Advantage Butte taps new officers during busy agenda

Advantage Butte followed the recommendations of its nominating committee Tuesday to name officers for the coming year.
The action-packed meeting was held Tuesday at the Butte Plaza Inn.

The decision saw two current officers promoted, one held over and one officer joining the hierarchy. Advantage Butte is an organization formed to procure sporting events for Butte as a means of economic development.

Vice President Rody Holman, representing PaineWest Insurance, was chosen for president; Secretary Kami Johnson, of the Butte Plaza Inn and the Butte Copper Company, becomes vice president; and Dorea Wilmoth, of the Butte Comfort Inn, moves into the secretary office. Treasurer Brad Spear, of the Anderson ZurMuehlen and Co. CPA firm will continue in his role. He has held the office for several years.

The recommendations were made by a committee headed by Past President Ray Ueland, of The Metals Sports Bar and Perkins Restaurant. Desiree Shogren, of Town Pump Inc. and the Butte Comfort Inn, will leave as president, but stay on the advisory board with Ueland and the other past president, Ron Davis, of Butte Broadcasting, and as part of the executive council.
Ueland presented the recommendations and a motion was made and seconded to accept them. The motion carried easily by the voice vote.

Holman presided over Tuesday’s meeting in the absence of Shogren, who was unable to attend.  He reported that Advantage Butte is to receive $13,380 in county executive development funds, pending approval by the Butte-Silver Bow County Commissioners.  Holman said those speaking for approval “see extreme value in what we’ve brought to the community” and that they “recognize the impact of bringing tournaments to Butte is certainly worthwhile.”

Holman credited Davis and Shogren for presenting the well-crafted Advantage Butte request to the council of commissioners.
Advantage Butte has agreed to $21,900 in commitments for events to be held in Butte during the 2015-16 school year with more meets and tournaments expected to seek funding from the group, Holman said.

The meeting saw the group grant the Butte Tarpon Swim Team’s request for $2,500 to help cover expenses incurred while playing host to a swim meet earlier this month at the Butte Family YMCA pool. Advantage Butte had agreed earlier in the year to pay the amount, but needed a formal request before completing the transaction.  “The Butte Tarpon financials were very well done,” Davis said as a compliment to those presenting the request and completing the requirement for payment.

Bill Melvin, manager of the Butte Civic Center, said new scoreboards have been hanged in the arena in anticipation of the soon-arriving basketball season. He said some parts are still on there way to complete the installations. Melvin added that training sessions will be held in early December for anyone wanting to learn how to operate the scoreboards and interested in joining the staff of table workers for games and tournaments.

Melvin said a new reader-board for outside of the Civic Center is to be shipped early next month. He noted that the first basketball game of the season set for the Civic Center is Dec. 10, a boys’ game between Butte High and Helena Capital. He also informed that a mixed martial arts card will now be held on Dec. 19.

Philip Borup, director of the Butte Family YMCA, talked about the facility staff’s most recent dive into swimming. He said the Y and the Tarpons co-hosted the early November club meet and that it went well “with tons of volunteers” and parents who put in long hours. He said the water stayed clear. Cloudy water had been an issue in a couple of meets held in past years at the Y. The facility underwent major renovation work to solve the problem last year.  The Y pool will be the site of two high school meets soon. The Helena Tri, a three-team meet, is scheduled for Dec. 4. Helena teams lost their pool last year with the closing of the Carroll College pool and so the Butte Y agreed accommodate the teams. Also, Butte High will hold its invitational meet on Dec. 12 at the Y.
Borup added that the Snowball Splash, a club meet, is scheduled for Jan. 16-17 at the facility.

He said the Butte Y’s delving into its own club swimming entry project will likely complete the application process for United States Swimming Federation (USSF) sanctioning after the season, but in time for next season. He said coaching classes, equipment upgrades and such still need to be completed.  “We want to be known as a fast pool, where records are set,” he remarked about the upgrades.  The new Butte Y team will be known as the Butte Riptides, as chosen by Butte YMCA Swim Club members.  Borup said the Butte YMCA is also looking into holding swim camps, either as a week-long session or over a two-day period, and maybe also fielding a masters swim team for adults.  “We want to get more people into town to enjoy our facility,” he said.

Action or discussion was also held at the Advantage Butte meeting on helping with a potential Montana Tech football playoff bid, Butte Wrestling Club plans, Butte High events and programs, tournaments at the Maroon Activities Center and sports-related Butte-Silver Bow Chamber of Commerce activities. (See related story for details).
The next Advantage Butte meeting is scheduled for Dec. 16 at the Butte Plaza Inn.

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