Business Bites: Bar S sale; new café; Peace Place; A Kids Nest Childcare; GFPS book giveaway; apartment renovation; West Bank development; Pride festival; Juneteenth; UP award; childcare website; Municipal Band concerts

Updated 4 p.m. June 13

Bar S

Ed Buttrey and Mike Tabacco are in the process of buying the Bar S.

The sale is scheduled to close on June 22, Buttrey said and they plan to take over operations at that time.

He said they plan to keep the business operating as is, but will expand the casino and make some updates and renovations over the next few years.

He said they intend to keep the same staff and menu and “we hope that the ownership change is invisible to the customers, hoping to reopen on the day we close the deal.”

For gift certificates, Buttrey said the former owners kept a list of certificates that were purchased, but they don’t have good records on which are still outstanding. Buttrey said that once they take over the business, they’ll make the decision as to what to do with any outstanding gift certificates.

Business Bites: Silhouette Bridal Studio opening; Mrs. Wrights Pastys moving; new dispensary planned; Luna Coffee has new owner; NeighborWorks Week

Buffalo Blanc

The city has received a permit application to convert the former Campfire Girls building 1925 2nd Ave. S. into a coffee shop called the Buffalo Blanc.

Mark Tronson, an owner at 5th and Wine, is the café owner.

Food scene evolving, revitalizing downtown

West Bank

The city has received a permit application for a tenant buildout at 405 3rd St. N.W. for a nurse practitioners office.

The office is in the West Bank Landing space known as Mixed Use II that also houses Payne West and the Great Falls Development Authority.

Business Bites: Community needs survey; Follain Physical Therapy opens; Family Promise receives grant; taco shop opens; Evans retires; downtown accredited again; Shakespeare in the Parks; KDS Fiber expansion

Peace Place

Peace Place is hosting Center Stage Great Falls at 6 p.m. June 15 at the Black Eagle Community Center.

General admission is $20 and VIP tickets, which include guaranteed seating, two drink tickets, snacks and extra voting rights, are $40.

The event includes food trucks, a silent auction, 50/50 raffle and photography, as well as dancing after the competition.

Tickets can be purchased here.

Proceeds benefit the children of Peace Place and will be used to help build an inclusive playground.

Peace Place has also submitted a permit application to renovate the property at 519 4th Ave. S. with new ADA restrooms, classrooms and offices for their respite care program.

City approves $2.88 million in community ARPA grants

Peace Place has completed the architectural and engineering reports for the new space and are now in the permitting and bidding stages of construction, according to KC Beall, Peace Place director of administration.

The fundraiser will help fund the outdoor play space at the new location, Beall said.

She said currently they have a shared courtyard with First Presbyterian Church with no permanent play structures, “so we are super excited to have a new space that will be all-inclusive and designed specifically for our kiddos with special needs to enjoy.”

Opportunities Inc.

The Opportunities, Inc. Family Resource Center at 622/620 1st Ave. S., has been providing supportive services to families for many years. It now has a new sign that has brought some renewed attention to this location.

Anyone ages 14 to 24 interested in work force training opportunities, inclusive of obtaining a Hi-set is encouraged to stop by 622 1st Ave. S.

Workforce opportunities and childcare tend to go together for many. Families can visit 620 1st Ave. S. next door to learn about infant to five childcare, which is free to those who qualify.

The Opportunities, Inc. location at 1100 1st Ave. N. has also had signage added. This is an Opportunities, Inc. office building. This location also houses the Clearwater Credit Union. Opportunities, Inc., and Clearwater Credit Union had a ribbon cutting on April 7 to celebrate their partnership.

Clearwater Credit Union is a values-based banking cooperative and Montana’s largest community development financial institution Clearwater offers financial products, services, and education that empower Montanans to build bright futures and build long-term financial resiliency.

From its Great Falls location, Clearwater currently provides consumer lending, video teller services, a 24-hour ATM, and works with Opportunities’ case workers to help referred clients. Additionally, Clearwater offers free financial counseling to Opportunities clients and financial literacy classes to all Great Falls area residents.

For more information or questions about any of the services Opportunities, Inc. offers, individuals can call 406-761-0310 or visit

A Kids Nest Childcare

A Kids Nest Childcare has opened at 908 8th Ave. S. and has openings available and accepts the Best Beginning Scholarship. The facility is open Monday though Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.

Call 406-866-0079 for current rates and more information.

Business Bites: Qdoba planned in West Bank; Kenny’s downtown closed; West Bank construction; apartments underway for Touro students; game club opens; Voyagers field upgrade

GFPS Book Giveaway

The annual Great Falls Public Schools book giveaway is June 14-15 from noon to 6 p.m. at the Paris Gibson Education Center gymnasium. Bring your own containers and take as many books as you want. Preschool curriculum, social studies, kids books and more.

City Prosecutor’s Office Closure

Due to an HVAC renovation, the city prosecutor’s office will be closed to walk-in traffic from June 15 to the middle of July.

To reach the city prosecutor’s office during this timeframe, call 406-455-8535, 406-455-8536, or 406-455-8538 for assistance.

City approves two Civic Center improvement contracts

For deferred prosecution agreements of minor traffic offenses, call the prosecutor’s office to determine eligibility. Qualifying offenders will be mailed the agreement documents.

To request a copy of a police report, visit the legal department’s website for the instructions and document request form. Mail the police report request with a $15 check or money order to: City of Great Falls, Legal Dept., P.O. Box 5021
Great Falls, MT 59403.

Great Falls Municipal Band 

The Great Falls Municipal Band begins its 130th consecutive season of free concerts in the Gibson Park beginning June 14 at 7 p.m. The first concert will feature a clarinet ensemble, a saxophone quartet and a surprise group.

Concerts begin at 7 p.m. Bring a chair.

The schedule for the remainder of the summer is:

  • June 21, 7 p.m. with the full band in the Gibson Park bandshell
  • June 28, Summer Celebration in the Mansfield Convention Center, with the Paris Gibson Awards and Miss Linda’s School of Dance performing pre-show entertainment. Doors open at 5:30 p.m.
  • July 5 and every other Wednesday through Aug. 9 at the Gibson Park bandshell

Business Bites: Bakery moving downtown; Crooked Tree second location; Buckle planned for Marketplace; Alluvion construction progressing; Les Schwab open

Roberts Apartments

Community Preservation Partners is pursuing state tax credits for a renovation project at the Roberts Apartments at the corner of Central Avenue and 6th Street.

The firm presented to the Montana Board of Housing in May and has been invited back for the full tax credit application process in the fall.

The firm is planning an extensive $4.9 million rehabilitation of the building, which has 60 units, with energy efficiency and safety upgrades.

Business Bites: Emerald City Casino demolition; West Bank Landing permits submitted; no, there’s not a Chik-fil-A under construction; Baatz project progressing; Zadick wrestling club; Wellness406 open; Family Affair reopens; local chef on Food Network; Rise Athletics teams place nationally


The YWCA and Great Falls Public Library are hosting a Juneteenth celebration on June 17 from 1-4 p.m. at Gibson Park.

The free family friendly event includes live music, games, food and stories.

Pride Festival

The city’s first official Pride festival is set to take place on June 24 at the Paris Gibson Square Museum.

The festival will feature local vendors, food trucks, and a beer garden hosted by Kellergeist, lives music, a poetry slam and an adult spelling bee. For the kids, the festival will feature a bouncy house, face painting, and arts and crafts hosted by Paris Gibson Museum.

The free festival is noon to 6 p.m. June 24.

All are welcome to attend and join in the celebration of diversity and acceptance in Great Falls. The festival is sponsored by local businesses and organizations that support the LGBTQ+ community, including the Great Falls Clinic, Casey and Teresa Schreiner, Paris Gibson Square Museum, Cassiopeia Books and The Do Bar.

Montana Child Care Business Connect

Montana Child Care Business Connect has launched a new website as a comprehensive resource hub for all those in the child care industry, providing information, tools and support to help businesses thrive and provide high-quality care to children and families across Montana.

The MCCBC website is designed to cater to the unique needs of child care providers, early childhood educators, families, and community members. The website offers a user-friendly interface, making it easy to navigate and access a wide range of resources. Users can explore various sections of the website, including business support, professional development, and community capacity growth tools.

UP Athletic Director

University of Providence Athletic Director Doug Hashley was selected the Frontier Conference Athletic Director of the Year in a vote by the league’s athletic directors.

It’s Hashley’s second conference Athletic Director of the Year award. He joined the UP athletic staff in 2017 and was named athletic director in 2020.