The Blackfoot Valley Dispatch is the oldest newspaper devoted to Lincoln, Montana and the upper Blackfoot Valley and has been the best source for local news from Lincoln, Ovando, Helmville and Canyon Creek since 1980. With a circulation of nearly 600 in 37 towns across Montana and in 25 states, we reach an estimated 1500 readers each week. We are member of Montana Newspaper Association and are working hard to provide our readers with the best possible local news and advertising. We appreciate feedback, so let us know what you think and how we can improve.You can contact us at 406-362-4131.
July 31 Headlines
--New owners of Coyote Coffee plan to carry on friends legacy
- Lincoln man accused of threatening local deputy
-Woman cited for animal cruelty in dog dragging incident
- Funds raised through Putt Putt donated to local organizations
- One-time Lincoln student graduates, begins discipleship
- Ranger Roundup
- Chiefs Corner
- Greetings and FarewellsLincoln welcomes new doc, says good luck to Crowell and Smith- Sportsman Motel under new ownership
- Sportsman Motel under new ownership
-This is Montana: BOWDOIN WILDLIFE REFUGE
- Obituary: Darrell Woodahl
- My Smart Mouth: Dog Days
- A meeting of art and history
Remember, letters to the editor, guest editorials and commentaries are welcome
We should have our photo site up and running someday!!!
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Sportsman Motel under new ownership
After managing the Sportsman Motel for two years Dick and Linda Birkholz took over ownership of the well-known Lincoln business from Norm and Vicki Slead at the end of June, after saving for the down payment for nearly two years.
Birkholz said they had been talking about buying the business since they began managing it for the Sleads in 2012. “He wanted to sell it and I wanted to buy it, so we just had to figure out the terms,” he said. They began seriously planning and negotiations about a year ago and the Birkholz’ formed a limited liability corporation with their son Aaron and his wife Kristin for the purchase.
“We brought the kids in with us so we could run it for however many years until we decide not to and then they can moving in and take over,” Birkholz said. “We purchased it with the LLC and it was a great buy.”
They closed on the sale June 30.
“The plan was to take it over this July because ...you need to start it in July so you have enough money to carry you from January through April,” Birkholz said. “I ran it for two year so I knew exactly what the costs were, so that was nice.”
For now, Aaron and Kristin are basically silent partners who will take care of the motel when their parents need a break and occassionally fill in as backup housekeepers.
Norm Slead, who bought the motel form Bob and Trudi Armstrong five years ago, said he and his wife they were happy to turn the motel over to a local family like the Birkholz's. "They just did such a great job with it and have such good ideas, we just wanted to get out of their way."
The Sleads also wanted it the business to go to someone who would love it as well as the Armstrong's did, and he's sure the Birkholz's fit the bill.
"I just think it's in good hands for a long, long time," Slead said.
Birkholz said the Sleads made several upgrades to the motel during the last two years, including new carpet and paint in several of the rooms and the installation of air conditioning in every room. He said they plan to continue with the upgrades by replacing some of the beds, buying new flat screen TV’s for the rooms and installing more new carpet in rooms that still need it. He’s also looking into the possibility of adding a four-stall garage near their existing woodshed. The garage attached to the main house is now his shop, so Birkholz said they need a place for their vehicles to clear up the parking lot. He hopes to have three stalls for their vehicles and to make the fourth available for guests such as bikers and cyclists.
So far they’re off to a solid start. Birkholz said the month of July has been a better than average one with the motel filled to capacity for most of the month.
Although he’s not sure why business has been better, Birkholz, who until June was a board member for the Lincoln Valley Chamber of Commerce, said a lot of people are finding them through the Chamber’s web site.
Birkholz, who just a few years ago had to rely on Social Security for a disability, joked that there are probably some pretty good rumors floating around town now about how they could buy the motel , particularly since of Aaron and Kristin’s recently took over Coyote Coffee, but he said buying the motel was a matter of hard work, saving and old-fashioned American opportunity.
“Only in America can you go from disabled, living on $700 a month, to owning a motel in three years.”
In light of the recent attempt to abduct one of our own, a group of local citizens feel that it is important to increase the awareness of women in our community as to possible dangers that exist in our world today and steps they can take to protect themselves.
As a group, we have taken it upon ourselves to organize a “less than lethal” class to help teach women in our community ways to better avoid situations that may put them in danger and how to properly use a pepper-spray type device effectively in case they find themselves in a dangerous situation.
In doing our research, we found that the typical class can cost as much as $100 per attendee. However, we have found an instructor that is willing to come to Lincoln and facilitate a class for $25 per attendee.
To make this training a success we will need a minimum of 25 attendees. Attendees must be an adult. If someone wants to bring their daughter, they may but we ask that all attendees be over 16 or older. Those that are under the age of 18 must be accompanied by their legal guardian. If childcare is needed we can make arrangements for a caregiver. The $25 fee for attending must be paid in advance so that the instructor can bring the correct amount of materials
Attendees will be taught:
1. Situational awareness – how to be more aware of their surroundings.
2. Avoidance – How to avoid situations that could put them in harm’s way.
3. Proper use of a pepper-spray type device in the event they find themselves in a dangerous situation necessitating the use of such a device.
Attendees will leave the class with:
1. A better understanding of the dangers present in our society.
2. Better decision making tools.
3. A personal canister of pepper-spray.
Please fill out the bottom portion of this letter and drop it off with Erin Dey at the Blackfoot Valley Dispatch 362-4131. The class will be August 30th and 31st. Deadline to sign up is August 15th. If you have a hardship, please contact Jen, Erin or Bill and we will attempt to arrange for financial assistance.
Thank you for your support of this worthwhile project.