The Last Best Place. Big Sky Country. The Treasure State.
City of Missoula: http://www.ci.missoula.mt.us/
Missoula Chamber of Commerce: www.missoulachamber.com
State of Montana: www.state.mt.us
Montana Magazine: www.montanamagazine.com
Missoula Living Magazine: www.missoulaliving.com
Montana is celebrated for many things, among them are its grand mountains, vast prairies, wide-open sky, cool clear rivers, abundant wildlife and friendly, independent people. The fourth-largest state in the nation in land area, Montana has a population of just more than 900,000, for an average of only 6.2 people per square mile.
Nestled in the Rocky Mountain grandeur of western Montana, Missoula is the hub of five valleys and three major rivers - the Blackfoot, the Bitterroot and the Clark Fork. Roughly halfway between Glacier and Yellowstone national parks, Missoula is a blend of small-town charm and big-city sophistication.
Local restaurants serve up everything from steak and seafood to Thai noodles and Sushi, while an array of coffeehouses, pubs, nightclubs and movie theaters can also be found in Missoula. Residents come from around the region to shop the city's department and discount stores, shopping mall and specialty boutiques. Missoula boasts a thriving downtown.
With an economy once based largely on agriculture, timber and mining, the state's industries are becoming more diversified. Tourism in particular is on the rise as people discover Montana's incredible natural beauty, rich culture and excellent outdoor recreational opportunities.
Montana. There's something special about this place.
Next to Billings Montana, Missoula is one of the largest cities in Montana. Within the city limits there are approximately 60,722 (2003 estimate). Available data shows a population growth of 1.7% for Montana, while Missoula's growth is above 6.1% (2003 census information). Missoula's population is highly educated. A review of job seekers registering with the Job Seeking Center in 2003 revealed that over 91.5% have graduated from high school and 38% have some post-secondary education.
Missoula public schools consistently score above the norms in national standardized testing in virtually all academic areas. The Missoula public school system consists of 7 area high schools, 10 middle schools, and 18 elementary schools. Missoula is the home of University of Montana, with about 14,000 students registered in fall of 2006, and an average entering GPA of 3.13. The city is also home to the Missoula College of Technology, a community college with a growing reputation for excellence.