NewsMontana and Regional News


After 20 years, Butte's headframes will finally get new lights

Posted at 9:03 AM, May 12, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-12 11:03:46-04

BUTTE — It was 20 years ago when Butte’s iconic headframes were decorated with lights. Now, thanks to a generous donation, the headframes on the richest hill will sparkle again.

“We wanted to honor the people that had worked in them and what they represent to Butte. They’re just iconic symbols of the community,” said George Everett with Mainstreet Uptown Butte.

Butte first put red lights on most of the headframes in 2003 to make them stand out in the evening.

“We were told in 2003 we can put these on; these lights have a guarantee of five years and it’s been 21 years,” said Everett.

The lights have experienced plenty of wear in that time and Town Pump donated about $37,000 to replace the lights on the Travona headframe and is paying $45,000 each for lights on the Original and Steward headframes.

“Of course, one of our goals and objectives was to make sure these were done before the start of the festival season,” said Bill McGladdery with Town Pump.

High Country Lighting was contracted to install the lights.

“This is one of the larger and more difficult custom projects that we’ve ever done. Between the 85-foot lifts and 130-foot cranes we're having to use to get up and accomplish this project is quite a feat,” said Tyler Jarvis of High Country Lighting.

Markovich Construction is providing the lifts to help put up the lights. These new lights will also be able to do more patterns than the previous ones.

“St. Patrick’s Day, Christmas, Easter—anything you want to put up there we can do a different pattern,” said Jarvis.

They eventually plan to do the rest of the headframes.