June 25, 2013 |
They don't care if it rains or freezes, they can keep their ski-mountain Jesus. A federal judge ruled Tuesday that a 6-decade-old, 6-foot-tall Jesus statue could stay on a small patch of federal land in the Flathead National Forest in Montana after an atheist and agnostic group argued that the statue violated the 1st Amendment separation of church and state. The Jesus statue sits on a 25-by-25-foot parcel of federal land along a ski run in the Whitefish Mountain Resort. In 1953, the Knights of Columbus, a Catholic group, won permission from the U.S. Forest Service to erect the statue.
June 12, 2013 |
It's not enough to offer tax rebates and credits to lure filmmakers. Now Montana has joined a handful of states offering outright cash to get Hollywood's attention. In addition to breathtaking mountain scenery and pristine wilderness, Montana is touting its Big Sky Film Grant, which provides up to $1 million in cash per fiscal year to Montana-based film and TV productions. The program, which launched earlier this year, targets feature-length films and television series that shoot at least 50% of principal photography in Montana.
June 8, 2013 |
Karen Sciascia has had her share of big catches over the years during fly fishing trips on the Big Hole River in southwestern Montana. Her biggest, though, came last weekend: a 25-pound baby moose. Sciascia, a Pennsylvania gynecologist, and Four Rivers Fishing Co. river guide Seth McLean were in a motorless drift boat when they spotted a cow moose on a bank downriver. The moose appeared to be trying to push a much smaller moose, a baby, toward the water. The baby would walk out on the rocks only to retreat or fall down.
April 29, 2013 |
The sons of a pair of football Hall of Famers did not get drafted this past weekend, but Nate Montana and Duron Carter still may be able to follow in their fathers' footsteps into the NFL. And with their dads' former teams, no less. Montana has accepted an invitation to take part in a three-day rookie minicamp with the San Francisco 49ers, the team his father, Joe Montana, led to four Super Bowl victories. Nate Montana, whose agent says his client turned down invites from three other teams for the opportunity, participated in the 49ers' local pro day earlier this month.
April 26, 2013 |
COLSTRIP, Mont. - Out in these windy stretches of cottonwood and prairie grass, not far from where Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer ran into problems at Little Bighorn, a new battle is unfolding over what future energy development in the West will look like. Here, rancher Wallace McRae and his son, Clint, run cattle on 31,000 acres along Rosebud Creek, land their family has patrolled with horses and tamed with fences for 125 years. They could probably go on undisturbed for 100 years more if the earth under the pastures weren't laced with coal.
April 24, 2013 |
Since Mitt Romney lost to President Obama on Nov. 6, the conventional wisdom has been that the Republican Party is in trouble. The less conventional truth is that it is the Democrats whose chances many be more bleak. Yes, Republicans are currently engaged in a round of intraparty sniping between establishment conservatives and the militant, purist right-wingers who abound in the ranks of party activists. And, yes, the 2012 election exposed the GOP's profound unpopularity among rising voting groups, especially Latinos.
April 23, 2013 |
The surprise retirement of Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) immediately swung attention to the state's former Democratic governor, Brian Schweitzer, who declined to say Tuesday if he would seek the job. The two-term governor left office in January and would be the immediate front-runner for the Democratic nomination if he jumped into the Senate race. For the last several months, Schweitzer said, he has been focused on an effort to take over the state's financially struggling Stillwater mine as part of an investor group seeking to save its roughly 1,600 jobs.
April 23, 2013 |
Democratic Sen. Max Baucus of Montana, who sometimes crossed his party in the powerful role of Finance Committee chairman, announced Tuesday he would retire at the end of his term - complicating Democrats' efforts to keep control of the Senate in the 2014 midterm election. The move caught many in Washington by surprise. Baucus had stockpiled $5 million - a fortune by Montana standards - and voted last week to oppose compromise gun control legislation, which some viewed as a calculation aimed at winning reelection in his libertarian-leaning state.
April 6, 2013 |
The idea came from something a state lawmaker noticed while cruising the wide-open roads of Montana. The highway often has carcasses - plenty of them. "There are a lot of animals and a lot of roadway in Montana," state Rep. Steve Lavin said. "I've had a ton of people ask me after striking a deer or an elk, 'Can I take it?' And I have to say no.'" But that could soon change. If a bill becomes law, Montana motorists could take home certain roadkill - and cook it up. And no, the "roadkill bill" - HB 247 - wouldn't mean open season on animals on the state's roadways.
March 30, 2013 |
WASHINGTON - After Shane Todd, an engineer from Montana, was found hanging by the neck in an apartment in Singapore, police there quickly ruled the 31-year-old's death a suicide, citing evidence including an apologetic note typed on his computer and a description of an elaborate pulley system the 6-foot-1 man allegedly used to hang himself from a bathroom door. But when his parents visited his apartment a few days later, they found an external computer hard drive that they think tells a different story - one that suggests their son may have been inadvertently caught up in a plot to transfer sensitive technology to China.