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Huckleberries to Plains Public Schools 10th-grader Jessica Thompson, this year’s winner of the annual Congressional Art Competition, and to runner-up Sarah Cherry, a 10th-grader at CM Russell High School in Great Falls. The two were among a total 19 students from 12 different high schools in Montana who submitted artwork to U.S. Rep. Ryan Zinke’s office – many more than in previous years. Thompson’s tea wash, graphite and ink piece titled “Memoir of Walt Whitman” will be displayed in the U.S. Capitol for one year, and she’ll receive a trip to Washington, D.C., to meet other young artists representing every state and territory of the U.S. Huckleberries to all the entrants and to the art teachers who encouraged them to enter the competition.

Chokecherries to the Flathead Joint Board of Control, which voted to cancel irrigation district elections and is now refusing to recognize the results. Lake County maintains the election results are valid, which means three board incumbents - Jerry Laskody, Shane Orien and Wayne Blevins – will be replaced by three newly elected members - David Lake, Janette Rosman and Ray Swenson. The elections were not even close – the difference in each race was thousands of votes. The board should acknowledge that the people have spoken, show some respect for the voice of the voters and stop trying to cling to power.

All-natural huckleberries to Missoula’s sixth annual Unplug & Play week. Once again, Let’s Move! Missoula brought together a host of businesses and organizations to offer a week’s worth of fun activities designed to get the whole family away from electronic distractions such as TV, computers and smart phones, and out of the house to enjoying the outdoors together.

A gift basket of chokecherries to Kimbia, which hosted the national online platform for last Tuesday’s “Give Local” campaign. Technical difficulties caused websites all over the nation to crash and prevented some donors from participating in “Give Local Missoula County.” Fortunately, the event’s local organizers, the Missoula Community Foundation, quickly spread the word about the crash, set up alternative giving routes and extended the deadline for to ensure no gift would be left ungiven.

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Two scoops of huckleberry ice cream to the Big Dipper, the local shop featured by USA Today, which is asking readers to vote for their favorite ice cream parlor. Readers can vote once per day, and voting ends May 23 at 10 a.m. At last look, Big Dipper, the only ice cream maker in Montana to be featured in the contest – it also has locations in Helena and Billings – was making a strong showing, at No. 2 out of 20 entries. Vote for Big Dipper online at http://www.10best.com/awards/travel/best-ice-cream-parlor/big-dipper-ice-cream-missoula-mont.

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Missoulian editorial board: Publisher Mark Heintzelman, Acting Editor Darrell Ehrlick, Opinion Editor Tyler Christensen.

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