Battle of the B's in southwest Montana.
Yeah, we've all made fun of it. We call it "Butt" or "The Pit" or "that place I go to get drunk on St. Patrick's Day." But Butte can't be all that bad, right? It was chosen over all other Montana towns for the National Folk Festival, after all. With it being part of our state and being so close, we almost feel bad judging it against Bozeman. Almost.
It's sad that both towns even have pits, but that's another story. Bozeman's came about in 2008 when a gas line exploded; Butte's came about with years of mining and a lovely mix of poisoned water. It's a close call about who has the "better" pit, given that the Berkeley Pit in Butte is at least getting federal clean-up funding and people are paying $2 to step onto its viewing platform; but at least Bozeman's pit is getting filled in.
Famous Local Food
If there's one thing we love to get when we're down the road in Butte, it's a pasty. Don't pronounce it "paste-ee"; it's a "pah-stee"! (Sheer coincidence that it rhymes with “nasty.”) These tasty little meat pies are part of the area's mining heritage, and restaurants all over town crow about making the best ones. They're definitely worth the trip, and they far outweigh Bozeman's "famous local food"—the latte—in both form and substance.
The contrast comes down to this: mining versus moguls. Starting as little more than a collection of mining camps set up in the 1870s set up to get at the area's copper and silver, Butte was one of the most prosperous towns in the United States after World War I, and Butte's mining heritage is still a big part of what the town is today. Bozeman's prominent industry involves moguls: both the skiing kind and the financial-empire kind. For better or for worse, the moguls are winning when it comes to town prosperity.
Who's cooler: Evel Knievel or Ted Turner? How do you decide between a guy who can jump 151 feet over the fountains at Caesar's or the guy who changed the world with cable news? Both are incredible feats. Ted owns ranches and restaurants; Evel inspires copycat daredevils the world over. In the end, it comes down to this: no kid asks Mommy for a Ted Turner action figure.
Yeah, yeah, Montana Tech finds jobs for more of its graduates than MSU does, and Montana Tech grads tend to get $10,000 more a year. But MSU’s over four times the size, has way more liberal-arts programs, and our Bobcats are having a far better time skiing Bridger and Big Sky and fishing the Madison between classes. So what if the "Orediggers" can drink us under the table on March 17. Edge: Bozeman
Well, you know it always ends the same way: Bozeman is victorious again! Sorry, Butte, losing is never fun. It's the pits.