Sunday, April 5, 2009

Spring Time In The Rockies "Missoula Montana"

The Carousel At Night, Caras Park Missoula, Montana.

If you will give it a home, and promise no one will ever take it apart, I will build A Carousel for Missoula. That was the promise Missoula cabinet-maker Chuck Kaparich made to the Missoula City Council in 1991. Kaparich, who had spent many childhood hours on the carousel at Columbia Gardens in Butte, Montana, had already carved four carousel ponies and had purchased an antique frame in thousands of pieces. The Council agreed and Kaparichs dream of A Carousel for Missoula became the dream of a community.

A board of directors was formed to facilitate organization and fund raising, Kaparich taught others to carve, mechanics began the process of restoring 16,066 pieces, painters were recruited, and Missoula began working together to create a treasure.

By Opening Day, May 27, 1995, over 100,000 hours of volunteer time had gone into the construction of 38 permanent ponies, three replacement ponies, two chariots, 14 gargoyles, gargoyle frames and mirror frames, and the largest band organ in continuous use in the United States, all within a jewel box building KEEP READING HERE.

Big Sky Country Reports
Some Beautiful Photos, From Big Sky Katie.

Missoula, Montana

First things first: people who live in Missoula love Missoula, an attitude that permeates just about every aspect of the community. From the uber-happy employee at a natural foods store, carting lettuce to and from the salad bar (did I mention he has a Ph.D. in forestry?), to the young mom carpooling her kids to the town’s very own ski hill, to the cabinet maker who ditched pressed shirts and a steady gig in computers for Carhartt jeans and the joy of not knowing when he’ll next work, but a pretty good idea of when he’ll next kayak.

This is Missoula: A groovy town of approximately 65,000 well-educated people who’d rather be here than anywhere else. “There’s no place like home,” is a mantra locals (also known as Missoulians) seem to have inscribed on the sunvisors of their ubiquitous Subaru wagons. Imagine how happy you’d be if you lived in what you perceived to be the best place on earth. Heck, why not take a vacation there (summer or fall are recommended) and let that warm, fuzzy feeling wash over you.

Travel Review for Missoula, Montana in the New York Times.

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