Articles from the April 16, 2020 edition

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  • Potomac resilient through COVID-19 pandemic 

    Sigrid Olson, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    POTOMAC - The Potomac community continues to adjust to COVID-19. The school, businesses and other organizations keep moving forward amidst challenges and continual change. The Potomac School has been closed since the Governor closed schools statewide March 23. Although students can no longer meet in their classrooms, the Pioneers are all studying and doing homework from home. Principal John Rouse said the school appreciates the effort parents and family members of students are making to keep a... Full story

  • Seeley Lake resident named AAI Art Benefactor

    Andi Bourne, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    SEELEY LAKE - Each year, Alpine Artisans, Inc. selects an individual or a business that has contributed outstanding merit to the local community. This year's Arts Benefactor award was given to Sara Wilcox, founder of AAI's Open Book Club and co-founder of the In the Footsteps of Norman Maclean Festival. Wilcox has been involved with AAI for 13 years. She is familiar to those in Seeley Lake who frequent the Grizzly Claw Trading Company where she works both as a barista and as the Grizzly Claw's b...

  • Living with bears comes full circle in the Swan Valley

    Andi Bourne, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    SWAN VALLEY – There is a new ranger who will be making the rounds in the Swan Valley this spring and summer visiting campgrounds and dispersed sites helping to educate the public about living responsibly with bears. While the Swan Valley Bear Ranger Kathy Koors is new to the position this summer, she has been the heartbeat behind the position's existence since it started more than 13 years ago. The reinstatement of the position has also gone full circle bringing the first two bear rangers in the...

  • Vote Morris and Gilpin for a change in direction

    Don Larson, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    SEELEY LAKE - I am writing to recommend Tom Morris and Jason Gilpin for election to the Seeley Lake Sewer District board. Here is why. With only one recent exception, current board members have blindly pursued an exorbitantly expensive sewage treatment solution which will not clean up or protect our watershed. Tom and Jason will respect our constitutional rights to know and participate in this important process. With the direct aid of Missoula County officials, the Board did an end run around our 2016 vote to NOT pursue this proposal and has...

  • Government regulations inhibit handyman services

    John Rice, Missoula, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    We now have many Montanans wanting to work to support their families but in my opinion are prohibited from doing so by intrusive government regulations. Private homeowners and landlords in Montana that need to have maintenance work done and now qualify for low interest loans are also hampered by the same laws. I understand that many professional service providers will not work doing minor maintenance on older homes or mobile homes, even though they can charge many times more than a handyman. If they do concede to work, I believe many do so by...

  • Consider alternatives as you vote

    Troy Spence, Seeley Lake, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    SEELEY LAKE - Ballots are in the mail this week. Please fill them out and sign them correctly. This is the time to vote two great candidates onto the board. Don’t let two candidates who are business owners make you subsidize the sewer for their benefit. Instead, vote for Tom Morris and Jason Gilpin. Just remember 40 years is a long time to pay for a system only good for 15 – 20 years. I was also wondering, during a crisis like we are in now, who would pay your operating and maintenance? Who would pick up the costs for any foreign objects tha...

  • Bring PSC back to working for the public - Vote Tranel

    Dave and Shirley Atkins, Bonner, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    The current Public Service Commission is dysfunctional and hasn’t been serving the public’s interest. Why should you care? Because it affects your pocketbook, your environment and the social well being of Montanans. Do wildfires and smoke concern you? We have a family forest in the Lower Blackfoot at risk because of our reliance on fossil fuels. We need a vision for a heat and power system that reduces fossil carbon emissions. Monica Tranel is running for the District 4 Commissioner. She has EXPERIENCE, over 20 years worth. She is ready the fir...

  • O'Brien's expertise in education needed in Legislature

    Dori Gilels, Missoula, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    Voters in Senate District 46 should check the box for Shannon O’Brien on June 2. I’ve known Shannon for over a decade and she is a passionate leader who has dedicated her career to providing a quality education for Montana’s kids. As an education policy advisor to Governor Steve Bullock, Shannon worked collaboratively on issues ranging from early childhood learning to workforce training and economic development. She helped identify and define problems and find solutions that work. Montana spends almost a third of the state budget on education,...

  • Tranel will benefit Montanans

    Gwen Jones, Missoula, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    Monica Tranel is running for the Public Service Commission District 4 including Missoula, Lake, Ravalli, Sanders, Granite, Mineral and Lincoln counties. I am grateful to have such an intelligent, hardworking, educated and knowledgeable candidate for this position. An attorney with a wealth of experience presenting cases in front of the PSC, Monica truly understands this complicated area of the law. She also understands the role Public Service Commissioners are supposed to play in Montana – regulating monopolies to protect consumers’ poc...

  • A vote for O'Brien will not disappoint

    Nancy Hobbins de Pastino, Missoula, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    Vote for Shannon O’Brien for Senate District 46 and you will not be disappointed. Shannon has extensive experience as an educator and an advocate for our children. She served as education policy advisor for Governor Bullock and dean of Missoula College. She was a high school teacher and coach. She understands how to work hard and get things done in Helena. She shares our values: a clean environment, high-quality health care, affordable homes, and believes in treating each other with basic human dignity. Shannon and I have worked on a handful o...

  • Public lands more precious than ever

    Tom Puchlerz, Stevensville, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    Montanans are doing our part in this very difficult time to help each other out and curb the spread of the COVID 19 virus. We come together and look out for each other, as we always have in times of crisis and in this case that means practicing social distancing to slow the spread of this disease. It is times like this that we as Montanans are even more appreciative of our public mountains and foothills, forests and prairies, and rivers and streams. Montanans recreate in the outdoors at as high of a rate as any state and last year’s C...

  • Drawing The Scrupulous Line On Graft

    John Brian Driscoll for US Senate, Helena, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    A candidate for the United States Senate in Montana’s June 2 primary election has refused to accept campaign contributions during the reporting quarter ended March 31, 2020. He spent $2,474.73, which includes the $1,740 filing fee and expenses for driving to 43 of Montana’s 56 counties before the shelter in place order. He intends to draw the line on graft. John Brian Driscoll (R) also announced today, in a published essay titled “Backfire,” that during his general election campaign he will not accept from any donor more than the filing...

  • Burning Down the House

    Dusty Weber, Park City, Mont.|Apr 16, 2020

    Us: Some unusually bad hail came through this season and sadly it shattered many of our most precious stained glass windows in our home. What should we do? Government: Start by pouring gasoline all through your house and light it on fire. When the neighbors show up to help, begin screaming “FIRE, FIRE” at the top of your lungs. Tell them to be calm but encourage them to join in. When the crowds get large enough and loud enough, encourage them to burn down your neighbor’s house as well. And finally, if enough are willing and the rest are afrai...

  • Responsibility during a global crisis

    Ken Silverstro PhD|Apr 16, 2020

    There are many ways to understand responsibility. For example, caring for and not endangering another person, such as caring for someone you love – your spouse, your children or your parents. A month ago, I wrote a column about "the other;" the person who is seen as different. By forming imaginary circles around ourselves or circles that include loved ones and a very close friend or two, we leave everyone else outside our circles. The people outside our circles are considered "the other." We o...

  • Spotted knapweed battles against spring weather and treatments

    Karen Laitala, Powell County Weeds Coordinator|Apr 16, 2020

    The past few weeks I have been making a concerted effort to take daily walks on the ranch where I live. Last week the snowy path I wandered gave way to a spring melt off event. By mid-week I sighted my first wildflower blossoms. Yet even before the snow cleared, I had begun to see spotted knapweed rosettes emerging at the base of last year's seed heads as well as scattered seedlings. With temperatures reaching the mid to upper 60's, I started to experience an increase in questions about weed man...

  • Use caution when outdoor burning

    Missoula County Fire Protection Association|Apr 16, 2020

    With warmer, drier conditions expected later this week, interagency wildland fire officials with the Missoula County Fire Protection Association (MCFPA) are expecting an increase in outdoor burning by permit. The fire danger rating is currently LOW and a quick scan into the hills around Missoula reveals snow on the ground. Missoula County citizens are taking advantage of more time spent at home, protecting their neighbors by complying with the state’s shelter in place order. There’s another group of your neighbors that need to be in the for...

  • Nonresident spring turkey and black bear hunting suspended

    Montana Fish Wildlife and Parks|Apr 16, 2020

    Following the extension of Montana Governor Steve Bullock’s directive that out-of-state travelers must quarantine for 14 days, Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks director Martha Williams has suspended nonresident hunting seasons for spring turkey and black bear until at least April 24. On Tuesday, April 7 Bullock extended the mandatory quarantine directive related to COVID-19 through April 24 for travelers arriving in Montana from another state or country. The quarantine directive for out-of-state travelers applies to public outdoor recreation, gro...

  • Seeley Lake School District No. 34 Trustee & General Levy

    Apr 16, 2020

    Voter Information: There are five candidates for the two open SLE School Board trustee positions. The sixth candidate Jody "Doc" Welter will fill the two-year position since he ran unopposed. Candidates are listed below in the order the filed for election. Candidates' responses were based on the following questions: • Biography • Qualifying experience • Why do you want to be a trustee? • What challenges do you see in the near future? • Are there things you would like to see changed on the board...

  • Seeley Lake - Missoula County Sewer District Directors

    Apr 16, 2020

    Voter Information: There are five candidates for the two open director positions on the Seeley Lake - Missoula County Sewer District. Candidates are listed in the order they filed. Candidates' responses were based on the following questions: • Biography • Qualifying experience • Why do you want to be a director? • What challenges do you see facing the Sewer Board and District in the near future? • Are there things you would like to see changed or what issues would you address if elected? • What...

  • Motor Vehicle Division responds to social distancing directives

    Andi Bourne, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    Governor Steve Bullock issued a directive allowing Montanans to renew their driver’s licenses online and by mail and extended the deadline to complete title and registration paperwork. This is an effort to provide essential services without furthering the spread of the coronavirus. In a press conference April 14, Attorney General Tim Fox and Motor Vehicle Division (MVD) Administrator Sarah Garcia provided more details regarding the Directive. Fox said these are temporary measures and will continue to be assessed per state and federal g... Full story

  • Home energy bill assistance available

    Energy Share of Montana|Apr 16, 2020

    If you are worried about how you are going to pay your home energy bill as a result of issues related to COVID-19, please contact Energy Share of Montana. Energy Share is a statewide nonprofit organization whose purpose is to help Montanans facing loss of heat or lights in their home and who have no resources to pay the bill themselves. Energy Share is fuel blind so helps people no matter what their heat source is. If you or someone you know needs help: • Contact the Human Resource Council in Missoula at 406-728-3710 or http://www.humanresource... Full story

  • Sharing love of art while adapting to new norm

    Andi Bourne, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    SEELEY LAKE - The stay at home order couldn't have come at a better time for local artist Kris Gullikson at her Uncorked and Creative Studio in Seeley Lake. Though the learning curve has been steep, she is now ready to help everyone's creativity come out and play. She has opened Pandora's Box in a good way and is now able to supply and teach art to kids, adults or families during these trying times. Gullikson has been painting for 30 years and has a Graphic Arts degree from Colorado Institute...

  • Reaching out and changing lives during challenging times

    Andi Bourne, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    SEELEY LAKE – Amidst the uncertainty and challenges presented by statewide closures of schools and businesses, many residents are reaching out to others with encouragement and support. The ways to do that are endless and exemplify the words "Montanans taking care of Montanans." Depending where you live in Seeley Lake, the encouragement for our local health care workers and other essential workers can be heard with howls at 8 p.m. every night. The Facebook group "HOWL for Seeley Lake" has v... Full story

  • Easter celebrations in the Valleys

    Apr 16, 2020

    With the Governor declaring the Easter Bunny essential and forgiving the 14-day quarantine as long as the Bunny maintains social distancing guidelines, we want to share reader photos from the holiday weekend. There are so many ways to celebrate. Readers gave us a glimpse of their holiday activities....

  • Time to knuckle down

    Betty Vanderwielen, Pathfinder|Apr 16, 2020

    SEELEY LAKE – When school buildings closed because of the Corvid-19 pandemic, teachers devised home assignments for their students. However, with distractions such as toys, TV and video games readily accessible in the home, many students had a hard time focusing on those assignments. And no doubt many a parent was heard to say, “Knuckle down and get to work,” or perhaps “buckle down and get to work.” While the two phrases now mean the same thing, they have different origins. Knuckle down may sound like a gorilla’s way of walking but the phr...

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