Great Falls will always be a special place for me, for the 23 years I’ve walked the Earth I’ve considered it my home. I grew up just west of Great Falls in Simms, Montana which is a small farming community. As a kid I remember making trips to town once a week for groceries, and whatever else we needed. “Going to town” became something that I looked forward to each and every week, because there was always something new and fun to do. Whether it was walking along the River’s Edge Trail staring at the falls, feeding the fish at Giant Springs State Park, or stopping at my family’s favorite restaurants, I knew that whatever my parents had planned that week was going to be a blast. As fun as that was for me growing up, it wasn’t until I got older that I really got to experience all of what this dam town has to offer.
Best Breakfast: Tracy’s
If you take a stroll around town you might catch me over at Tracy’s Diner having breakfast with my wife. I’m a big fan of their Smothered Breakfast Burritos, my wife on the other hand can’t get enough of their Eggs Benedict. The people there are so friendly and welcoming to everyone. The morning of our wedding day my wife and her bridesmaids went to eat at Tracy’s diner for breakfast. They were approached by the owner John Barnes who frequently makes rounds to the guest to see how they are enjoying their meal. He asked my wife what the occasion was, she told him that it was our wedding day and they thought to swing by for some good food. John congratulated her and offered to send her off with chips and refreshments for the wedding. Completely shocked my wife said yes, we were just wondering if we had enough for our guests earlier that day. This is an unforgettable memory for my wife and I which is one of the many reasons that Tracy’s Diner is one of our favorite places to go.
Best Place to Unwind: MT Pints
After calling it a day as Sales Director of Great Falls Montana Tourism, I like to enjoy some locally brewed beverages at MT Pints. Jeremiah Johnson Brewing Company’s Honey Weizen has always been a favorite of mine. Couple that with some of their soft pretzels for starters and a juicy Grizzly burger to top you off, it’ll make for a perfect evening. After a few we might take a walk down to the River’s Edge Trail in the West Bank Park and soak up some fresh air. Sunsets while in West Bank Park reflect beautifully off the water, it’s as if the water is glowing. Peaceful end to a perfect evening in my book!
Best Friday Nights
My Friday nights, however, are dedicated to dirt track racing at Electric City Speedway. Whether in the pits working on cars or watching from the stands, to me those are some of my best nights spent during the summer. After racing is over, I get my dose of sports by supporting the Americans Hockey Team that plays in town. Every winter I look forward to spending time with my best friends who are pretty much like my family. My nephew Mason wants to play for the Americans someday and shows up to every game with his helmet sticks and gloves, ready to play!
Best Outdoor Adventures
On the weekends, I practice what I preach throughout the week to in market visitors by getting out and exploring. Year round I’m in fishing mode. I keep my fishing rod in my truck just in case on my way home from work I feel like stopping along the river and casting a line. Great Falls also has great nearby opportunities for hunting, which is another hobby of mine. There is a lot of State Land around Great Falls that is open to the access of hunters, which is a huge perk for someone who is looking to fill their tag. This year, I am hoping for an elk!
Zach Clausen is the new Sales Director for Great Falls Montana Tourism. He orchestrates the arrival of conventions, meetings, and groups into Great Falls, Montana. Focusing on Agriculture, Outdoor, Culture, and competitively significant opportunities for our community, he develops local teams and makes connections to ensure organized, supported, and unique events. Connect with him and he’ll share his ideas for networking ideas, refreshing itineraries, and might even tell you some secret fishing spots.