Wow — quite a thunderstorm yesterday! Driving home from work, I crossed three sets of railroad tracks, and the lights were flashing at all three, but there were no trains. And the lights at the intersection of Central Avenue and 3rd Street Northwest were not working — created a bit of confusion. Even had some hail — I pulled over along River Drive, as did several other drivers, until the hail and heavy rain let up.
It’s finally official: Great Falls is getting it’s very first free-standing Starbucks! Great Falls will join Billings, Helena, and Missoula as a Starbucks town. I’m sure you’ve all noticed the building going up in the parking lot of Holiday Village Mall. I’ve heard that the intersection there, 10th Avenue South & 9th Street, is the busiest one in town, so I suppose it makes sense to plant Starbucks right there. I have no doubt that the store will be successful. I wonder if they’ll have any grand-opening celebrations and prizes and such?
For local TV news, I usually turn to KRTV, channel 11, as do most folks in Great Falls. The set re-design, the improved graphics, and the website that debuted over a year ago went a long way to making KRTV more watchable.
One thing that has not changed, however, is the delivery of Fred Pfeiffer, chief meteorologist for KRTV. He seems like a nice guy, and he clearly loves Montana and his job. But every single time that I have watched his forecast – every time, bar none – he has delivered the forecast in exactly the same manner. He reads the highs/lows/precip for the same cities in the same order ALL THE TIME. Why doesn’t he do it in reverse order for a change? Or alphabetically? Or throw in some places other than Saco, Malta, Glasgow, Big Sandy, and Belt? A minor quibble, perhaps, but changing the line-up would be cool.
In other Fred news, he’s got his own website, and did you know that he appeared on “The Late Show with David Letterman” back in 2001? The category: Top Ten Things You Don’t Want To Hear From Your Weather Forecaster. Fred was #6 with this gem: “Rain, sun, snow, sleet — what’s the difference? We’re all gonna die someday!”
Bob Dylan is coming to Great Falls in July. His popularity continues to baffles me. Every song of his that I’ve heard sounds something like this: “Huh-hee-blah-blah-doo-dee-da.” Still, I’m glad that he included Great Falls on his concert tour.
Regarding BRAC: Montana officials journeyed to Oregon to make the case for keeping the F-16s in Great Falls. Based on past BRACs, I’d put the odds of success at roughly 5%, but I understand our elected officials have no choice but to make the effort to save jobs.
On a more whimsical note, the seventh annual “Dachshund Days” was held this weekend, with proceeds benefitting the American Red Cross. What is the appeal of weiner-dogs?
The allure of the breed, said attendee Michael Wilson, is that they are intelligent, travel-ready and dedicated. Plus, they’re adorable. But despite their small stature, Wilson said, they are vicious and protective: His dachshund often chases deer out of his yard. “And they don’t take up as much room on the bed,” Wilson said.
And on the roadways, the section of River Drive between 57th Street and the L&C Interpretive Center STILL isn’t complete. I thought that it would be done in time for the Explore The Big Sky kickoff, but now I’m just hoping that it will be done by the time EBS is over.
Well, the mercury finally cracked the 75 degree mark in Great Falls yesterday. I know that’s probably very nice for most folks, but it makes me a little sad (in a way) to know that Summer has arrived. I’ll enjoy parts of it — the sunshine, the fans blowing, etc — but I won’t enjoy the temperatures once they get above 80 degrees. Sigh.
If you live in Great Falls, I’m sure you’ve seen some of the wonderfully whimsical painted bison around town. Would you believe that some jackass (or jackasses) actually took one and left it alongside the highway amidst a pile of beer cans? Grrrrr. I hope the criminal left fingerprints on the bison and the police track him (or her) down.