Friends of the Missouri Breaks Monument
April 25, 2017
5:00 pm - 8:00 pm
About Friends of the Missouri Breaks Monument
Working to protect the Upper Missouri Breaks National Monument.
The Friends of the Missouri Breaks works to support the Upper Missouri River Breaks National Monument – where 149-miles of wild and scenic Missouri River flows through nearly half-a-million acres of central Montana prairies and badlands in central Montana.
Project / Needs
One of our most important projects is the restoration of the native cottonwoods that surround the area. In the past two years we have planted almost 200 cottonwoods and last summer we hired our first seasonal workers to water and care for the new trees. Plains cottonwoods (Populus deltoides monilifera) are critical to the health of this river corridor. Cottonwood forests provide habitat for more than half the bird species in Montana, while hundreds of thousands of migrating birds seek these areas for food and shelter. Cottonwoods also provide excellent habitat for deer and elk and a variety of mid-sized to small mammals – especially bats. We want to see these trees grow and survive the early stages of development.
We hosted our first Artist-in-Residence this year. The Bureau of Land Management created the Artist-in-Residence program to promote the public lands they manage in a new and creative way, placing artists in these wild and scenic areas, with the task of portraying them in their art. Paul Tunkis, a watercolor artist from Livingstone, floated the Breaks for two weeks this summer. His art from his time on the Missouri will be sold at an event and 30 percent of the proceeds will go to the Friends of the Missouri Breaks.
The Friends are funded by donors and we place a huge value in personal relationships and maintaining our good standing with our members. The Friends does not have a big yearly fundraising like many organizations, at this point we spend most of our time interacting individually with donors.
How will the funds be used
The money will go into our general fund. The fund supports our on-the-ground work which is 80 percent of what we do, to restore and protect the river. This includes things like the cottonwood restoration, road obliteration and upkeep, and overall general maintenance of the area.