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HAVE trouble spelling a word? Most folks do.

In South Dakota, a lot of people struggle with "chaos," and in Idaho they aren't sure about "businesses." So they ask Google "how to spell" those words, and Google, in turn, has produced a map of the most common "how to spell" words of each state.

In Montana, that word is "tomorrow."

" 'Or is it "tomarrow," or "tomorow," or "twomorrow"? (It's not, lol)' " quips Kristen Inbody in the Great Great Falls Tribune.


​FUNNY how baby names rise and fall in popularity over the years. Some stay in vogue for years, while others completely disappear, and others rise to take their place, as a recent list of the most popular Montana baby names indicates.

In 2017, Montana parents most often picked the traditional names of James and William for their baby boys, followed by Liam, Oliver and Wyatt.

The top five names for girls: Olivia, Emma, Harper, Ava and Charlotte.

If you want to see how tastes in baby names have changed in Montana over the years, go here.






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.


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Flooding closes highways, swamps property in Augusta area

13 horseback riders, trapped wilderness flooding, rescued by chopper

Heavy rains cause water to flow over Swift Dam spillway

State agencies may get $46 million injection as budget picture brightens

Mystery animal shot near Denton was a wolf, tests confirm

Missoula hit-and-run victim ID'd as recent UM grad; suspect arrested

Senators, congressman pan practice of separating kids from parents

Governor seeks presidential disaster declaration for flooding

Boulder drug-treatment program sees population drop by almost half

State to notify Medicaid providers they'll get temporary rate hike

Study: Number of Montanans with no health insurance stays steady

Missing man who fell into Yellowstone River at Reed Point identified

Sidney hospital settles lawsuit over sex-assault exam

Moose goes for a swim at Butte's new water park

Tester answers broadcasters' questions at Whitefish 'debate'

Panel to vote on grizzly delisting strategy this week

Clark Fork Coalition consolidating 2 Deer Lodge Valley ranches

Searchers look for person seen falling from Yellowstone River bridge

Adam Kemp, former foster kid, celebrates 1st Father's Day as foster dad

Enrollment disparity between MSU, UM continues to grow

Hundreds march in rainy Helena in support of gay pride

Flathead pickers finding bumper crops of morel mushrooms

Crews recover body of man, 70, from Clark Fork River

Billings man, 22 says he was 'blessed' to survive 60' fall from Rims

Officials undecided on how to deal with judge's order on Medicaid rates

Many questions linger about Lewistown nursing care center

Daines visits Anaconda's smoke stack, which is normally off limits

GOP group, photographer ready for trial battle over Quist photo

Book store hires investigator to check charges of inappropriate behavior

Billings nonprofit borrows Native practices to heal addiction

Neighbors fret over noise from Missoula-area cryptocurrency facility

State has paltry $4M in firefighting fund reserves as it enters fire season

Crew films movie based on Montana's 1949 Mann Gulch Fire

Some low-income Montanans losing housing vouchers

BUSINESS / ECONOMY


Chamber of Commerce won't endorse in US Senate contest

Montana joins other states in defending state mining laws

Flathead high-tech battery firm reopens after getting new funding

Thanks to Oprah, Havre woman's bra business has been booming

GTF firm has bought MT properties owing back taxes, then let them sit

Montana manufacturers start to feel impacts of new tariffs

Family creates app that helps visitors explore Yellowstone Park


SPORTS / OUTDOORS 

MT bull rider Jess Lockwood wins Match of Champions and $75,000

Montana wallops North Dakota 55-7 in annual Badlands Bowl

Lakers legend Michael Cooper teaches Pablo camp

6-7 Seattle Pacific transfer commits to Grizzlies

Why boaters love the Smith River so much

Bozeman teen runs nation's fastest 3,200 for high schoolers

MT teams win both games vs Wyoming as they kick off annual series

UM gets commitment from Washington sharpshooter Freddy Brown III


OPINION

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Montana's a nice place to visit, but it has its drawbacks

Be skeptical of the political ads you see

For me, plagiarism wasn't an issue with coach Selvig's speech

Drugs are killing a culture, destroying reservation families

Zinke not doing cause of hunting any good by endorsing bad practices

After more than 4 decades, it is time to release wilderness study areas

School boards cannot restrict public comment


FEATURES


Columbia Falls priest one of the inspirations for the movie 'Tag'

In 'Cloudbursts,' Tom McGuane gathers short stories from long career

Copper King Marcus Daly and his Manhattan mansion

Music venues are popping up all over MT. Are there too many now?

Blackfeet writer passes on lessons learned from her father

In Costner's 'Yellowstone,' the wolves scatter when the cowboys arrive

Wild Horse Island unique treasure in state's park system

Billings woman explores her romantic life, or lack of it, in YouTube series


CALENDAR​​

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A round-up of this year's Montana concerts

Songwriter Festival returns to Red Lodge June 21-23

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 January

Send tips to editor@montanabuzz.com


Water from recent heavy rains tumbles over the spillway at Swift Dam on the Rocky Mountain Front -- a rare occurrence. Dam operators have sent water over the spillway after the reservoir filled from recent rains. (Vern Stokes)

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


June 24, 2018