LETTERS, published March 19, 2017

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Thanks for help with science fair

The Flathead County Science Fair Committee would like to extend a thank-you to the Flathead Valley community for helping make the science fair a success for our county’s third- through 12-graders. Our science fair depends on the support of the community, and it is great to see everyone come out to help. This event helps our students to refine their problem solving, critical thinking and public-speaking skills.

We had funding provided by the Applied Materials Foundation, the Weyerhaeuser Giving Fund, Kalispell Regional Healthcare, and Flathead Electric Cooperative, with help from the Kalispell Education Foundation. This funding helped us to provide some exciting scientific entertainment for the students as they waited for the results of the judging, among other things.

We would also like to thank the more than 100 community members who showed up to help us with judging and evaluating the projects, and providing feedback to the students. These judges came from many diverse areas of our community, and it is amazing to see the expertise that is available to our students. Jimmy Johns and Montana Coffee Traders also chipped in to help us feed those judges and keep them sharp.

We would also like to thank the Audubon Society, Glacier Institute/Big Creek Outdoor Educational Center, NorthWestern Energy and the Flathead Lake Biological Station for providing special awards for particular project categories.

Finally, we all owe a thank-you to the teachers who helped and encouraged their students, helped at the county science fair, and put on the science fairs in their own schools.

Many of the top students from Flathead County will be showing their projects at the Montana Science Fair in Missoula on March 27. We expect to see many of them do well there, as well. Thank you all for your help; it is the support of the community which will enable our students go on to do great things. —Tom Ritzdorf, Bigfork

Time for a change at co-op

This letter is in support of Jerry Bygren for Flathead Electric Coop’s board’s in the upcoming election for District 8.

He is a man that is no stranger to hard work and honesty. He has worked for the folks in Bigfork, a lovely community that my we are part of and we know he will work for all taxpaying citizens here in the Flathead. Integrity has no bounds and we need that, no matter where you live and what your profession is.

He has served the community well in many aspects. The Roundup for Safety for the past five years is a great way for anyone to serve their community. He has done that. Many times we just don’t read the ballots or vote for the incumbent, or worse yet throw them out. Well it’s time for change folks, and in my opinion this is it.

The co-op is a mini-government within itself and the people need a voice for them, so we have made our decision and hope you have too. —Joe and Gina Klempel, Kalispell

Again with Gianforte?

Greg Gianforte is back at it again. He’s now running for Congress. He’s using his old governor TV ads and editing them by saying he’s now running for Zinke’s open congressional seat. If he fails to be elected, what next? A run for dog catcher?

Why do we Montanans have to look at this guy again? Didn’t we say no already (failed run for Montana’s governor)? Rob Quist is a real Montanan and a real person. Yes, he may not have any experience in government, but then neither does Gianforte! But the GOP doesn’t care; they need to keep control of Congress and they need a guy that will vote their way no matter what the bills are. Daines, who dodges real townhall meetings, and his only claim to fame was gaveling down Elizabeth Warren, supports his old boss, Gianforte. What is this? An old boys club?

Gianforte stated he would support Trump’s policies and drain the swamp. Looks like Trump isn’t draining anything; he’s adding alligators and Gianforte is just another gator. Let us put some new blood in congress and elect a real Montanan to look after Montana. Not another out-of-state puppet who runs on out-of-state money for out-of-state interests. A vote for Rob Quist is a vote for Montana. —Frank DiNenna, Lakeside

Support legalization of raw milk

I am proud to be a native Montanan, a state that believes in minimum government interference in our daily lives. But there is one glaring exception. Montana does not allow sale of raw milk, but does allow sale of alcohol that has caused far more injury and death in our state.

Growing up in Bigfork, I never had problems with raw milk delivered to our door in the 1950s by our local dairyman. But when small local dairies consolidated and began pasteurizing milk for sale at grocery stores, I started having problems in my gut, and also headaches, so that I had to give up milk. When I moved to Oregon, where sale of raw milk was legal, my health issues went away as long as I used only raw milk.

Ever since, I have been a raw milk advocate. My university and graduate studies in biology and chemistry helped me to learn why pasteurized milk caused my health issues, while raw milk supported and improved my health. I have many friends who have been helped by switching to raw milk, but here in Montana, the sale of raw milk is illegal.

If you agree, please contact your state senator to vote YES on HB325. For more about the benefits of raw milk, and the health issues caused by pasteurized milk, please see my article on my food blog: Raw Milk: A Real, Natural & Perfect Food (catsfork.com/CatsKitchen/?p=6244). It includes all my sources/references, most of which are peer-reviewed, scholarly articles or articles written by licensed medical doctors.

My credentials: B.A. biology, B.A. chemistry; post-graduate work in molecular biology and quantum chemistry. —Catherine Haug, Bigfork

Bygren would serve co-op well

I would like to endorse Jerry Bygren for the Flathead Electric Board of Trustees. I got to know Jerry while we served together on the Roundup for Safety Board.

He was well-informed, asked relevant questions, and looked at all sides of the information. Jerry has a good mind for business and common sense (which is not so common anymore). He has been in Bigfork many years and would serve the co-op well. I encourage all to vote for Jerry to serves us on the FEC board. —Wally Sutton, Kalispell

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