LIVINGSTON, MONTANA – With a backdrop of the spectacular Absaroka mountain range, Livingston plays host to a variety of interests. Whether it is a tour through old downtown’s Sax & Fryer Book Store, a stop at one of the fly fishing shops, a stroll through the many art galleries or a culinary experience at any of Livingston’s restaurants, it is worth a day or more of investigation. Don’t forget to take a walk or drive along the Yellowstone River in beautiful Sacajawea Park where you will find numerous photography opportunities along the walking trail atop the river bank. Sacajawea Park is also where a number of summer events are hosted including the local farmer’s market and Summerfest.
Growing up in Livingston, Montana, Chan came to appreciate the character of the community and the characters who defined it. He spent his childhood working with his father, who operated a wholesale beer distributorship in the old Coca Cola bottling plant on 5th Street where Chan’s grandfather had bottled Coke for a time. During Chan’s youth the ratio of saloons to churches was 24 to 26 or something like that. The diversified cast of characters making up the town’s population provided a lucrative clientele for each category of establishment.
The local populace supplied the economy with trades based in cattle production, locomotive repair, timber harvesting, mining, outfitting and dude ranches. The colorful and historical collection of characters can be investigated at the Park County Museum located at 118 Chinook Street and the Historic Livingston Depot Museum along the railroad tracks on Park Street. A tour of these local museums will introduce you to a small town with a big heart and an amazing array of individuals who shaped the West. For example, Calamity Jane was known to frequent a number of the local establishments. You can ride by her old house location on a Livingston historical tour aboard the restored Yellowstone National Park bus.
This community’s attractions and way of life grabs your sense of awe and pulls you in. Writers, artists, singers, actors, actresses & outdoorsman alike, gravitate to this area struck with this sense of place. Artists, Charlie Russell, Will James & writers such as Thomas McGuane, William Hjortsberg & Jim Harrison have claimed Livingston and Park County as first or second homes. Hollywood actors such as the late Warren Oates as well as present day actors like Dennis Quaid have found the tranquility and remoteness as a getaway from their other life. Resident singer John Mayer recently hosted a fundraiser for the Pine Creek Fire Department. The eclectic mix of talent fuels the town’s diverse selection of fly fishing shops, local restaurants, art galleries and supports a collection of businesses and services that will rival any big city fare. We invite you to this area and suggest that you stay a while to explore. Come be your own Lewis and Clark — oh, did we mention they came through, also. Plan to stay a while — this magical place won’t let go of you any time soon!!!