News

Jon Herington on stage at the Crown Guitar Festival. Tune in Sept. 4 at 8:00 p.m. to hear a replay of this concert.
Michael Marsolek

Steeley Dan's Jon Herington, and the sultry songstress Madelein Peyroux shared the stage for an incredible show Monday night at the Crown of the Continent Guitar Festival. Tune in to MTPR at 8:00 p.m. Friday September 4 for a replay of the entire concert.

Solomon Hicks is an accomplished young musician, and a student and performer at the Crown of the Continent Guitar Festival at Flathead Lake Lodge in Bigfork.
Micheal Marsolek

Musical prodigy Solomon Hicks describes himself as a blues musician with a jazz mind. He's back in Bigfork for the Crown of the Continent Guitar Festival going on this week. He talks with Michael Marsolek about his dual role as Crown guitar fest student and performer.

Morning Newscast 09-03-15

3 hours ago
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

A hearing in Choteau yesterday afternoon discussed proposed drilling in the Badger­-Two Medicine area.

A firefighter working to battle a wildfire north of Helena has been hospitalized after an ATV crash.

Manuscripts, drafts and other items belonging to renowned Western author Ivan Doig will be housed at Montana State University.

STEM Education And More

20 hours ago
Jackie Yamanaka

As the Baby Boom generation starts to retire in big numbers, Montana is facing a potential shortage of skilled workers.

Efforts to fill jobs being vacated by retirees start in elementary school.

At first glance, Mr. Marquis’ classroom may seem chaotic. Take a closer look and you’ll find students standing at tables with plastic tubs filled with wires, wheels, joy sticks, and various small parts, and they’re consulting their tablets.

Evening Newscast 09-02-15

20 hours ago
MTPR Evening Newscast
Josh Burnham

Despite a Red Flag warning being in effect, firefighters on the Holter Complex Fire between Helena and Great Falls managed to keep the blaze’s growth under a hundred acres.

The Sheep Fire just south of Essex is also showing slowed activity as crews continue to build fire lines and put out hot spots.

Firefighters continued to de-mobilize from the Clark Fork Complex fires straddling the Idaho-Montana state line near Heron.

A soldier was injured during a U.S. Army Special Operations parachute training exercise near Hamilton yesterday.

Several groups voiced concerns today about proposed new rules that govern Montana political campaigns.

Lightning Photo: Courtesy of NOAA
Courtesy of NOAA

August was a stormy month at Montana Public Radio. On the evening of August 10, when Missoula experienced a remarkable thunderstorm with hurricane level winds, the MTPR team was all hands on deck keeping the station on air. Then 11 days later, a lightning storm crashed both the primary and backup transmitters for Missoula’s 89.1 frequency, and one intrepid engineer had a harrowing night on the mountain.

The Solenex well site in the Badger-Two Medicine
Corin Cates-Carney

John Murray, the Blackfeet Tribe’s historic preservation officer says the Badger-Two Medicine is sacred land. As he walks through the tall dry grass here, he refuses to give life to the idea that this land will be disturbed in search of natural gas.

Montana Wildfire Roundup For September 2, 2015

Sep 2, 2015
InciWeb

Information from InciWeb.nwcg.gov. We will update this post as more information becomes available today.

West Fork Fish Creek Fire:
Some evacuees from the West Fork Fish Creek fire southwest of Alberton are being allowed back into their homes this afternoon.
 
"The evacuations along Fish Creek have moved from Cache Creek drainage, and they’ve moved north up to Surveyor Creek," says Breanna Thomasson, fire information officer.

Morning Newscast 09-02-15

Sep 2, 2015
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

On today's morning newscast: a federal court has rejected Montana's request to rehear their defense of state campaign contribution limits. The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals says none of its 44 judges moved to reconsider the case that the court already decided was tried on out-of-date standards.

A southwestern Montana doctor charged with 400 felonies in connection to overprescribing pain medication, which officials say lead to the deaths of two patients, has pleaded not guilty. The Ravalli Republic reports 67-year-old Chris Arthur Christensen made his first appearance in Ravalli County District Court yesterday.

An attorney for a Louisiana oil company is asking a judge to reject the government's proposed timeline for lifting its hold on an energy lease in Montana that's on land sacred to American Indians.

Montana Historical Society Press

Step out of a world governed by clocks and calendars and into the world of the Kootenai and Blackfeet peoples, whose traditional territories included the area that is now Glacier National Park.

Montana's construction sector is making gains, but still isn't back to pre-recession levels.
(PD)

Montana's construction industry has come a long way in the past few years, but University of Montana economist Patrick Barkey says the industry is still feeling the effects of The Great Recession.

Evening Newscast 09-01-15

Sep 1, 2015
MTPR Evening Newscast
Josh Burnham

In general it’s been a fairly quiet couple of days for wildfires in Montana, with cooler temperatures and higher humidities in the northwest.

Between Helena and Great Falls, Montana's Department of Natural Resources and Conservation reported an active fire day on fires near Holter Lake.

Up around Libby, firefighters reported minimal fire spread on the Goat Rock Complex of 7 fires burning about 8,500 acres in Lincoln and Sanders County.

Further north, around Noxon and Clark Fork Idaho, some of the nearly 400 people fighting fires on the Clark Fork Complex have started demobilizing.

Southwest of Alberton the 12,000 acre West Fork Fish Creek Fire was that started August 14th was at zero percent containment as of this morning.

Jonathan Motl is rewriting the rules for politics in Montana. That might sound like hyperbole, but it’s not.  The state's Commissioner of Political Practices has come out with a top-to-bottom rewrite of the rules that candidates, parties, and political committees must follow, partly because of Senate Bill 289, the so-called “dark money” bill passed by the state legislature this year.

Map of Solenex Lease site in the Badger-Two Medicine near Glacier National Park
Courtesy Montana Wilderness Association

Wednesday brings another round in the decades-long fight over whether to allow energy development on U.S. Forest Service land in the Badger-Two Medicine area just south of the Blackfeet Reservation in Montana.

InciWeb

In general it’s been another fairly quiet day for wildfires in Montana, with cooler temperatures and higher humidities in the northwest.

But, between Helena and Great Falls, Montana's Department of Natural Resources and Conservation reported an active fire day on fires near Holter Lake.

Morning Newscast 09-01-15

Sep 1, 2015
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

On today's morning newscast: in general, wildfires in western Montana have calmed recently, thanks to cooler weather and even a little rain, but other fires grew, and some new ones popped up. Two new fires were reported Sunday on the I-15 corridor between Helena and Great Falls.

To the northwest, evacuees in the Noxon area are going to be allowed back into their homes this morning.

Firefighters are optimistic that they can get a handle on the fire known as the “Family Complex,” burning on and near the Blackfeet Indian Reservation.

A federal appeals court has formally dismissed Montana's gay marriage case now that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that same-sex couples have the right to wed.

Evening Newscast 08-31-15

Aug 31, 2015
MTPR Evening Newscast
Josh Burnham

In general, wildfires in western Montana calmed over the weekend, thanks to cooler weather and even a little rain, but other fires grew, and some new ones popped up.

Two new fires were reported yesterday on the I-15 corridor between Helena and Great Falls.

To the northwest, evacuees in the Noxon area are going to be allowed back into their homes tomorrow morning.

A proposed initiative would allow Montana public school employees to carry concealed weapons in school.
Flickr user Ibro Palic (CC-BY-NC-2)

Signature gathering soon begins for a proposal to allow public school employees with a valid permit to carry a concealed weapon in school. Initiative-175 has cleared the necessary legal hurdles to appear on the 2016 ballot if sponsor Chet Billi can get the necessary number of signatures.

Montana Wildfire Roundup For August 31, 2015

Aug 31, 2015
Burned area in the interior of the West Fork Fish Creek Fire.
Inciweb

In general, wildfires in western Montana calmed over the weekend, thanks to cooler weather and even a little rain, but other fires grew, and some new ones popped up.

Volunteers look after a canine evacuee at the makeshift shelter in Browning.
Courtesy Lewis & Clark Humane Society

When authorities Saturday ordered the residents of Heart Butte to evacuate in the face of an approaching wildfire, Gina Wiest decided to help some of those who were being forced out of their homes. The Red Cross had already set up a shelter for the people, but Wiest, executive director of the Lewis and Clark Humane Society, knew there was no shelter for the animals.

New Montana Immunization Requirements In Effect This School-Year
(PD)

Kids going back to school this fall may first need to visit the doctor’s office to comply with new immunization requirements.

This Is About Darkness

Aug 31, 2015
vasse nicolas, antoine

The forsythia eats sunlight
near the open barn door
where Bill Perry stands in his overalls watching
his dappled-gray Percheron, Pike.

The largest horse on record was a Percheron,
a mare, twenty-one hands
high. This stallion stands, easy,
at nineteen.

Pike can pull a Cadillac up Humpback Mountain
in a headwind.

Morning Newscast 08-31-15

Aug 31, 2015
MTPR Morning Newscast
Josh Burnham

On today's morning newscast: light rain dampened some wildfires in far western Montana, while other fires closer to the central part of the state continued to spread and threaten rural residences.

More firefighters and equipment are headed to the wildfire near Alberton. That’s what the fire’s Incident Commander John Thompson told about 200 people who crammed into the fire station in Alberton last night.

About 125 people have applied to replace the outgoing chief investment officer for the Montana Board of Investments.

The University of Montana is apologizing to North Dakota State University football players, coaches and staff after a postgame incident Saturday involving a fan who confronted a Bison player on the field.

Guss Yellow Hair, a Lakota and Northern Cheyenne artist from South Dakota's Pine Ridge Reservation, talks about his role as "culture bearer," and about the importance of passing on tradition through language and music.

Eric Whitney

The U.S. Forest Service team leading the attack on the West Fork Fish Creek Fire southwest of Alberton had a public information meeting in Alberton last night, and more than 200 people came. So many people came, they had to open the big garage doors at the fire station to accommodate the crowd.

InciWeb

The following information is from the federal government's InciWeb wesite, full post is here.

Eric Whitney

The following information was posted to at 8:55 a.m. Sunday, August 30 to the federal government's InciWeb site.

Homeless people make us uncomfortable. We wonder what’s gone wrong, but hesitate to cross an unspoken line, or extend a helping hand. Family Promise, a faith-based initiative, does both. And it works. Nick Zullo, director of Family Promise of Helena joins Brian Kahn on this episode of "Home Ground Radio".

Stuffing And Saucing The Divine Nightshade

Aug 30, 2015
Flickr user, Tiny Banquet Committee (CC BY-NC-2.0)

Here at the height of tomato season, "Food Guy" Jon Jackson pronounces tomatoes "one of the most accommodating things to cook with." Other "Food Guy" Greg Patent recommends cooking with beefsteak or Roma varieties of this glorious nightshade. If you can take a break from stuffing yourself with raw tomatoes, try Greg's stuffed tomatoes or tomato sauce.

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