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New Brewery Combines Craft Beer and Craft Pizza

By Brent Zundel
For the MSU Exponent
March 3, 2013

Bridger Brewing became the newest addition to Bozeman’s collection of microbreweries this Saturday, March 2. Located in the Town & Country complex just a block away from the MSU campus, the brewery is serving up “craft beer with craft pizza,” according to General Manager and Owner David Breck.

The sign above Bridger Brewing's bar. Photo by Brent Zundel

The sign above Bridger Brewing’s bar. Photo by Brent Zundel

Last night, Bridger Brewing held a family and friends night as a trial run, but today is their first day open to the public. Business was brisk, but not crowded as a group of friends and I were seated in a cozy corner table right away.

The brewpub’s ambiance is a significant shift away from any of the others in town. Large floor-to-ceiling windows shower the entrance in light, but the back of the building opens up into a cavernous seating area with low mood lighting and sleek black tables. Read More…

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Guns on Campus: A History

Photo by Nicole Smith, MSU Exponent

Photo by Nicole Smith, MSU Exponent

By Brent Zundel For the MSU Exponent February 14, 2013

“Some out-of-state students seem a little shocked,” AdvoCat Amara Crane recently explained. Most prospective students who visit MSU, however, don’t seem especially interested in guns.

The students who are interested, Crane said, are native Montanans, mostly concerned with storing their hunting rifles while they live in the Residence Halls during the fall hunting season. Crane, of Laurel, has worked as a tour guide for AdvoCats representing MSU to prospective students for two years.

“Some out-of-state students seem a little shocked.” —MSU AdvoCat Amara Crane Read More…

MSU Grad Student Dives into Video Game Economics

By Brent Zundel
For the MSU Exponent
November 29, 2012

Kristian Miller, a master’s student at MSU, has what many young men might consider their dream job.

He does not technically have a boss. He has flexible hours at an office that offers bike parking, a fully stocked fridge and a weekly company lunch. And he and his colleagues work in small groups called “cabals,” surrounded by other employees who are paid to play video games.

Kristian Miller, a 2011 graduate of MSU and current master’s student, stands next to the eponymous valve in the main lobby of Valve Software. Photo By Brent Zundel

Kristian Miller, a 2011 graduate of MSU and current master’s student, stands next to the eponymous valve in the main lobby of Valve Software. Photo By Brent Zundel

Miller works as an economist for Valve Corporation, a video game development and digital distribution company based in Bellevue, Wash., just across Lake Washington from Seattle. Read More…

Montucky Cold Snacks: Drinking with a Cause

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Author Brent Zundel

By Brent Zundel
For the MSU Exponent
November 29, 2012

Do you enjoy the low malt profile and slight hop bitterness of cheap, corporate brews like PBR, Rainier, Coors or Bud, but still care about giving back to your community? Do you enjoy drinking light beer, going to rodeos and howling at the moon, but want your choice of beer to reflect your undying love for Montana? Read More…

New Microbrewery Opens in Belgrade

Pint glasses and growlers wait to be filled above the taps at Outlaw Brewing in Belgrade, Mont. Photo by Brent Zundel

Pint glasses and growlers wait to be filled above the taps at Outlaw Brewing in Belgrade, Mont. Photo by Brent Zundel

By Brent Zundel
For the MSU Exponent
March 1, 2012

Take the Belgrade Interstate exit and the last right before the train tracks to sample a pint of the newest beer in Montana. On Jan. 16, Outlaw Brewing’s taps started flowing.

Located inside the Bar 3 Bar-B-Q restaurant, the brewpub is in an industrial section of town with blaring train whistles adding to the beer drinking experience. New tables and a barbecue joint atmosphere contrast the inside of the building sharply with the exterior. Read More…

Local Band of Professors Releases Original Album

Textbook Blues performs at the release party for their latest CD, "Got Your Number," on Nov. 10, 2011. Photo by Brent Zundel

Textbook Blues performs at the release party for their latest CD, “Got Your Number,” on Nov. 10, 2011. Photo by Brent Zundel

By Brent Zundel
For the MSU Exponent
November 17, 2011

With final exams fast approaching, the name “Textbook Blues” likely conjures up many different images in students’ heads, but four Bozeman residents recently gave attendees at the Filling Station a different image. “Textbook Blues” is a local band composed of four members, all of whom have some connection to teaching, thus providing a fitting name.

John Priscu, a professor in the Land Resources and Environmental Sciences (LRES) Department, shreds a mean lead guitar when not conducting nationally renowned research in Antarctica. Edis Kittrell, an English professor who also teaches in the Honors College, provides a soulful lead voice.

Warren Jones, an environmental engineering professor and former Faculty Senate Chair, keeps rhythm for the band by playing a skillful bass. To round out the quartet, Greg Vallor holds a crisp beat on the drums. Although he holds a teaching credential, presumably he no longer teaches because he can “do.” Read More…

Undercover Operatives, Aerial Photography and an Apocalyptic Church

The Exponent’s Controversial 1988 Investigation of the Church Universal and Triumphant

An aerial photograph taken by then-Editor-in-Chief Chet Uber, showing the construction of fallout shelters made by burying two Burlington Northern rail cars. From the March 3, 1988 edition.

An aerial photograph taken by then-Editor-in-Chief Chet Uber, showing the construction of fallout shelters made by burying two Burlington Northern rail cars on their land near Corwin Springs, Mont. From the March 3, 1988 edition of the Exponent.

By Brent Zundel
For the MSU Exponent
April 15, 2010

Author’s Note: This article, originally published as the feature of the April 15, 2010, edition of the Exponent, was the first in a two-part series that examined the controversy surrounding the Exponent’s reporting on the Church Universal and Triumphant during spring 1988.

With the spring semester ending, the Exponent is taking a hard, introspective look at, arguably, one of the most controversial periods of its 115-year history. The year was 1988. The Church Universal and Triumphant (CUT) had been in Montana for nearly three years, and Chet Uber was the editor-in-chief of the Exponent. The church and the Exponent were about to clash in a way that would leave a lasting impact on both.

Reacting initially to what he believed was an attempt to recruit Montana State University students, Uber began an extensive investigation of the church that included secret attempts to infiltrate them, aerial photographs of the CUT compound, and subsequent censorship by the ASMSU Senate. As a result of purchases Uber made to support this and other investigations, the issue also raised controversy over the Exponent’s budget.

The Church Universal and Triumphant

Elizabeth Clare Prophet. Image from tsl.org

Elizabeth Clare Prophet. Image courtesy tsl.org

CUT is a New Age religious movement, founded originally as the Summit Lighthouse, by Mark Prophet, a traveling salesman from Wisconsin. Prophet met Elizabeth Clare Wulf in 1961. They had, she claimed, met before — in an earlier incarnation — in King Arthur’s Camelot: She was Guinevere, and he was Lancelot. Shortly after the 1961 meeting, they each left their spouses and married.

When Mark Prophet died, or “ascended,” as followers believe, in 1975, Elizabeth Prophet assumed control of the organization and renamed it the Church Universal and Triumphant. In 1981, Prophet married Ed Francis.

After stays in Colorado and later California, CUT purchased Malcolm Forbes’s 12,000-acre ranch in Paradise Valley in 1981. The organization sold its property in California and moved to Montana in 1986.

Apocalypse Now

Rumors and controversy have followed CUT everywhere it has moved, but at the time many Montanans were particularly leery of the organization. Elizabeth Prophet began to predict a nuclear war between the Soviet Union and the United States, because of “accelerated negative karma.”

one of teh

An aerial photograph taken by then-Editor-in-Chief Chet Uber of one of the fallout shelters being constructed by burying a Burlington Northern rail car. From the March 3, 1988, edition of the Exponent.

In order to survive the impending nuclear apocalypse, the group began constructing a number of underground bomb shelters and stocking them with food and survival equipment on its ranch near Corwin Springs, which they named Glastonbury. After the nuclear exchange did not occur, Prophet claimed that group members’ prayers had averted disaster.

In 1989, Francis, Prophet’s husband, pleaded guilty to conspiring with fellow CUT member Vernon Hamilton to purchase $130,000 worth of weapons, including armor-piercing assault rifles, and 120,000 rounds of ammunition. They were arrested for using false identification to buy the arsenal. Read More…