April 11, 2024

Bozeman Journal

Good Morning Bozeman! Happy Thursday. MSU's Spring Rodeo kicks off today and runs through Sunday at the Brick Breeden. At the time of writing this there's still a few tickets left. This is a must-see event especially if it IS your first rodeo.

🚨 Keeping the rodeo pun alive - we're looking to hire a local social media manager - someone who has been around the social rodeo before. If you or someone you know is looking for part-time gig please give us a shout by replying to this email or hitting our social DMs!

In Today's Edition:

  • Local Business
  • Civil News
  • Upcoming Events


Can you name the three states that have designated rodeo as their official state sport?

Local Business

🥃 Glass half full: According to the National Alcohol Beverage Control Association (NABCA), from November 1, 2023, to January 31, 2024, Lazy K Bar’s bourbon was the top-selling new bourbon in Montana. Lazy K is a 92 proof straight bourbon, distilled and aged for a minimum of eight years in Kentucky and then bottled here in Bozeman. Sold exclusively in Montana, this new brand is a collaboration among local legends: David Leuschen, owner of Lazy K Bar Ranch—the oldest operating dude ranch in Montana, situated in the eastern foothills of the Crazy Mountains; Cole Hauser, an actor best known for his role in the '90s coming-of-age comedy 'Dazed and Confused' and some new Paramount series called 'Yellowstone'; and Livingston local, Britt West. You can read more about the brand here.

🏥 MSU Nursing Goes on the Road: MSU celebrated a significant milestone with the groundbreaking of a new nursing education building on the west side of Missoula last Friday. The new facility, spanning 21,000 square feet over two stories and featuring an upper-level terrace, will be equipped with modern classrooms and state-of-the-art simulation labs specifically designed for nursing education. This expansion was made possible by a historic $101 million donation from Mark and Robyn Jones, founders of Goosehead Insurance Inc. This progress follows closely after the school's announcement earlier this year regarding their new nurse-midwifery program also made by possible through the donation from Mark and Robyn Jones.

🏠 Housing Market Update: The median home price in Bozeman dropped in March to $730,000 from February but just about steady with the previous year's price at this time. Bozeman saw about a 25% increase in homes sold from February to March of this year with the median amount of days on the market dropping to a low of 16 days; a low not seen since August of last year. The Bozeman Real Estate Group says this is clearly a "seller's market". You can read more on Bozeman and the surrounding areas in their report here.

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News you might have missed this week from publishers & blogs around the valley:

  • Endangered or not? Since the early 2000s, the topic of whether grizzlies in the Greater Yellowstone and Northern Continental Divide ecosystems should be removed from the endangered species list has sparked considerable debate. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is currently conducting a review to address this question and a response could come as soon as this summer. Julia Barton, a freelance journalist, recently covered the topic in the Mountain Journal which you can read here.

  • Wolves sparking debate as well. Environmental groups, including Western Watersheds Project and WildEarth Guardians, are suing the USFWS for not reinstating federal protections for Northern Rockies wolves. They argue the USFWS's decision, made in February 2023, wrongly concludes wolves are not at extinction risk based on flawed models and ignores the impact of human actions. You can read more on the issue over here at MTFP.

  • Libby, MT: There's a lawsuit playing out against BNSF Railway alleging the company's responsibility for asbestos pollution in Libby, leading to rare lung cancers and deaths. The dispute centers on BNSF's transportation of asbestos-contaminated vermiculite from a nearby mine. This case is significant as it is the first community exposure trial against BNSF, amidst broader concerns over asbestos exposure from vermiculite mining and processing affecting thousands. You can read more here from the AP.

Civil News

🎫 Park in a Bike Lane; Get a Ticket: The City Commission unanimously passed an ordinance to ban parking in bike lanes to improve road safety. Violations of the new rule will result in fines ranging from $50 to $300. The ordinance, aimed at preventing vehicles from blocking bike lanes and ensuring safety for all, will take effect next month.

🚰 Water Restrictions coming to Livingston: Livingston city officials are preparing to propose new public water usage regulations by May 7 to address potential drought conditions this summer, with plans to implement restrictions in stages based on drought severity. Although there's no immediate water shortage, the city aims to educate residents about water conservation and may introduce measures like assigned watering times, amidst concerns of below-normal snowpack and high usage stress on the city's pumping capabilities. Bozeman implemented permanent water restrictions with assigned watering times back in 2022 and also has a stage based drought plan.

Upcoming Events

🗄️ Cabinets of Curiosity: Is hosting guests for it's last weekend at Story Mansion. This event is being run by the Random Acts of Silliness group and the installation is a collection of interactive cabinets, created by Montana artists, that include "mesmerizing mementos, fanciful renditions of scientific specimens and artifacts, and even encapsulated sounds and memories". To learn more - check out the event page here.

🍜 4th Annual Restaurant Week: is kicking off on April 22. You should plan to keep your eyes on social media to see which of your favorite restaurants or potentially new-to-you restaurants might be running specials during this week. You can read more about the event at on Downtown Bozeman's website.

⛷️ Goodbye Winter: Bridger bowl will be turning off the lifts on Sunday evening for the last time in the '23-'24 ski season. The Madison Base at Big Sky is also closing up on the 14th with the remainder of the resort closing on the 28th later this month. Enjoy the spring skiing while it lasts.

Trivia Answer

Hopefully you guessed South Dakota, Texas and Wyoming. There is a movement to make it Montana's official state sport. We're not sure how far along this effort has made it but you can check out more here.