A packed house at the Wilma Theatre watches a Feb. 17 screening of Sweetgrass during the seventh annual Big Sky Documentary Film Festival. The film, which follows Montana cowboys on their final trip leading sheep to pasture in the Absaroka and Beartooth mountains, drew the largest turnout of the festival and earned an award for artistic vision.
Local artists Nathan McTague and Natalie Christensen covered the wall of downtown coffee shop Butterfly Herbs with almost 2,000 customer food tickets for an exhibit during January’s First Friday Artwalk. The installation, titled Butterfly Herbus Regularis, celebrated the venerable coffee shop’s eclectic regulars.
Fire spinners light up Caras Park Nov. 2 during the annual Day of the Dead celebration. Thousands of Missoulians gathered downtown for the parade and party, which follow the traditional Mexican holiday of honoring the deceased.
More than 50 protesters, including 14-year-old hunter-hopeful Amanda Andres, march outside the federal courthouse in Missoula June 15 to voice support for removing gray wolves from the endangered species list. U.S District Judge Donald Molloy, however, ruled Aug. 5 to reinstate protections.
Missoula’s in-town play wave came of age in July when it hosted the U.S. National Freestyle Kayak Team Trials. Sixteen-year-old Dane Jackson set the tone on Brennan’s Wave with this winning run in an open canoe, and followed it with two more first-place finishes to qualify for next summer’s World Championships in Germany.
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Photo by Bob Wiesner
The increase in bear activity this year—including bear attacks near Yellowstone National Park that left two people dead—kept Montana Fish, Wildlife & Parks managers busy mitigating bear-human conflicts. Bear management specialists like Jamie Jonkel, above, worked with groups like the Blackfoot Challenge to put up electric fences and install bear-resistant containers in order to keep the animals away from people’s livestock and garbage.
The brilliant blues of Ipasha and Margaret lakes greet climbers on their way to Ipasha Peak in Glacier National Park. The park celebrated its 100th anniversary this summer and recorded its busiest year ever, with 2,216,019 visitors through November. The previous record was set in 1983 with 2,203,847 visitors.