• On 9-11-2015, a commentator noted that if the US had been attacked in the same manner as on 9-11-2001, by a country, we would have been at war with that country. We have been, 14 years since, struggling with the significance of being at war, with not a country, but with ideas – the ideas held by those responsible for
    Read More
  • While it’s looking like another good year for the sugar beet business, the industry faces a serious challenge in public perception regarding the healthfulness of its product.The sugar beet business would most likely not even be alive, today, in Yellowstone County, if it were not for the development of “Round-up” resistant beets, but anti-GMO public sentiment against that same technology
    Read More
  • Lifting sanctions on Iran will have impacts on oil in the US. Sanctions are expected to be lifted by an agreement reached by President Obama by the end of November.The country is expected to increase petrochemical output by 500,000 barrels a day within a week after sanctions end and by 1 million barrels a day within a month after that.
    Read More
  • Insulation Snakes has chosen Billings for their new United States location.Insulation Snakes manufactures a reusable, weather-proof, economical, insulating system for surface equipment mainly focused on the oil and gas industry. Their new location is at 6840 Trade Center Avenue. Owner, Brian Impey, chose Billings because, “Billings is business friendly, and plain old friendly. It is a breath of fresh air.”Impey
    Read More
  • Visit Billings has announced that the Gold Wing Road Riders Association will return to Billings for its 38th Annual Wing Ding, Sept. 1-4, 2016. The group is expected to bring over 10,000 attendees to the area. The Rally will be held at Metra Park.“Billings previously hosted this group in 1997, 2000 and 2007,” said Visit Billings Executive Director Alex Tyson.
    Read More
  • If the future of our economy is to be measured by the outlook for rail transportation, then it would seem that it will be booming, based upon comments from Matt Jones, Regional Director of Public Affairs for BNSF Railway Company, in speaking to the attendees of the Montana Petroleum Association annual meeting.The freight shipped by BNSF is identified in three
    Read More
  • “We are doing a good job in our industry,” summed up Don Hrap, President, Lower 48 ConocoPhillips, in speaking to guests at the annual Petroleum Industry Appreciation Day Luncheon on September 2.Hrap told his audience that recent US oil production has “taken us to places we have never seen before.” US oil production is expected to reach between 14 million
    Read More
  • Officially, 5872 people attended the BMW MOA International Rally in Billings on July 23-25, representing 50 states, nine Canadian provinces and nine foreign countries.Over 100 vendors also attended, giving away over $100,000 in door prizes.
    Read More
  • It’s a growl, it’s a snarl, it’s a sound that’s unique, but it’s the unmistakable sound of a Harley Davidson Motorcycle. With years of numerous assignments to the various Air Bases, I compare it to the sound of a jet fighter plane coming in after a sortie, approaching base, as they back off military power, first to circle, then to
    Read More
  • It’s long past time to end the ban on oil exports in the US, contend industry officials. Several speakers advocated support for the change during a gathering of some fifty Billings business people recently. The change needs to happen now, not in 2016, said Dave Galt, Executive Director of the Montana Petroleum Association.
    Read More
  • The start of construction of the Billings Bypass, which would connect Lockwood and the Heights across the Yellowstone River, faces delay, in large part because no federal transportation bill has been passed. Projected to begin construction in 2016, the start of the Bypass may not happen until 2019, according to Mike Tooley, Director of the Montana Department of Transportation. The
    Read More
  • “When people see our new showroom they will say ‘wow,’” says Dustin Bretz in describing the new facility that is being built for Bretz RV and Marine in Lockwood at 2999 Old Hardin Road.A new 36,000 square foot facility for showroom, service center, maintenance and administration offices, will be the center piece of a 44 acre expanse that will allow
    Read More

shape upEntries are now being accepted for the 10th Annual Shape Up Montana program, a three-month team-based project of the Big Sky State Games that encourages Montanans to make healthier nutrition choices and be more physically active.

Since it began in 2003, over 43,000 Montanans have logged more than 10 million activity miles and shed 82,948 pounds! Organizers are working to reverse the progression of obesity and overweight trends in Montana.  This year’s program features a new user friendly website.

The early entry deadline is January 24. 

The “Shape Up Montana” program works with the business community, member organizations and families to engage their employees and members in a team format that spurs increasing physical activity and encourages healthy eating habits.  Past Shape Up Montana teams included businesses, church groups, organizations, friends, clubs, school staff and families.

 The team competition offers two categories:

  Accumulated Activity based on logging miles with the aid of an activity conversion calculator and Weight Loss due to healthful eating and physical activity. 

Teams of 4 to 10 individuals work together for three months (February 1 - May 1) helping each other and their team to either log mileage or lose weight.  Mileage is converted from regular daily activities (yard work, housework) and aerobic activity (swimming, running, walking, cycling, etc.). 

The cost for the three-month program is $15 and $10 for employees of Big Sky State Games (BSSG) program sponsors.  Everyone who enters will receive a Shape Up Montana T-shirt, weekly challenges, exercise videos, nutrition and physical activity tips/articles, access to numerous wellness calculators and free entry into the 27th Annual Big State Games Fitness Walk held July 20, in Billings.  Awards will be presented to the top three teams in each division.

Online registration, entry forms and more information are available at www.shapeupmontana.org or call (406) 254-7426.    Entry forms are also available at the Big Sky State Games Office in Billings (490 N. 31st, Suite 200).  

Shape Up Montana is presented by Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana. Community Sponsors include Billings Clinic, Billings Gazette and Montana’s News Station (KTVQ, KBZK, KXLF, KRTV, KXLH, KAJ18, KPAX). 

Contributing partners include Albertsons, Eat Right Montana, Montana Chamber Choices, TwoMedicine, Montana Beef Council and Wendy’s.

The Big Sky State Games’ Major Sponsors are First Interstate Bank, Kampgrounds of America, and Montana Cycling and Ski.


°F | °C
Mostly Cloudy
Humidity: 50%
20 mph
50 | 75
10 | 23
AM Clouds/PM Sun
50 | 68
10 | 20

Market Update

1 DOW 16,823.90
+33.71 (0.20%)    
2 S&P 1,986.54
+6.62 (0.33%)    
3 NASDAQ 4,759.84
+11.48 (0.24%)    
4 MDU 18.78
+0.06 (0.32%)    
5 SWC 11.11
+0.03 (0.27%)    
6 EBMT 11.50
-0.04 (-0.35%)    
7 FIBK 27.51
-0.11 (-0.40%)    
8 GBCI 27.27
+0.49 (1.83%)