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Articles from the April 18, 2024 edition


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  • Plains-TF district welcomes new ranger

    Ed Moreth|Apr 18, 2024

    The U.S. Forest Service Plains-Thompson Falls Ranger District has a new leader, and he's no stranger to the workings of the woods. Curtis Rintz has worked in the forests, deserts and high mountains and is now a ranger in the Lolo National Forest. The 62-year-old took over as the district's ranger in Plains only six weeks ago and is quickly getting familiarized with his new role, the district's missions and its crew. "I am excited to be here. It's a challenge but I love it," said Rintz, who has...

  • A union of Q and U

    Ed Moreth|Apr 18, 2024

    The average age of people getting married in the United States was early 30s, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, but last week's wedding at Plains School might throw a wrinkle in their statistics. Six-year-old Malia Hart (as the letter Q) and 5-year-old Finley Williams (as the letter U) were "married" in the classroom by their kindergarten teacher last Thursday. Classmate Emma Colwell served as the ring bearer and Frances LeClair was the ceremony's flower girl, placing pink flower petals at...

  • County readies school ballots

    Annie Wooden|Apr 18, 2024

    Ballots are being prepared for local school district elections. Sanders County Elections staff said ballots will be mailed Monday for school elections in Plains and Noxon. Hot Springs, which has one board position open and is asking voters to approve a levy, is running their own election. In Noxon, two three-year positions are open on the school board, with Kyra Bosker, Annie Manning, Arthur Potts and Lars Swanson filing as candidates. Cassandra Hill was the only candidate to file for an open 2-year position. For the portion of the Noxon...

  • Hot Springs students try different media with CSKT artists

    Shannon Brown|Apr 18, 2024

    Artists from the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes (CSKT) went to Hot Springs School on Saturday to teach fifth through 12th grade students about different art modalities. Sketch artist Cameron Decker from Missoula, along with his wife Aspen Decker, said this is the second school they have visited in Sanders County. "We went to Dixon last weekend," Cameron stated. "We had a weaver there teaching traditional weaving. Our idea is to bring more art education into the schools." Students can ta...

  • Sunday's Snapshots

    Sunday Dutro|Apr 18, 2024

    Recently, I read two opposing books on time. One told me time is a construct and I can therefore make more of it by focusing on what I want to accomplish. Another book said time is finite, I can never have more of it, but I can learn to use it better by focusing on what I want to accomplish. While both books had opposite views of time itself, both books believed time is a thing we can harness through focus. It’s a fascinating contrast, to come at something from two opposed ways and yet obtain the same result. Perhaps that’s why core math works,...

  • Our Viewpoint

    Annie Wooden|Apr 18, 2024

    In recent years there was an uproar about schools not teaching how to write in cursive anymore. A method of communication like landline phones and hand-written letters that is disappearing. It feels, however, like we're losing the basic skills of face-to-face communication. When I started writing this, I told my mom it feels like I broach this subject a lot. But it's worth repeating. It's not unusual in 2024 to go to a school board meeting or a city council meeting or a town hall meeting (all three of which I have attended in the last week)...

  • Remember When?

    Sherry Hagerman-Benton|Apr 18, 2024

    4 YEARS AGO • APRIL 26, 1984 FOREST SERVICE CHOOSES PLAINS Orville Daniels, Supervisor of the Lolo National Forest, announced the decision not to seek a new lease for office space in Thompson Falls. That decision came after four months of exploring possibilities of how best to operate the combined offices of the Plains-Thompson Falls Ranger district. Last November, the forest service announced that they were reconsidering an earlier decision made to move the district headquarters to Thompson Falls. They felt economics favored the move to P...

  • Registered offender pleads not guilty

    Stephanie Molzhon|Apr 18, 2024

    James William Hill made his initial appearance before Judge Molly Owen last week on a felony charge of failing to give notice of change of address by a sexual/violent offender, pleading not guilty. A jury trial was set for September 19, 2024. According to the charging documents, on January 2, Detective Ethan Harvey was contacted by Lynn Bierwagen, Probation and Parole, regarding one of her probationers that she had recently revoked. Hill, a registered sex offender, had a last known address in Paradise but had been arrested and was being held...

  • Sheriff's Log

    Apr 18, 2024

    Ambulance: Plains, 7; T. Falls, 5; Hot Springs, 5; Trout Creek, 2; Paradise, 1; Noxon, 1. Monday, April 8 Welfare check, Hot Springs. Abandoned vehicle, Paradise. Animal stray/lost, T. Falls. Intimidation/harassment, T. Falls. Trespass, Paradise. Civil attempts, T. Falls. Theft, Dixon. Civil attempts, Trout Creek. Attempt to locate, T. Falls. Road hazard/debris on road, Plains. Civil attempts. Property damage/criminal mischief, Hot Springs. Road hazard/debris on road, Hot Springs. Business contact, Plains. Tuesday, April 9 Assist motorist/citiz...

  • Justice Court

    Apr 18, 2024

    Montana Highway Patrol David Dilley, 57, operating without liability insurance, 1st offense, $285; seatbelt violation, $20; driving while privilege suspended/revoked, 1st offense, $275. David Rush, 54, speeding in a restricted zone, $115. Hassan Abikar, 37, speeding in a restricted zone, $95. Richard Novak, 80, seatbelt violation, $20. Benjamin Bjork, 24, night speeding, $120. Colin McClain, 22, seatbelt violation, $20. Kaleb Scott, 32, night speeding, $20. Felipe Icimoto, 40, day speeding, $70. Taylor Osburn, 32, day speeding, $70. Tanner...

  • SANDERS COUNTY SCHOOL BOARD CANDIDATES

    Apr 18, 2024

    Editor's Note: The Ledger sent questions to each of the school board candidates in all of the school districts who filed for the May election, regardless of whether or not the candidates were running opposed or unopposed. The following candidates returned completed questions and provided photos. PLAINS SCHOOL DISTRICT Name: Ellen Childress Education: B.S. Zoology University of Montana, Education Certification in Biology and General Science Grade 7-12 Occupation: Teacher (Retired) Owner-Whistle Creek Pottery What qualities make you a good...

  • Plains Schools seeks $100,000 levy

    Ed Moreth|Apr 18, 2024

    Plains School is asking for a $100,000 levy this year in an effort to recruit and retain qualified teachers and staff and to help better fund classroom programs. “Our levy is for learning,” said Dr. Kathleen Walsh, the school superintendent, who added that they’re going to educate the children regardless, but the levy will give the students better opportunities to be successful in the future. “The levy will allow the school community to expand and support family and community engagement while supporting expansion of academic program...

  • Plains creates pool board

    Ed Moreth|Apr 18, 2024

    A Plains pool board was officially established last week in an effort to make the operation of the E.L. Johnson Memorial Pool more efficient this year. Five community members volunteered to be on the newly formed committee last Monday at City Hall, where the town's newest certified lifeguard trainers offered to help get this year's lifeguards trained. Seth Gibbs, Lyle Fisher and Matt Fielders completed a 21 1/2-hour Red Cross training session in Missoula the previous Sunday to become trainers...

  • MASTER CLASS

    Ed Moreth|Apr 18, 2024

    Plains resident Tom Collins gives a special carving class to Plains High School students Emory Erchanbrack, a senior, (left) and Izzy Bakker, a junior and a foreign exchange student from the Netherlands. Collins, president of the Plains Carving Club and an expert carver, gave a four-day class to Kristen Cole's art students last week. This was the second time Collins had given the class to Plains students. He is also the coordinator for the Montana Woodcarvers Association Show at the Missoula...

  • Annamaria Curry

    Apr 18, 2024

    3/26/1939 - 4/08/2024 Annamaria Curry of Thompson Falls, Montana, passed away at home on April 8, 2024, in Warren, Oregon, where she lived with her daughter, Marion and son-in-law Brad Grantham since February 2022. Anna was preceded in death by Clarence Curry (2016) her husband of 50 years and son Frank Curry (2008). She is survived by her daughter Marion (husband Brad Grantham), son Dean Curry (wife Katrina), son Eddie Curry (wife Crystal), daughter Diana (husband Andy Bogart), eight grandchil... Full story

  • Theodore Stoughton Stiles

    Apr 18, 2024

    Ted was born January 6, 1936, at the Hotel Dieu Hospital in Polson, Montana, to parents Roy Frank Stiles and Lela Arline Stoughton Stiles. He grew up west of Polson along with two older sisters, Edna Arline and Ruth Emma Wiley (Bob). He graduated from Polson High School in 1954. Ted married his high school sweetheart, Martha Alice Van Hellen on April 1, 1956. They farmed and ranched west of Polson. They had five children together, four of whom survive him: Carol S. Swope (Ronnie) Polson,... Full story

  • James O. Pavola

    Apr 18, 2024

    James O. Pavola, 84, of Thompson Falls, Montana, passed away on April 12, 2024. He was born May 25, 1939, in Greenville, California, to Oscar Pavola and Ruby (McKinney) Pavola. (James) Jim always regretted not finishing his education, but did become a successful truck driver for many years. He drove long-haul for about 10 years, hauling many dangerous loads that he didn’t know what, a lot of times. Some were bombs to Bremerton, Washington, and some were fertilizer (very dangerous) and some were foods and some he didn’t even know what they wer...

  • Shirley A. (Schneider) Steinman

    Apr 18, 2024

    September 18, 1948 - November 6, 2023 Shirley Steinman passed away peacefully surrounded by family and friends at her home in Trout Creek, Montana on November 6, 2023. Shirley is missed immensely by her family, friends and favorite four-legged kid, Josie. You can be sure Shirley and Larry are together again. Memorial Donations can be made to the Cancer Society or your favorite animal shelter. Please join us in Celebrating the Beautiful Life of Shirley, Saturday, June 1, 2024, 1-3 pm at the... Full story

  • Thompson Falls board votes for 5-day week

    Annie Wooden|Apr 18, 2024

    Thompson Falls Superintendent Bud Scully accepted a check for $23,270 just before Monday's school board meeting. The check from the Clark Fork Soccer Alliance was the result of fundraising by the organization to support a cooperative high school soccer team between Thompson Falls and Plains beginning in the 2024-25 school year. The school board officially voted Monday to approve the application for the soccer cooperative with the Montana High School Association. "We just want to thank the...

  • Run kicks off reading program

    Annie Wooden|Apr 18, 2024

    Thompson Falls Elementary students had a little spring in their step last Monday morning as they kicked off the Running Start reading program with a jog around the playground. The program is presented by the Thompson Falls Woman's Club (TFWC). Elementary principal Len Dorscher said the program has been part of the school year since the 90s and joked that they have tried to figure out how long it has been going on but no one seems to know the exact year it started. "They are really supportive of...

  • Hot Springs hosts Dave Tripp meet

    Skye Hill|Apr 18, 2024

    Hot Springs hosted their annual Dave Tripp Memorial in Polson, where the Savage Heat, Plains and 15 schools came together for an action packed track and field day. Nicholas Hill led for Plains in the 100 meter race, with his time of 11 seconds. Behind him was Greg Tatum with a time of 12.02, Matthew Thurston in 12.70 and Jack Cockrell rounded it out for the Horsemen in 14.06. Hill took sixth place in the 200 meters with his time of 25 seconds, Thurston finished in 26.57, Liam Lyman crossed the finish line in 28.35 and Cockrell ended with a...

  • Plains welcomes golfers

    Skye Hill|Apr 18, 2024

    The Plains and Thompson Falls golf teams met again on the Plains golf course for a full 18-hole match on Saturday. The Thompson Falls boys took fourth out of nine teams while the girls took second place out of five teams. The top team for the boys was Florence with a 122, St. Regis took second with 143, Eureka in third with 186, Thompson Falls with 200, Superior with 216, Loyola with 222 and Plains with 264. For the girls Florence once again took first place with 238, Thompson Falls followed...

  • Red Devils see first home competition

    Skye Hill|Apr 18, 2024

    The Noxon-Thompson Falls Red Devils faced the Polson Pirates last Thursday, falling 24-1. The Pirates got on the board in the top of the first inning after a left field home run scored two runs. Polson would score five more runs before the Devils had a chance to bat. The Pirates would prove their strong arm, striking out the Red Devils in just three hits. Polson would go on to score six runs on four hits in the top of the second inning. After a Pirate solo home run to left field the Red Devils...

  • Hawks, Devils find success in Libby

    Skye Hill|Apr 18, 2024

    Thompson Falls and Noxon took to the road taking on the Libby invite with six other schools: Browning, Libby, Ronan, Bigfork, Eureka and Troy. Starting off for the Blue Hawks in the 100 meter race was Braxton Dorscher who took sixth place with his time of 11 seconds. His brother Teagan Dorscher came behind with 13.14, with Kolton Oden coming in with 13 seconds. Dorscher also ran the 200 meters, getting a time of 25 seconds, and Braedon Ferris came in behind Dorscher with a time of 25.75. Ethan...

  • Hawks, Trotters battle in Missoula contests

    Skye Hill|Apr 18, 2024

    The Thompson Falls Lady Hawks and Plains Trotters took to the road this past weekend to play softball in Missoula taking on opponents from across the state. The Lady Hawks took on the Three Forks Wolves first, falling 22-10. Three Forks came out swinging, gaining eight runs in the first inning to take the lead over the Lady Hawks. While in the bottom of the first Thompson was able to score one run. The Wolves would be able to sneak in three more runs in the second while keeping the Hawks from scoring. It would flip in the third and fourth...

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