“The Verizon District”

We have the “Mattress District” on 10th Avenue South at 9th Street, much to the dismay of mattress-haters and people who seem to forget that not too long ago, there were THREE video-rental stores in that area (Hastings, Blockbuster, Hollywood).

Now it looks like we can refer to a stretch of 3rd Street NW as the “Verizon District.”

Once this becomes operational, we will have not one, not two, but THREE VZW stores within about one mile. All three are authorized retailers – the only corporate VZW store in Great Falls is on 10th Avenue South near 23rd Street.

The one seen below is part of the new City Brew building. There’s another store in the small plaza where Little Caesar’s Pizza and Great Clips are…and the third is the large, red-lit building where the J Bar T used to be. The large red-lit one looks pretty fancy on the outside – when it was being built, I (mistakenly) thought that it would be the new HQ for a VZW corporate store.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m not complaining! You know that I am a very, very loyal “Big Red” customer. It just never occurred to me that there was such a demand for VZW stores within such a relatively small area.

The new one by City Brew will be a “Wireless Connection” store, and as of a few weeks ago, they were hiring:

Fire north of Skyline

The good news is that nobody was hurt, and property damage seems to have been limited to a barn and possibly an outbuilding.

The bad news is that there was a fire.

More good news: Great Falls Fire Rescue, Black Eagle Volunteer Fire Department, and other emergency personnel did an amazing job, as always.

It was a bit scary in the first few minutes, coming nearly one year after last year’s huge (6,000 acre) “Vineyard Fire” that forced dozens of people to evacuate, but fortunately, this one was knocked down very quickly and didn’t spread.

Here’s an aerial view taken at about 8 p.m.

Here’s video from last year’s fire:

Paying it forward at Ford’s

Stopped at Ford’s Drive In to get some tasty burgers, fries, and a corn dog for me and my lovely bride on Wednesday.

Parked next to a large white pickup truck that had what I am pretty sure was a dad, mom, and teen son. On the other side of the truck was a large sedan with an older gentleman.

The friendly car-hop took my order and zipped around the lot and inside for a bit.

A few minutes later, she delivered an order to the pickup truck, and they drove off.

About two minutes later, she brought out my bag o’goodies (and it’s always in one bag – never ceases to amaze me how much food Ford’s can fit in one bag!), and when I reached out to hand her money, she said my food had already been paid for.

Uh…what? I asked her who paid for it, and she replied that the people in the pick up truck had paid for my food, and the sedan man’s food.

I asked her if she knew who the pickup truck family was, and she said no.

So whoever you are, pickup truck family, THANK YOU – that was very kind of you!

Ford's Drive In in Great Falls

Ford’s Drive In in Great Falls

Drone Upgrade!

I have a new hobby! My lovely bride surprised me with a Hover Passport drone for Christmas, and it is SO cool.

It’s small, safe, and awesome. The drawbacks: the range is very limited – about 100 feet; and it does NOT like windy conditions AT ALL.

But it got me absolutely fascinated with drone video, so I took the plunge and bought a DJI Phantom a few days ago.

In a word: AWESOME. Can’t wait to do plenty of aerial exploring in and around Great Falls!

Maiden flight (after a test drive in my front yard):

My fansite for the town I call home – Great Falls, Montana

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