STATEWIDE INTERPRETIVE SIGN STRATEGY PLAN IN FINAL REVIEW
Montana's Lewis & Clark Interpretive Sign Strategy Plan is in the final review and edit stages. The interpretive strategy has been the top project of the interagency Montana Tourism & Recreation Initiative's Lewis & Clark Focus Team for the last year. It will offer a user-friendly "blueprint" for communities, tribes, organizations and agencies to use in developing new or enhanced interpretive signs. Designs standards and appropriate story lines will be suggested, as will a process to ensure that new or refurbished signs are historically accurate and culturally inclusive. An introduction to the new strategy will be offered during the Montana Governor's Conference on Tourism and Recreation, April 10-11,2000, in Big Sky, Montana. An announcement about the final plan's availability will be made this Spring
UPCOMING MEETINGS / CONFERENCES
- Fifth Annual National Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Planning Workshop; April 26-28, 2000, Kansas City, MO
- Passages 2000 Conference; March 1-3, 2000, Lewiston, ID
- Montana Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commission meeting; June 15, 2000, Fort Benton
- Governor's Conference on Tourism & Recreation; April 10-11, 2000, Big Sky
- 2nd Annual Montana Lewis & Clark Conference; October, 5-6, 2000, Great Falls.
NEW COMMISSION MEMBERS NAMED
Marilyn Ryan of Missoula and Homer Staves of Billings have been appointed to the Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Commission by Governor Marc Racicot. Each will serve a three-year term. Ryan is an award-winning history teacher at Missoula Hellgate. Homer Staves is the vice-president of Kampgrounds of America (KOA) International. Governor Racicot also re-appointed Commission chair Betty Stone and vice chair Darrell Kipp to three year terms.
STATEWIDE PROJECT NEEDS LIST GENERATED
A list of 107 Lewis & Clark-related projects sponsored by Montana community and tribal entities was recently sent to the National Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Council in preparation for that organization's presentation to federal legislators. The project list, involving $45 million in funding requests, was created by the Commission working through community and tribal contacts. The Montana list included 91 community-oriented projects planned by 19 bicentennial groups and communities statewide, and 16 tribal projects identified by four Indian groups. In addition to these projects, Montana's report to the National Council includes summaries of numerous state and federal agency projects being planned.
The National Council, with Montana and other trail state project lists in hand, will make a presentation to the federal House Lewis & Clark Caucus in early March. The presentation is an effort to inform the Caucus of the extent of project funding needed by the Lewis & Clark Trail States. It is hoped that by creating this awareness in Congress, more federal funding will be made available to prepare for and create legacies for the Bicentennial. In conjunction with the national council's efforts, Montana's Commission will work closely with the state's Congressional delegation to gain Lewis & Clark project funding.
The list submitted to the national council was not a final, all-inclusive listing of Montana projects. It represents the start of an on-going process. Communities, tribes and public-sector agencies are encouraged to continue their planning and preparation efforts, and to keep the Commission updated on their progress.
MONTANA BICENTENNIAL MASTER PLANNING EFFORT TO COMMENCE
The Hingston Roach Group, Inc., has been hired by the Commission to develop a statewide bicentennial master plan. Montana's master plan will articulate a vision of Montana's Bicentennial Observance, as well as serve as a "road map" to highlight how the multitude of current and projected planning and preparation elements will be strategically inter-connected. Work on a master plan draft has begun. September 1, 2000, is the anticipated completion date. The Hingston Roach Group recently completed a similar strategic plan for Idaho's Clearwater-Snake Lewis & Clark Bicentennial Committee.