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Over its four-year life, the Montana Skatepark Association's annual On Deck art auction has raised nearly $20,000 for the betterment of boarding across the Big Sky.

And it continues its legacy starting on Friday, as the auction enters its fifth year.

Dozens of barren wooden boards have been given new artistic lives for the auction by local, national and regional artists.

Such local artists include Patricia Thornton, Josh Quick, Jess Abell and Courtney Blazon. In all, there are 46 boards to bid on.

Those who wish can still bid on a board online at, but the real fun is always the live event, which takes place on Friday from 5-10 p.m. at the Badlander.

Bidding for each work starts at $75. Those who have already bid online can set up a proxy bidder at the live show by calling 530-9758.

Missoula is once again bursting at the seams as First Friday enters its spring/summer season.

Another showcase of local art with bidding and auctioning for a good cause begins Friday at the Warehouse Mall, 725 W. Alder, Suite 17.

Living Art of Montana, which offers artistic opportunities for the sick or grieving and their families, previews the light-fantastic creations of its annual "The Light Show" starting Friday at 5 p.m.

More than two dozen lamp and light-inspired works, within this year's theme "Hollywood Glam," will be on display, previewing next weekend's "Light Show" benefit and auction at the Hilton Garden Inn.

The May 15 show and auction features a reception, entertainment and more, with emcee Severt Philleo. Tickets to the show are $50, or $450 for a table of 10. To get them, call 549-5328, or visit

The "Light Show" preview on First Friday is free and open to the public, however.

Other notable shows this First Friday, and through May:

• "Redress Yo-self," sponsored by the YWCA GUTS! program, Flagship and the Missoula County Health Department: Eighth-grade girls in Missoula recreate modern advertisements to more accurately reflect the girls' actual experiences at school

and home. Florence Hotel lobby, 5-8 p.m.

• "National Iron," Missoula Art Museum, 5-8 p.m.: Iron artists reveal new cast-iron works at the second biennial Western Cast Iron Art Conference. The juried show and First Friday opening features a beer garden and music by Joan Zen.

• "Climb Against the Odds" art auction and raffle, Axis Physical Therapy, 420 N. Higgins, 5-9 p.m. Art by M. Scott Miller and Jerry McGahan will be auctioned, and numerous prizes will be given away in a raffle, including a handmade quilt, massages and gift certificates to Scotty's Table. Proceeds support Missoula climber Ragna Thoirne-Thomsen in her quest to climb California's Mount Shasta as a fundraiser for breast-cancer awareness and research.

Reporter Jamie Kelly can be reached at 523-5254 or at


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