• George A Warmer, CCIM, Managing Partner, Coldwell Banker Commercial CBS, Billings, has been awarded the Certified Commercial Investment Member (CCIM) designation by the CCIM Institute. The designation was awarded during the Institute’s Annual Governance meetings Oct. 29 in Austin, Texas. Warmer was among the 244 commercial real estate professionals who earned the designation by passing the CCIM Institute’s Comprehensive Examination,
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  • When shopping for Christmas, check out local businesses first. Encouraging community support of local businesses is the purpose of “Small Business Saturday”, November 28 in Billings. It’s the time for local Billings businesses to shine!Each year the Billings Chamber of Commerce invites small and local businesses to participate in the Small Business Saturday program and rally communities to support local entrepreneurs.
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  • It was called a “jewel for Yellowstone County” when it was first announced that the Sindelar family is donating 720 acres along the Yellowstone River for public use. And, as one stands on a precipice, rising a hundred feet over the river, gazing across the property, the landscape does seem ethereal, and the river does sparkle like a diamond. Looking
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  • Montana’s new school choice program is scheduled to launch in January, but already it’s running into constitutional problems. Proposed regulations don’t allow faith-based schools to participate in the program, which is discriminatory and unconstitutional, one attorney says.Potential regulations for Montana’s new school choice program would unconstitutionally ban religious schools from participating, an attorney says.“They’re interpreting their own constitution to require
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  • Almost immediately after the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan was posted on the federal register, dozens of states filed a lawsuit challenging the regulations.But North Dakota didn’t join those other states as co-plaintiffs. Instead Attorney General Wayne Stenehjem, a Republican who is expected to run for governor in 2016, filed a separate suit against the federal government.The Clean Power Plan
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  •   To open a medical school in the state without first identifying where students can find residency positions is not a plan that he’s “comfortable” with, said Nicholas Wolter, MD, CEO of Billings Clinic, in talking with board members of Big Sky Economic Development.And, to establish a medical school in Montana that the Billings medical community doesn’t support, “with the
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  • Jerry Brown, Governor of California, declared that California was burning because of climate change, and, he said, “We can’t wait for the government to act.”How profoundly perceptive. He has nailed it. Unfortunately, (and this is a head scratcher) he made the statement while at the same time appealing to government for help.If, indeed, the climate changes in ways that are
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  • Wood’s Powr-Grip in Laurel is in the process of moving into a new addition – one that will allow the company to expand to meet a growing market. The company manufactures and distributes vacuum lifting equipment, to markets around the world.“We are fortunate to see sales back on an upward trajectory and we want to make sure we position ourselves
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  • A family business is about hard work and dreams.The family businesses which were honored at the Montana State University Jake Jabs College of Business and Entrepreneurship Family Business Day were families who know about the hard work and have been successful in achieving those dreams. And, they are on their way to achieving even greater dreams – and embracing more
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  • Three Billings civic organizations are taking steps to expand air service at the Billings airport, by offering to subsidize service from American Airlines for flights to and from Dallas, Texas.Last week, the Big Sky Economic Development Authority’s executive committee voted to recommend that their board commit $25,000 toward a goal of $750,000 in commitments from the community as a source
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  • A Bozeman- based company with locations in Billings, Big Sky, Sidney, Ralston WY; Williston ND, and Dickinson ND, received special recognition at the Montana State University Jake Jabs College of Business and Entrepreneurship during their Family Business Day awards presentation in Bozeman on October 23.Williams Companies of Bozeman, a business that provides leading-edge plumbing services to the region is the
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  • One of Montana’s outstanding startup businesses came close to being shut down by proposed legislation earlier this year. Fortunately, the bill was “tabled,” and the Garrity family – and independent, family breweries across the state — were able to move forward with their dreams.Michael Garrity has a passion for making beer. He and his wife, Erin, began to dream of
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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.


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Humidity: 82%
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