​​


A GREAT horned owl is keeping a close eye on proceedings in the courtroom of District Judge Mike Menahan from its nest just a few feet away from the Lewis and Clark courthouse.

And Menahan, an avid bird watcher, and a court clerk have been closely watching the owl, which they dubbed Ollie. They've set up a watching station in the courtroom, complete with binoculars and a camcorder that can record Ollie's activities.

Ollie took over a crow's nest, and Menahan believes she's a young mother. If so, that wouldn't necessarily be a good thing. "There's not a lot of food around here," he noted.

Moreover, the nest is near busy Broadway Avenue, which would be dangerous territory for any young owls that flutter out of the nest toward the street.

Sometimes even a judge can't keep the streets safe for younger ones.


AS AN INCUMBENT, Sen. Jon Tester will enjoy a number of advantages as he runs for re-election: Name recognition, the ability to raise campaign funds, the backing of Democratic allied groups, no significant primary challenge, and so on.

Tester has won statewide elections twice before, but he will now have to run in a state that President Donald Trump won by 20 points. That helps explain why Tester just came out with a campaign ad that touts how he sponsored or co-sponsored 13 bills that passed, and then were signed by Trump.

Despite some advantages, Tester will be no shoo-in. A recent national poll showed that Tester is the most vulnerable Democratic senator seeking another term. The survey done by SurveyMonkey for Axios showed Tester would lose by a 55-42 margin to a Republican opponent if the election were held now.

Of course, a lot could change between now and November. The Republicans haven't even picked their nominee yet from among the four men who have filed for the job.


IT IS not unusual to hear a fellow Montanan say we live in the middle of nowhere. And now there's some proof for that claim.

Especially if you live in Glasgow. Here's why: A team of researchers at Oxford University -- working with the Washington Post -- analyzed all the places on the map in the contiguous United States to determine the points that were the most distant from populated places, or most anything else. Or to put it more simply, they wanted to know, what was the middle of nowhere?

Their evidence pointed to Glasgow.

"Of all towns with more than 1,000 residents, Glasgow, home to 3,363 people in the rolling prairie of northeastern Montana, is farthest — about 4.5 hours in any direction — from any metropolitan area of more than 75,000 people," said the Post..​​


WHERE DO you go when you're a celebrity and you want to lay low after going through a bitter divorce? Well, the solitary mountains of Montana might be a good choice.

That's just what Ashton Kutcher did after his official split from Demi Moore, taking a weeklong "spiritual" visit to Big Sky. Kutcher, the former star of 'That 70's Show' and 'Punk'd,' claims he lived on just water and tea for the week. “I started to hallucinate on day two, which was fantastic … It was pretty wonderful,” he told his old friend and fellow actor Dax Shepard in a podcast interview.

Kutcher also had a pen and notepad, so he wrote down all his regrets about past relationships, and then wrote the women letters expressing how he had been wrong. He's now married to actress Mila Kunis, and they have two children.

While news accounts of Kutcher's trip to Montana imply he spent his week roughing it in the wilderness, Buzz bets his "spiritual" visit took place at one of the million-dollar homes at Big Sky's Yellowstone Club. Kutcher worked as a model before beginning a long, successful career as an actor. He's also becoming well-known as a venture capitalist.


JIM MESSINA, the University of Montana graduate and 2012 manager of Barack Obama's presidential re-election campaign, raised eyebrows the other day when he appeared on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" and knocked the relevance of public polls so early in an election campaign.

"I think all public pollsters should be shot," he declared.

Messina, who graduated from UM's journalism school in 1993, has been honored by the university on several occasions. He was named a distinguished alumni in 2013, and also was the university's commencement speaker that same year. 

After graduation, he worked for US Sen. Max Baucus before he became a top official in the Obama Administration, and then ran Obama's re-election campaign manager. He was hailed by the media as the "Fixer" for his work on the Obama campaigns and political promotions.

But in more recent years his political success has been more decidedly mixed. After leaving the Obama Administration, he set up a political consulting firm that has put much of its focus on campaigns in Europe, where he suffered a series of defeats that included the Brexit vote and the Italian reform plan.

​​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Former water-treatment plant chemist accused of doctoring samples

Eastern Montana resident cope with flood threats

Power outage plunges 4,000 Billings customers into darkness

MSU president defends $32M renovation of school's Romney Hall

Kalispell man gets 15 years for illegal handgun exports

Taking a wide view of Ryan Zinke's record

Grandmother sues feds after grandsons removed from reservation

9th Circuit Court upholds Montana's campaign-disclosure law

4 hunters missing in backcountry west of Darby

Plane crashes on I-90 near Lookout Pass; pilot walks away

Baker trucking firm, owner found guilty on charges related to explosion

Fort Peck Dam boosts spills of water to deal with rapidly melting snow

Forecasters still see several more weeks of flooding, then warm summer

Judge lifts gag order for Butte Superfund cleanup agreement

Bear attack victim says she was working in 'dream job' as researcher

Convicted pain doctor back in jail after attorney misses deadline

Drowning victim on Smith River identified

Prosecutors want more funds set aside for crime victim services

Former Billings nurse pleads guilty to stealing drugs

Jefferson River could soon hit major flood stage, threatening homes

Missoula flood evacuees allowed to return home to check damage

Man dies after his boat strikes rock in Smith River and capsizes

More creditors go after Billings mansion building who faked abduction

Feds propose expanding hunting opportunities on wildlife refuges

Governor appoints Butte judge to state's parole board


BUSINESS / ECONOMY


Missoula promoter to build 1,500 capacity music venue in Bozeman

Flathead Valley gets 6 new hotels since 2016, with more on the way

UM to hire Barnes & Noble College to manage its bookstore

Charter eliminating video-repair call service in Billings

Havre's 2nd brew house opens in old gas station

Another mid-rise building proposed for downtown Bozeman

Jefferson Lines to run 2nd daily bus service through state

Researchers: Recreation brings money to economy, and impacts


SPORTS / OUTDOORS 

Airborne radar helps show where unwanted lake trout are hiding out

Bob Stitt posts tongue-in-cheek thanks to Griz fans

Montana horse to skip Preakness, run in Met Mile

Grizzlies land 6-10 power forward from Australia

Lady Griz land transfer guard from Arizona

Anaconda basketball legend Wayne Estes would be 75 this month


OPINION

​​

1st Amendment doesn't give right to 'trollstorm' opponents

Legislators must develop better way of putting together budget

Daines didn't block a lot of Tweets, and what he did block was pretty bad

Don't sign petitions for I-183, as it would encourage discrimination

Get behind Montana Locker Room Privacy Act

Trump criticism of Tester was off base

Treatment a key to reducing rate of violent crime in Montana

Tester 'poked the bear,' but its hard to say if the bear will get his revenge


FEATURES


Hutterites make their mark on Montana and rest of region

Actor Ed Harris scouts locations in Belt

Dinosaur expert Jack Horner's next big thing: Holograms

Montana is home to 433 species of birds

Masterpieces from Copper King's collection going to MT art museum

Billings mom, pregnant for 11th time, has seen many highs and lows

Is Yellowstone region getting too much love from its fans?


CALENDAR​​

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

A round-up of this year's Montana concerts

Steely Dan, Doobie Brothers to play in Missoula June 9

Imagine Dragons set for MSU stadium show July 26

Dwight Yoakam to headline Red Ants Pants Festival in late July

Chris Stapleton to play in Billings Aug. 2, Missoula on Aug. 3

Magic City Blues Fest to includes ZZ Top and Phillip Phillips

Jeff Foxworthy joins State Fair lineup Aug. 3 in Great Falls

Lineup set for Decemberists' Travelers' Rest Festival Aug. 4-5

Rockin' the Rivers festival runs Aug. 10-12

Kelly Clarkson performing at Billings' MontanaFair Aug. 12

Pearl Jam plans concert at Missoula's UM stadium Aug. 13

Big Sky music festival to feature Grace Potter, Bruce Hornsby

Country music star Suzy Bogguss headlines Lewistown fest Aug. 18

Alice Cooper to play KettleHouse Amphitheater Aug. 18

Another round of guitar greats slated for Bigfork's Crown festival

Jason Isbell appearing at Bonner Sept. 8

Montana International Film Festival slated Sept. 13-17 in Billings

Avett Brothers to headline Sept. 16 Missoula concert

Rod Stewart moves his Billings concert to Oct. 24

Bob Seger reschedules Billings concert for next January

Send tips to editor@montanabuzz.com


The road between the Magruder and Paradise guard stations west of Darby was impassable last year when some 60 avalanches dropped debris on the road. Now, up to four bear hunters are missing are missing when their vehicle rolled into the Selway River near the Paradise station. (Missoulian)

TELEVISION
WEEKLIES
THE BUZZ
BLOGS
​​MAGAZINES
DAILY NEWSPAPERS 
WEATHER
OTHER INFO LINKS
OTHER SOURCES

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​              A daily digest of Montana news


May 25, 2018