Wednesday Buffet: Presidential Ground Game, UM Prof Dies, Babes on Bikes Parade

By Beacon Staff

Good morning. Today was the birthday of Isaac Hayes, an R&B singer and the voice of South Park’s Chef, who died earlier this month.

It’s Wednesday! You all know what that means…only two more days until the weekend! Oh, and, of course, the new print edition of the Beacon is out on the stands! Check out our lead story by reporter Dan Testa about the presidential ground game in Montana. The presidential campaign of presumptive Democratic nominee Barack Obama is making good on its promise to wage a serious battle to win Montana in November, but will it work? John McCain’s current effort in Montana thus far is considerably less visible than his opponent’s, but polls show Obama’s lead in the state has evaporated over the last month.

A man whose body was found Monday in Flathead Lake was identified yesterday as James D. Kriley, a former dean of the University of Montana’s School of Fine Arts and the former artistic director of the Montana Repertory Theatre. A 19-year-old Kalispell woman charged in the death of a man who was shot 16 times at a campground near Libby has pleaded not guilty to deliberate homicide. And Glacier Bancorp Inc., based in Kalispell, says it will acquire Bank of the San Juans, a community bank based in Durango, Colo.

In other news around the state, several Placid Lake cabin owners want to put the brakes on a regional planning process in Seeley Lake, and want to know more – lots more – about meetings held between Plum Creek Timber Co. and town leaders in Seeley Lake. College presidents from about 100 of the nation’s best-known universities are calling on lawmakers to consider lowering the drinking age from 21 to 18, but UM is not taking part. Construction of a long-anticipated railroad to carry coal from a mine near Roundup to Eastern and Western markets has begun near Broadview as Yellowstone County and railroad representatives signed an agreement. And the Montana National Guard has achieved its plan to better watch for post-traumatic stress disorder in soldiers who return from war, military leaders said Tuesday.

And things are getting crazy in New Zealand, where a court has ruled to allow a parade of topless porn stars on motor bikes to proceed on the main street of the country’s biggest city. Have a good day, everyone.

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