Monday, Feb. 23rd, 2015

Def Leppard with STYX and Tesla

Def Leppard returns to the road this summer for an extensive North American tour. The tour hitting nearly 50 cities across the U.S. and Canada will make a stop at the Brick Breeden Fieldhouse on October 2nd. Joining Def Leppard on their massive summer outing are rockers Styx and Tesla. For complete details, visit www.brickbreeden.com. Tickets go on sale Friday, February 27 at 10am MST and will be available at the Bobcat Ticket Office, online at TicketsWest.com, by phone at 800-808-5940, and all TicketsWest outlets.

Def Leppard's influential career includes numerous hit singles and ground-breaking multi-platinum albums—including two of the best-selling albums of all time, Pyromania and Hysteria, capturing the group's legendary tracks, bringing together classic Leppard hits such as "Rock of Ages," Pour Some Sugar on Me" and "Foolin". The upcoming tour follows on the heels of the band's massive 2014 co-headlining tour with KISS, last summer.

About Def Leppard:
Def Leppard--Joe Elliott (vocals), Vivian Campbell (guitar), Phil Collen (guitar), Rick "Sav" Savage (bass) and Rick Allen (drums)—continues to be one of the most important forces in rock music. With 100 million records sold worldwide and two prestigious Diamond Awards to their credit, the group's spectacular live shows, filled with powerful melodic rock anthems, continue to sell out venues worldwide. For the past thirty years the band's epic live shows and arsenal of hits have become synonymous with their name, leading Def Leppard to be heralded as an institution in both the music and touring industry.

About Styx:
Spawned from a Chicago basement in the early ‘70s, STYX would eventually transform into the virtual arena rock prototype by the late '70s and early '80s, due to a fondness for big rockers and soaring power ballads. Over the course of their 38-year career they've released 15 studio albums, six best-of compilations and four live albums, garnering eight Top Ten singles. STYX has sold over 30 million albums worldwide. Throughout their illustrious career, they've performed more live shows since 1999 than all of the previous years of its career combined. Two Super-Bowl appearances, Pollstar box office chart-topping tours with Def Leppard, Journey, Boston, REO Speedwagon and Bad Company (to name only a few), two more studio albums and no end in sight, STYX continues to conquer the planet, one venue at a time.

About Tesla:

TESLA -- Jeff Keith (vocals), Frank Hannon (guitar), Brian Wheat (bass guitar), Dave Rude (guitar) and Troy Luccketta (drums)— One of Rock n Roll's most respected bands, multi-platinum sellers TESLA have remained true to their "no frills" style since the first day they hit the music scene nearly 30 years ago. Their catalog reads like a soundtrack to the lives of a generation of fans worldwide. With their latest chart topping release "SIMPLICITY" they have proven they are a band that continues to consistently deliver energetic, hard-driving, blues-based rhythms with thought-provoking lyrics that die-hard fans expect and today's generation craves.

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Saturday, Feb. 21st, 2015

Balloon carries two MSU experiments to edge of space

A balloon that traveled to the edge of space this week carried two Montana State University experiments.

One experiment -- launched Feb. 19 and retrieved Feb. 20 after reaching 102,200 feet -- tested a tracking and high-definition link that MSU hopes to use during a total solar eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017. The Montana Space Grant Consortium is organizing a national effort where college students across the United States will monitor the eclipse with high-altitude balloons.

The second experiment tested a computer system that’s designed to resist radiation in space. MSU recently received word that the tiny satellite it designed to carry the system was one of 14 CubeSats selected to fly on an upcoming NASA mission.

“It was just awesome,” Angela Des Jardins, director of the Montana Space Grant Consortium, said about the 7 a.m. balloon launch. “Our students were thrilled to be there and be part of it.”

MSU was one of two universities invited to send experiments on the balloon, an opportunity that arose from connections between MSU’s Dave Klumpar and World View, Des Jardins said. World View is the commercial balloon spaceflight company that launched the research flight from the Tucson, Ariz., area. Klumpar is director of MSU’s Space Science and Engineering Laboratory.

The other university that flew an experiment on the balloon was the University of North Florida. That experiment was designed to measure the ozone gas profile in the stratosphere.

The research and education payloads are part of World View’s commitment to opening routine access to high-altitude balloon flights, as well as its dedication to advancing science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs in schools, according to a Feb. 20 press release from World View. All three experiments involved multiple students over multiple years.

Randy Larimer, deputy director of the Montana Space Grant Consortium, said more than 40 graduate students and undergraduate students over eight years were involved in designing the computer system. They are led by MSU faculty member Brock LaMeres in the College of Engineering. Besides flying on an upcoming satellite mission in 2016, the technology is scheduled to be tested on the International Space Station later this year.

More than 15 students at MSU and Iowa State University contributed to the design of the video link that flew on the World View balloon, Larimer added. The video link test verified that the technology setup works well.

Larimer and four MSU students went to Arizona for the balloon launch. The students were Sam Harkness, a graduate student in electrical engineering; Scott Miller, a senior in computer engineering; Tim Basta, a senior in mechanical engineering; and Trevor Clark, a senior in electrical engineering.

To learn more about the balloon flight and MSU’s Balloon Outreach, Research, Exploration and Landscape Imaging System (BOREALIS), go to http://spacegrant.montana.edu/BOREALIS.html

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Wednesday, Feb. 18th, 2015

Paul Decker of Music Villa Elected to NAMM Board of Directors

At its Annual Meeting of Members held during the 2015 NAMM Show, the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) Board of Directors welcomed second-generation Bozeman music retailer Paul Decker to a three-year term on NAMM’s board. The NAMM Board of Directors provides guidance and leadership to the global music instrument and product industry.

Decker took over Music Villa from his father more than 15 years ago, and during that time has established the Bozeman store as a thriving music school, a full-line, independent musical instrument store, and a vibrant hub for local musicians. He also works with local artists to help them network with other musicians through Montanabands.com and MontanaMusicians.com, sites created and maintained by his web team. A drummer since childhood, Decker has performed with several bands including Little Jane & The Pistol Whips, and is currently a member of The Kris Clone Band.

Decker views his election to the NAMM Board of Directors as an opportunity to support independent music dealers. “It can be challenging, determining how to navigate social media, marketing and community outreach,” he said. “I have already seen how much passion and dedication the people of NAMM have provided for the industry. I hope to add to the same passion and work towards keeping the music industry a fun and exiting place.  I’m really looking forward to being involved with this group.”

Decker is a member of the Bozeman Chamber of Commerce and the Bozeman Downtown Association, and serves on the marketing committee of The Alliance of Independent Music Merchants.

About NAMM

The National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) is the not-for-profit association with a mission to strengthen the $16.9 billion music products industry. NAMM is comprised of approximately 9,200 member companies located in 102 countries.  NAMM events and members fund  The NAMM Foundation's efforts to  promote the pleasures and benefits of music, and  advance active participation in music making across the lifespan.  For more information about NAMM, please visit www.namm.org, call 800.767.NAMM (6266) or follow the organization on  Facebook,  Twitter  and  YouTube.


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Monday, Feb. 16th, 2015

“Creative Nations,” a cavalcade of Native arts and creativity

The Montana State University Office of the President and the College of Arts and Architecture present “Creative Nations,” a series of engaging events held from February through the first week of April to celebrate Native arts and creativity. All events are free and open to the public.
 
Among the highlights are: a lecture by celebrated Indian author Sherman Alexie on March 28 in the Emerson’s Crawford Theater; a performance of the Sun Dance Opera Recital on March 24; a screening of the film “Winter in the Blood” with Alexie, film directors Alex and Andrew Smith and actor Chaske Spencer, star of the film on March 29; and a screening of a documentary April 1 about Native activist LaDonna Harris followed by a panel featuring Harris, MSU President Waded Cruzado, professor emeritus Henrietta Mann and Denise Juneau, State Superintendent of Public Instruction.  MSU graduate Joe Horse Capture, associate curator of the Collections Research and Documentation Department at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian will lecture on March 31.
 
"We have planned for this year’s President’s Fine Arts Series since my arrival at MSU,” said Nancy Cornwell, dean of the College of Arts and Architecture. “It feels timely, important, and absolutely humbling to present such caliber of artistic work.  Whether you attend a performance, a lecture, a film or art exhibits, you will leave this year's President’s Fine Arts Series with a sense of wonder and an a deeper appreciation for the creative contributions of Native American artists.
 
Cruzado said the theme for this year’s series is in keeping with MSU’s continued commitment to Native students, programs, scholarships and issues.
 
“Each event in the series demonstrates the beauty and strength of the Native American communities through authentic stories, creatively told,” Cruzado said.
 
The series kicks off on Wednesday, Feb. 18 with a lecture on sacred design featuring MSU alumni and celebrated Native architects, Dennis Sun Rhodes and Richard Wyman Smith. The series ends with the MSU Pow Wow, April 3-4.
 
For a full schedule and more information, go to: http://www.montana.edu/caa/pfas/index.html

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Sunday, Feb. 15th, 2015

Pesticide training for homeowners, private applicators and the general public will be held in Bozeman

Pesticide training for homeowners, the general public and people wanting to earn their private applicator license will be held this spring in Billings, Bozeman, Kalispell and Miles City. A private applicator license allows individuals to apply restricted-use pesticides on land they own, rent or lease.

The Montana State University Pesticide Education Program will hold six-hour training sessions on Feb. 24 in Miles City, Feb. 25 in Billings, March 4 in Bozeman and March 26 in Kalispell. Each one is open to any Montanan.

Each program will cover integrated pest management, pesticide movement in the environment, pesticide safety and toxicity, pesticide law, calibrating ground spray equipment, understanding the private applicator license, and reading/understanding pesticide product labels.

In addition, MSU Extension Rangeland Weed Specialist Jane Mangold will speak at Bozeman and Kalispell. MSU Extension Cropland Insect Specialist Kevin Wanner will speak in Billings and Miles City. MSU Pesticide Education Specialist Cecil Tharp will speak at each location. Assisting will be local MSU Extension agents and district officers for the Montana Department of Agriculture.

Cost for the workshops ranges from $10 to $25, depending on whether or not attendees want to earn their private applicator license.

The cost is $10 for those who don’t want a private applicator license or who simply desire private applicator credits. They will qualify for a license by attending the training session, however. People holding a private applicator license can buy and use labeled restricted-use pesticides and will also be notified of future pesticide trainings in their area.

Attendees holding a current private applicator license will earn three private pesticide recertification credits by attending either a morning or afternoon session, and six credits for attending the entire day.

The training costs $25 for those who want to qualify for a private applicator license. The fee covers the six-hour training session, as well as training manuals.

A catered lunch will be available to all attendees, but they must pre-register. When pre-registering, they must say if they want to earn a private applicator license, desire private applicator credits or if they simply wish to attend the event.

For more details, pre-registration information and complete agendas, go to www.pesticides.montana.edu and select one of the workshop locations under “Regional Initial Pesticide Training Opportunities.” For additional information, contact local Extension agents or Cecil Tharp at (406) 994-5067 or ctharp@montana.edu.

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Friday, Feb. 13th, 2015

High Plains Book Awards - Nominations Still Open

There is still time to submit nominations for the eighth annual High Plains Book Awards. Nominations will be accepted through March 13, 2015.  For information on how to nominate a book, go to highplainsbookawards.org. More than 90 nominations have already been sent in, with books originating from small regional presses and major national publishers.
 
Nominations are open for the books published for the first time in 2014 in these categories:  Best Fiction; Best Nonfiction; Best Poetry; Best First Book; Best Woman Writer; Best Art & Photography; Best Short Stories, Best Culinary, Best Young Adult, Best Children's Book and Best Medicine & Science Book. Winners receive a $500 prize.
 
All nominated books are read and evaluated by community readers in the first round of the selection process.  Finalist books in each category are judged by published writers with connections to the High Plains region.
 
Winners will be announced at an awards banquet on Saturday, October 3, 2015, at the Yellowstone Art Museum in Billings, Montana. The Awards Banquet is a signature event held in conjunction with the 13th annual High Plains BookFest. Authors interested in participating in the 2015 BookFest should contact the Writer's Voice director Corby Skinner corby@skinnerbenoit.com.

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Friday, Feb. 6th, 2015
Thursday, Feb. 5th, 2015

Greater Gallatin United Way announces the opening of the 2015-16 Community Investment/Impact Grant Application process

Every year volunteers help GGUW’s Board of Directors wisely invest community funds, the resources raised from the annual campaign through an open competitive community-based process. Community Investment/Impact is an effective grant process for allocating dollars into local programs and initiatives that address Education, Health and Income, the building blocks for opportunity and improving lives.

Volunteers act as the voice of donors, the community, and work together with a focus on "community impact," to improve the lives of people who live here and create lasting change in community conditions.  Volunteer input is important and helps guide GGUW’s Board of Directors in determining what organizations and programs receive funding.

Distribution of Community Impact Funds is a decision made by the Board of Directors, the important evaluation process helps determine an organization’s and/or program’s strength, capacity, effectiveness and sustainability.  Other volunteers, CPAs and persons familiar with nonprofit financial statements and IRS 990 forms, evaluate the cost-effectiveness of the program(s), whether they meet eligibility criteria, have good financial accountability and demonstrate financial need.

"It is a rigorous application process and those that receive funding demonstrate they have solid governance, effective leadership, and ability to measure the impact of their work," said Danica Jamison, Greater Gallatin United Way President and CEO. "The community investment volunteers along with United Way Board of Directors strategically invest funds in programs that have the most impact in our community.”

To volunteer to help determine where to invest donor’s dollars into our community, contact admin@greatergallatinunitedway.org or 406.587.2194.  Volunteers review grants and/or attend presentations on the evenings of April 1 and/or 7.

To apply for funding, please visit http://www.greatergallatinunitedway.org/2015_CI_Grants.
 

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Tuesday, Feb. 3rd, 2015

Maestro Matthew Savery to Perform at Carnegie Hall

BSO conductor, MAESTRO MATTHEW SAVERY to perform in New York City at Carnegie Hall on June 5th, 2015 with extraordinary solo violinist, ALEXANDER MARKOV and a STRING ORCHESTRA.  Markov most recently visited Bozeman in September, 2014 as part of the Bozeman Symphony’s 47th concert season and the Discover the Wild performance featuring Paganini’s second violin concerto.   

Now in his 21st season as Music Director of the Bozeman Symphony Orchestra and Symphonic Choir and continuing in his 7th season as Music Director of the Wyoming Symphony Orchestra, Matthew Savery enjoys an expanding reputation for his multi-faceted career as an electrifying performer, dedicated orchestra builder and charismatic teacher.  An internationally acclaimed conductor, Savery will be joined by world-renowned violin virtuoso and the hippest violinist on the planet, Alexander Markov, as part of Maestro Savery’s Carnegie Hall debut.
 
SAVERY and MARKOV perform at Carnegie Hall on June 5th, 2015 at 8:00pm in the Stern/Perelman auditorium (881 7th Ave, at 57th Street New York, NY 10019), collaborating with Heike Doerr on harpsichord performing Vivaldi’s epic “Four Seasons”. Other masterpieces on the program include Tchaikovsky Serenade and Vitali Chaconne.

Tickets are priced from $25-$120 and may be purchased by calling Carnegie Charge at 212-247-7800 or online at www.carnegiehall.org.  Tickets for this performance go on sale to the public Thursday, February 12th. 

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Friday, Jan. 30th, 2015

Montana's elderly homeowner/renter tax credit for 2014

Montanans who turned 62 or older by the end of last year may qualify for Montana's elderly homeowner/renter tax credit for 2014.

If you can answer "yes" to all of the following questions, then you may be eligible for the credit:

?       Were you 62 or older as of Dec. 31?
?       Did you occupy a Montana residence(s) as an owner or renter for a total of 6 months or more during 2014?
?       Did you reside in Montana for nine months or more during 2014?
?       Was your total gross household income less than $45,000 in 2014? Montana Department of Revenue’s Form 2EC contains instructions for determining total gross household income for the purpose of determining the tax credit.

Montana allows qualifying citizens a credit for a portion of their property taxes or rent paid based on their income. The credit can be used against state income liability or as a direct refund if the person is not required to file a Montana state income tax return.  Only one claim is allowed per household.

To determine eligibility, complete Form 2EC, which can be found at your local Department of Revenue office, library, post office or tax preparer’s office.  The form is also available on the web at http://revenue.mt.gov/Portals/9/individuals/forms/Form_2EC_2014.pdf

Help is available to complete Form 2EC by calling the Department of Revenue, toll free: (866) 859-2254 or (406) 444-2830 (hearing impaired only). If you are in the Helena area, call (406) 444-6900.  Or, visit the website at revenue.mt.gov

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