Elevation Dance Co.

Elevation Dance Co. is moving into the vacant discount theater building at 825 Broadwater Ave. in Billings.

ERIK OLSON/ Gazette staff

The long-vacant dollar movie theater at 925 Broadwater Ave. will be home to a growing nonprofit dance group, Elevation Dance Co., this summer.

Jenny Barriger, executive director of the nonprofit Elevation, said the company is finalizing some details about its expansion into the 14,000-square-foot space, but she expects it will give a big boost to the dance and movement arts community.

“We’re excited to repurpose it for kids,” Barriger said.

The building was best known as a discount theater starting in 1971, when its owners converted an old Safeway grocery store into a Cine 7.

Owner Carmike Cinemas closed the theater in 2000. A local couple, Riley and Vickie Cooke, opened an independent discount theater in 2007, the Fun House Theater, but it closed the next year. It’s been mostly vacant since then.

Elevation Dance opened three years ago at 1426 Grand Ave., offering intensive dance training for seven students. Since then, the number of participants has soared to more than 50, and Barriger said she expects to hit triple digits this year or next.

The nonprofit has benefited from a cultural boom over the last decade in dance, fueled by reality shows like “So You Think You Can Dance,” said Barriger.

Elevation and its seven instructors offer nine-month courses designed to prepare students for competitive, high-level positions with companies in New York, Los Angeles and other metropolitan areas, she said. Elevation also has beginning courses for younger students to try out dance, she said.

The building is owned by Stevens Bros. Inc. of Billings, which is doing the renovations for Elevation. Midland Mechanical is the contractor.

New CEO at Vision Net

Great Falls-based Vision Net announced last week that Corey Jensen of Billings has been appointed its new president and chief executive officer.

Jensen has spent the last 11 years with the firm as executive vice president. He replaces the retiring Rob Ferris, who’s been with Vision Net for 11 years.

Jensen will assume day-to-day operations of the telecommunications firm and provide corporate leadership and other duties.

Jensen is also acting president of INDATEL, a group of state and regional fiber networks. He was previously general manager at Montana Advanced Information Network.

Vision Net has offices in Great Falls, Billings, Missoula and Helena. The company sells broadband network services, worldwide video conferencing and other networking services.

Upgrades to IRS accounts

Taxpayers can better track their payments, balance and tax transcripts with a new IRS tool, agency officials announced last week.

The online account at www.irs.gov first launched in December but now comes with added features, according to the Internal Revenue Service.

These include viewing up to 18 months of payments, tracking payoff amounts and tax balances due and obtaining various Form 1040 series transcripts.

Taxpayers must authenticate identities through a two-step system called Security Access.

Woltermann is Golden

Golden Entertainment, Montana’s second-largest gaming machine operator, has named Travis Woltermann, of Billings, to lead its state operations.

The Las Vegas-based operator bought two Montana companies last year, including Billings-based Amusement Services.

Woltemann will oversee Golden’s relationships with bars and casinos in the state. He replaces Tim Carson, who sold Amusement Services to Golden and will remain a sales executive with the company.

Woltermann, 41, has worked in Montana’s gaming industry for eight years and has two decades’ experience in customer service.

Realtor on radio show

Billings Realtor Damian Forrester will appear on a weekly statewide network radio show to discuss the local housing market.

Forrester of Forrester Group eXp Realty will offer market analysis on Montana Real Estate Today on KCHH 95.5 FM and KBUL 970 AM 10 a.m. Sunday mornings.

The program starts airing June 25.

Haikus from the valley

While politicians

declare end of War on Coal,

Colstrip still struggles.

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