(not) Lazy Days of Summer
Summer in the Tobacco Valley offers more than most of us possibly have time to fit in. Perhaps you enjoy hiking in the Ten Lakes area or fishing at Dickey Lake or even going for a swim in Dickey's clear glacial waters. And now we are starting into the huckleberry season, which is a joy for anyone who likes those especially tart blue-purple berries plain or in pies or jam. Grab your bucket and head up into the mountains to find these delicious treasures (but please remember to be bear aware).
And there's more! July 15-16 is the annual Yaak Music Festival, which always offers great sounds in its bucolic location on the Yaak River. The following weekend (July 22-23) is the annual Tobacco Valley Rodeo, and if you haven't yet been to see that, you have definitely missed out. Barrel racing, mutton busting, steer wrestling and more. It is the perfect way to spend a summer's evening. Then, the first Saturday in August is the Eureka Montana Quilt Show celebrating its twelfth year. Hundreds of quilts will line the town's main street and fill the parks. It is a visual treat to walk through downtown to see the amazing work of quilters from all over the country. Make it a day so you have time to view the quilts as well as walk around the Historical Village, grabbing a bite to eat and taking in the Village's museum. You can finish that Saturday with the Poverty Creek Music Fest out at Abayance Bay, beginning at 6:00 pm.
Whether you prefer the action of the rodeo or sitting on the shore of Big Therriault Lake, this time of year is bound to have everything you want and more. Playing golf at Indian Springs or the Wilderness Club, grabbing a milk shake at Cafe' Jax, walking through Eureka's Farmers Market on Wednesday afternoons ... this valley will truly make you smile. It is what summer is all about.
About the Author: Rita Collins. I am a believer in the power of community and for now I call the Tobacco Valley home. I have lived in nine states and three counties and this community here amazes me - how people reach out to neighbors and even travelers. I've never lived in a place that demonstrates people caring for each other so well. And I've never lived in a place that has such a high percentage of talented musicians and artists. I work with the the Sunburst Community Service Foundation, a nonprofit that began in Eureka twenty years ago and now serves numerous communities in western Montana. And I just started a new business, St. Rita's Amazing Traveling Bookstore and Textual Apothecary. I never could have imagined life being this exciting in my sixth decade.