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Welcome to the website of the Seeley Swan Pathfinder.
The Pathfinder is the award-winning weekly newspaper serving the communities of Seeley Lake, Condon, Swan Valley and the Blackfoot Valley of Montana.

Highlights from the February 26, 2015 issue

Visit the Seeley Swan businesses with links below.
Their sponsorship makes this website possible.
Blackfoot Valley Dispatch
(Local news source for Lincoln, Ovando, Helmville
and Canyon Creek)

CLB Custom Landworks
(Landscaping, Tree Care and Fencing)

Clearwater Montana Properties, Inc.
(Proudly partnering with Cabela Trophy Properties
for Real Estate Sales)

Double Arrow Resort
(Historic Lodge & Golf Course)

Great Bear Properties
(Real Estate Sales in Seeley Lake)

Lindey's Prime Steak House
(The Place For Steak & Burgers on the Bay!)

Montana Loon Society
(Supporting Montana's Common Loons)

Prudential Montana Real Estate
(Real Estate Sales in Seeley Lake)

Pine Hills Outfitters
(Outfitting in the US)

Swan Mountain Outfitters
(Outdoor Recreation Services and Exclusive Lodging)

Swan River Valley Real Estate
(Real Estate Brokerage)

Swan Valley Centre Cabins
(Vacation Lodging in the Swan Valley)
Okaidja and Shokoto, as a part of the 2 Valleys Stage 2014-2015 concert series, performed in the Swan and Seeley Lake schools Thursday and Friday, Feb. 19 and Feb. 20 and gave a public concert Feb. 22. In the photo, Okaidja Afroso danced a Ghanaian harvest dance while band mates Mashud Neindow and Chaz Mortimer accompanied on the drums. More photos and story page 10.
Lady Blackhawks Divisional Tournaments Butte MAC & Civic Center (see note on brackets)
Feb. 26-28.
Click Here for Tournament Brackets

- Potomac Principal Allen to Resign

During a special board meeting Feb. 23 Potomac School Principal David Allen gave his letter of resignation effective the end of the 2014 - 2015 school year citing personal reasons. Potomac School’s last day of school is May 28. The board, in a unanimous vote, accepted Principal Allen’s resignation.

- Sounds of Paradise Reverberate in Seeley Swan

Okaidja and Shokoto filled the Seeley Swan with their culture, rhythm and education Feb. 19-22. They led students through performances and workshops at Swan Valley Elementary, Seeley Lake Elementary and Seeley-Swan High School (SSHS) as a part of the 2Valleys Stage “informances.” Their final Sunday concert performance at SSHS captured the attention of nearly 90 attendees.

- Peter Hale Memorial Race Consistent Snow, Great Terrain

With one of the few places in Montana to still have skiable snow, Seeley Lake Regional Outdoor Center for Kinetic Sports (SL ROCKS) hosted their second annual Peter Hale Memorial Race, Feb. 21. This year there were 51 skate skiers and 15 classic skiers, totaling a dozen more participants than the inaugural race drew last year.

- Swan Song: Ethel Marie Moore & Robert Sanford “R.S.” Tillotson

- Missoula County Seeking Public Input in Next Growth Policy Phase

How can we preserve the character of our local communities, while also providing places for people to live and work? How can we make sure Missoula County’s open spaces and natural resources will be here for future generations, while also ensuring communities have places to grow and local economies are thriving? These questions and others will be discussed in a series of public meetings to be held throughout the county Feb. 23 through March 5. The meetings will focus on draft county growth policy goals and objectives and the steps needed to achieve them.

- Seeley Lake Sewer District - Discussion Shifts to Annexation Policy

The Seeley Lake Sewer District Manager Amy Rose recommended, at the February board meeting, that the board work to create a policy for accepting new properties into the district. The policy would handle both requests to join and annexations.

- Swan Valley Regional Planning Moves Forward without Horne

The Swan Valley Regional Planning Committee (SVRPC) learned at their Feb. 11 meeting that funder Harry Blazer dismissed Applied Communications Urban Planner Robert Horne. Blazer and SVRPC Co-Chair John Keller will take over writing the draft of the growth plan to present to the SVRPC at their March 11 meeting.

- Grief Support Group Begins in Seeley Lake

When I first came to Seeley Lake two years ago, one of the things that struck me was how many people are struggling with loss – either through death, divorce or other major life changes. This group formed in order to meet this community need.

- Put Them on Your Annual Bucket List

Welcome to 2015. If you are like me, you have been bombarded with all of the pressures to “…improve yourself now, don’t delay, start today, I’m sorry but you wrote last year’s date on your check…” and on and on. Here is another suggestion, without the high pressure sales tactic or the reminder of previous years’ mistakes, visit some of your Montana State Parks this summer. Don’t set a personal achievement goal for that visit, don’t stress and fret that you have to accomplish a checklist of tasks on your visit. Just come, bring a bologna sandwich and a fishing rod if you choose, and just plan to take some deep breaths and enjoy nature.

- Film Fest Engages Community

The Seeley Lake Community Foundation (SLCF) sponsored Mountainfilm On Tour at Lindey’s Prime Steak House, Feb. 21. The idea of a film festival evolved from the vision of Seeley-Swan High School sophomore Angus Batchelder and was an effort to provide an evening of entertainment following the Peter Hale Memorial Ski Race.

- Kennecott Mining Project 2015 - Snowy Cliffs Continue to Conceal Copper

The Copper Cliff exploration project, under the direction of Rio Tinto Kennecott Exploration Company (KEC), will resume sometime this spring. KEC Exploration Manager Russ Franklin, Regional Communities Manager Matt Jeschke and Senior Project Geologist Clinton Roberts gave a status update to more than 40 community members in Potomac Feb. 17. Kennecott Geologist Sara Jergenson and Project Coordinator Matt Hoffman attended alongside the Kennecott team. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) representatives Chris Rye and Amanda Miller also attended. Kennecott has a Notice of Intent with the BLM and drilling permits with DEQ.

- Book Clubs Thrive in Seeley Swan

In the Seeley and Swan valleys there are at least six book clubs. Each got started because a small group of people decided to meet and discuss the books they enjoyed reading. Some of the clubs have been in existence for 14 or 15 years.

- Positive Response to Four+ School Week

The Seeley-Swan High School (SSHS) teachers decided to continue to pursue what they are now calling the four+ school week for the 2015-2016 school year. They are hosting the second community meeting Monday, March 9 at 6 p.m. in the SSHS cafeteria. Missoula County Public School (MCPS) Superintendent Dr. Alex Apostle will be in attendance.

- SVCC Meeting - CSKT Water Rights Compact Impacts Swan River Drainage

Swan Valley resident Larry Dunham spoke at the Swan Valley Community Council (SVCC) meeting Tuesday, Feb. 17 about his opposition to the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) Water Rights Compact and its effects on the Swan River drainage. Also named Senate Bill 262 (SB 262), the 1,600 page document was introduced to the Montana Senate Feb. 3.

- Cowgirl Ramblings - Lessons From A Horse - Heather Layman

- Letters to the Editor

Wishful Thinking is Sometimes Dangerous

- 2015 Regular Session of the Montana Legislature

Legislative Roundup – Week 7 (Click here to read); Senator Sue Malek Reflections; Representative David "Doc" Moore Reflections

- Community Briefs

CM Russell Heritage & Legacy Show, Feb. 27; Pancakes and Permits, Feb. 28; Outdoor Burning Opens March 1; Swan Valley AARP Meeting, March 2; Forest Carnivore Monitoring Update, March 6; May Day Music Galore – Local Talent Wanted; Seeley Lake Library News; Volunteers Needed at Garnet Ghost Town;  Nominations Sought for 2015 Land Stewardship Award

- Fire Board Approves Raises

The Seeley Lake Fire District Board of Trustees approved a 2.5 percent raise for District Administrator Lynn Richards and maintenance personnel Mark Kues at the Feb. 17 meeting.

- At the Heart of Things

We tend to be critical beings. It is a part of our human nature. In his letter to the Galatians, Paul records numerous acts of our sinful nature and, though “criticism” is not specifically listed, some of the acts he lists are directly related. For example: discord, dissensions, factions, even hatred may have their roots in criticism.

- Sports - Week in Review

Blackhawk’s Season Ends at Districts; Lady Blackhawks District Champions; Lady Blackhawks Take Undefeated Record to Divisionals

Copyright 2015 Pathfinder LLC PO Box 702, Seeley Lake, MT 59868, 406.677.2022.
All rights reserved, no photograph, writing or other material may be used
without prior permission.
Please enjoy select archived articles, Passages columns, Swan Songs (obituaries) and Eye on The Environment columns from local organizations. Links to these offerings are available on the left side of this page. Also at the left you will find links to local area information and our site sponsors and other potentially interesting or useful websites.

* Disclaimer: This website is undergoing a revision so you may find new as well as very old pages! Follow us on FACEBOOK for more immediate news feeds.

Please email comments, letters or other matters to: pathfinder@seeleylake.com This website is maintained by Andi & Nathan Bourne, Editors and Publishers, Seeley-Swan Pathfinder, PO Box 702, Seeley Lake, Montana 59868. Phone 406.677.2022.