Missoula is a vibrant and super friendly place filled with great activities. As an exchange student basically everything you do is new and exciting, but I wanted to highlight these five things. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!
1.Hike the M. This is the number one thing to do whilst you are here. The views are spectacular and if you enjoy doing this, you’ll be tempted to try out the other hiking places in Missoula too.
2.Go watch a Griz game! American sports culture is something else and this is an experience you don’t get anywhere else. The atmosphere is amazing and the Grizz community is hilarious. And the best thing is that you have a variety of sports to choose from: football, soccer, volleyball, basketball…
3.Water sports. Rent a tube from rec center (uni students) or buy one, and then go float the Clark Fork river. If you are into different kind of water activities there’s plenty of rafting, canoeing and paddle opportunities. On a warm summer day there’s probably nothing better to do than this.
4.Build a bike! You can do this at the http://www.freecycles.org/ and I guarantee that that you’ll love it. You volunteer for 4 hours and then you get to make your own bike with the help of oh-so-wonderful volunteers. This place truly is a community.
5. Downtown events. Missoula has different kind of festivals, music events, brewery tours etc. You can find more about them here: https://www.missoulaevents.net/. Check at least Caras Park and Roots Festival. You will be able to access all these with you brand new bike too!
Top Hat Lounge is a great local venue. Through the upcoming months they offer many free shows including,
Friday, November 4th, 2016
Mon, Nov07, 2016
Wed, Nov09, 2016
Sharin’ in the Groove
Fri, Nov25, 2016
Andrea Harsell & Luna Roja
Missoula’s Best Drink Specials
Iron Horse Bar and Grill
Martini Mondays: 5pm-Close Any of Our Martinis$5
Shaken Tuesdays: 5pm-Close Everything on the shaken and stirred list$5
Wednesday: 7pm-Close Blue Moon$3.50and Skip & Go Naked $5
Thursday: 9pm-MidnightTwo for One Well Drinks$3.50
Thomas Meagher Bar
Missoula’s new downtown pizza shop that gives you a bang for your buck! For all you late night munchers, Pie Hole is throwin’ dough Er’day from 11AM-3AM!
The Roxy Theater
For any movie lover that doesn’t want to pay the astonishing 12 dollars, The Roxy is a theater like non other. As you walk in THE ROXY has the Missoula vibe painted on its walls. I highly suggest anyone looking for cheap theatrical entertainment hit up the Roxy…. By the way they serve booze there too!
Hub Family Entertainment Center
The Hub Family Entertainment Center has 50,000 square feet of fun and excitement for the whole family. The Hub is a perfect place to have birthday parties, team parties, corporate events including team building, graduation parties, day camp parties, and youth group events. GO KARTS, LAZER TAG, ARCADE, FOOD… Hell Yeah!
(Yes, there is much more to Ireland than just Dublin)
#1 – Puck Fair in Killorglin, Co Kerry.
Whether you’re looking for a bargain on a few things for the household or you’re just out for the sesh after a normal day at the office, Puck Fair is an event to be attended if you’re down the South-West in August. When explaining our rationale to anyone who doesn’t live in Kerry we may seem crazy in hailing to a goat otherwise known to us as King Puck. Of course the story provides a reason for us to practice such a ritual annually but today we know and have come to love it as being a 3-day drinking session and no one can tell you you’re wrong. Whether you’re down in the O’Shea’s beer garden or you’re up with the live band in Kingston’s there’s quality banter to be had. Of course such an event can’t finish without a wrap up. On the final night at midnight in celebrating your “glorious” time, fireworks are set off to mark the occasion of yet another year gone in celebrating together the King of Puck Fair.
#2 – Taking a stroll around Muckross on a grand day in the summer (with chance of rain).
As much as we enjoy heading out to the pub with the lads on a Saturday night we do offer some activities for tourists in the area. If you’re looking for a family picnic, if you’re in the mood for a dip down in our Dundag “beach” or if you’re just looking to stroll around and absorb some sunshine (assuming we’re blessed with some) you should make tracks down to Muckross House and Gardens. For any Irish cultural lovers, Muckross House still has its own Traditional Farms in operations and if you’re still intrigued, give a walk around to see the old cottages and dwellings that still stand to this day. Most definitely a good way to spend some time with the family even in the gardens for the kids to play a quick game of catch while the parents can relax with a cup of tea or coffee at the Garden’s Restaurant.
#3 – The Ring of Kerry
Probably one of the most widely known tourist attractions for County Kerry. If you’re in a bit of a rush for time just hop in the car and give a quick tour around and absorb the beauty the coastline can offer. If you’re looking to make a memory of it check yourself in to one of the many hotels along to way to make sure you see everything it has to offer. If you’re looking for more of a communal participation by about a 12 thousand people you can always participate in the Ring of Kerry Cycle that occurs every year on the first weekend of July. Probably the most rewarding challenge you can set yourself, not that I’m speaking from a personal experience but what I can speak personally about is the Post-Cycle session that happens all the way up through the town where you’re bound to have a good time. And also, for all you Star Wars enthusiasts, make sure you drop down to the Skellig Islands for a real-life view of where the climactic ending to Star Wars: The Force Awakens was shot.
P.S. Word is, they’ll be returning for the next 2 movies!
#4 – Live Entertainment
Summertime in Killarney provides probably the best and most vibrant atmosphere you’ll ever experience in your life. Almost every bar throughout the town provides a live band performance to get the crowd on their feet and absorb in the energy coming from the speakers to have one hell of a night. Whether you’re at the top of the town in Scott’s Bar and Beer garden or you’re listening to the local musicians down in Charlie Foley’s, there’s live music to be heard from a variety of different musicians. If you’re for traditional, rock possibly even some chart toppers there’s something for everyone.
#5 – What’s summertime in Killarney without a day at the Races
Hands down this is an event that should be attended at least once in your life time. This annual experience allows for people of all ages, guys and girls, to get suited and booted and head to the race track with the lads for a couple of hours to make a couple of bets while also enjoying an “occasional” drink or two. The feeling of going out in the town looking dapper is a feeling that is encouraged. And for the ladies, if you’re the competitive type, you could be up for Best Dressed / Ladies Day Competition. Assuming we’re in the clear of rain, it’s guaranteed to be a mighty time.
(And if you’re looking for proposal ideas it’s not a bad spot for it. Just ask any of the previous couples who got engaged on their day out here)
The amount of times I have heard “I’m not a runner” or “I’m not built like a runner, therefore I can’t run” has really started to piss me off and honestly, whoever I walked by this weekend saying these things, thank you for the inspiration to prove you all wrong.
I’ll start by being completely candid, I am a bit biased to the whole physical activity hoorah. I grew up playing competitive soccer up until the day I left for college. I mean, yes, it’s a lot of running and disciplined conditioning, but I never had to run longer than 3-4 miles at a time in those 15 years of playing. I should also add that each of those miles had to be in 7 minutes or less (the struggle was totally real).
Once college started, all concepts of physical activity went out the window and I was now struggling to run 1 mile, on a Sunday, while trying not to gag over the smell of Captain Morgan and Fireball seeping through my pores. Cool.
Freshman year ended and those attractive 15 pounds needed to go (this isn’t where running saved my life, I just got cut off of my campus meal plan when I moved out of the dorms). Exercise became important again and I was back in shape but I still couldn’t run more than 2 agonizing miles, maybe 3 on a good day.
Come Junior year I accepted an offer for an internship in Seattle and decided I should find things to do that would let me see the city in a unique way. This is where running made my life great. I signed up for the Rock and Roll Half Marathon in Seattle, by myself. Turns out I wasn’t alone, a few of my friends had already signed up and planned on taking a road trip to run as well. Training became fun as we increased our distance by one mile each Sunday and spent the majority of our runs singing and talking in very breathy sentences. Come race day, 13.1 miles never seemed so doable.
To make a long story longer, I caught the running bug. Since my first half in Seattle, I have completed two more half marathons, improving my time each time.
The point of this was to show that anyone can lace up some shoes and hit the pavement. I can’t lie like some Pinterest post and say it’s as easy as that. Running is an investment in your time, your body, and your wallet. Ugly running shoes changed the way I felt about running. YOU MUST INVEST IN UGLY RUNNING SHOES. My GPS watch complimented my competitive drive by keeping my pace (so that I wasn’t trying to run 7 minute miles for 13.1 miles straight) and my running belt was crucial for holding my phone, keys and ID. Looking the part makes performing the part so much easier.
I’m not saying go sign up for five half marathons or to start out running 9 miles at a time. I challenge every one of you to start by going outside (weather is a horrible argument), plug in some pump-up tunes or grab a friend to distract you, and start off slow. If 1 mile is all you’ve got, then it’s one more mile than those sitting on the couch. Happy Running 🙂
*Serious about it? Comment below for more tips and help on joining a world wide community.
There’s more to enjoy than the beautiful scenery and great outdoors while living in Montana, and that’s because the state also plays host to a variety of great events held throughout the year. You can’t beat life while living in Montana, and you sure as heck can’t live in Montana without attending some of these events!!
Mullet Fest is an annual co-ed softball tournament put on by the M-Club at Montana Tech University. You are sure to have a great time with friends from all over the state when you meet up in chilly Butte, America for some fun softball action. Oh yeah, and have a mullet (even you ladies)!
Haha just messing, ladies please don’t do that.
Brawl of the Wild (Cat/Griz or Griz-Cat)
Where: Missoula, MT
When: November 22nd, 2014
Attire: Dress Warm!!!! Muck boots are the best for this one!!
Beverage: Any type of beer (have gloves, hand warmers and a koozie though)
It’s time to show your colors – whether you’re a Griz, Cat, or House Divided, you better be ready to cheer loud and proud at the state’s largest sporting event. Featuring a showdown between two of the state’s top football programs, the Brawl of the Wild is a true testament of what it means to be a die-hard football fan. Be brave and face the elements. Have fun and support your state.
Note: Attendance is a MUST for any college student.
Headwaters Country Jam
Where: The Bridge near Three Forks, MT
When: June 25th-27th, 2015
Attire: Country duh
Beverage: Coors or Budweiser
If you like country music and drinking beer then Country Jam is the right place for you. This Watershed spinoff has slowly grown into one of Montana’s biggest summer hits, and it continues to attract more big name artists year after year. Attendees can also enjoy mechanical bull riding, dancing, food vendors and horseshoe tournaments.
Montana State Fair
Where: Great Falls, MT
When: July 25 – August 2, 2015
Beverage: Go to the beer garden or food concessionaires
The Montana State Fair is one gnarly way to celebrate a summer full of fun, with animals, motor sports, exhibits, concerts, rodeo, fair food and much more on display. Don’t be that dude who doesn’t go to the fair, no one likes them. Go and enjoy life.
Testicle Festival (Testy Festy)
Where: Rock Creek Lodge in Clinton, MT
When: August 1-5, 2015 (Unconfirmed)
Attire: Not much…at all
Better bring a strong appetite and a parka if you’re attending this event because you are sure to leave bear-soaked and full of Rocky Mountain Oysters. Testy Festy is packed with all sorts of wild fun; featuring wet T-shirt and hairy chest contests, some oil wrestling, and other R-rated shenanigans. Go big or go home with this one ladies n gents.
Big Sky Pond Skim
Where: Ambush headwall at Big Sky Resort’s Mountain Village
When: April 18, 2015
Attire: Snow pants and a pullover
Beverage: Twisted Tea
If you are looking for a slightly sketchy, yet totally BA way to rock out during the winter, then participate in the Big Sky Pond Skim. If you are a big fan of Jack Ass and like watching people perform dangerous stuff then go watch! Overall, the Big Sky Pond Skim is a great event that sponsors lots of fun and entertainment.
St. Patrick’s Day
Where: Butte, MT
When: March 17, 2015
Attire: Green, green, green my friends
Beverage: Green beer and shots of celebration
What better place is there to celebrate St. Patty’s Day then in Butte, America? The city is rich with Irish history and tradition, and considers itself Ireland’s Fifth Province. Get ready for bagpipers, green-died beards, parades and dancing, drinking, and one hell of a good time.
Tip: Go wherever the green beer tastes the best. Good luck!
Where: Missoula, MT
When: Depends – Winter Brewfest (Feb.), Maverick Brew Fest (Sept.), Garden City Brewfest (May)
Attire: Depends on which one you attend. Always bring some gloves or a koozie to hold your brewskies though
Beverage: Try everything
Brewfest features an array of taps that are mainly made in Montana. This is a great event to go to if you are looking to casually drink and hang out with friends before a night out on the town. There’s also live music and food available for purchase.
Tip: Enjoy ALL of the brewskies. Cheers!
Miles City Bucking Horse Sale
Where: Miles City, MT
When: May 14-17, 2015
The Miles City Bucking Horse Sale has it all: showdowns between cowboy and bronc, street dances, live music, a parade and much more. Chances are you’ll find what you are looking for at this extravaganza.
Montana Folk Festival
Where: Butte, MT
When: July 10-12, 2015
Attire: Shorts and a T-shirt
Beverage: Water & beer
The Montana Folk Festival is one of the largest, free outdoor musical festivals in the Northwest. This is a great family event that features some of the best traditional performers in the nation, Folklife workshops, regional artists, and ethnic and festival foods. You, your family, and friends are sure to have a good time in Butte for this one.