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*- W / M HIoTQtilC ,L T h e B i £ T i m b e r P i o n e e r BIG TIMBER, SWEET GRASS COUNTY, MONTANA — Wadaetday, January 4, 19*4 ■»./.ft' N a It A Review of 1983 Centennial events dominate news of the past year The Big Timber Centennial celebration dominated the news during 1983. The year was filled with related activities intermixed with everyday events plus an extraordinary happening now and then. As we embark on 1984, take a few moments to reflect on the past year and remember the happiness and sadness it brought us. JANUARY 1983 opened with The Pioneer reproducing a history of the com munity first published in 1906. An old-fashioned style to the weekly newspaper was designed and fol lowed throughout the year. Andy Drange was the recipient of SI00 cash and a 4-H Sheep Award. The annua] session of the State Legislature got underway in Helena. One of the topics of discussion at that session plus in the com munity was the Lower Deer Creek Canal Project, a plan to erect an ofT-stream storage canal and reser voir. The proposal drew criticism at a local public hearing and little enthusiasm from the solons in the capitol city. Newly elected public officials took office the first o f the month. They included Justice of the Peace Dick McLces, District Court Judge Byron Robb, Commissioner Bjamc Bjomdal, and County At torney Tom Biglen. The SGHS Board of Trustees let bids for a diesel engine-school bus to be used on the Grey ClifT route and to take athletic teams to out-of-town sporting events. The first baby of the new year was bom at the Sweet Grass Com munity Hospital — Jenny Lee Gibson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. James Gibson. A proposal to change the bound aries of Montana House District 73 surfaced, raising the possibility •of Representative Orval Ellison being out of a job. The change was later discarded and the District remained as was. FEBRUARY The new entranceway at the Overland Golf Course was com pleted — a wood and stone marker in memorial to Elnor Overland from his wife. Marguerite. Boulder Valley resident Charlie Rasnick died at his cabin home. He had become a legend in this area, well known for his inde pendent ways and fondness for the church camp youngsters who climbed the trail to visit him. Jim Graham was inducted in the University of Montana Basketball Hall of Fame. Plans to upgrade the BigTimber Fish Hatchery were announced, pending Legislative approval of financing. That approval was later made and engineering plans were being drafted by fall. Mayor John Drivdahl proclaim ed 1983 Big Timber’s Centennial year, and more plans for upcoming events were announced. A request was made by the City Council for state funds to finance a study of the local solid waste dis posal system. MARCH Charges against Andy Livings ton of aggravated assault were dropped by his wife and she told Judge Bryon Robb she would not testify against him. In February Livingston had been arrested fol lowing signed complaints against him. The local man was released on his own recognizance. A Centennial Mural was started at BTGS, a project of the 8th graders and local artists. When finished, the work of art was dedi cated to the memory of Danny Johnson. Shannon Kirby was selected as one of two Montana recipients of the Cook scholarship to S t Paul’s School in Concord, NH. The Herder Boys Basketball team earned their way to the State Toumey but were defeated the first game by Conrad, who went on to take the Championship. A lawsuit against the city, county and Undersheriff George Ames was filed by prisoner Terry Robbins. Robbins was earlier found guilty of burglarizing the Grand and Bob’s Sport Shop. The Forest Service announced their consideration of selling feder ally-owned land in the Crazy Mountains. C Sharps Arms building plans hit a snag when it was discovered the Davis-Bacon wage structure would apply to the project Chantell Schuman was the top county speller and advanced to the state contest in Butte. APRIL Rocco Carroccia was named FFA Star Greenhand. The BTGS and SGHS voted mill levies were defeated and a second election date was set for May. The Centennial Bail was held, and a good time was had by all! A solution to the C Sharps Arms/Industrial Park problem was reached by reducing the annual interest rate on a 5100,000 loan and agreeing to a one year deferred amortization schedule on thatloan. Also, the C ity conceded - to give a credit on Park land pur chased by the company to offset the Davis-Bacon wage schedule which resulted in more construc tion money being needed. A Centennial Fireworks Pan cake supper was held at the Moose were over $600 was collected for the special event. Nora Hanson was named the Mental Health Association Vo lunteer of the Yenr by that state wide group. M A Y The Centennial Concert, under the direction o f teachers Jim Brat- vold and John Novotny, was a delight Triangle Telephone Coopera tive announced their plans to change all the telephone numbers on the Big Timber exchange. Efforts to get the Boulder Road designed for federal highway system funds was well underway in May as interested persons met in an effort to move the thorough fare up the priority list. As of the end o f the year, no federal monies have been assigned the local pro ject. 1983 Boat Floaters were con sidering boycotting Big Timber because the local Fair Board voted not to let the rafters use the Fair grounds for overnight camping. The Board later rescinded this decision. Beraie and Debbie Hedrick took over the ownership of Solbergs. Mike Colpo took the gold and silver medals at the NRA Daisy Air Gun Invitational held in Ar kansas. A family cat was credited with ' saving the life o f Earl B utler during a fire at the family home east of town. The Centennial Art Show, fea turing the work of county school children, drew lots of *oohs’ and ‘aahs’ from spectators. Steven Elliott allegedly con fessed to killing 86-year-old Wil liam Feldt in 1976. An autopsy subsequently performed confirm ed the fact that the man had been stabbed. The case is now before the Montana Supremo Court, as Elliott was a juvenile a t the time the alleged crime was committed Dave Christensen announced his Centennial project, rediscover ing and growing native Big Timber com. The second school levy was presented to voters. The BTGS request passed, the SGHS levy ended in a tie vote. PGM announced their summer plans to proceed with a survey- mapping operation in the Absar- oka-Beartooth Wilderness. Grade School students celebrat ed “Centennial Day’’ with an Open House and numerous de monstrations of various crafts. JUNE Dan Halverson donated a sheep sculpture to the city. At the end of the year, the artwork was not yet in place. Jo Lavold retired after 22 years of teaching at SGHS. A Burlington Northern train de railment caused a gigantic pile-up of cars between Grey Cliff and Reed Point Martin and Heide Siebcrt were welcomed at the First Congrega tional Chruch. Pastor Siebert re placed Terry Ryan. New owners of the Ben Franklin store are Cleve and Sharon Woodard A joint venture between Chev ron, Manville and Anaconda to assess the mining potential of the Stillwater Complex was announc ed. Kaia CosgrifT was named the BigTimber Centennial Queen and Wistar Laverell chosen the 1983 Big Timber Rodeo Queen. The '-Rodeo and Parade were centered around Centennial themes and drew a large crowd and much praise. Chris Bassett was presented a silver bowl by the Big Timber Woman's Club for designing the Centennial logo. A county-wide permit system, which had been discussed off and on throughout the earlier part of the year, drew much criticism at a Commissioners meeting on the subject. At the end of 1983, the system is undergoing changes and it’s fate is still unknown. JULY The day was cloudy and cold, but spirits were in fine shape as Big Timber marked it’s 100 year his tory with a day long celebration July 3. Activities in the city park, a play presented by MSU students, and a fireworks display highlighted the day. Hundreds took part in the history making event. A timber fire on the Lone Indian ranch northeast of Big Timber drew over 400 firefighters includ ing state and Indian crews. No one was injured nor buildings burned in the 12 to 1500 acre blaze. Fire did destroy The Firepit that month, with the Big Timber rest aurant closing it’s doors for good thereafter. The structure on the 300 block of McLeod Street was empty when the flames erupted. The City Council named the new street built in the Industrial Park “ Centennial Drive” in honor of the year. The Fire Department approach ed the City Council and Commis sioners about purchasing a new truck. The issue was later put on the November ballot and given approval by voters. However, by the end of the year it was un certain if bids would be let or exactly what action will be taken to secure the needed equipment A new whirlpool bath was in stalled at the local hospital, pur chased through contributiods to this facility by the Montana Elks Association. a u g u s t The questions o f what to do with the old SGHS building surfaced again. Public meetings on the issue Recognized for their actions On December 2 0 a special recognition d in n er was h eld a t Frye's Cafe. Over 100 people p a id tribute to the s ix men pictured above who were p a rt o f the J e n n ifer F ik e kidnapping attempt From left to right are shown J im E s p B ill Kinsey. Jennifer Fike, M ik e M auland, J e ss B erg D a v id R o y s a n d D a n Roys had been held earlier in the year and the issue was on the School Board’s agenda again in August. The problem is still not resolved. The City Council received the first report from the Solid Waste Study Tearn. More research is still going on. Louis and Lana Pistulka be came the new managers of Big Timber’s Farmers Service. The Big Timber Grade School received a S31,000 energy grant to be used to control future energy costs. A significant portion of the money will be used to change the , size of the existing classroom windows. Monte Finn, Tye Faw and Ronnie Halverson topped the an nual Youth Rodeo An expedition o f fossil hunters spent the summer exploring for the remains of ancient mammals in the northern part of Sweet Grass County. The County Fair was held in August At the variety show, an unexpected spectator was a rattle snake — which crossed the foot of Marilyn Grosfield before it’s time ly end at the hands of Floyd Lar son. Grasshoppers plagued the county, with several gardens being devoured by the insects. A possible tornado hit the Al fred Ostrum ranch up Bridger Creek. The Airport received a $75,000 federal grant for their repaving project Roger Roots advanced to Eagle Rank in the Boy Scouts. SEPTEMBER Terrell Dean was arrested on felony assault and sexual assault charges. He was later found inno cent of the felony assault charges by a District Court jury. Stillwater PGM Resources clo sed their Big Timber office and transferred business being done here to their Nye office. A Newsweek reporter visited SGHS preparing for an article on education. The local school was mentioned briefly in the finished feature. Heavy snows in September caught Big Timber unprepared for winter. Marguerite Overland made ar rangements with the Alexander- Felton Vet Clinic to have cats and dogs spayed and neutered there free of charge. The Lions Club embarked on a project of planting new trees in the local park. Controversy swarmed over the community early in 1983 when an out-of-town firm pruned the Park’s trees, and many felt the job was very poorly done. A Tricentencial celebration of Germans in America was held at the First Congregational Church. A dative dinner was served. OCTOBER Ai Goetsch announced plans to open a Paramedic School on a Deer Creek Ranch. Goetsch was later arrested on bad check charges and is now awaiting further court action. A rare Cattle Egret was sighted near Big Timber by Dr. Jim Fel ton. It was later positively iden tified by authority Bob Elgas. The City Council applied for matching funding to construct new tennis courts at the City Park, replacing those present now. Edith Harper was awarded the G.V. Erickson award by the Mon tana Conference of Education Leadership. SGHS Senior Ken Hoffman was killed in a train-pedestrian accident in Big Timber on October 21 . The Herders football team gained the conference title and had the best winning percentage in Big Timber football history. NOVEMBER Lee Kinsey was rewarded with a $50 Savings Bond for his quick action in extinguishing a blaze at the family home. Darlene Stene and Laun Cooney purchased The Center- piece and in December moved the floral shop to its new location on the opposite side of McLeod Street The Girl Scouts honored Kathryn Lowry for her many years devoted to that organization. John Crighton’s attempt to kid nap Jennifer Fike was thwarted when four teenagers responded to her cries for help. Crighton, fol lowed to the outskirts of town by two Starr Ford employees, com mitted suicide before Sheriffs deputies reached his car. A special dinner in recognition of the six men’s bravery was held in De cember. The local hospital got the okay for a “swing bed” arrangement whereby patients waiting for a vacancy at the Pioneer Home may stay in the hospital. Burlington Northern Railroad held a hearing here on their request to the PSC to combine the Big Timber and Columbus depot agencies. The PSC has taken no action yet. The idea of-a fishing access in Big Timber was discussed at a Chamber of Commerce meeting. Several local ranchers opposed the idea. A call for help was traced by the local Sheriffs department and and phone company employees to Lars Krone, who had suffered a stroke. DECEMBER The story of the attempted kidnapping in Big Timber was entered into the Congressional Record by Congressman Ron Marlcnee. John and Debbie Severeide opened a shoe and saddle repair shop in Big Timber. Bitter cold invaded Montana The lowest reading recorded in Big Timber was -36° on Christmas Eve. No weather-related problems were reported, however the power was off for a short period of time on December 20 with the thermo meter reading 30 below zero. A special Christmas issue of The Pioneer pictured numerous homes, businesses, and scenes — the way Big Timber looks today. The issue was intended as a keep sake for future generations to see what we looked like in our Cen tennial year. The last issue of The Pioneer in 1983 questioned the future of this community. Local students contri buted their thoughts in essays and poems. Preservation Assa meets tonight at Courthouse The Sweet Grass County Pre servation Association will hold if s annual meeting tonight. January 4, at the Sweet Grass County Court house courtroom beginning at 7:30 pm. The public is invited to attend Of interest to many is the planned discussion on an upcom ing Legislative Council public hearing On the agenda for the January 13 end 15 meeting in Helena is the studies c f navigabili ty on Montana’s streams and rivers conducted under HJR36 and HJR40. The Legislative Council will hear reports on uses of the term “ navagability” in different con texts and summaries of leading cases on the subject on the morning of Friday, January 13. That afternoon the Montana Supreme Court will hear oral arguments on the case of Deaais Michael C a rraa vs. Montana Coalition for Strcaai Access. The subcommittee will attend the court s session. Other topics on the agenda include various related reports. The Helena gathering will be held in Room 108 of the CapitoL