UFO Sightings in Great Falls?

Let’s end 2007 on a slightly odd note: I noticed today that the billboard near the Hampton Inn (at the Marketplace in SW Great Falls) is now sporting the following URL: www.WeMakeContact.com. It also has the word INVASION on it. I figured it was some sort of promo for a Sci-Fi channel movie or something, but no, the website seems to be created by someone named Roy who claims that there were UFOs sighted over Great Falls on Thursday, December 27 at approximately 1:15 in the afternoon. He’s posted two videos of the objects – looks like several bright lights that appear to move in “V” formation. I’m skeptical – never bought into UFOs (at least in terms of aliens visiting from other worlds) – so I’m not sure if this is a legit attempt to shed some light on the airborne objects, or some type of joke, hoax, or marketing campaign. Here’s the billboard:

WeMakeContact.com?

Of course, this isn’t the first time that “UFOs” have been spotted near Great Falls. One of the most notable American “UFO” incidents occurred here back in 1950, and is commonly referred to as the “Mariana UFO Incident.”

So here’s a few questions for everyone: did any of you see any “UFOs” over Great Falls recently? Why does the billboard have the date 1-15-08 on it, even though the site is live now? Do you think this is legit, or some sort of hoax, joke, or marketing campaign? Why did “Roy” go to the trouble and expense of renting a billboard? Hmmmmm…

Snap Fitness

Noticed the new Snap Fitness center in the Target shopping complex yesterday – looks pretty spiffy. The idea is cool: if you’re a member, you can go workout anytime, day or night, 24 hours a day. A staff member is only available during certain hours to provide management, oversight, and sign up new members. Access is controlled by a key-card, I believe. No contract, no sign-up fees – just a monthly membership fee. The equipment all looks shiny and new. The phone number is 727-2077, if you want more information.
Nifty idea, and timely, too, since so many people (hangs head sheepishly) make New Year’s resolutions that involve losing weight and getting in shape!

Snap Fitness in Great Falls Montana

Also of note: the NW side of town is in desperate need of a fitness center – all of the others are on the South side (Gold’s, Peak, the now-closed Nautilus, and now Snap). Well, there’s good news: according to the Snap Fitness website, another location will be opening soon at the corner of Smelter and 4th Street NE (lots of new stuff in that area lately!).

2007 Highlights

Wow! 2007 was an amazing year here at GreaterFalls.com – thank you for keeping this place fun and for coming back to visit. Thought it might be fun to take a stroll down memory lane and review some of the more popular entries this year. Here’s a starter list:

The “Tattoo You” entry back in January garnered some attention because it was pointed out in the comments that Mystic Rhythms offered a free $50 tattoo of the ARTIST’S choice. Yikes.

A Hobby By Any Other Name” was my defense of blogging against those who deem it to be solely the province of losers, geeks, and people with too much time on their hands.

The ads for Dragonfly Dry Goods seem to inspire pretty much either love or hate among Great Falls residents!

In April I posted an entry about “Coming Clean” to reveal my “true” feelings about Great Falls – but as most people figured out in short order, the date of the entry was a dead giveaway!

I’ll rustle up some more popular entries later – in the meantime, if there’s a particular entry from 2007 that you really enjoyed – or want to see followed-up in any sense – let me know!

Robin Loznak, Photographer

I’m sure many of you have noticed the name “Robin Loznak” in many of the amazing pictures that appear in the Great Falls Tribune. To be honest, I never really paid much attention to “photo journalism” until I moved here and began realizing how incredible some of Robin’s pictures are. So it was a little sad to learn, via Robin’s blog, that he is moving on to Oregon in January, and that his last day at the Tribune was last Friday. But thanks to the goodness of the internets, we can always keep tabs on Robin’s work!

Robin, thanks for sharing your talent and photos with Great Falls – best wishes to you & your family as you begin a new adventure in a new community!

Boston’s The Gourmet Pizza

We finally made it to the new restaurant – Boston’s The Gourmet Pizza – last night. We went at 9:00 pm, figuring that the wait wouldn’t be too bad, and we were indeed seated immediately. The atmosphere is lively, and the overall look of the place is pretty fun. There seemed to be dozens of staff members rushing around, most of them with smiles and zip in their step. The menus are fun, too, presented like large hard-back books. Plenty of choices on the menu: pasta, pizza, burgers, seafood, salads, and lots of appetizers.

Since we had never eaten at a Boston’s The Gourmet Pizza before, we opted for basics: a bacon cheeseburger and a shrimp-n-pasta dinner. About the burger: they LOADED it with crumbled bacon, and I never thought that I would say this, but there is indeed such a thing as “too much bacon.” And the bacon wasn’t even good – it was way too “smoky” flavored, and really distracted from the burger. Although once I removed most of the bacon, I could see why: it was not a good burger. Didn’t taste like fresh beef, if that makes any sense. The shrimp-n-pasta was a bit better, but didn’t quite fall into the “good” category. Fair, at best. And our server, for some reason, didn’t seem to have the “zip” that the rest of the crew had – she went through the motions without smiling or seeming enthused.

Sigh. Basically, it was very much like Applebee’s – generic, rather bland food served in a “forced fun” atmosphere. Except that, unlike the several times that I have eaten at Applebee’s, I didn’t feel sick afterwards. Overall, quite disappointing. There’s lots of other stuff on the menu, so we might give it another chance – once we cycle through our regular eateries a few more times.

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

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