax money effectively. The RTB board members are Les Loble, Jamey Kabisch, Ginna Hermann, Mike Scholz and Jeff Strickler, and all five attended both of the full-day meetings. A hired consultant, Buz Davis, of Davis and Associates, facilitated the meetings, which were open to the public and actually functioned more like a series of working sessions. Davis spends winters in Big Sky and works as a consultant around the country, bringing groups and organizations together. He interviewed individual RTB board members before the meetings and outlined the current situation as he saw it. All the pre-work Davis did was pro-bono.

“I have never worked with a group quite like this,” Davis said at the start of the Aug. 8 meeting. “There is not a lot of dialog between the community and the resort.” The desire of the board to serve the community was obvious, he noted, and the election of three new board members—Kabisch, Scholz and Strickler—offered a “perfect time to stop and examine the future of community needs and processes in place.” On Aug. 8, Davis reflected on an interview with one board member who said, “I felt totally alone in there,” during the appropriations meeting. Echoing that sentiment, board member Jeff Strickler said during the Aug. meeting that, “It was frustrating the priorities [of appropriations] were decided in the final meetings instead of ahead of time.” Davis talked about the diversity of complementary skills on the board that help with the review process, and about the commitment that a volunteer board such as this inherently has. He observed the board’s overall

desire to be proactive in exploring the best ways to engage the community in setting its own future direction. “It comes from living in a small community,” Strickler said. “People know what you’re doing before you do it.” “You can’t do your best work without the public,” Scholz added. Tax board attorney Mona Jamison brought up a potential bond statute as a way for the board to make a longterm difference. “The board can have a vision with reserves, but in two years a new board could change its mind. [However] if a bond statute is passed, it’s the only way to commit long-term funds.” Jamison went on to observe that Big Sky is a unique community—maybe even one of a kind in the U.S. “This is a rare thing that an unincorporated area has a governing entity that collects taxes and makes appropriations,” she said. “We don’t want to make ourselves a quasi-city council,” Scholz said, “[but] we act like a city council because we hold the purse strings.” It was clear that this session opened up a dialogue within the board that hadn’t existed before. When Davis asked the board if they’d ever had conversations like these when proposals came in, the answer was a resounding “no.”

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“This group is so committed to this community,” Davis said. “The fact that they haven’t had this type of conversation [in the past] is probably because of tradition, not that they haven’t wanted to have it.”

The four “musts” for resort tax allocation: 1. Community benefit – The project must benefit the Big Sky community at large. 2. Location – The project must be located within the resort tax district. 3. Continuity – The project must be proposed by an applicant with assured continuity such as a corporation or a limited partnership, as opposed to an individual. 4. Section 19 – The project must satisfy section 19 of the ordinance governing the resort tax district. The seven “wants” for resort tax allocation: 1. Quality of organization and clarity of application • Is the organization stable? • What is the quality of its current operations? • Does the organization have the ability to execute the proposal? • Clarity of the proposal submitted. 2. Tourism development – Does the project promote tourism and development as measured by an increase in resort tax revenue? 3. Game changer to the community – Is the project, if completed, a game changer to the community? A “game changer” is a project that brings significant benefit to the community stakeholders (residents, visitors and business community).

The first day the board developed two sets of guidelines for resort tax applicants: “musts” and “wants.” The “musts” are requirements for an application to even be considered, and the “wants” are guidelines the board will use to evaluate whether a project will receive funding once the “musts” are satisfied. See below for a list a list of these criteria.

4. Big Sky world class resort and community – Does the project help Big Sky become a world class resort and community?

Day two was spent developing long term strategies for the board to improve its communication with the community. These strategies will be discussed at public board meetings in the upcoming months.

6. Collaboration – Does the project involve collaboration among organizations and other stakeholders in the community to meet common goals, enhancing the outcome of the project and community benefits?

“Everyone felt these were positive meetings,” board chairman Loble said. “We thought a lot of good work was done, and we were all very pleased with it.”

5. Critical infrastructure – Does the project support or improve critical infrastructure (public health, safety or welfare in the community)?

7. Fill need – Does the project fill a community need not currently or adequately being satisfied?


Big Sky Weekly

Former Bluebird space sits empty

Fitness instructor moves on up Jolene Budeski to adds climbing classes in new location

By emily stifler

By barbara rowley

Owner says ongoing litigation would not affect potential tenants big sky weekly managing editor

BIG SKY – In 2010, the Bluebird Café was the local hot spot. The place was packed on Thursday nights, when it hosted bands after the free concerts in the Town Center Park next door. Owners Alex and Scott Hoeksema, who also own the Lotus Pad, sold the business to Steve and Justina Smith in October 2010, and the Smiths started remodeling soon after. But the Smiths stopped paying rent in June 2011, having never completed the remodel, said the building’s owner, Mark Goode. The Smiths left town soon after and are now purportedly living in Pennsylvania. “Not only did they stop paying rent,” Goode said, “they also apparently stopped paying subcontractors that were working on the space.” The Smiths were already in a lawsuit over the business sale—the Hoeksemas filed a case when the couple failed to pay for their purchase of the Bluebird Café—and Goode sued as well. “They took a working restaurant and disabled it and left us with the pieces,” Good said. “I just couldn't sit back and say, ‘that’s OK’.”

The Hoeksemas declined to comment for the story because of ongoing litigation.

BIG SKY – For locals with kids devoted to Jolene Budeski's gymnastics studio or who are themselves fans of her Spin, Fit Moms and Pilates classes, the news that she might need to leave her current space to allow for the expansion of Ozssage this fall was disconcerting. Where would she go? Not to worry, says Budeski.

Today, the space on the south end of the Goode Place building sits empty. It’s actually in good shape, said Goode, noting that the Smiths installed new electric and plumbing, and Lone Moose had made other upgrades since. And, he noted, the ongoing litigation wouldn’t affect a potential tenant. “There is no question of ownership, occupancy or possession.”

She has secured a new spot above Geyser Whitewater that will be equally convenient and even allow expansion. Budeski plans to offer climbing classes here, for kids, adults and even special women's clinics. Budeski has been climbing for nearly a decade and says it’s one of her favorite activities. A former level 10 elite gymnast (the highest level possible), Budeski is also a certified gymnastics teacher and has been instructing for a dozen years, the last six in Big Sky. She also holds certifications in Pilates and Fitness instruction and is a Personal Trainer.

Built in 2007 and designed to accommodate a restaurant, the space was also home to the Huckleberry Café before it became the Bluebird Café. The 26,050-square-foot ground floor space neighbors Lone Peak Chiropractic and the Gallatin River Gallery has a drive-through, a full commercial kitchen and windows on three sides. It has three entrances—two on the Ousel Falls Road side and one leading toward the park.

She will be offering all of her classes at her new location starting in late October. Until the move, she will continue offering Spin and Fitness in her current locations. Gymnastics will resume in late October; climbing classes will begin at the same time. Just as in her Meadow location, the Geyser space is conveniently on the school and Skyline bus routes, and kids will once again be able to take after school classes. For more information, contact Budeski at

Ryan Hamilton, the project manager for the Big Sky Town Center, would like to see another restaurant go in there. “Dozens of events and activities happen in the park—farmers market, Shakespeare in the Park, concerts, the PBR and weddings in the summer, and hockey all winter,” Hamilton said. “That really makes it the A1 spot for a restaurant in Big Sky.”

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BIG SKY – Pretty Paws, Big Sky’s pet grooming service, recently acquired a new truck for mobile dog grooming. The plan is to use the truck to provide its services throughout the Big Sky area, West Yellowstone, Belgrade, Four Corners and Bozeman, said Nina Trevino, Pretty Paws manager. “Everything is full service,” Trevino said. “We would stay right there, basically in your driveway, groom your dog, and bring it back to your front door.” E.S.

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Big Sky Weekly

Report: Outdoor recreation provides 6.1 million U.S. jobs

Tourism and travel account for 9 percent of the Montana economy By tyler allen

big sky weekly staff writer

BOULDER, Colo. – The outdoor industry provides 6.1 million jobs in the U.S., according to a report released by the Outdoor Industry Association in June 2012. The report detailed the significant impact that outdoor recreation has on the economy, including $646 billion dollars spent annually on outdoor recreation. More Americans are working in the outdoor industry than in construction (5.5 million) or finance and insurance (5.8 million), according to the OIA report. “America is globally recognized as the leader in outdoor recreation,” stated the report. “Advancements in technical apparel, footwear and equipment for outdoor activities are driving innovation and entrepreneurism, while creating a demand for highly skilled workers in areas like technology, product design, manufacturing, sustainability and global commerce.” It also noted that the outdoor recreation economy grew approximately 5 percent

annually between 2005 and 2011—a time during the economic recession when many sectors contracted. Even without state specific figures (which OIA plans to release in 2013), it’s obvious the outdoor industry is a major factor in southwest Montana’s economy. The region is a world-class destination for hunting, fishing, skiing and hiking, and with Yellowstone National Park in the backyard, the recreation economy has an obvious and sizeable impact. The most recent OIA report for Montana showed the outdoor recreation economy contributing $2.5 million and 34,000 jobs in Montana in 2006; the industry generated $118 billion in state tax revenue that year. “Montana not only attracts those from out-of-state to take part in active outdoor recreation but also, with exceptional close-to-home recreation, generates economic activity from active Montanans,” the 2006 report stated. The abundance of federally administered land in Montana is also an economic benefit to the state; in fact,

according to the 2012 report, rural Western counties with more than 30 percent of their land under federal protection increased jobs at a rate four times faster than rural counties with no federally protected land. A number of businesses based in southwest Montana benefit from America’s outdoor recreation obsession, and Mystery Ranch, Simms and Sitka Gear are just a few of the local brands impacting both the state and national economies. Sitka Gear, which makes performance hunting clothing, moved to Bozeman from Napa Valley in January of this year. “The single biggest reason we moved to Bozeman is so we could do product testing,” said Brad Yeomans, Sitka’s national sales manager. “We have almost every animal in North America available to us within a two hour drive. It’s a good address; the culture of Bozeman really fits well with our company.” There is a direct impact on the Montana economy from tourism, guides and retailers, said Wendy Stock, professor of economics at Montana State University, and “there is also a multiplier of spillover impacts, when those guides

make money and go out and spend it at restaurants and shops.” Tourism and travel account for 9 percent of the Montana economy, she added. In Big Sky, a town built on outdoor recreation, this residual trickle down is obvious. After purchasing a set of skis, a consumer buys a lift ticket and dinner, spends money on lodging and entertainment. Big Sky Resort hired 27 new employees at the Basecamp this year, according to the resort’s public relations manager Chad Jones. “They’re all outdoor jobs. The outdoor side of things is growing as people realize they can get outside, do fun things and get exercise.” “The [OIA] report is encouraging for this region, and the fact that we created 27 new jobs here is a testament to that,” Jones said. “We all live in this area to recreate and enjoy the outdoor opportunities we have here, and it’s cool that people who live outside the area are getting a chance to experience that too.”

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chamber news

Big Sky Weekly

Clemens starts in director’s seat

Chamber planning collaboration with other Big Sky entities By emily stifler

big sky weekly managing editor

BIG SKY – The days of change continue at the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce. On Aug. 21 the group held its second board meeting in its new building at the corner of Highway 191 and Lone Mountain Trail. This was the first time the new executive director, Kitty Clemens, was in attendance. It was also the last meeting for Robin Brower-McBride, who’s been the Chamber’s program and membership director for nearly two years. "Robin has been a huge asset to the Chamber and the community,” said Chamber president David O’Connor. “I can't thank her enough for helping to get us through this transitional year." Clemens officially started work on Aug. 16, and said a lot of her director’s report for the meeting consisted of housekeeping items. More organized planning prior, she said, would help the board move through future meetings more quickly. She also discussed the sign for the new Visitors’ Center.

“That was something I walked into when I got here in July, and we are still waiting for the county to give us a permit,” Clemens said. The board, wanting to put up a sign quickly, had approved and paid for a design from Vega Creations already; but Clemens found that SCS Wraps, a new Chamber member, could do the entire process—from redesign to installation—for a third the cost. Other personnel changes include hiring Danielle Chamberlain, a longtime Big Sky local, as the new Visitor Information Center manager. Chamberlain formerly worked as distribution director for Outlaw Partners (publisher of the Weekly). She will start Sept. 1, helping with weekend coverage and creating a volunteer staffing plan at the VIC. In his financial report, Chamber Secretary/Treasurer John Richardson said the Chamber is “in a pretty good position right now, from a cash basis.” Country Fair made a significant profit for the first time ever, which was largely due to a $10,000 grant from the Rapier Foundation. He noted that Chamber bookkeeper Wanda McCarthy suggested if the fair is something the Chamber wants to continue, it’ll need to come up with additional funding sources.

Chamber brings FAM trips to Big Sky

“It's a lot of work for a break-even, from a financial standpoint,” Richardson said. Board member Victor DeLeo gave kudos to Brower-McBride for her work organizing the fair and retaining its sponsors. Brower-McBride said partnering with local and regional nonprofits was beneficial to everyone involved. It was a “nice handshake to have with Bozeman,” she said, adding that the West Yellowstone Chamber has since sent a ‘thank you’, even though they weren’t involved in an official partnership. The fair also had nearly $3,000 in sponsorship and in-kind donations from businesses including the Blue Moon Bakery, Creighton Block Gallery, Gallatin River Gallery, Lone Peak Brewery, the Corral, Half Moon Saloon and Pretty Paws, BrowerMcBride said after the meeting. The Chamber’s website is set for a revamp, and the board discussed the process: Its request for proposals will stay open until Aug. 27, and the target to award that $15,000 contract is Oct. 1. The new site, Brower-McBride later said, will have a recon-

figured landing page where viewers can choose to see visitor or business information. Most of the content will remain the same. The board also set Sept. 26 as the tentative date for a joint marketing meeting between the Chamber, the Convention and Visitors Bureau, and the Biggest Skiing in America Committee. “Sometimes the right hand doesn't know what the left hand is doing,” O’Connor said. By collaborating more, these three groups can become “more efficient on how we spend our money and time.” On a similar subject, Ryan Hamilton, during public comment earlier in the meeting, brought up the Big Sky Resort Tax Board Aug. 8 and 9 planning session. “It was a public forum about the future of Big Sky,” Hamilton recalled. “Where do we want to be in 20 years? How do we get there? I’d like to see collaboration with the resort tax board. I think it could be good for the entire community for the Chamber board to be there as a leadership entity… They’re doing essentially what a city commission would do—they hold the money.”

All are invited...

In a publicity move to get national and regional travel writers interested in Big Sky, the Chamber is hosting a FAM (familiarization) trip with Ken Ellens, a nationally known travel, marketing and public relations writer, Sept. 5 – 9. Ellens and the Chamber will invite six to 10 other journalists on the trip. “The goal is to get them through Yellowstone, and from [Gallatin] Canyon, all the way to Moonlight, and to points in between,” O’Connor said. “We want to show them the Town Center and the new movie theatre. [A visit to] the Yellowstone Club could also be a hook in getting people here.” REGISTER TODAY!! Another FAM trip is coming to Big Sky on Sept. 8, this time a group of at least 44 European tourists on a Rocky Mountain International motor coach tour. The Chamber worked with the Montana Office of Tourism organizing this trip.

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As of press time, 12 teams were already registered for the Big Sky Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament. The tournament can include more than 30 teams and it sells out every year. One change this year is there will only be one mulligan allowed per player.

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real estate

Big Sky Weekly

Madison Valley luxury ranch to sell at absolute auction

Ponderosa Ranch exemplifies new trending sales technique in high end real estate, Big Sky realtor says By emily stifler

big sky weekly managing editor

CAMERON – A Madison Valley gentleman’s ranch with luxury amenities will be sold at absolute auction next month through New York City-based Concierge Auctions. The 180-acre Ponderosa Ranch will be auctioned on Sept. 13 in cooperation with Martha Johnson of Mountain Living ~ Big Sky Real Estate. This is the first time the property has ever been offered for sale. “It’s more of a recreational ranch,” Johnson said. “There are much larger acreages [in the Madison], but this has every toy under the sun.” Set atop a hill on Raynold’s Pass, 50 miles south of Ennis, and the property abuts Forest Service on two sides—one Idaho and one Montana. An absolute auction means there is no minimum bid or reserve price, so the property will sell to the highest bidder on auction day, according

to Laura Brady, vice president of marketing for Concierge Auctions. So while Ponderosa Ranch is listed at $6 million, ultimately the bidders will determine the sale price. The sellers are “savvy business people,” Brady said. “They did not have the ranch on the market for sale prior to approaching us for auction, and chose the auction route in order to effectuate a sale in short order. They understand the value is not what the property cost to construct or what it is listed for sale, but rather whatever the market determines through competition on auction day." They’re fully committed to finding a new owner on Sept. 13 so they can move on to other opportunities, Brady added. Johnson said she and Concierge together have more than 700 leads already—these are qualified buyers that have requested information on the property. The auction is Sept. 13, and between Johnson and a Concierge representative, they’ve been Ponderosa Ranch sits atop a hill in Cameron, MT Photos courtesy of Concierge Auctions

showing the property nearly every day. “It’s a successful combination, with the auction company, a real estate agent and the seller,” Johnson said. “It moves properties a lot faster.”

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Some interested parties have flow into West Yellowstone, and others were already Big Sky homeowners looking for a place to compliment their resort property, Johnson said. Most have been couples looking for a generational family compound or a legacy property. “It’s a very cool, fun property, great for family and friends to congregate, think tanks or corporate retreats,” Johnson said. Ponderosa Ranch is located in Cameron, an unincorporated community in Madison County, Montana. The main building is 9,000 square feet, and the guest house is 6,000. Both have panoramic views, vaulted ceilings, granite fireplaces and radiant floor heat. There is also a salt water pool, a slide, exercise facilities and a game room with a full arcade, Johnson said.

The same family is also auctioning Paintbrush Ranch, a similar-caliber property in Jackson, Wyo., the week prior through Concierge. A retreat once owned by the artist Connie Schwiering, Paintbrush is in a valley at the base of Shadow Mountain, literally up against Grand Teton National Park. That property will sell to the highest bidder on Sept. 8 in cooperation with Ryan Block of RE/MAX Obsidian Real Estate. A 3 percent commission is offered to the buyers’ representing brokers with both sales and 10 percent of the purchase price will be paid to Concierge.

There’s hunting, fishing, snowmobiling, four-wheeling and hiking on the property. The Madison River is nearby, as is Henry’s Lake.

Concierge Auctions has executed auctions for high-end homes and ranches nationwide and has a database of more than 100,000 luxury real estate buyers and agents from all 50 states and 38 countries and territories. According to a press release from Concierge, it uses an accelerated marketing process to obtain fair market value for the properties in 60 days. The company’s principals have been involved in the transfer of more than $2 billion in luxury real estate sales over the past 10 years.

Also on the property is a caretaker’s cottage with two bedrooms, three bathrooms and two-and-a-half-car garage.

For more information on the Ponderosa Ranch, visit or call (406) 995-6333.



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.86 acre lot premier mountain enclave w/ views ski in/ski out lot could be combined with next door

RAMSHORN, LOT 4 • • • •

$189,500 • #180395 • Call Don

nice level building lot all season easy access great views of Porcupine Creek electricity and phone to lot


$225,000 • #181151 • Call Stacy

.25 +/- acre level building lot overlooks golf course great views of the surrounding mountains municipal water, sewer, utilities are adjacent


$72,500 • #184268 • Call Stacy or Eric

• • • •

.34 Acre Lot great views of Porcupine game range HOA tennis court, play area, trails fenced backyard for pets

Stuart Koch, Sales Associate, 406.581.1225

business profile

Big Sky Weekly


By marcie hahn-knoff big sky weekly contributor

BOZEMAN – Between tart’s cherry red and rain slicker yellow walls, every nook, shelf and rack is occupied by something unique—it’s a menagerie of creativity. Feathered earrings and other handmade jewelry are neatly arranged on a fuzzy pink tablecloth. Screen-printed and appliqué skirts and shirts hang amidst quirky wine racks, bins of buttons, greeting cards printed on antique letter press equipment and fine wall art with imaginative subjects. Amazingly, Montanans created everything here. This is tart, the brainchild of Montana native and creative virtuoso Anna Visscher, who’s known affectionately as ‘the tartress’. The lower case ‘t’ is part of the store’s mystique, she says. Visscher’s shop is a cornerstone of the Emerson Center for the Arts and Culture, a repurposed historic school at the corner of Grand and Olive in Bozeman. tart is a go-to spot for handmade, oneof-a-kind items, each one a genuine little piece of Montana.

tartique shop in the Emerson Center for Arts and Culture


Give us some background on the tartress. I was born in Bozeman but soon moved to the east coast so my father could complete his medical training. My family ended up moving back to Montana and spent several years living in the Northern Cheyenne and Crow Reservations before finally settling in Dillon. I think I developed a wider view of the world as a result. I was voted most likely to leave and never come back in high school. But after spreading my wings and moving out of state, my heartstrings pulled me full circle back to Montana. So, I guess I get the homing pigeon award.

Photo by Craig Hergert

How did you end up as a shop owner? I have always been crafty. I picked up beading when I lived on the reservation as a kid and moved into making jewelry for myself. Friends began buying pieces off of me (literally) at dinner parties and social events. So, I began selling my work at shows and shops. I finally decided to take the plunge and open tart originally to sell my own jewelry in February 2007. Right off the bat I had friends interested consigning pieces and it’s grown from there. I worked another job for the first three years to keep tart going—even so it still felt right. Since then tart has moved across hall, I’ve hired several tartistas (employees), and expanded into an adjoining shop. Where did the name tart come from? While painting my original shop space, I was brainstorming with friends and tart popped up as a suggestion. It was perfect. Since then the name tart has morphed into many variations. We hold tart walks where tartinis are offered. Our artists are known as tartists and our art gallery is called tart gallery. I’m the tartress. You get the point. What to you attribute tart’s success to? I opened tart in 2007, right before the economy began to tank. Even though retail has taken huge hits lately, tart has managed to grow every year. Bozeman was ripe for a store featuring things made in Montana—people here are well acquainted with the local food movement and Bozemanites want a connection to what they are buying. It’s about a sense of place and building relationships. What makes tart different? tart is bigger than me. Like any business owner, I want to make enough money to support myself, but I’ve also made a choice to run my business a bit like a nonprofit. My mission is to support my artists.

The "tartress" Anna Vissacher and husband Photo by Jessie Moore

Many tartists who once were only able to do their art on the side are now able to focus on art full time. This makes me deeply happy. At tart, we treat art as approachable and fun—a step away from traditional gallery white walls and pedestals. We have 63 tartists right now. Many of our tartists have turned traditional Western art on its head, producing papier maché trophy heads, clothing emblazoned with jackelopes, and bones turned into jewelry. What is on the horizon for tart? We opened an online store in 2010, which has been expanding. It’s focused on bringing Montana goods to the nation. We have an exciting lineup of fine art shows rotating through the tart gallery with a percentage of each going to a nonprofit of the tartist’s choice. The Red Ants Pants party takes place this fall, allowing local ladies to purchase award-winning women’s work pants. tart’s birthday party, the biggest shindig of them all, takes place next February—tart will be six. I feel like a proud parent. I love where this business is going. Marcie Hahn-Knoff has been a tartist since February 2010, hand building collapsible travel hula hoops. When not hooping or skating in circles with the local roller derby team, she sells real estate as a broker for Winter & Company. More at

tisement which will appear in the 2009-2010 edition of the Big Sky Regional Telephone tewide Publishing - Montana under the heading(s) of:

Big Sky Weekly


nformation correct? .......................................................................................... ❑ Yes ❑ No $389,000. Call ❑ 406-595-6641 ber and address correct? Yes ❑ No services help wanted for rent ................................................................................. ... ❑ isYes colors in my ad RENTALS may vary due to differences in printer inks &Victoria paper.Bentley the Owner and Director of Bentley Bodies, DRIFT BOATS, ecessaryRAFTS/TUBES, corrections directly on the ad as neatly as possible. a premiere mind-body-wellness RV'S, TRAILERS, SKI BOAT, BABY GEAR 406-587-4747

Downtown Bozeman full beverage, full service restaurant seeking upper management. Good pay, good benefits, good people. Email resumes to

$10 classfieds! Email classifieds and/or advertising requests to

boutique committed to healthy lifestyle choices. Locations are in Big Sky and Bozeman.

(406) 995- 2055

CAFE & ESPRESSO • 81305 Gallatin Road

• Maintenance AsphaltAsphalt Paving Paving • Maintenance • Seal Coating Seal Coating • Lot Striping • Patchwork Crack Sealing Lot Striping Patchwork • Crack•Sealing

Owner Supervised - 30 years Experience Owner Supervised 30 years Experience

Serving all of Southwest Montana

CREEKSIDE DINING | 406.587.3114 4 blks S. of 4corners on Hwy 191 | Mon-Sat / 8am-3pm

Serving All of Southwest Montana


REMOVING DEAD AND INFESTED TREES Grants Available for Home Fire Suppression Approved RC&D Hazardous Fuels Reduction Contractor


Tom Newberry:


ate, and return within five working days for completion of your file.

n is greatly appreciated in returning this proof even if the ad is approved as is. Fulton/Hertz/Hoover

.......................................... ❑ icated changes ............... ❑

al proof will not be sent out to customer.

Wealth Management Group 875 Harmon Stream Blvd., Suite 200 Bozeman, Montana 59718 (406) 556-4407 (800) 995-3443





Contact: Koy M. Hoover, CFP Vice President/Investment

turned before publication, Publishing will not be responsible for any inaccuracies in the advertisement. RidingStatewide a bull


market is easy

Designer: (It’s the bear market that can throw you off)LDM We are please to support Professional Bull Riders Association


� HEALTH COUNSELING Proofed by: ______ N:_____A:_____P:_____

Member SIPC and NYSE |

Victoria Bentley, Certified Health & Lifestyle Coach

Call for appointments in Bozeman or Big Sky

Appointments only [ 406.570.9154 ]




Our ideal location in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem and extensive permits for fishable waters provides for exceptional fly fishing experiences. All guides are ORVIS® endorsed and provide personalized instruction based on anglers’ skill level and preferences, while learning the science of fly fishing and surrounding ecosystem. Trips include guide fees, flies, transportation, shuttle service, snacks and non-alcoholic beverages. Walk/Wade Half Day Walk/Wade Full Day (includes lunch) 1 angler $250/trip 1 anger $375/trip 2 anglers $275/trip 2 anglers $425/trip 3 anglers $325/trip 3 anglers $475/trip

Drift Boat Full Day (includes lunch) 1 or 2 anglers $450


Our cuisine is an epicurean exercise taking advantage of locally produced offerings and prepared to satisfy the kind of appetite that develops after outdoor adventures. Join us in the Dining Room for an elegantly casual evening or stop by the Saloon for small plates, like our Pulled Pork Sandwich. Dinner, Tuesday-Friday, 5:30-9pm (by reservation) Saloon 4-10pm, Live Bluegrass Wednesdays at 8pm *Taxes and gratuities not included in above pricing; contact LMR for full details and reservations


Our experienced wranglers and horses will guide you through some of the most diverse and spectacular scenery in the west, including the bordering Lee Metcalf Wilderness, Gallatin National Forest and Yellowstone Park. Riders ages 6+ of all ability levels welcome. 2 Hour Group Rides $65 per person 2 Hour Private Rides $130 per person


Our seasoned naturalists share an unrivaled intimacy and understanding of the Park Tuesdays and Fridays, 7:30AM-5PM. All tours leave from the Ranch Outdoor Shop and include lunch, your guide, transportation from Big Sky and Park entrance fees. Group Park Tours, $195 per person Private Tours, $650 for 1-4 people; $50 for each add. person


Join us for a half day and full day guided hikes in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem, including Yellowstone Park. Every guided experience is planned with the abilities and interests; hikes include guide and transportation. Half Day Hikes $125 per person All Day Hikes $195 per person (includes lunch)


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Section 3:

Big Sky Weekly

Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 Volume 3 // Issue No. 17

life, land and culture

outdoors The Grand Teton: A successful summit bid takes a little luck By tyler allen

big sky weekly staff writer

JACKSON, Wyo. – The most iconic peak in the Greater Yellowstone ecosystem, the Grand Teton has attracted mountaineers for more than a century. With at least 115 established routes and variations on mostly high-quality granite, it has something for every climber. I headed down from Bozeman to the Tetons in midAugust this year to attempt one of the peak’s most popular routes, the Upper Exum Ridge. Approximately 1,100 vertical feet, this route is the upper section of the complete Exum Ridge. It’s an exciting and moderate climb with awesome exposure and interesting routefinding challenges that tops out right on the 13,770foot summit of the Grand. As I drove south through Gallatin Canyon, smoke blown over from fires in Idaho dulled the blues and greens of the surrounding hillsides. In Yellowstone, the usually prominent massif of Mount Holmes was hardly distinguishable, and I wondered if I would be able to see anything from the top of the Grand, if we did indeed make the summit. I met my climbing partner, Ellie, for burgers at the Knotty Pine in Victor, Idaho, and then we drove over the pass to Wyoming and found a quiet spot to crawl into our sleeping bags for a couple hours. I didn’t sleep at all. At 1 a.m., we packed up the car and drove toward Grand Teton National Park, past bars still watering the late-night crowd. We left the Lupine Meadows trailhead just after 2 a.m. and began the seven-mile walk up Garnet Canyon to the Lower Saddle. As we hiked, the moon silhouetted the looming rocky giants above us against the night sky. At the Lower Saddle, which is at 11,600 feet, we put on all our clothes and huddled next to a rock, eating breakfast and hydrating as we waited for the sun’s rays to reach us. The Grand towered above, looking massive as the approaching light revealed the details of our intended ascent. Marmots chirped 10 feet away, begging for scraps of Ellie's turkey sandwich. After about an hour, at 8 a.m., we left the Lower Saddle and started the 1,200-foot scramble to the base

Grant Teton Upper Exum Route

Photo by Marcie Hahn-Knoff

of the route, at a landmark called Wall Street. This is a giant face with a long, wide ledge trending southeast. It’s an easy walk until the ledge narrows at its end, where you must make a committing and exposed step around the corner to gain the ridge proper.

Vitals: The Upper Exum Ridge, Grand Teton First Ascent: Glenn Exum, solo, 1931 Grade: II 5.5 Length: 4,000 feet Park: Lupine Meadows Trailhead Vertical Gain: 7,000 feet from the trailhead to the summit. Camp: You can sleep at a number of backcountry campsites between Garnet Canyon and the Lower Saddle if you don’t want to take all the punishment in one day. However, it can be difficult to secure a backcountry permit for these sites.

Above Wall Street is the Golden Staircase, where easy climbing on beautiful golden knobs is thrilling, thanks to the sheer drop on either side of the ridge and nearly non-existent protection. After the Golden Staircase we packed the rope away and scrambled up the Wind Tunnel. This long, vertical slot in the ridge makes for easy climbing with little exposure, though there are a few large blocks with committing moves that you must negotiate. We tied back in at the top of the Wind Tunnel gulley and Ellie led off. As I waited at the belay and she pulled the rope up, I heard a loud thwack. I glanced up and saw a rock the size and shape of a cinderblock careening toward me. I took a large, desperate step to my right and watched it hurtle down the Wind Tunnel, right where I had been standing. Above the Wind Tunnel is the Friction Pitch. It’s easy to get off route here, and I’m still not clear if we actually did the Friction Pitch proper. I certainly did more smearing in my approach shoes than I wanted to, so it may have been our own friction pitch. If you aren’t a confident leader on unprotected, slabby rock, you may want climbing shoes for this section, which many consider the mental crux. Continued on p. 34

L: Ellie Thompson on the top of the Golden Staircase R: Looking east from the Lower Saddle at sunrise, toward Disappointment Peak. In the foreground is a shelter used by the Jenny Lake Rangers for staging high alpine rescues. Photos by Tyler Allen Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 33


Big Sky Weekly

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Summer Clothing (Women, Men, Children)

Summer Sporting Gear (Golf, Camping, Fishing, Bicycles)

Home Furnishings (Kitchen items & Appliances)

Artwork, Wall Hangings & Décor Items

Electronics, CD’s & DVD’s

Ellie Thompson and Tyler Allen on the summit of the Grand Teton. Photo courtesy of Tyler Allen

Continued from p. 33

Come in to see us! Located in the Big Horn Center, across from Bugaboo Café, at corner of Hwy 191 & Lone Mtn Trail to Big Sky

Call: Janine & Dick @ 406-993-9333 Open: 7 days a week, Mon – Sat 10 AM to 6 PM Sun 11:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Got Noxious Weeds? 

The Friction Pitch leads you into the V-pitch, a well-protected, left-trending dihedral. You can bypass this pitch and scramble up an easy ramp if you need to save time or if there are other parties on the V-pitch. We roped up for one more section above this, where a huge block must be negotiated in an exposed location. The last 200 feet to the summit can be simul-climbed and scrambled, though I found it difficult to focus on the climbing with the full spectrum of view unfolding beneath me. The lingering smoke obscured the distant peaks of the Greater Yellowstone, but the Tetons were distinct in their grandeur.

High pressure allowed us to enjoy the summit well into the afternoon, before some easy down climbing and two single-rope rappels got us down to the Upper Saddle to begin the long scramble and hike back to Lupine Meadows. While we do everything possible to mitigate risk in the mountains, an element of luck accompanies every successful objective. On our ascent of the Grand, we were fortunate the weather didn’t suddenly change as it often does in that volatile, alpine climate. For me, the rockfall above the Wind Tunnel was another reminder that even in the best conditions, high summits aren’t obtained without a little luck on your side.

We can help!  The Gallatin/Big Sky Noxious Weed Committee

provides free onsite assistance, including identifying weeds on your property & recommending treatment methods.

For assistance, contact Jennifer Mohler at  406‐209‐0905 or,   and visit  Noxious Weed Spotlight:  Musk Thistle    

Musk thistle is an aggressive biennial weed, requiring 2 years to complete a reproductive cycle, that reproduces solely from seed. Thus, the key for successful management is to prevent seed production. It’s a prolific seed producer, as 1 plant can produce up to 20,000 seeds. To successfully manage musk thistle, prevent seed formation. Cut and bag flowers heads to prevent seed from spreading. For maximum effectiveness, apply herbicides increases before it bolts and flowers.

Visit us at our booth at the Big Sky Farmers Market!

Help protect wildlife habitat, water resources,   & native plants by controlling noxious weeds!  

34 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

Bozeman hunter education classes begin Sept. 10 Class registration open fish, wildlife and parks

Bozeman – Anyone born after Jan. 1, 1985 must present a Hunter Education Certificate to purchase a hunting license in Montana. A student must be at least 11-years-old to receive certification. Registration is now open for Bozeman’s fall hunter education class. Volunteers will lead the classes at Chief Joseph Middle School (4255 Kimberwicke St.) at the following times and dates: Sept. 10, 6:30 – 9 p.m. Sept. 11, 7 – 9 p.m. Sept. 12, 7 – 9 p.m. Sept. 13, 7 – 9 p.m. Sept. 14, 7 – 9 p.m. Students will complete a field day on Saturday, Sept. 15 from 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. at the Logan Range. A morning or afternoon time will be assigned students in class.

There are two options for registration for the Bozeman class: •

Register online between Aug. 18 and Sept. 6 by going to FWP’s website at, clicking on Education, then Hunter Education, then “View Course Schedule.” Students must print, sign and bring the Student Agreement Form the first night of class. If the student is under 18 years old, a parent/guardian must sign the agreement. After online registration, classroom materials must be picked up at FWP’s regional office in Bozeman (1400 S. 19th Ave.) by Sept. 7.

Students may also register in person on Wednesday, Aug. 29 anytime between 7 – 9 p.m. at the FWP regional office in Bozeman in the large conference room (north entrance). Students under 18 years old must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.


Lightning safety and first aid By dave mcevoy

aerie backcountry medicine

Where do you go when you are outdoors in a lighting storm? Unfortunately, no one can say with certainty. Most lightning advice assumes you have recourse to a building or a non-convertible car, where your chances of injury are very small. Some of the advice, such as assuming the “lightning position” (where

you squat in a ball while the storm rolls over you) is best performed by a yogi or Cirque du Soleil artist. We can, however, learn from the 40 years of data that shows where people are most often struck by lightning. About 80 percent were in open fields, on water or under trees. In the West, strikes are most common during hot summer afternoons. Most people injured by lightning are not actually struck directly, but are instead in contact with

objects that are hit. Plan your activities to best avoid those places and objects, spread your group out, and be prepared to care for those who are injured. Beyond that, there are some reasonable positions to get into that may minimize your chance of being struck. If you cobble together smart travel and first aid knowledge and avoid the big no-no’s from the list below, you’re probably doing as well as you can, so you might as well enjoy the storm and ride it out.

Predicting strikes

First aid

You can’t. But, you can make some well-informed, educated guesses.

The tens of millions of volts that travel through a body and leave within a thousandth of a second can cause some unusual, distinct and often permanent injuries; however, there is nothing unique about the care you need to render in the field. What is unique is the way you need to go about finding them.

Many people struck by lightning are hit as the storm approaches or as it’s leaving the area, sometimes when the sky is clear above them. This means you need to get away from dangerous areas before things around you are exploding.

A commonly used guideline for lightning safety in public places like stadiums is the 30/30 rule: If the time between the flash and the boom is less than 30 seconds, avoid the more dangerous places for 30 minutes. It certainly helps to have a building or car to move to.

Because people like to get together in a storm, they often get struck together. If this has happened, figure out who is dead and who is not, do CPR on the former and evacuate the latter. This is probably the only situation where CPR on its own, without a defibrillator, will have a high likelihood of bringing a pulse back.

If the electrical activity of a storm is very close, your hair may stand up, you may hear crackling static, or metal objects around you may glow. If you haven’t gotten yourself to a better location or in a better position, do it now.

While figuring out how to get out of the backcountry, splint injuries, stop bleeds and otherwise render basic first aid. Don’t hang around in the place that was struck, particularly if it’s on the list of likely strike locations.

Additional information can be found at

Geographic position It’s easier to describe where not to be than to list where you should be when lightning is around. No outdoor place is perfect, but some are worse than others. These typically include: •

High places like ridges or mountaintops

Tall objects like trees

Metal objects like fences and poles (by the way, these things don’t actually attract lightning, they’re just very good at conducting electricity)

Open water or on the shoreline

Open fields

Tied in to your climbing rope

David McEvoy is a paramedic and the director of Aerie, a wilderness medicine training organization based in Missoula. Aerie is teaching a Wilderness First Responder and Wilderness EMT course this fall on the MSU campus in Bozeman.



Locations near the North and West Entrances to Yellowstone Park

Body position and group dynamics After you’ve changed your geographic position (moved out from under the tree), or if you’re stuck with nowhere to go, you need to change the position of your body. These recommendations are based on a good understanding of lightning but scant data. Turns out it’s hard to get people to sign up for lightning-strike studies. •

Sit down. Try to avoid lying down.

Get off the ground by using an insulating pad like a Thermarest.

Spread your group out so there’s about 50 feet between each person. This doesn’t decrease your chance of being struck, but it makes it less likely that more than one person will be struck at a time.

Common injuries Lightning injuries can be simple and fleeting or devastating and permanent. •

Loss of consciousness, amnesia and confusion

Loss of hearing and or vision

Extremity injuries (often from being thrown or having things that were thrown land on you)

Burns. Significant, large burns are unusual and quite a bit of what looks like a burn may in fact be other things like simple pigment changes.

Paralysis. Again, may be temporary.

y l i m Fa Fun!


Valid for adult fees only

ZIP & DIP Present coupon at check-in Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 35

Gear reviews Sea to Summit ULTRA-Sil Day Pack

Jetboil Flash

This might very well be the smallest backpack ever.

And of course, there are outdoor applications, too. Last week I went up to do some work on a rock climb one evening in Gallatin Canyon. Hanging on a rope, scrubbing holds and checking things out, I wanted to bring along sunglasses, a long sleeve shirt and my climbing shoes. But packing up at the car, I instantly rejected my regular bullet pack, not wanting to carry the extra weight. Bingo: the ULTRA Sil.

By emily stifler

I haven’t really done enough all-out grocery shops or summit pushes with this pack know how durable it is, but it’s made from “siliconized” CORDURA, which sounds wicked tough, plus the stress points are all reinforced with bar tacks. Still, it’s so lightweight I’d say it’s definitely not made for hauling or chimneying on rock climbs, or dragging behind your car.

The one-liter cooking vessel is meant to double as a mug and has a rubber lid that keeps the liquid hot and protects your lips. I have probably drunk a cumulative swimming pool of ginger tea from mine. I also have the Java Cooking System, which makes pretty good French Press coffee.

I regularly use it grocery shopping— stuffed into its tiny built-in stuff sack, it takes up the same amount of room in my purse as my wallet. When expanded, it holds 5.28 gallons (20 liters). I tried to give this bag to one of my rafting co-workers, but she turned her nose up at it—classic boater thinks she can take the kitchen sink everywhere she goes! But I’m a climber, and a well-made summit pack that weighs only 2.4 ounces appeals to my alpine sensibilities, even if I’m only going for groceries.

Basically, this is a very cool niche item. Without any pads in the shoulder straps, it’s definitely not made for carrying heavy weight. But for shopping, a summit push or just to have an extra tote while traveling, it’s just right. $29.95 E.S.

Big Sky Weekly

big sky weekly managing editor

The Jetboil boils water in two minutes. Lightweight and self contained, it’s suitable for bowhunting, backpacking, alpine climbing, car camping and everything in between. The Army Special Ops even use this stove, according to Jetboil PR representative Chris Denny.

The cooking cup clips onto the burner, helping prevent spills; a fuel canister tripod bolsters overall stability. The insulating coozy has a color-changing heat indicator that shows when contents are hot. A newly designed burner secures the igniter to prevent it from breaking, which is what happened to some of the older versions. Denny says it’s also possible to cook pasta or other food items in the Jetboil if you stir, but I’ve never really been able to do it without losing my macaroni.

Old trusty, the Flash is Jetboil’s most popular item, but the company also has several newer noteworthy products. The more expensive Sol Ti ($150), which is titanium, has an aluminum regulator, allowing it to work better at colder temperatures and at higher elevations; however, Denny says, it’s good for boiling water, and water only. The 1.8-liter Sumo ($130) is meant for groups of three. Hunters rejoice—a new multi-cam camouflage coozy is set to come out in January. $99

Jetboil Crunchit Always wished you could recycle those empty butane canisters? Safe and foolproof, the CrunchIt punctures Jetboil and other butane fuel canisters, rendering them recycling bin ready $5.95

Patagonia Stealth Hip Pack for fly fishing By sean weas

big sky weekly staff writer

As fly fishing season delightfully fell upon me this spring, I was in need of a gear overhaul. Having looked at hip and sling packs for fishing in years past, I was always interested but hesitant. Well, I finally pulled the trigger, and after a summer of fishing, I can safely say that buying the Patagonia Stealth Hip Pack was the most solid choice. Even the slight bulkiness of a vest is noticeable while casting, but not with this hip pack. That’s the thing I love

most: It’s there when you need it and disappears when you don’t. When you do need to re-rig, just slide the pack around and you’ll be greeted by two large compartments. The molded front compartment houses your quiver, with a fold-down working area. The back compartment is large enough for two good-size fly boxes and comes with a host of smaller interior pockets for organizing. Two beverage holders frame the pouch, keeping you hydrated during your slay-fest. The pack sits rather high, which was confusing for me at first, until I got into a deep wade and realized the design keeps the pouch dry. If you’re looking to speed up and slim down your fishing setup, the Patagonia Stealth Hip Pack is the way to go. $89

36 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

Sea to Summit Pocket Body Wash By tyler allen

big sky weekly staff writer

I was skeptical when I first opened the hard plastic container of the Sea to Summit Pocket Body Wash. There was no soap. Instead, there were 50 paper-thin leaves that dissolve in water to create a soapy lather. But they’ve turned out to be a great alternative if you want to shave precious ounces in your backpack. Kind of like dried fruit. You’ll need multiple leaves for anything more than a simple handwash, and that means you need to anticipate how many you’ll use—if you try to remove the leaves with wet hands they’ll dissolve right in the case. A full bath or shower requires at least five or six leaves. But if you’re just looking to freshen up on the trail, a few of the biodegradable leaves will suffice for those

“problem” areas. They’ll keep the smell down and the weight as well. $3.50 for a case of 50 leaves. Available at the Bozeman REI and at





LOCATED IN THE BIG SKY TOWN CENTER big sky, montana 406-995-3830

Join us on the porch this summer baked goods | pizza | $2 pbr | sweet iced tea | fresh lemonade | iced coffee

we deliver 406.995.2305 open 7 days a week 7am-10pm view menu at: located in westfork plaza mall, Big Sky Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012 37

EVENTS ongoing events Big Sky Big Sky Farmers Market Big Sky Town Center Wednesdays, 5 p.m. Moonlight Basin’s Yoga on the Deck Moonlight Lodge Monday and Friday thru Aug. 31

Planning an event? Let us know! Email and we’ll spread the word.

Sunday, Aug. 26

friday, aug. 31

Big Sky

Big Sky

Big Sky XC Big Sky Resort

Artist Reception with Jerral Derryberry Creighton Block Gallery, 4 – 7 p.m.

Historic Crail Ranch Harvest Celebration Historic Crail Ranch, 2 – 5 p.m.

Paradise Valley


Little Jane and the Pistol Whips Pine Creek Lodge & Café, 7 p.m.

Always, Patsy Cline Ellen Theater, 3 p.m.

Black Water Band Chico Hot Springs Saloon, 9 p.m.

The Raptor Center hosts open house The Raptor Center, 11:45 a.m.

The Bonnie Situation Sacajawea Park, 9 p.m.

Gallatin County Farmers Market Gallatin County Fairgrounds, Saturdays, 9 a.m.

Harvest Classical & Autumn Showdown Gallatin County Fairgrounds Events Park

west yellowstone

Rockin’ TJ Ranch Farmers Market Rocking TJ Ranch, Mondays, 5 p.m.

Old Settlers Days Parade, Firemen’s Breakfast, BBQ and Run Clyde Park, Livingston

Hike, Bike and BBQ Moonlight Basin Tuesdays thru Sept. 4, 4:30 – 9 p.m. Bozeman

Bogert Farmers Market Bogert Park, Tuesdays, 5 p.m. Paradise Valley

Paradise Valley

Club Championship Livingston Golf Course

Annual Knothead Square Dancing Jamboree Union Pacific Hall

The Dirty Shame Wells Fargo Coffee House, 9:45 p.m. Big Sky

6th Annual Blues Fest Bale of Hay Saloon, 9 p.m.

Living History Weekend: Women of Alder Gulch

Michael Franti and Spearhead Big Sky Resort, 8 p.m.

6th Annual Blues Fest Bale of Hay Saloon, 10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Bottom of the Barrel Choppers Pub, 10 p.m.



Bridger Creek Boys Bozeman Brewery Co., 5 p.m.

Bozeman Sculpture Park opening Bozeman Public Library, 10 a.m. 2nd Annual Art on the Lawn 27383 Frontage Rd., 5 – 8 p.m. Always, Pasty Cline Ellen Theater, 8 p.m. Paradise Valley 17th Annual Madison River Run Ennis Lions club Park, 9 a.m.

Ryan Matziner, Jazz and more Bozeman Public Library, 7 p.m.

wednesday, aug. 29

Bozeman Out to Lunch The Filling Station, 9 p.m. paradise valley Frank Keys Sacajawea Park, 9 p.m. Black Water Band Chico Hot Springs Saloon, 9 p.m.

Buscrat’s Comedy Show Lone Peak Cinema, 8 p.m.

West Yellowstone


Annual Knothead Square Dancing Jamboree Union Pacific Hall

Old Settlers Days Parade, Firemen’s Breakfast, BBQ and Run Clyde Park, Livingston

GPS Navigation Basics Bozeman REI, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m.

Club Championship Livingston Golf Course

Big Sky

Come see how grassfed beef is raised! Muddy Creek Ranch, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.

saturday, sept. 1

Big Sky

Ayurvedic Tips for Women Hill Botanical, 6 p.m.

thursday, aug. 30 The Cold Hard Cash Show Big Sky Town Center, 7 p.m.

Annual Knothead Square Dancing Jamboree Union Pacific Hall Virginia City Living History Weekend: Jack Slade’s End

wednesday, sept. 5 bozeman Alan Kesselheim: Let them Paddle Bozeman REI, 6:30 – 8 p.m.

thursday, sept. 6 Big Sky


Virginia City

Monday, Aug. 27

west yellowstone

virginia city

Virginia City

Big Sky XC Big Sky Resort

Monday, sept. 3

Pinky and the Floyd Big Sky Town Center, 7 p.m.

The Red Elvises Chico Hot Springs, 5 p.m.

Big Sky

Living History Weekend: Jack Slade’s End

The Sugar Daddys Wild West Pizzeria and Saloon, 9 p.m.

Livingston Farmers Market Sacajawea Park, Wednesdays, 5 p.m.

Saturday, Aug. 25

Big Sky Weekly

Bike Maintenance Basics for Women Bozeman REI, 6:30 – 8 p.m. Chamber of Commerce: Business Before Hours Petra Academy, 7:30 a.m. Pecha Kucha Ellen Theater, 6 p.m. Paradise Valley She Stewart Pine Creek Lodge & Café, 7 p.m. Fish Camp Boys Wild West Pizzeria & Saloon, 8 p.m.

friday, sept. 7 Big Sky 15th Annual Big Sky Chamber of Commerce Golf Tournament Big Sky Resort Golf Course, 12:30 p.m. Bozeman Tracy Nelson with Speakeasy Filling Station, 8 p.m.

Virginia City

Paradise Valley

Living History Weekend: Jack Slade’s End

Denny & the Resonators Pine Creek Lodge & Café, 7 p.m.

Labor Day Horseback Poker Ride Bale of Hay Saloon, 10 a.m.

Six Strings Down Chico Hot Springs Saloon, 9 p.m.

sunday, sept. 2 Big Sky

Jawbone Railroad Sacajawea Park, 9 p.m.

Bottom of the Barrel Choppers Pub, 10 p.m.

Buscrat’s Comedy Show Lone Peak Cinema, 8 p.m.



Old West Dinner Cookout Yellowstone National Park, 3 p.m.

West Yellowstone

Bears and Backcountry, what you need to know Bozeman REI, 6:30 – 8 p.m.

Jazz and more with Kelly Roberti Bozeman Public Library, 7 p.m.

Tessy Lou & the Shotguns Wild West Pizzeria & Saloon, 9 p.m.

Flat Busted Wild West Pizzeria and Saloon, 9 p.m.

Chadron State vs. Bobcats at MSU Bobcat Stadium, 7 p.m.

Virginia City

west yellowstone

Living History Weekend: Women of Alder Gulch

The Dirty Shame Wild West Pizzeria and Saloon, 9 p.m.

DownTime Chico Hot Springs Saloon, 9 p.m. Dave Walker Band Pine Creek Lodge & Café, 9 p.m.

6th Annual Blues Fest Bale of Hay Saloon, 9 p.m.

Paradise Valley Tracy Nelson Pine Creek Lodge & Café, 5 p.m. west yellowstone Annual Knothead Square Dancing Jamboree Union Pacific Hall virginia city

38 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

west yellowstone

norris hot springs Aug. 25, Charley Orlando Aug. 26, She Stewart Sept. 1, Chad Okrusch Sept. 2, Wendy and the Lost Boys Sept. 3, Jawbone Railroad

EVENTS Michael Franti plays second annual Spruce Moose Music Festival, Sept. 1 Mountain Fest to kick off the day BIG SKY – Michael Franti and Spearhead will headline the Spruce Moose Music Festival at Big Sky Resort this year, alongside The Whigs. The inaugural Spruce Moose in 2011 brought in more than 3,000 people, and the resort expects an even larger crowd this year. The night begins at 5 p.m. Franti’s music is a blend of hip hop, funk, reggae, jazz, folk and rock. His latest album, The Sound of Sunshine, debuted at #17 on the Billboard 200. This will be his first ever show in Big Sky. The Whigs are a “refreshingly invigorating batch of deep-fried garage rock,” according to American Songwriter magazine.

Buddy Walk 2011

Earlier that day, Mountain Fest will begin with the 5K Trail Challenge on the Moose Tracks Trail at 9:30 am. Registration begins at 9 a.m. in the plaza. Next, at 11 a.m., the Cardboard Boat Regatta will have participants racing homemade cardboard boats across Lake Levinsky and attempting to stay afloat. Costumes and boat decorations are encouraged, and personal flotation devices are required. More information and regatta registration forms available at Nonprofits interested in setting up a table can contact Big Sky Resort at (406) 995-5765.

photo courtesy of Amber Miller

Dream Buddy Walk By amber miller d.r.e.a.m.

BIG SKY – If you live in Big Sky, you’ve probably seen Devan Elizabeth Miller around town, either dancing at the front of the stage at a Thursday evening concert or maybe shopping in the Hungry Moose. Devan is only 4 years old, but she has a smile and personality beyond her years. Born with Down syndrome, Devan is a proud member of the Big Sky community, as well as a group called D.R.E.A.M., which stands for Down syndrome research, education and advocacy in Montana. For the third year in a row, Devan and her D.R.E.A.M. family will host a walk to raise money for the nonprofit; this year’s D.R.E.A.M. Buddy Walk is Saturday, Sept. 8 at 11 a.m. at the Dinosaur Playground in Bozeman. This is the organization’s sole fundraiser. D.R.E.A.M.’s mission is to make sure children and community members with Down syndrome are accepted and included in every way in their communities and schools. The money raised at the Buddy Walk goes toward

grants to help families pay for medical expenses, therapies, tutors and adaptive equipment. The walk is a one–mile loop around the Gallatin County Regional Park, and the celebration begins and ends at the Dinosaur Playground. Last year we raised over $10,000, and this year we hope to beat that number. Registration begins at 10:30 a.m. at the Dinosaur Playground off of Oak Street and Davis in Bozeman. The fee is $10 and includes a t-shirt. This year there will be live music from Sally Newsome and delicious burgers from Montana Wagyu Cattle Company and door prizes that include donations from Big Sky Resort, among others. You can register ahead of time, make a donation, or create a fundraising page on the nonprofit’s First Giving page, or visit for more information. Amber lives in Big Sky with her husband Joe and daughters Devan and Ellen. She and Joe are the co-founders of D.R.E.A.M.


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entertainment Johnny Cash, Pink Floyd tribute bands wrap up free concert series By brian hurlbut

On Thursday, Aug. 30, the Arts Council welcomes one of Montana’s favorite bands, the Cold Hard Cash Show, to Center Stage at Town Center Park. The Cold Hard Cash Show is an innovative tribute to the life and music of Johnny Cash.

ity, selling out shows across the state. The group puts on an amazing live show that’s both note-for-note and improvisational. Their superb musicianship, energy and stage presence sets them apart from other tribute bands. All Pinky members are professional working musicians, assembled from genres across the board. All told, the group is members of more than 20 bands spanning genres from Americana, Vintage Swing, Hip Hop, Jazz, Country, Salsa, Funk, Rock to Blues.

Frontman Merle Peterson moves and sings like Cash, with power, composure, intensity and focus—more calculated than contrived. Peterson’s band includes Johnny Pope Staelens (bass) and Felipe Torres (drums); their unparalleled comprehension of Cash music goes beyond just the notes and into subtlety, nuance and proper tone. The Cold Hard Cash Show captures the look, feel and sound of ‘Folsom Prison’ era Cash, with a repertoire of more than 100 hits and classics spanning his five-decade career. On Thursday, Sept. 6, Pinky and the Floyd will play at Town Center Park. This group calls Montana home, and was recently called the Northwest’s Hottest Pink Floyd tribute band. Founded in 2007, Pinky is a grassroots effort that’s exploded in popular-

Each member “…unconsciously affects the overall sound,” the group says. “As players, musicians and artists, whatever you’ve got comes with you…” Between the 10 of them, they have a lot! You can expect albums in their entirety, and something from every Floyd genre— from Syd Barrett to Division Bell, and everything in between. The park opens at 6 p.m., and music typically starts at 7 p.m. Food and beverages from local vendors will be available. Please no glass containers or pets in the park during concerts. Admission is free and suitable for all ages, and there is plenty of parking available. For more information on these concerts and to hear songs from the artists, visit

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BIG SKY – The Arts Council of Big Sky’s free summer concert series will wrap up the season with Montana favorites, Cold Hard Cash and Pinky and the Floyd, Aug. 30 and Sept. 6.

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entertainment The modern man’s hustle

An exclusive interview with Slug from Atmosphere By ersin ozer

big sky weekly contributor

How old were you when you started pursuing music?

Atmosphere’s fall tour kicks off in Minneapolis, then heads west stopping in Bozeman (Sept. 10) and Missoula (Sept. 11). The band has played many shows in both cities on past tours—proof that the word is starting to spread about how live Montanans can be.

When I was 11, I fell in love with rap. From there I started collecting records and trying to be a DJ. Then I started to write graffiti, and from there I wanted to be a break-dancer. [Next] I started rapping, performing, putting out tapes, and getting jobs at record stores. There’s still a part of me that thinks this music My first Atmosphere show was in the thing is going to go away at any mosummer of 2004; a friend got us VIP ment. People tickets because could be like, he knew the “I’m not sure why the “yeah, we don’t right person rest of the world can’t like your stuff to email. Back then, I had no have as much fun as the anymore.” I don’t know why idea the band’s people in Montana do.” I can’t embrace emcee would be that we’re doing affirming the great. I’ve never seen it as a career, but importance of those connections during something I get to do because I’m lucky. a phone interview years later. I got the chance to chat with Atmosphere’s front man, Sean Daley, a.k.a. Slug (short for “Sluggo”, his father’s own nickname before it was Sean’s), about traveling, art, snowboarding and life. While the rest of the world glamorizes the hustle in hip-hop, the only part of the hustle Slug glamorizes is the fact that he’s not afraid to work. When was your first visit to Montana? We played in 2002 on the God Loves the Ugly tour. We were on the outskirts of Missoula near some strip club, getting out of the van, and Brother Ali’s tour lanyard was flying in the air as he got out and it hit Dibbs in the face. The plastic backstage pass hanging from the cord cut his eye! He went to the hospital, and didn’t know if he was going to be able to play the show, but he put on some crazy eye patch and played. You played in Big Sky last March during the Chamberlin Rail Jam— That was a cool show! You don’t want to play a bunch of dark stuff when you’re outside in a festival setting. So, we got to be out in the cold and play all the fun songs. You know what I’m saying—as opposed to some of the songs we would play inside a club with weird lighting. I’m not sure why the rest of the world can’t have as much fun as the people in Montana do. It’s weird. Did you go snowboarding while you were here? I’ll hook up lift tickets next time. No, I’m cool! By no means am I short of adrenaline. Every time I get on stage it’s a 120 minutes of nonstop adrenaline. Yeah, plus I’d break something.

Who is the woman named “Lucy” referred to in earlier material? Truthfully I’ve never said it like this before—but she was a metaphor for me. I created this character to signify my problems and co-dependencies, whether with girlfriends, co-workers or my boss, or even booze. I named her Lucy Ford trying to be silly and clever with words, like Lucifer. She was like the devil on my shoulder as opposed to me, Sean, the angel on my shoulder. What’s funny about that is the notion that I made the devil the antagonist and myself the protagonist. Basically saying, “really, you’re an angel, Sean?”

Slug from the band Atmosphere Photo by Moses Namkung (cc)

What advice do you have for aspiring artists? Stop hanging out with people who bring out the worst in you. If you want to be more positive—art imitates life and then life imitates art, it’s a chicken or the egg thing—use your art to write yourself to where you want to go. Don’t lie. If you trick someone into believing in you, there’s going to be shrapnel. If you can genuinely convince people to support you, you’ll make connections that will last forever. It’s

not about selling records, it’s about connecting. Hopefully that connection will result in records sold, but either way if you can connect with somebody, then you’re an artist. Who would you choose if you had the opportunity to highfive any one person (living or deceased)? I would high five one of my grandfathers, either one. Just to be like, “in your face, I make music that you’d probably hate!”

Your lyrics have grown wiser. What has influenced your latest writing? I don’t drink at all when I write now. If you look at the writing from back in the day you can probably tell. A lot of earlier material was self-centered around my ability/inability to play well with others. I’m turning 40 this year, and if I was still living and rapping about what I did when I was 22—that would be pathetic! That would be sad that here’s this guy who hasn’t grown and experienced the world in any way. Talking about it makes me feel bad for some of the rappers I know, because they still have to rap about selling crack. It’s like, ‘c’mon bro you’re 43, you’re not selling crack anymore, and if you are, you’ve been selling crack for 20 years—how come you haven’t gotten any sort of promotion? You’re still on the corner. 20 years on the corner means you suck at selling crack! The thing that has shaped where I’m at now is traveling and all the people I’ve met. Not being quick to judge and think my way is right. In my mid-20s I thought I knew it all. I’m not convinced anymore.



Big Sky Weekly

Buscrat's Fables: the magic stew "It’ll differentiate the two of you so when you return to your village everybody will know who Percy is and who Bienna is." "Good," Percy said. "I hate getting confused with Bienna."

"Look at the wonderful city," Bienna said. "It probably has a lot of bad people like everyone in the village says," Percy said.

"That would make everyone in the village happy," Bienna said. One day me and my good wife, Clairebelle, was sittin’ in our rocking chairs in our cottage in the woods, when someone knocked.

They walked on the sidewalk and saw a dog chained to a light pole outside a store, looking sad. He had something yellow on his face.

The sisters ate their stew then went on their way to the big city. Along the trail they came across a beehive up on a branch of a tree.

"Look at the cute little dog," Bienna said.

I opened the door, and there stood two teenage girls what were identical twins. They were about five feet tall, with long black hair, big brown eyes and fair skin, and they were wearing matching tan dresses.

"Ooooh, I love honey," Bienna said. She climbed up the tree, took a handful and ate the honey while she climbed back down.

"My name is Bienna," one said. "I'm Percy," said the other. "We're on our way to the big city to find our future and got hungry on our way." "I hope the city is as grand as they say it is," Bienna said. "I hope so because I hate living in the village," Percy said. "My name is Buscrat, and this here is Clairebelle, my wife," I said and invited them in. "Why don't you sit there on the nice soft sofa while I make you some stew," Clairebelle said. "I'd love some stew," Bienna said "I hate stew, but if it's all you've got, OK, I guess," Percy said. I already couldn't remember which was which cuz they looked identical. It had always been their fate, and nobody in their home village ever knew them apart. As Clairebelle served them supper, I explained it was a special magic stew.

"I hate bees," Percy said, and down fell the beehive from the branch and landed on her head. Honey dripped all over her hair, and the bees flew out and stung her face. The girls ran for three miles until they were far away from the bees. Bienna's hair turned a beautiful golden color from the honey. Percy's face became bumpy from the stings.

Bienna and Percy decided they would need money in the city, so they stopped at a farm with a "help wanted" sign out front. The farmer offered to pay them for cleaning out the pen where he kept his pigs. Bienna was delighted. "What cute little pigs," she said as she worked. "Their snouts are ugly and they stink,” Percy said.

"As you make your journey, this stew will do two things. First, it will magnify your outlook on life and make your inner self visible on your outward appearance."

When the girls cleaned, the piggies squealed and giggled. Every time they giggled it attracted beautiful butterflies to land on their heads. Bienna saw this and giggled too. Percy complained about the noise and the smell of the pen. Suddenly, her nose began to stretch and widen and square off at the end. While Bienna giggled, a butterfly landed on her head that stayed with her during the rest of their journey.

Confused, those poor girls looked at each other then shrugged their shoulders.

When they finished the work, the farmer paid them, giving Bienna a little extra for her cheerful effort.

"Whatever," Percy said.

The sisters continued on their journey, eventually coming over a final hill where they saw the big city in the distance. There were tall buildings and paved streets.

"Sounds fun," Bienna said. It would make sense later, I told ‘em. Then I told them the second magical thing the stew would do:

Percy pointed at a hot dog wrapper on the sidewalk. “He must have stolen that hot dog," she said. “It’s mustard.” She walked closer to the curb, away from the dog. “Hello, little doggie,” Bienna said. The dog wagged his tail, then stood on its hind legs, put its paws on Bienna's dress and licked her on the cheeks. Her cheeks became rosy, and her dress turned yellow from the mustard, with polka dots where the dog had left paw prints. Right then a car drove by and hit a pothole of muddy water. The water splashed all over Percy's dress and turned it brown. The sun began to set over the city skyline. "Look at the beautiful sunset," Bienna said. "That's from the smog," Percy said. They watched the sunset together, and Bienna's eyes became flecked with blue, soaking in the sky's colors. Percy's eyes turned dark gray, influenced by the color of the smog. When they finally walked home, the villagers were all happy to see the sisters again.

The villagers looked at the one with scraggly hair and gray eyes. Her face was lumpy, and she had a pig's snout and a big scowl on her face. She was in a brown dress and smelled like a pig. "This one must be Percy," the villagers exclaimed. Then they looked at the other sister who had a colorful butterfly in her beautiful golden hair. She had pretty blue eyes, rosy cheeks, a cheerful smile and a squeal of a giggle. She wore a yellow sundress with black polka dots. "This must be Bienna!" they exclaimed. Percy looked at Bienna. "How did they know who was who?" Percy asked. From that day on, everyone always knew the difference between Percy and Bienna. The magic stew had fulfilled its promise. That's the end of this story, friends. Of course there’s another story about two boys who came by our cottage, too, and had some of Clairebelle's magic stew. When they returned to their village, one of the young fellers had grown strong and handsome. A stranger passing through gave him a fine home and a piece of land, and when Percy and Bienna met him, he asked Bienna to be his bride. The other brother wasn’t as attractive or fortunate. He asked Percy to go on a date. "How come I get the ugly one?" Percy said. Buscrat's fables are simple stories that teach a moral. Buscrat welcomes you to visit and post your comments regarding the fable. Buscrat will be performing his comedy show at Lone Peak Cinema on Aug. 29 and Sept. 2.


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wanderer at rest

Pfamily Pfun

story and photo By jamie balke

big sky weekly columnist

Recently I attended an extended family reunion in Illinois that my father hosted. The consonant-loaded, überGerman name of the family begins with a Pf. This portion of my extended family is very kind, but I don’t know them very well. As a result, I felt a bit like an observer in the midst of a chaos ruled by decades-old relationships and arguments. My brother and I traveled to the reunion together, which was held at a resort on Lake Michigan. This beautiful, gigantic lake is one thing I miss most about my home state, and almost immediately upon arriving at the hotel my brother and I bee lined toward the beach. We reverted to games we played as kids, trying to see who could swim the farthest underwater and generally making fools of ourselves. That evening we ate a late dinner on the hotel’s second story porch and watched a nearly full, glowing tangerine moon rise over the lake. The second day we convinced our parents to go for a dip. A few other family members followed along, including an adorable baby cousin who hadn’t ever been swimming before and seemed to hate it with a fiery passion. A “wacky” cousin of my father also made her way to the beach and very thoughtfully attempted to record the family swim session with her digital camera. Being preoccupied with filming, she couldn’t be bothered to attend to details such as her dress that had somehow blown up farther than I can relate in a familyfriendly publication. On the third day, I reluctantly participated in the traditional family horseshoe competition. The first round found me and a cousin pitted against my mom and brother. My mom alternated between aggressive and blatant cheating, and loudly declaring that the game was over before the agreed-upon point minimum was reached. I’m pretty sure my brother was trying to throw the game. My mom called the game long before the moderator agreed it was over, and clearly both teams should have been disqualified.

Inexplicably, my cousin and I were declared the winner of that rather interesting round, and were given a buy to the semi-finals. Advanced to a degree far beyond our skill level, we were promptly creamed by two of the older female cousins, both of whom had been enjoying undisclosed beverages in red plastic cups for the majority of the day. One of them accessorized with a cigarette casually dangling from the side of her mouth and sunglasses festooned with skulls. They pretty much used us to wipe the floor. It was about that time that a childhood friend of my brother drove up to the resort, because apparently, he enjoys a good awkward situation. After he was wrangled into photography duties by a well-intentioned family member, we made a temporary escape to one of our favorite restaurants, Captain Mike’s. One of the best things about this joint is the names on the menu. For example, being a vegetarian, I enjoyed the “green bastard” burger. Omnivores had a wide range of options including the “liquor and whores” or the “never trust a man with no shirt on” burger. The food is excellent, and the drink list will blow your mind. Thus fortified, my mom drove us back to the reunion, where we dove head-on back into the pfamily pfun. My uncle had hired a great band, and in a strange twist, another family reunion that was going on at the hotel spilled out onto the patio and danced their way into ours. It felt sort of like a cheesy movie, in a good way. In retrospect, I’m glad I had that opportunity to spend time with my family. I enjoyed swimming in the lake of my childhood, getting slaughtered in yard games by inebriated women at least twice my age, and watching the chaos unfold. Jamie Balke moved to Bozeman in the fall of 2009. She can generally be found behind the cover of a book, meandering down a trail or desperately trying not to kill houseplants.

Big Sky Weekly

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Big Sky Weekly

Adventures between Montana and Alaska

The bears are happy, too By mike mannelin

big sky weekly columnist

Sitting on my four-wheeler, I watched the bears at the local dump near our cabin in Bear River, Alaska. One of them looked up at me for a second and then lay down next to the smoldering pile of what was left of the village’s trash. I spun my tires out in the sand, racing my buddy to get out in front on the trail back to camp. Competition is part of the human spirit. From the time a person is born, there is a cultural expectation that whatever direction a life heads, the best is to be sought. Every parent wants to have the smartest, most beautiful children. We aren’t satisfied until we live in the best house in the neighborhood. If evolution is the baseline for human existence, does this mean that animals are the same way? I watch the bear sow with cubs wandering outside my window and wonder. Does she hope her cubs grow up to take over the animal kingdom, or is it simply that the strongest bears find the best food and are more likely to survive another winter? Sometimes larger boars will kill and eat a cub. The sow cries near the baby, mourning the loss for a short time before she gets on with her life. This seemingly archaic action is only part of the nature of the animal. Our relationship to the passing of time is different than other animals’. We have the ability to create an industrial revolution. We are able to offer ourselves more options based on what we learn from success and failure. We can make a conscious decision to change how we live. We aren’t like bears. They depend on instinct and a set of survival tools handed down through evolution from their ancestors. This allows us to purpose our lives in the pursuit of recreation. In Big Sky, for example, the entire town is

built around a ski resort, the ultimate recreational grounds for anyone looking to spend time having fun. In this microscopic segment of society, there is a group of people that make up the general population. There are smaller groups of individuals that possess a drive to take their existence to a next level. Someone will stay at the office late, trying to move one more unit. Someone else will spend countless hours figuring out a way to top last year’s participation numbers. A snowboarder or skier will obsess over a line that nobody has skied before. Why is this the case? As humans, we are able to view each day in life as a new start. We have moved beyond survival, seeking forward motion instead. Undoubtedly though, there is a tipping point. Those at the front of the pack forgo any semblance of life outside the pursuit of bigger numbers. A skier will get in over his or her head. When this happens, the rest of society will look on them and murmur things from the comfort of the couch like, “See, that’s what happens when you aren’t satisfied with the status quo.” Or “Better him or her than me.”





So where’s the happy medium? Well, that’s the easy part, my friends, because the key word is happy, not medium. If your drive at work is compelling you to stay at the office at night to move one more unit, then by all means, go there. There is bound to be fulfillment wherever you place your focus. If spending your existence foraging to feed the little ones makes you happy, it’s been going on for millennia. After all, we would like to keep the cubs around for another season. Mike Mannelin is a skier with roots in Minnesota, Montana and Alaska. He gains his inspiration in life by spending time in the mountains with friends.

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

Big Sky Weekly

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, how-to pieces for traditional or outdoor skills, and science.

The Gallatin Speedway creates a fast family legacy story and photos By tyler allen

big sky weekly staff writer

The dull cough of the engine became a deafening roar when the yellow caution light blinked off and Doug Martin accelerated the modified two-seater stock car to full speed. We hurtled into the first corner of the dirt track at the Gallatin Speedway, and he yanked the steering wheel to the left, throwing me into the side of the custom safety seat. “It’s like taking your car out on the highway at 75 mph, and then pitching it sideways,” Doug said before the Friday night races began Aug. 3. During intermission between the heats and featured races, one lucky person gets to ride in the modified “two seater” stock car for a few laps. Martin isn’t racing this season, so this

is his one opportunity to lay some rubber on the track every week. Since 1997, the Gallatin Speedway in Belgrade has been hosting races every Friday night between Memorial Day and Labor Day. The first heats begin at 7:35 p.m. and the featured races end before the 10:30 p.m. track curfew. Regular competitors come from as far away as Billings, Great Falls, Deer Lodge and Powell, Wyo., and some drivers even travel from South Dakota and occasionally the Midwest. The Martin family can see the track from their house. At one point Doug, his wife Tina, and their oldest son were all racing every week. While they could see their house from the track, they never saw much of each other on race night, Doug said, so now they’re just focusing on their youngest son Taylor.

A super stock heat at the Gallatin Speedway At 15 years old, Taylor is the youngest driver on the track this season and won’t have his driver’s license until September. “Last year I had to start in the back every race,” he said. His favorite part is “racing side by side with another car,” describing how the cars are often a couple feet—if not inches— apart at top speeds. Tina Martin was one of two or three women racers at the Gallatin Speedway last year. This year she sits in the grandstand during the races instead of behind the wheel. “I do miss it,” she said, “but I’m thrilled to watch my son.” Brought up in a racing family, Tina went to the track every week to help her father. After dinner at the Martin house, the whole family can often be found in the garage, working on the car. Sometimes, when it’s just Doug tinkering with Taylor’s car, Tina tells her friends, “He’s with his 3,200 pound girlfriend.” The winning drivers take home between $200 – $2,000 depending on

The races

48 Aug. 24 - Sept. 6, 2012

the car class and event, and every driver that competes gets some compensation, said Sue Weisz who promotes the races with her husband Dave. Dave managed a track in South Dakota with his father and step mother before taking over the Belgrade track in 1998. “My father retired, and the [South Dakota] track was too big for me to take over,” he recalled. “My folks came out when they were building this track and ran it the first season.” The next summer Dave and Sue quit their jobs, moved to Belgrade and stayed in a camper, “until it got too cold and we had to buy a house.” After the races, young girls and boys roamed around the pits collecting autographs from the drivers on their plastic checkered flags. “Will I get back out there?” Tina Martin wondered aloud, grinning as Taylor signed an autograph for a young race fan. “I think it’d be fun to race against him.”

Each heat consists of at most nine cars racing around the track for eight laps. The featured races are 20 laps and include all the cars in the class. Starting positions are selected randomly by a computer for the heats, and then re-drawn for the featured races based on heat results.

motor at 350 horse power. The super stock drivers are only required to have the front half of the original car; they have a custom body built behind it with a 450 hp engine. Modified cars have the biggest motor, from 650 – 750 hp, and any suspension the driver can afford to install.

The night I attended there were two heats in each of the three classes: street stock, super stock, and modified. The street stock racers must retain the whole body of their cars and they have the smallest

All the cars have the same size tires, so that each one has the same amount of traction and it’s cost effective if a driver wants to change divisions.