Media. Marketing. COMMUNITY.
“Media, marketing, community.” That’s our tagline here at Flathead Beacon Productions. We pride ourselves on not only being current with what’s movin’ and shakin’ in our community, but by also being an active, caring part of it. This past week some big things have happened in our valley, proving that the people who reside here have each other’s backs and can come together to support one another through hard times.
On Thursday, January 5th, 2017 we lost someone who was abundantly loved, highly cherished and thoroughly respected throughout the community. Ben Parsons was the guy who made friends with everyone he met, except sometimes the competitors he happened to be surpassing on the bike trail or ski course. But when the race was over even his opponents loved him. I, myself, wasn’t all that close with the red-haired racer but I have had the pleasure of spending a limited amount of time with him and his wonderful wife, Jen, because of our mutual friends. Days after his sudden passing, over 300 people hiked through deep snow and sub-zero temperatures to reach the summit of Whitefish Mountain and ski down in honor of Ben.
That same weekend, on January 7th, hundreds of locals gathered for an outdoor block party celebrating love, not hate, in Whitefish. This event was organized after some recent stirrings in the community that had reached national media profiles. The gathering aimed to celebrate and affirm our valley’s acceptance of diversity — and with the attendance of several faith leaders, business owners, artists, and musicians of different backgrounds and beliefs, I’d say the message rang true and clear.
So, as I prepare to attend the funeral of one greatly missed man, I’ll leave you with this. Though “community” may be the last word in our tagline, it is undoubtedly our most vital value, for, as Haniel Clark Long wrote, “Each of us is a being in himself and a being in society, each of us needs to understand himself and understand other, take care of others and be taken care of himself.” Thank you for being part of our community.