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Forestvale Cemetery’s original Gothic arched stone entrance was constructed in 1890. The cemetery district will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the new entrance on McHugh Road. 


Humane Society fundraiser 'Wine for Whiskers Ball' is tonight

The Wine for Whiskers Ball will be held on tonight, Sept. 14, at the Delta Marriott Hotel, 2301 Colonial Drive.

This is a fundraiser for the Lewis & Clark Humane Society and will feature an evening tasting fine wine, beer, hors’ doeuvres and dancing to the Mighty Flick while raising funds for the animals.

The event will begin at 7 p.m. with the wine and beer tasting. The Mighty Flick Band will perform from 9-11 p.m. There will also be a silent auction with plenty of baskets to bid on. Tickets can be purchased in advance online at or at the Lewis & Clark Humane Society. Tickets will also be available at the front door. Tickets are $50.

Meet artist Dean Crouser at Leslie's

Artist Dean Crouser will be at Leslie's Hallmark, 1609 11th Ave., from noon-2 p.m. today, Sept. 14.

Crouser is an Oregon native whose watercolor paintings of hummingbirds, fish and wildlife are enjoyed by art enthusiasts and collectors around the world. 

Call 442-3933 for more information.

Ribbon-cutting on tap at Forestvale Cemetery

The Forestvale Cemetery District will hold a ribbon-cutting celebration at 11 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 15, at the 128-year-old cemetery’s new entrance on McHugh Road.

All members of the public are invited to the celebration, which will include talks by Historian Ellen Baumler and Susan Bjerke, the architect who designed the new entrance. The Montana Honor Guard will have a special flag-raising ceremony at the new flag pole located at the north entrance.

Forestvale is one of a few Montana cemeteries that is supported as a special district receiving county tax money. Forestvale became a special district some 30 years ago to provide the resources for a cemetery that is such a piece of Montana history and which was being vandalized.

There are 15,000 people interred at Forestvale. Early trustees and their historic preservation committees began the process of fencing, putting in paved roads, installing an automatic sprinkling system, adding columbariums and a mausoleum.

The new entrance on McHugh was created to help address traffic problems at the corner of Forestvale and McHugh. It was a project that took years to complete.

Those attending the ribbon-cutting celebration will have the opportunity to participate in self-guided walking tours.

For information, call 457-8513.

IR sports reporter to speak at event

"A Cup of Coffee with Capital City Baseball" is the subject of Curt Synness' presentation to the Last Chance Gulch Corral History Dinner Group. They will begin their 2018-2019 season on Monday, Sept. 17, at Jorgenson's Restaurant, 1720 11th Ave., in the lower banquet room at 5:30 p.m. with no-host cocktails followed by dinner at 6 p.m. Reservations are required by noon on Sept 14. Call Shirley Thomas at 227-5953 or 431-8196.

Synness will be talking about a few of his previous local baseball articles in the Independent Record highlighting some of the historic moments of the sport. The 1902 Helena Senators minor league baseball, Joe Tinker in Helena, East Helena's Kes and Frank Rigler, Jim Thorpe in Montana, 1932 Helena Legion, Herb Plews, Patsy Rude, Copper League, Charlie Pride, Brian Knight, Helena Phillies, Helena Gold Sox, and the Helena Brewers will be highlighted.

The LCGC has been meeting monthly since 1978 on a wide variety of programs of interest to Montana and Helena history buffs. New members and those interested are welcome. For further information, call Dolly Post at 458-1175.

Suicide survivor to speak at Carroll

September is National Suicide Prevention Month and NAMI Helena and Carroll College will host a free presentation with Kevin Berthia, a suicide survivor and prevention advocate, at 7 p.m. on Monday, Sept. 17, in All Saints Hall at Carroll College. 

Celebrating the US Constitution's 231st anniversary

The State Society Daughters of the American Revolution and the tri-county Oro Fino Chapter NSDAR will sponsor the 231st commemoration of the signing the U.S. Constitution at 1 p.m. Monday, Sept. 17, in the Capitol rotunda.

The celebration will feature school civics by Superintendent of Public Instruction Elsie Arntzen, citizenship by Secretary of State Corey Stapleton, a new performance of “This is My Country” by Helena Xpress Singers in four-part a cappella harmony directed by Barb Leland and reflections by The American Legion District Six Commander Joshua T. Clement.

Posting the colors will be Sons of the American Revolution Helena area Guardian Chapter President Warren Dupuis and Vice President Keith Kramlick, with DAR Oro Fino Chapter Treasurer Gale Kramlick and Secretary Patty Donoho in colonial dress. The Pledge of Allegiance and Invocation will be led by DAR member Charmaine Lindgren and “The Star-Spangled Banner will be sung by Helena Xpress Singers.

Ringing the statehood centennial bell will be First Lutheran School fourth- and fifth-grade students in Mrs. Allyson Briese’s class, assisted by Patricia Greene, Oro Fino Chapter vice regent. Oro Fino Chapter Regent Veronica Bovee-Anderson will bring greetings, Martha Washington will be portrayed by Shirley Herrin, chapter historian, and Jane Lee Hamman, Montana Society DAR State Regent and Constitution Week chair for the six-state Northwestern Division, Montana and the Oro Fino Chapter, will read a proclamation letter from Gov. Steve Bullock and emcee.

Birthday cookies will be provided by members of Oro Fino Chapter. Everyone is welcome.

For information, visit, which has links to all these groups and most genealogy sites, or contact the national society at

LWVHA to host speaker Morton at next meeting

At noon Tuesday, Sept. 18, the League of Women Voters Helena Area will feature Claudette Morton, who will speak on the history of the LWV in Montana and Helena. We will gather in the small conference room at the Lewis and Clark Library, 120 S. Last Chance Gulch. Everyone is invited.

Cranium Cafe program continues

Cranium Cafe is a brain health workshop featuring brain health exercises and education in a relaxed, fun environment.

Participants learn how to feed and care for the brain for improved memory, overall health and well-being. Nanette Whitman-Holmes, Life Enrichment Director at Touchmark, facilitates. The Wednesday, Sept. 19, program is called, “Brain Myths Exploded: Lessons from Neuroscience.” Dr. Indre Viskontas, University of San Francisco Conservatory of Music is the video presenter. With its 86 billion neurons and hundreds of trillions of intricate connections, the human brain is mystifyingly complex. Which explains why, despite lightning-fast advancements in neuroscience, there’s still a lot that is not understood.

Bring a brown bag lunch. Beverages and enrichment will be provided. Cranium Café is free, however non-perishables for Helena Food Share are suggested as a donation. Cranium Café begins at noon. Register at Cranium Café is a program of Helena Community Connections. All programs are offered at Covenant United Methodist Church, 2330 E. Broadway, unless otherwise noted. All programs occur in handicapped accessible facilities.

St. Peter’s Health Hospice offers bereavement support group

St. Peter's Health Hospice will host a Bereavement Education Support Group from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Sept. 26 to Nov. 7 on Wednesdays. The seven-week bereavement education support group is for adults who have experienced the death of a loved one.

The focus of the group is to provide participants with the opportunity to learn about the grief process and strategies for coping and healing. Group members will also be able to discuss their thoughts, feelings and experiences with others who are living with a significant loss. Topics of information and discussion include the individual and unique pathways of grief, the emotional, physical and spiritual aspects of grief, strategies for healthy self-care and exploring the opportunities for personal growth and transformation in the grief process. Hospice bereavement team members will facilitate the group.

Pre-registration is required by Sept. 24, as group size is limited. Call Lynne Grant at 447-2464 or Karissa Bennett at 431-5006 for information or to register.

Free seminar on human trafficking awareness Oct. 1

The public is invited to a free seminar on human trafficking Monday, Oct. 1. The seminar will be held at the Carroll College Campus Center from 6 to 9 p.m.

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The event will feature guest speaker Detective Guy Baker, Missoula Police Department; Grace Manchala, director of Glory for Ashes; and Dr. Christopher Fuller, director for Hunthausen Center for Peace and Justice.

Sex trafficking is increasing, yet because it’s a crime that happens in the shadows many are unaware that it’s happening in their own community. Anyone who has children or works with youth, including counselors, teachers, coaches, foster parents, CASA volunteers, youth home staff, faith-based groups, and community volunteers are strongly encouraged to attend.

Come and learn more about the tactics used by perpetrators and the behaviors of victims. The panel platform will give attendees ample opportunity to ask questions and gain the knowledge needed to protect themselves and the young people in their lives.

In addition to the panel presentation, information regarding organizations working to dismantle the sex trafficking supply chain, victim recovery services, and educational materials for schools and other groups working with youth will be provided.

Saluting Branches coming Sept. 19

The Second Annual Saluting Branches event in Helena will be Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2018 at the Veterans Administration facilities and the State Veterans Cemetery at Ft. Harrison. Saluting Branches is a united tree worker industry-wide arboriculture initiative to express our appreciation and gratitude for the sacrifices and services our military forces have provided to our nation.

The Saluting Branches National Day of Service is a way to give back to the brave troops who have sacrificed so much. The National Day of Service has been swiftly embraced by tree care companies, associations, and utilities throughout the nation. On Sept. 19, Saluting Branches will bring together thousands of arborists, tree care professionals, and other volunteers at 55 veteran cemeteries and other sites across the nation.

In Helena, over 50 tree care professionals and other volunteers from as far away as Missoula and Great Falls will provide small tree pruning classes, small and large tree pruning, tree and stump removals, identification of 20 spring 2019 tree planting sites, and irrigation improvements for trees at Liberty House. The Montana Saluting Branches event is supported by Montana tree industry organizations and businesses including the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the International Society of Arboriculture; Asoociation of Montana Turf, Ornamental, and Pest Professionals; NorthWestern Energy Company, Montana Nursery and Landscape Association; Gardenwerks of Helena, Tree Amigos from Great Falls, Nitrorgreen of Helena, the City of Helena Park and Recreation Department, Asplundh Tree Care, Growing Friends of Helena, Townsend American Legion Post #42, Townsend Tree Board, and others.

Last year, 45 volunteers at Ft. Harrison donated over 300 hours of tree care services, which translated into many thousands of dollars worth of donations.

The organizers of the event would like to thank all the local Helena businesses for their many donations of money, food, gloves and other safety equipment, and other supplies for this event. For more information or to volunteer please contact Patrick Plantenberg at 431-4615.


Women’s Foundation of MT celebrates $46K in grants

The Women’s Foundation of Montana, a project of the Montana Community Foundation, is celebrating its latest investments and a brighter future for Montana women and girls.

The grants awarded include:

  • Girl Scouts of Montana and Wyoming, Billings - $5,787
  • Girls Using Their Strengths (GUTS!) GRIT Project, YWCA Missoula - $2,500
  • AAUW Start Smart Trainings, Statewide - $7,000
  • Montana GEMS, Butte - $4,000
  • Montana NEW Leadership, Mansfield Center, University of Montana, Statewide - $5,000
  • Red Ants Pants Foundation, Girls Leadership Project, Statewide - $7,000
  • Girls Thrive, Girls Leadership Project, Helena - $4,000
  • Stevensville Community Center, Girls Computer Coding Project, Stevensville - $3,000
  • Montana Women Vote, Women’s Policy Leadership Institute, Statewide - $3,500
  • Prospera Women’s Business Center, Prosperity Party, Bozeman - $5,000

The new grant funding is focused on creating systemic change to improve the economic status of women, supporting initiatives that give girls the tools to be financially successful, and programs that improve women’s economic security and equalize the pay gap.  

The foundation advisory board gave preference to programs that showed innovation, collaboration, and tangible, measurable results. The end result will be new opportunities for hundreds of Montana women and girls in financial education, leadership, entrepreneurship, wage-negotiation training and STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math) programming.


U.S. Air Force Airman Joseph Mergenthaler graduated from basic military training at Joint Base San Antonio-Lackland, San Antonio, Texas.

The airman completed an intensive, eight-week program that included training in military discipline and studies, Air Force core values, physical fitness, and basic warfare principles and skills.

Airmen who complete basic training also earn four credits toward an associate in applied science degree through the Community College of the Air Force.

Mergenthaler is a 2017 graduate of Capital High School.

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