This year’s Gallatin County Fair saw a large attendance spike compared to last year. The fair saw a 64 percent increase in tickets sold compared to 2013. Such a large percentage increase could be influenced by a variety of factors. Weather, obviously, can drastically affect the crowd turnout, as well as new exciting acts coming to town with the fair. But these factors cannot account for such a large increase. Perhaps the growth of Bozeman has increased the population the fair can draw from. Other events have also seen an increase in popularity in the last few years, including Sweet Pea and Music on Main. Bozemanites continue to show great pride in their local culture and events, and they seem to come to community-building events in stronger numbers every year.
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Displaying blog entries 1-7 of 7
In early June, the Bozeman City commission approved plans to partner with the YMCA to build a new aquatics center in Bozeman. The YMCA plans to build the land at Vaquero Parkway, a piece of land they already own. City commissioners approved the partnership, voting 3-2 in favor. The city also had the choice of either building the aquatics center at Rose Park with the YMCA, or without them, but instead chose to partner with them and build it near Regional Park. Regional park also provides locals with amazing opportunities such as the Dinosaur Park, two ponds, a beach and other facilities. The new aquatic center will only add to the fun and utility of this Bozeman park.
Residential building permits and rising utility connections continue to suggest rapid growth in Bozeman. From 2008 until 2013, Bozeman dealt with around 200 residential building permits per year. In 2014, the City of Bozeman Department of Community Development expects more than 1,000 permits to be given. Other than last year, the last time residential building permits reached more than 1,000 permitted buildings in a year was 2005.
Bozeman is also beating other Montana cities for new electric and gas connections. As of early June, Bozeman had 375 new electronic connections and 175 new gas connections. Billings paled in comparison, despite having the second highest number of new electronic connections with 100. To put the growth in perspective, compared to a high growth year in 2013, Bozeman has still doubled its average new electric connections per year in 2014.
Developers in Bozeman are looking to renovate the Cannery District, an industrial sector to the Northeast of town. Given its name from the old pea cannery that did business there in the early 1900’s, the district had been used almost solely for industrial use. Now, the developers of the area are looking to create a new hub of commercial activity. Plans include renovating the older buildings while also constructing 7 new buildings. Owners will be looking to strip the old buildings down to the bone, in order to get them back to their roots. They will also make the buildings more energy efficient, without losing the historical significance of the district. By project’s finish, the district should have 15 buildings in total that would cost roughly 15 million dollars. Tenants have already been secured for many of the new buildings. Even now, coffee shops, breweries and restaurants have already moved into the district.
Petra Academy, Bozeman’s second largest private school, plans to continue growing in the next year. Petra will break ground on a 2 million dollar classroom expansion that should be finished before fall of 2015. They plan on adding 8,600 square feet to the building, including 8 additional classrooms. Petra, who offers a Christian/Classical education to its students, has always limited its classroom size to 16, and had been forced to turn away students in previous years. Currently teaching 170 students in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade, the expansion should ease this ongoing issue. With more and more young families looking to move to Bozeman, most of the expansions are aimed at Petra’s youngest students. The renovation will almost double the elementary wing of the school. Expansions like the one at Petra, should offer more than enough room for new Bozemanites looking for the right school for their children.
The city of Bozeman, in conjunction with Gallatin County, began construction on a new trail from North Rouse to Seventh Avenue. The city expects the project to cost $264,596 dollars and should be finished in the next few weeks. Ideally, the trail will greatly increase the safety of bikers and pedestrians in Northern Bozeman. As most trails run north to south, the east-west running trail should markedly improve transportation ease in the city. In addition to the trail on Rouse, the city has recently added trails along Norris Rd. as well as from Cougar Dr. and Cottonwood Rd. south of town. Reliable, safe trails can be a lifesaver for young families while keeping bikers off of busy main roads. Bozemanites can now look forward to relaxing evening walks or morning runs with more comfort and confidence.
Top Montana high school students, who received a Montana University System Honor Scholarship, continue to choose Montana State University and Bozeman over any other college or university in the state.The MUS Honor Scholarship rewards students for exceptional academic excellence at the high school level, requiring applicants to maintain a 3.4 grade point average after 7 semesters of high school. MUS Honor Scholars can receive free tuition for up to four years based on this GPA coupled with their SAT and ACT scores. At MSU, this converts to around 5,300 dollars annually. Yet, even with high competition levels between Montana schools, sixty-eight percent of these students have applied to MSU, reflecting a higher percentage than all other Montana universities combined. MSU beat its own numbers this year, up five percent from the previous year. High quality programs continue to attract young ambitious thinkers, while its university culture and a positive relationship with the city of Bozeman continue to spur these numbers forward. Intelligent students in higher numbers can only be a positive sign for Bozeman’s future.
Reinhardt, Tanya. "MSU Remains School of Choice for High Achieving Students." Bozeman Daily Chronicle (2014): n. pag. Web. 7 July 2014.