Bigfork Church is “Born Again”

By Beacon Staff

“I wish it were more tidied up, I’ve been working on it all day,” said Mollie Glendening, who is helping pour, patch, and polish the new Flathead Valley Montessori Academy for it’s grand opening.

Glendening is aiding her son and daughter-in-law to get the new Montessori Middle School up and running. Jeff and Stephanie Pernell bought Saint Catherine’s Church, and moved it last spring. The old church was wrapped up and carried across the Flathead River and over to North Somers Road on March 30th, 2006. Since then it’s gotten a face lift, new additions on the sides, and a balcony overhead.

They used recycled timber for much of the work; the cedar trim comes from the old church itself. The old front door also remains as a reminder of the school’s past. It will now host 7th and 8th grade students, and preschoolers. The Pernell’s opened a pilot Montessori Middle School program this past fall. The method places the reins in student’s hands, with teachers acting as guides. The Pernell’s say curriculum will include a heavy emphasis on community interaction through internships and service.

On Tuesday Plumbers and electricians were scaling the walls and crawling under the kid-sized sinks to get it ready, Thursday, it’s the public who gets a chance to wander through. The Pernell’s are hosting a grand opening at the new location, 330 North Somers Road, from 5:30 to 7:00 PM. For more information, go to the FVMA website at www.flatheadvalleymontessori.com.

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