Katrin Frye

Flathead Reporter

Katrin Frye reports twice weekly on northwest Montana news from her native Flathead Valley. Frye is a graduate of the University Of Montana School Of Journalism and Davidson Honors College. Before coming on board with MTPR, she reported for the local CBS affiliate in the Flathead Valley, and worked as a contributing writer to the weekly paper the Flathead Beacon. Her reports covering the news of the Flathead Valley and northwest Montana have been heard on National Public Radio’s Evening Edition, NPR News and National Native News.

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Forest Legacy Project
10:41 pm
Fri March 14, 2014

Preserving water quality, recreation, and a working forest in Whitefish

75% of the municipal water supply for Whitefish comes from Haskill Basin, in the summer, when that supply runs low, the city pumps and treats water from Whitefish Lake.
Credit Katrin Frye

The U-S Forest Service ranks a Whitefish project involving drinking water, recreation, and logging as a number one priority in the nation. The Haskill Basin project encompasses about 3-thousand-acres of the F.H. Stoltze Lumber Company’s land.

Whitefish Mayor John Muhlfeld said it’s a popular recreation area, and it also supplies 75% of the city’s water.

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Children in Crisis
4:06 pm
Thu March 13, 2014

Bridging gaps, and overlaps in child welfare in the Flathead

There are a number of groups in the Flathead working to help children in crisis. The problem is that they don’t all know each other, and gaps and overlap in services can form among these agencies.

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Tourism Economy
3:41 pm
Wed March 5, 2014

Measuring the impact of national parks on Montana's economy, hint: its really big

NPS report says Glacier Park brought $172 million into the local economy in 2012.
Credit Katrin Frye

Out of town travelers make up the vast majority of visitors to national parks and they dump a whole lot of money into local economies.

Nationwide that number is $13.9-billion for 2012. These are the findings released by the National Park Service in a report that details the economic impact of national parks.

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell hosted a conference call with reporters Monday. She said the report helps her make the case for funding parks.

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Septage Bioreactors
3:12 pm
Thu February 27, 2014

From flush to flash, how septic systems could help power your home

A garbage compactor at the Flathead County Landfill.
Credit Flathead County Solid Waste

The Flathead County Landfill currently has a gas-to-energy project where methane gas is collected to power a generator instead of being burned off.

Waste management officials recently learned more about how to use the waste from septic tanks to make trash decompose faster, and produce more energy.

St.Clair County in Michigan has about 50,000-septic tanks- residences or businesses not hooked up to a sewer system and therefore using septic tanks to collect their waste.

Those tanks need to periodically be pumped.

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Freeskiing Phenom
12:01 pm
Wed February 26, 2014

Whitefish's injured Olympian gets a warm welcome home

Olympian Maggie Voisin get a hometown welcome in Whitefish Tuesday afternooon.
Brian Schott/ Whitefish Visitors Bureau

An injury may have kept 15-year-old Maggie Voisin from competing in Sochi, but it did nothing to damper the enthusiasm of her hometown crowd.

Pe

ople of all ages line the street in Whitefish as Maggie Voisin and her family cruised through town on the top of a fire truck.

Among the onlookers was 12-year-old Libby Goldhirsch.

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Pond Hockey
10:16 pm
Fri February 21, 2014

How Kalispell hopes hockey will help with the "off season"

Workers prep the rink for Kalispell's first annual Pond Hockey Classic on Foys Lake.
Credit Katrin Frye

Most businesses in the Flathead count on winter as the slow season for tourism and visitation. Business and economic development leaders are hoping hockey will help take the sting out of the slow season. Rob Brisendine with the Kalispell Convention and Visitors Bureau says they’re hosting the first annual Pond Hockey Classic on Foys Lake this weekend.

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Pen Pals
12:44 pm
Wed February 19, 2014

Crayons and construction paper meets cursive and stationary

2nd graders from Kalispell's Edgerton Elementary meet with pen pals from the Buffalo Hill Terrace retirement community for the first time on Valentine's Day.
Credit Mike Kofford / Kalispell School District 5

Teachers of a second grade class in Kalispell found a fairly old-school way to get kids excited about writing.

Pen pals.

Shelly Kennedy and Suzanne Elliott’s class at Edgerton Elementary School started exchanging letters with residents at the Buffalo Hill Terrace retirement home at the beginning of the school year.

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Aquatic Invasive Species
7:45 am
Fri February 14, 2014

Why you may see dogs at boat check stations this summer

Pepin, a Working Dog for Conservation, sniffs for scat in a recent demonstration.
Credit Katrin Frye

Pepin is an 8-year-old Belgian Malinois trained to identify about 19 different scents.

In a demonstration at the Flathead National Forest office he’s finding wolverine scat Megan Parker placed out there earlier in the day. Parker is the Director for Research, and also a co-founder of Working Dogs for Conservation. The Missoula-based group is in the Flathead to talk with the Flathead Basin Commission about how dogs like Pepin could help in the effort to stop aquatic invasive mussels and weeds from getting into the area.

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Conrad Mansion
9:46 pm
Wed February 12, 2014

Why Kalispell first said "no" to owning the historic Conrad Mansion

Conrad Mansion, recent photo.
Karen Weyer Photography

Kalispell’s Conrad Mansion Museum is an east side institution, built by a city founder. School children take field trips there, brides have their pictures taken in the summertime gardens, and visitors from around the world take the tour. This year marks 40 years since the city took possession of the Mansion.

But, Conrad Mansion Museum Director Gennifer Sauter says Kalispell was not eager to take on the mansion at first.

Sauter described a picture of the home when the city first took charge of it.

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Flathead Foster Care
3:45 pm
Fri February 7, 2014

Why kids from the Flathead end up out of the area in an emergency

Kids with chaotic family situations, with behavior and mental health issues, as young as you can imagine, end up needing emergency housing. The need for foster families trained to help these kids is ever present.

Youth Dynamics is a non-profit organization operating across Montana. Katie Gerten works out of the Kalispell office licensing people to be foster parents. She said in the past six months she’s has about 20 children referred to her office to be placed in foster care that she had to turn down. She said it’s hard to find people up for becoming foster parents.

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