With so many things for canceled for 2020, summer in Bozeman is going to look different this year. Music on Main, downtown ArtWalks, Sweet Pea Festival, and the Gallatin County Fair have all canceled their events for this year. Many who had summer vacations planned have changed their minds, knowing this isn’t the best time to travel out of state. What this means for us, is an opportunity to explore right in our backyard! Even with tourism opening up slowly in Montana, there are bound to be fewer tourists which means locals get to enjoy what our own state has to offer with hopefully smaller crowds.
What IS still happening?
Both the Bozeman Farmers’ Market and Gallatin Valley Farmers’ Markets will be going on as planned this summer. The Bozeman Farmers' Market will start Tuesday, June 16th at Lindley Park and continue on Tuesday evenings from 5-8 pm. Gallatin Valley Farmers’ Markets will begin June 20th at Haynes Pavilion at the Gallatin County Fairgrounds and will continue Saturdays from 9 am-noon. Both markets will be making adjustments to practice social distancing and keep everyone safe while still being able to support our local farms and makers.
While the Big Sky Country State Fair has been canceled, the Gallatin County 4-H programs have not canceled shows. This is similar to Sweet Pea which has canceled but will have some activity. They plan to adapt certain events that can be put on while still maintaining safe distance practices. SLAM Festival has not made cancellation announcements at this point and the Headwater Country Jam has postponed the festival to August.
Music on Main will not be happening on Main Street, rather there will be live shows at the Rialto theater that anyone can watch through Facebook Live. They hope everyone will tune in either from their home or safely at their favorite local bar or restaurant. They are waiting to determine if they will resume in August as usual.
What better time to travel in our own state? Both Yellowstone and Glacier National Park have recently opened and this is the year to go. With less out of state and international travel happening, hopefully, the crowds will be a little lighter. There are so many other places to explore in our beautiful state. Most hot springs have opened back up and are limiting the number of people to guests only which is ideal for social distancing. Chico is a favorite of ours that had been getting crowded with day swimmers. Now if you can swing a reservation you’ll get to soak with more space! Visit a Montana ghost town like Virginia city or plan a weekend in another town you haven’t explored. Fort Benton, Red Lodge, Big Fork…Montana is a huge state full of so many cool places.
For the kids
Many summer camps are moving forward, which is great news for parents. However, some might not be ready to send their kids back to group activities. Luckily Bozeman still has plenty to offer. Bogert Pool will be opening June 22nd and there are always the local ponds to let the kids cool off in. Playgrounds were able to open up with Phase 2, the library has curbside pick-up so they can keep reading and the Museum of the Rockies has re-opened with a few rules in place. Click here for more summer ideas for the kids.
We all want to be stay safe as our state begins to re-open while also supporting our local businesses. Summer looks different this year but, we can still go out to our favorite restaurants or order takeout if you aren’t comfortable dining in yet. Many stores have opened back up, while still offering online shopping. No matter what your comfort level, you can find a way to support the local businesses so that they will be able to keep their doors open once everything goes back to normal.