Gateway Towns

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Planners aim to attract Obama to Yellowstone for 2016 visit

President Barack Obama awaits the eruption of Old Faithful with First Lady Micelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia during a 2009 visit to Yellowstone National Park.

President Barack Obama had a busy week, making headlines and sparking discussions on a wide range of issues in what may well turn out to be the most defining few days of his presidency. The week's events showed that even a lame duck president with 45 percent approval ratings who has long since lost once-solid majorities in Congress can still command the nation's attention. It also explains why many in the Yellowstone National Park gateway town of Gardiner, Mont. are working hard to attract Obama as a featured guest for next summer's celebration of the National Park Service centennial. Continue Reading →

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Crowdfunding campaign aims to send regional schoolkids to Yellowstone

Middle school students visiting Yellowstone Park from Utah board their bus after stopping at Artist Point in this 2012 file photo.

Children in Montana, Wyoming, and Idaho are fortunate that they have the opportunity to visit Yellowstone frequently. But how many of them do? According to information from the Yellowstone Park Foundation, many school children from the states surrounding the world's first national park have never visited Yellowstone. The Foundation is working to change that with its new crowdfunding effort designed to help kids participate in Expedition Yellowstone. Continue Reading →

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Jackson beer will benefit Jenny Lake improvements in Grand Teton

The most popular beer from Wyoming's oldest brewery is getting a makeover. Actually, the beer itself will stay the same—it's the brand that's getting a refresh. And the change is likely to be a huge boost for one of the most popular destinations in Grand Teton National Park. Snake River Brewing produces both a Snake River Lager and a Snake River Ale. After 20 years, the brewery figured it was time to rebrand the acclaimed lager as a way to avoid confusion between the two beers. This week, it will be relaunched as Jenny Lake Lager. Continue Reading →

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Park chiefs expect busy summer for Yellowstone, Grand Teton

Grand Teton National Park Superintendent David Vela, left, and Yellowstone National Park Superintendent Dan Wenk spoke Monday at Cody's National Parks Day luncheon.

There are plenty of summer construction projects getting started in Yellowstone and Grand Teton national parks, but it wasn't just bridge and road building that was discussed Monday at Cody's National Parks Day luncheon. There was talk of building relationships as well. Superintendents of both parks spoke at the annual event, now in its 62nd year, and both men outlined the importance—and challenges—of working with gateway towns. Continue Reading →

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Spring Into Yellowstone tours cover wildlife, science and even ‘time travel’

Archaeologist Larry Todd, kneeling, shows dozens of artifacts marked with small flags in the Shoshone National Forest during a July field trip sponsored by the Greater Yellowstone Coalition. (Ruffin Prevost/Yellowstone Gate - click to enlarge)

The Spring Into Yellowstone Birding and Wildlife Festival returns next week, offering tours of some of the most scenic and inspiring spots in Yellowstone National Park and public lands to the east of the park. The growing festival is entering its third year, but many of the places highlighted in its tours and events have been popular with wildlife and people for thousands of years. Archaeologist Larry Todd will lead a tour of the Dead Indian Creek campsite area in Sunlight Basin, a favorite spot for modern campers that has been popular with people and animals for centuries. Continue Reading →

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Savvy regulars, eager locals cherish Yellowstone spring

Bison dot the landscape in the Lamar Valley as a lack of snow leaves much of Yellowstone National Park open for spring grazing.

For the faithful and fanatical few early visitors to Yellowstone National Park arriving from Cody last week, Friday seemed more like a breezy summer day than the first chance to enter the park by car after another long winter. But it appears there wasn't quite enough winter overall in the park this year, as snowpack was at just a fraction of its usual levels throughout the wide valleys and high mountains that are home to headwaters for much of the surrounding region. A mild and dry winter made for an easy time moving around the park, but could mean limited water for irrigation and the potential for a busy fire season in surrounding areas. Continue Reading →

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Artist creates flag mural in Cody as part of 50-state tour of veterans’ posts

Artist Scott LaBaido is painting American flag murals on veterans' posts in all 50 states, including one in Cody, Wyo.

Early Saturday afternoon, as Scott LaBaido toiled away at putting some fresh paint on the exterior of the Veterans of Foreign Wars post 2673, a local house painter pulled his truck into the parking lot and offered his approval and encouragement. LaBaido's tools were nothing special—a ladder and a standard paint roller. But his deft, measured strokes drew a steady stream of new admirers who wanted to chat, snap photos and learn more about the project. Painting with a speed and ease that made his work look deceptively easy, LaBaido was creating a giant American flag mural that covered a huge section of the VFW's front wall facing 12th street. The mural is the 17th American flag LaBaido has painted on a VFW post, as he makes his way across the country on a six-month trip to create a new mural on a veterans' post in each of the 50 states. Continue Reading →

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Tourism insiders expect strong summer as Yellowstone’s East Gate set to open Friday

A bighorn sheep stands in the middle of the East Entrance road east of Sylvan Pass in Yellowstone National Park as spring 2014 visitors enter the park from Cody, Wyo.

With the East Gate to Yellowstone National Park scheduled to open Friday, tourism industry insiders are reporting strong advance bookings in anticipation of a solid summer travel season. Positive economic indicators like fall unemployment rates and the potential for low- and middle-income wage growth may be contributing to the optimistic travel outlook, along with gasoline prices that remain well below where they have typically been in recent years. Continue Reading →

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Yellowstone hosts fishery discussions in gateway towns

Dylan Riley fishes the Lamar River in Yellowstone National Park in October 2010 while visiting from California. (Ruffin Prevost/Yellowstone Gate)

Yellowstone National Park staff members will travel to nearby communities next week to talk with anglers about the ongoing efforts to restore native fish species, the threat of aquatic invasive species and the park’s fishing regulations. In addition to the general public, local fly shop employees and fishing guides are encouraged to attend the outreach meetings. Four meetings are planned for the last week in April. Continue Reading →

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Group meets in Cody to discuss greater Yellowstone issues

Federal land managers within the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem are inviting the public to join them in a conversation on April 29 in Cody, Wyoming, to help them assess ecosystem issues and to build stronger relationships in the future. The Greater Yellowstone Coordinating Committee (GYCC) is a group of eleven federal land managers who work together to coordinate management on more than 15 million acres of public land in Idaho, Montana and Wyoming. Continue Reading →

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