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Celebrate Halloween in Billings by heading to the annual Boo at the Zoo on Saturday, October 29. The family-friendly “merry, not scary” event has live entertainment, games, trick or treating and, of course, a costume contest. It’s the perfect destination for families with little ones, or anyone interested in seeing how the zoo does the holiday! The safest trick or treating in town takes place from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m., and all events are included with general zoo admission.

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Enjoy the decorations, and the non-stop candy flow is sure to keep trick or treaters raring to go to every exhibit. Halloween vendors are on site serving up ghoulish delights. Make a full day of it, and explore the 70+ acres rich with animals, insects and seafaring creatures from around the world. You’ll find that some of them aren’t quite as scary as you thought!

Other Halloween Options

For adults only, you’ll also find a number of Halloween outing options via the local nightlife scene. There’s the annual Hell of a Halloween Party at the Island Nightclub with their famous $500 costume contest. Try the Booty Bash at the Shrine Auditorium, or head to the midnight Rocky Horror Picture Show showing at Alberta Bair Theater.

The Yellowstone Art Museum hosts an annual Masquerade Party with champagne bottle service and dancing into the witching hours. The Loft Nightclub’s haunting bellydance show is guaranteed to deliver. Plus, you can trick or treat at shops in downtown buildings and in local neighborhoods to find out which area has the biggest, sweetest treats!

 

 

Three haunting destinations await you at the state park: The Pictograph, Middle and Ghost caves. In prehistoric times, these caves were homes for hunters, and today’s local loop trail lets you check out the remaining rock paintings (or pictographs) that have sustained through all these years. Winter hours from October through March are 10 a.m. – 5 p.m., with the visitor center open until 4 p.m.

You’ll find the parking lot at 3401 Coburn Road in Billings, and Park Manager Jarret Kostrba is usually available. It’s the perfect destination to consider the original human habitat of Montana, and it became a National Historic Landmark in 1964. The archaeological aspects of the caves are wondrous, and visitors get a unique experience when exploring the mystery and history of the site.

Early Inhabitants

The original hunters who flocked to the Pictograph Cave left us more than 100 rock paintings as well as many artifacts. Researchers estimate the oldest art to be more than 2,000 years old. However, the interpretations of the paintings are up for discussion. You’ll find images of warriors, animals and weaponry peppered throughout the caves.

There’s also wildlife viewing as you make the loop trail and, of course, plenty of photo opportunities. Bring a picnic lunch and the entire family for a one-of-a-kind outing in Billings.

 

 

When you think of dining in Billings, you likely imagine juicy steaks and hearty sides. There’s plenty of that in this part of Montana, but when only Chinese will do, you’re in for a welcome surprise! There are some fantastic Chinese restaurants in town, like Grand Garden Chinese Cuisine. Signature dishes include Peking duck in a steamed bun, the grand hot pot featuring BBQ pork, chicken, scallops, shrimp, beef and veggies, and of course the Signature Dinner for two or more people with egg rolls, crab puffs, BBQ pork, egg fried rice, wonton soup, orange chicken, scallops and sizzling beef.

Golden Phoenix Chinese Restaurant specializes in authentic cuisine mixed with some western flavors. Try the chicken or pork in garlic sauce or their cherry crispy chicken for a little sweetness. The crispy walnut chicken or pineapple chicken, beef sesame or teriyaki beef and pork are also great options.

Dine in or Delivery

Whether you want to tuck into a family owned restaurant, order delivery, or get take out for your guest room, options abound in Billings. China Bistro is a fusion restaurant serving beer and wine alongside delicious dishes seven nights per week until 10 p.m. Enjoy a lavish dinner or lunch buffet, or you can order from the menu. BBQ pork tenderloin, garlic wings, lettuce cups with pork or chicken and shrimp, and chicken spring rolls are all popular picks.

Head to the China Buffet, or try Tao New Asian for date night. Where will your Billings Chinese gastro journey take you?

 

 

Labor Day weekend in Billings is stuffed to the brim with activities, dining, and outdoor options, but don’t miss out on the annual Burn the Point Classic Car Parade! At 6:30 on Friday evening, more than 500 cars will cover the streets, ambling down Third Avenue North as over 12,000 attendees snap photos and revel in the excitement of some of the best-kept classics in the country. Every year, the crowd gets bigger, and 2016 is expected to be the grandest car lover’s gathering yet.

Parking lots and garages overflow with stunning vehicles that are more like works of art. Claim your spot on the sidewalk, and get a great view of the parade of muscle cars, lowriders, classics and vintage rides. Local DJs Kurt Anthony and Major Dan Miller from 92.5FM are on hand to announce which vehicles are front and center.

Show Your Own Ride!

It’s not too late to register to showboat your own classic or collector car! Register today and meet at North 27th Street to be part of a Billing’s tradition. As revelers dance in the streets to the tunes of The Bucky Beaver Ground Grippers, the party on Broadway goes into the late hours.

On Saturday, MetraPark hosts the Classic Car Show from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. so you can get an even closer look at the parade highlights. Experience downtown Billings like a local this Labor Day weekend!

 

 

 

The Yellowstone Art Museum’s incredible permanent exhibits pair well with their special Echo: Unspoken Dialects exhibit from July 14-October 19. It’s where the symbolism of written words are showcased while you discover how we experience the written language beyond hearing them—reading them and seeing them are part of the human experience, too. Everything from the grandest of ideas to the littlest word has been explored in written languages.

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An array of collections await, like the Dorothy and Herbert Vogel collection featuring 50 stunning pieces of art from 50 states. The Montana collection is the pinnacle of your experience, with over 2,000 pieces from and inspired by this great state. At the Poindexter collection, you’ll find New York Abstract Expressionist Art from the private collection of the Poindexters and spanning several years.

A Touch of Culture

Visit the Edith Freeman collection to see more than 60 woodblock prints, gifted to the museum in 1993. The Virginia Snook collection features the work of Will James, a Montana local illustrator and author. The Yellowstone Art Museum is also home to one of the few “visible vaults” in the world, where the museum’s private storage is on display.

Tours are available, pre-scheduled or private, as well as children’s classes and activities. Throughout the year, special events like the Summerfair, ArtWalk and Jam, art auctions, Paint ‘n’ Sip, Bridal Fair, Winter Fair, and Masquerade Fair offer an especially thoughtful way to enjoy museum activities. Where will your visit take you?