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Volume XXVI, Number 38

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Click here to comment on our front page stories on the new Bitterroot Star blog!

Hamilton City Council news

By Michael Howell

At the April 5 meeting, the Hamilton City Council authorized the Mayor to sign a memorandum of understanding with BEAR for a Ropes Challenge Course at Hieronymous Park. The course will be set up in the area at the entrance to the park at the opposite corner from where the Veteran’s Memorial stands. More...

About 75 families took part in the annual Florence Park Cleanup on Saturday morning. Moms and dads, sons and daughters, spent the morning raking the ball fields, picking up garbage and pine cones and getting the ball fields ready for spring and baseball. When the families register their children for baseball, they pay a fee for the park clean up. However, when they show up for the cleanup day, they receive their check back. Brennan Simmerman, 7, wields a rake that is almost as big as he is. His mother, Erika is on the left. Also helping are Ryan Winters and Kelly Winters. Jean Schurman photo.

Pantry Partners awards building contract

By Michael Howell

The Pantry Partners Food Bank Board of Trustees selected a building contractor last Thursday April 14, to construct the new facility that will serve as a consolidated location for the food bank, The Clothes Closet and Acts of Kindness. The building will be constructed on Stevensville School district property along ALC Way, off of Middle Burnt Fork Road. The lowest qualified bid of $362,468 was submitted by Patterson Construction of Corvallis. Funds for construction of the building are coming from two grants, a CDBG grant for $450,000 and a HUD grant for $200,000. More...

The Birds are Back...

Waterfowl welcomed back. Birdwatchers flocked to the Lee Metcalf National Refuge last Saturday for the annual Welcome Back Waterfowl Day celebration. There were ducks galore (below) and plenty of binoculars and spotting scopes provided for public use. There were even some microscopes provided (below left) for viewing the many micro invertebrates so crucial for the survival of the wildfowl. Canada geese in trees (below) are a perennial favorite for public viewing. A pair of nesting Osprey (below) were easily visible from the refuge road. Not exactly a waterfowl, some turkeys (below right)also attended the celebration. Few refuges in the nation can boast of such a wide variety of wildfowl as the Lee Metcalf Refuge. Michael Howell photos.

Stevensville Town Council

Former council member alleges illegal meeting

By Michael Howell

During the public comment portion of the last Stevensville Town Council meeting, former council member Clayton Floyd read the law concerning open meetings and alleged that Council President Pat Groninger in his role as acting mayor during the absence of Mayor Lew Barnett held an illegal meeting of the council immediately following the adjournment of the March 23 regular town council meeting. More...

Commissioner Foss’s ranching operation draws complaints

By Michael Howell

Commissioner Suzy Foss has recently been absent from work due to a death in the family. The Fosses also missed two separate meetings, scheduled on the same night last Tuesday, April 12, in which separate complaints about their ranching activities were considered by the Ravalli County Weed Board and the Bitterroot Conservation District. More...

Refuge balks at using grant money

By Michael Howell

Officials at the Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge have balked at accepting about $1,500 in grant funds from the Friends of the Lee Metcalf National Wildlife Refuge. A Memorandum of Understanding between the non-profit group and the USFWS that established a working relationship for joint projects on the refuge was dissolved last year following a dispute over the nature of the group’s involvement in refuge affairs. More...

Business booming for local ammo company

By Michael Howell

Business is booming at Bitterroot Valley Ammunition & Components (BVAC) in Stevensville. According to plant manager Misty Browning, the ammunition production industry in general was hammered by the run on ammunition that accompanied the last elections. She said that was probably sparked by fears of gun control. More...

‘Changing of the guard’ at Stevi foundation

At a recent meeting of the Stevensville Community Foundation board, longtime board member Cheryl Baldwin submitted her resignation. In fact, Cheryl was the sole founding member left on the board. While she is no longer on the Foundation board, her involvement in the Stevensville community has just changed direction. In a conversation with board members, she recalled how the Stevensville Community Foundation came into being. More...

Group continues push for community center

Every community needs a "heart" and the Stevensville Community Center Complex board of directors hopes the building they have planned will be the "heart" of Stevensville. The Center will provide a gathering place for individuals and families to participate in social, civic, business and educational opportunities. More...


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