Canvas Kombucha has opened its new space to brew their Kombucha drink which is a fermented tea drink with other ingredients. The new location will host art work of local artists.
Missoula’s last movie-rental store, Crazy Mike’s, will close at the end of May. The store is located in the Eastgate Shopping Center on East Broadway. The Albertsons next door is planning on an expansion that will take over the space vacated by the video store
Anaconda will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Anaconda Company’s smelter stack this summer on August 8th. The smelter stack stands 585-feet tall and was built in 1919. It is one of the tallest free-standing brick structures in the world. The smelter structure is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Amtrak will close the Havre and the Shelby ticket counters this June. Regular rail service for the Empire Builder will continue at both stations and passengers can board and get off of trains. Company officials explain the decision as a cost-saving move and the fact 90 percent of riders are buying tickets online or via telephone.
Zoot Enterprises has opened the Zoot Adventure Learning Academy, or ZALA, in their Bozeman headquarters. This is part of the company’s newly launched in-house daycare facility. The center, which employs two infant teachers, a toddler teacher and a preschool teacher, operates as a for-profit subsidiary of Zoot. The company offers tuition scholarships for its employees to help cut the cost.
The unused National Guard armory building in downtown Bozeman is being remodeled as an eight-story boutique hotel complete with event space and restaurants. The current plan calls for the conversion of the concrete structure into as much as 17,000 square feet of event space. The attached steel-frame hotel will include 122 guest rooms. The newly named Etha Hotel will retain 98 percent of the original armory building, which was constructed in 1941.
The Bureau of Reclamation announced the opening of the Hungry Horse Dam visitor center for the 2018 summer season, beginning May 25.
The former JC Penney building in Sidney will soon be occupied by Anytime Fitness, according to building owner, Roger Byer. Also, in Sidney, Serenity Oxygen Spa is being opened in Yellowstone Marketplace in downtown Sidney, by Heather.
Eleven Montana State University students hailing from all corners of Montana are newly minted veterinarians. Comprising MSU’s inaugural class of the Washington, Idaho, Montana and Utah Regional Program in Veterinary Medicine, dubbed WIMU, the students began their first year of the regional program in Bozeman, housed in the College of Agriculture. They then completed the final two years of their doctor of veterinary medicine degrees at Washington State University in Pullman. They received their diplomas on May 5.
The board of directors of MDU Resources Group, Inc. declared a quarterly dividend on the company’s common stock of 19.75 cents per share, unchanged from the previous quarter.
The City of Williston has completed a master plan for the redevelopment of 800+ acres that used to be the airport, Sloulin Field. Because the airport was located so close to the downtown of Williston it couldn’t be expanded when needed and was moved. The close proximity to the main core of Williston now poses advantages to the area’s redevelopment. Recently unveiled, the plan will enhance the connecting transportation corridors and focus on pedestrian walkability; introduce new “live/work” commercial and housing options; establish diverse housing types; and improve quality of life amenities by focusing on performing arts, special events, aquatics, and family-friendly gathering spaces.
SkyWest Airlines has announced the continuation this summer of the agreement with the West Yellowstone community to provide air service. Operating through Delta Airlines, SkyWest has been providing service to West Yellowstone since 1986.
The Bozeman City Council has placed a bond issue on the November 6 ballot, asking voters to approve $37.4 million to build a new building for municipal courts, the police department and fire department. Twice before previous requests to move the police and courts have failed.
Visitors to Yellowstone National Park visitors spent about $499 million in towns near the park last year, according to the National Park Service. The expenditures supported about 7,350 jobs in the nearby Montana and Wyoming communities, resulting in a total economic impact of $629.6 million. Nationwide visitors spent $18.2 billion near national parks last year. Yellowstone ranked sixth in the nation for visitor spending. Yellowstone’s 2017 totals represent a decline from 2016, when the agency estimated the park’s visitor spending at $524 million. As a whole, Montana received $556 million in visitor spending, good enough for 12th in the nation, an increase from 2016, when visitor spending was estimated at $548 million.
The Rialto Theater in Bozeman has been renovated and is slated to re-open in January. The revamped theater includes ground-floor “black box” style venue, which will accommodate up to 400 people and feature a mezzanine. The second floor will house a small, flexible dining space, named the Burn Box, as well as an adjacent art gallery/ private event space. The venue will host a wide range, everything from spoken word poetry to comedy and well-known musicians.
The Montana & Idaho Community Development Corporation, based in Missoula, has changed its name to MoFi.
Montana State University is working with the Bozeman Film Celebration as a sponsor for this spring’s inaugural BZN International Film Festival, which will be held June 7-10 in Bozeman. The event will spotlight women filmmakers, directors, actors and producers. It will include short films and features in a variety of genres, from drama and comedy to documentary and animation.
It was recently stated at an economic summit meeting in Williston, that there are probably only about 200 people in the community who are unemployed. North Dakota boasts a 1 percent unemployment rate.
Tickets for a new Big Sky music festival, featuring headliners Grace Potter and Bruce Hornsby, are on sale. The inaugural Moonlight Music Fest will feature two days of national and local talent in Moonlight Basin’s Madison Base Area, Aug. 16-18. The festival hopes to breathe fresh life into the southern Montana music scene.
Visitors to both Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks will be forced to pay at the gates of both parks starting this June. The $50 weekly pass that covered entrance to both parks will no longer be available. June 1 also marks the beginning of a nationwide fee increase bringing per car prices at each park from $30 to $35.
Owners of the Clarion Inn Copper King Hotel & Convention Center in Butte, Matt Nistler, his brother Ben and Rex Leipheimer, are building a $4.6 million, 42 apartment development, on property behind the newly remodeled hotel. They are building seven duplexes and seven four -plexes on land on the property they acquired with the purchase of the Hotel.
The City of Missoula is contemplating the pros and cons of developing “Max Wave”, a proposed man-made wave. The project would cost $2.2 million and would have to be approved by several state and federal agencies. One agency said it sees benefits in that portion of the Clark Fork River becoming an “engineered whitewater play-park.”