1. DO YOUR GROCERY SHOPPING AT T&C AND HEEBS
By that we mean Town and Country (but start calling it T&C like the locals do!) There are several big box grocery stores in Bozeman that are quite nice. They are probably ones you recognize from previous places you’ve lived. However, most Bozemanites prefer our smaller grocers for the excellent customer service and for finding local items. With T&C’s two locations and Heebs on the east side there’s really no reason to go anywhere else.
2. STOP GOING TO STARBUCKS
It took a very long time for them to make their way to Bozeman and now suddenly we have a couple of them. Try to resist the urge and instead frequent one of our many local coffee shops. Not sure where to start? We have some suggestions here.
3. AVOID 19TH AND 7TH WHENEVER POSSIBLE
While these are two of the main roads to get north and south through town they also tend to get the majority of our “traffic”. Luckily there are many routes and back roads to be taken around here. Take some time and try various routes. Don’t worry, we’re a small town still, you won’t get lost.
4. GET OUT OF TOWN ON THE WEEKENDS
We don’t mean leave Bozeman for someplace else, we mean get out to the mountains! If it’s winter hit the ski slopes and if it’s summer, grab your tent and go. We’re guessing one of the reasons you moved to Bozeman was for the beauty of our mountains…don’t just look at them. If you want to live like a local you have to play in them as well.
5. UNLESS IT’S SWEET PEA WEEKEND
There are always exceptions and Sweet Pea Festival is one of them. This is Bozeman’s top festival and it is worth sticking in town for. Even though plenty of tourists come just for it, the majority are locals or people who used to live in Bozeman and come back each year for Sweet Pea. There’s the parade, music, arts, kids activities, food and don’t forget tater pigs! (You really can’t consider yourself a local until you’ve had one).
6. LEARN THE RIVERS
Within a half hour or so you can be on the Madison, Yellowstone, Missouri, Jefferson or Gallatin rivers. Learn where they are and what they are known for. A quick cheat sheet. The Madison-floating, Yellowstone and Jefferson-flyfishing, Gallatin-kayaking, Missouri-relaxing.
7. PICK YOUR BREWERY OF CHOICE
No matter where in Bozeman you live there is a brewery nearby. Pick your neighborhood one or find a favorite and make it your go-to spot for a beer. Want to know what each of them offer? Click here for our Bozeman Brewery Roundup
8. START VOLUNTEERING
Bozeman is a wonderful community for giving back. Our non-profits are awesome, partly because so many locals volunteer time and money to these organizations. Whether you want to walk dogs at the Heart of the Valley Humane Society or serve dinners at the Community Cafe, pick one or two and start volunteering. It’s also a great way to meet others.
9. BUY A SOLID SNOW SHOVEL AND KEEP IT HANDY
Winter is for real around here. Starting in October and usually ending somewhere around April (if we’re lucky) you will spend a good amount of time shoveling your driveway and sidewalks. Invest in a good one and use it once the snow starts falling. If you don’t, the city will give you a ticket and your neighbors will be annoyed because locals don’t let a little snow stop them from getting outside to walk their dogs or go for a run.
10. GET A SUBARU AND A LAB
We’re just kidding (sort of). You will notice in Bozeman there are an abnormal amount of Subarus driving around. While you don’t have to jump on that bandwagon, a car with all wheel drive or a good set of snow tires will make winters easier. As for the dog thing, pick whatever breed you want. You’ll quickly find out Bozeman is a very dog friendly town so it’s best to get on board.