There is a show on HGTV called “Living Big Sky.” Each episode features a married couple (and their kids, in some cases) who are moving to Montana. The show hooks them up with a realtor, and they are presented with three houses, and at the end of the episode they announce which of the three they have chosen.
In between each visit to a potential new home, the couple is introduced to something “Montana-ey” — skiing, skijoring, snow-cycling, ice-climbing — to show how amazing the Treasure State is.
Up until a few weeks ago, every episode that we have seen featured a couple moving to one of the areas that are generally considered to be “trendier” than Great Falls: often Kalispell/Whitefish or Bozeman, some Missoula or Bitterroot, and even I think a few in Billings and Helena. One episode even focused on the Red Lodge area.
My wife and I often wondered if there would EVER be a Great Falls episode. I mean…you know that I think Great Falls is truly the best place in the world, but to the “outside” TV-viewing public, well…
When I say “Bozeman” or “Missoula,” that’s a very rough approximation. In many cases, the realtor shows the couple homes that are quite a distance from the “hub” town — and lo and behold, that was taken to the extreme on the episode that (finally!) featured Great Falls.
Here is the intro to the show:
Kelsey Conrow, a native Californian, is roping in her long-time beau, Kodi Groves, and heading for ‘The Treasure State,’ aka Big Sky Country. Having recently accepted a position as a registered dietician in Montana, Kelsey is excited to bring Kodi, a native of Wyoming, back to his country roots. Kelsey and Kodi are looking for a house that hits up both of their wish lists; a feat for sure! While Kelsey wants to looks at more luxurious, updated cabins, Kodi wants a remote cabin with tons of land, which also means a long commute for Kelsey. Will they find some middle ground in the hunt for their Montana dream home?
As we clicked to watch the episode, my wife and I half-jokingly wondered how far away from Great Falls the realtor would take this couple. Cascade? Belt area? Fort Benton?
For the slice-of-life, of course, the show featured the (to me) legendary Sip-N-Dip, and also showed the couple strolling around the Farmers Market downtown. Nice touches.
But back to “finding a house in or near Great Falls.” The realtor took this couple even farther away from Great Falls than my wife and I even jokingly imagined: one of the three houses they were shown was near WOLF CREEK – about 55 miles south of town, and actually closer to Helena.
Another was in Valier. VALIER, seriously. Lovely community, for sure, but it’s even farther away from Great Falls – about 85 miles.
I can’t recall specifically where the third one was — somewhere south of Cascade, if memory serves.
And just for fun, the realtor also showed them one of the condos downtown – the ones above Crooked Tree – which the couple quickly rejected (too small).
Ultimately, the couple decided on the Valier house – it was indeed a beautiful home.
Well, at least Great Falls was featured, even if just for a couple of minutes of on-air time.