Check out these five stories from across Montana that highlight entrepreneurship, the high tech sector and everything else that makes Montana great.

1. Bozeman venture capital firm eyes Missoula for growth, investment opportunities

Homestake Partners, an upstart venture capital firm based in Bozeman, has hired a Missoula partner to help grow the organization’s membership base. Andy Gordon, formerly with of Clearas Water Recovery in Missoula, was named as its outreach coordinator.

Homestake traces its roots back to 2010, but co-founder Bill Stoddart pins its launch date to 2016. The firm claims around 40 members. Stoddard said the firm’s current membership is capable of providing more than $20 million in financing throughout the state, and it has identified nearly $50 million in opportunity.

Read more here.

2. Lark opens 4-story expansion in downtown Bozeman

The LARK in Bozeman, a boutique hotel, announced it completed its new expansion this past Sunday.

The four-story addition on the corner of Main Street and Grand Avenue will nearly double the hotels capacity from 38 rooms to 67. It also includes a grand floor cafe run by Treeline Coffee Roasters. The new structure was constructed using cross-laminated timber.  The hotel is owned by the same group of investors behind the Rialto Theather.

Read more here.

3. Spirits and juice coming to Compass Cafe, distillery planned for Town Center

There are several changes to the Big Sky Town Center this year and in 2019.

Compass Cafe is currently undergoing remodeling and will soon double as a bar. The cafe intends to serve beer from breweries in and near Big Sky, liquors distilled in Montana and wines curated by their new sommelier. Willie’s Distillery, based in Ennis, is also planning on opening a satellite distillery. Robin Blazer, co-owner of the distillery, said they tentatively expect to be open by fall 2019. The Blazers have eyed Big Sky as a potential satellite location because of its growth, tourism and a love for the area.

Read more here.

4. Perfect for packing

Swan Mountain Outfitters in Swan Lake offers a unique experience for outdoor enthusiasts: llamas.

Along with treks and trail rides on horseback, fishing and hunting trips, the company is one of the few outfitters to bring llamas into the mix. While llamas are not suited for riding, they can carry up to 100 pounds in their packs. The llamas, said Tucker Deady, act as a natural deterrent to bears that are unsure of what to make of them.

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5. A new hiking group in Bozeman is looking to promote diversity in the outdoors.

Earthtone Outside Montana, is a group dedicated to promoting diversity of Montana’s outdoor recreation scene. In January, the group met for the first time. Since then they’ve hosted sledding and skiing events and inside events. The group hosted a summer cookoff on June 10 and plans on having weekly hikes, cookouts, rock climbing events and more.

Click here to read more.



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