Historic Belt Theater Reopens

A work in progress is what folks called it for many years. Prior to that the “old Belt theater” was just referred to as a mess. Today you would hope to take your best friends and family to see the beautifully restored theater and meeting space. The Historic Belt Theater held a grand opening last week and received rave reviews. As you walk down Castner Street in Belt, Montana, the storefront looks nice but you have no idea what … Read more

Cowboy Artist Charlie Russell: The Women In His Life and Art

A new exhibition just opened at the C. M. Russell Museum in Great Falls, Montana. At first glance, the title “Charles Russell: Women in His Life and Art” seems out of line, perhaps an ill-fit for America’s cowboy artist. Most western art aficionados I know value Russell artwork because he created such realistic images of wildlife and he portrayed the Plains Indian tribes with such accuracy. Since Russell lived the “cowboy way of life” he produced poignant and … Read more

Western Art Week Putting On A Grand Show

The third week in March finds Great Falls turning in to the Western Art Capital of the World. That’s a pretty heady title but once you experience it, you get it. This year is the 50th anniversary of the Russell Art Auction, now named The Russell: A Sale to Benefit the Russell Museum. Locals who began the show 50 years ago, and one who has attended all 50 shows, were all smiles last night at … Read more

Shonkin’s Country Christmas Worth The Drive

I’m not sure if I should even refer to Shonkin, Montana as a town. It’s primarily a community center building and an elevator but believe me, it was a hopping place this weekend. Located in Chouteau County, Shonkin was one of the towns that participated in the county-wide Christmas celebration. It requires a bit of gravel road driving to get to Shonkin but the drive provides some varied and beautiful scenery. Well worth it. I … Read more

150th Anniversary at Fort Shaw

150 years! In Montana history that’s pretty significant. First, some background on the history of this 150 year old Fort. In the late 1860s there was a lot of conflict between Native Americans and the white settlers who came to the area. Fort Shaw was constructed and opened June 30, 1867 to protect the settlers traveling on what was called the Mullan Road. Construction of the fort was primarily adobe bricks and when you look … Read more

Red Ants Pants Music Festival – What An Event!

You can call it a music festival (and it is) but it is so much more! It’s a celebration of rural life, of family, of small and big towns, all happening in the middle of a pasture just outside of White Sulphur Springs. The town of White Sulphur Springs has almost a thousand people living there but attendance at Red Ants Pants Music Festival tops 16,000. Just a few good folks over for a visit! … Read more

Lewistown Sponsors Montana’s Longest Table

When I first heard about the event called Montana’s Longest Table I couldn’t quite visualize how they would structure it, but I knew I wanted to attend. What is it? Two city blocks in Lewistown were closed off and long tables were placed down the middle of the streets. Area restaurants were contacted and eleven of them agreed to each make 200 samples (200 tickets were sold). The best part…they needed to use a product … Read more

Montana Style Events and B&B

This week I was in Havre, Montana for a meeting and made good on a promise to visit a new bed and breakfast and an event center. To get there I drove across Havre’s viaduct and then veered left. It’s a slightly confusing intersection but I made the right choice. Betsi, the owner of the B&B, had given me good instructions on how to get there with plenty of visuals. I saw the sign about … Read more

So Much Art, So Little Time

Great Falls recently hosted Western Art Week, a collection of 13 art shows all featuring a variety of art for sale. The longest show runs for five days, not quite a week, but the days are jam packed. The art shows take place the third weekend in March around the time of Charlie Russell’s birthday. Most folks think of western paintings during Western Art Week, but in addition to that, you’ll find an amazing variety of art including sculptures, … Read more

Montana Winter Fair Hosts Unique Events

Lewistown’s Montana Winter Fair definitely qualifies for having unique events. My favorite yodeler is Wylie Gustafson of Yahoo fame and he and his band, The Wild West, were performing an evening concert to kick off the Montana Winter Fair weekend. That was enough to get me to pack my bags and drive to Lewistown. The concert was held in the Grand Hall of the Eagles on Main Street. Thank goodness I had a ticket because … Read more