Recent Posts

Montana bar stakes claim as Yellowstone attraction where pigs fly

Pigs race at Bear Creek Downs, a seasonal swine derby near Red Lodge, Mont. (Montana Office of Tourism - click to enlarge)

Tourism slowed to a trickle in many small towns around Yellowstone after a series of spectacular fires in 1988 burned across nearly one third of the park. So, with a local population of only 83 people in Bearcreek, Mont., bar and restaurant owner Bob "Pits" DeArmond knew he had to do something to attract attention, and visitors. So he called in the pigs. "We just figured pig races might be the thing," said DeArmond, owner of the Bear Creek Saloon and Steakhouse, home of Bear Creek Downs. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,

Mint Bar in Livingston maintains authentic sense of history after modern makeover

A painstaking restoration of The Mint Bar and Theater in Livingston, Mont. has maintained a feeling of historic authenticity. (courtesy photo - click to enlarge)

A downtown fixture for the past century, the Mint Bar got its name because it was where railroad workers coming off the late shift often cashed their paychecks — and then quickly began drinking their way through that cash. Livingston's Northern Pacific rail hub closed decades ago, but the bar continues to thrive. During the height of the railroad era, around the mid 20th century, the Mint was rumored to have had more cash on hand than most local banks. Nowadays, it trades in an even more elusive currency: authentic Western historical experiences. Continue Reading →

Filed under: , , , , , , ,