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Friday, May 2, 2003

Today is SD2 makeup day Students in School District 2 elementary, middle and high schools have a makeup day today for days missed during November's teacher strike.

Elementary-school students will follow their usual schedule for the full class day. But Skyview High School will dismiss students at 12:30 p.m., and Castle Rock Middle School students will get out between 12:40 and 1 p.m. Crossroads Alternative students are dismissed at 12:10 p.m.

School buses will run on the early-dismissal times.

The older students are having what the district describes as an "early out" to accommodate the first day of the two-day State Music Festival, which is at Skyview .

Grades seven to 12 also have a final makeup day on Saturday, May 10.

Youths can get free sport licenses Youth combination sports licenses for first-time hunters are being issued for free to qualified youths, effective this week.

Youth hunters aged 12 through 17 who have never bought a hunting license in Montana and have completed a hunter-education course are eligible for a free youth combination sports license.

Youths who live in the eight counties surrounding Billings can visit the office of Fish, Wildlife and Parks, 2300 Lake Elmo Drive, to fill out a voucher for the free license or download the voucher from the FWP Web site at and mail it to FWP; Helena Fulfillment Center; P.O. Box 200701; Helena, MT 59620-0701.

The special free license is the result of 2003 legislative action on HB 248, and is intended to encourage young people to begin participating in hunting and fishing.

The youth combination sports license includes conservation, fishing, upland bird, deer and elk privileges and normally costs $27. Those who already bought a 2003 youth conservation license in order to put in for special drawings may check the box at the bottom of the voucher to receive a refund on that license.

Lake Elmo to allow motorboat testing Motorboat testing at Lake Elmo State Park is scheduled for May 17 and 18.

Boaters may make short test runs on the lake from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for the purpose of making minor adjustments to their engines and crafts. Boaters are reminded that there will only be two days of motorboat testing at Lake Elmo, and the lake is closed at all other times to motorized craft, except those with electric motors.

No extended excursions will be allowed during the testing weekend.

There is no charge for motorboat testing, which is sponsored by the Billings Boat Club in cooperation with the Department of Fish, Wildlife and Parks.

Boaters are reminded that the testing program is provided as a courtesy to motorboat owners to enable them to make short test runs and minor adjustments to their engines and crafts. No testing will be allowed if the boats are not properly registered.

Wearable personal flotation devices are required for each person on all boats. Those under the age of 12 must wear their PFDs when the boat is in motion. State park fees are waived on those two days.

Gather donations for food drive You've still got a few days to unclutter your cupboards or pick up a few extras when you shop for donation to the annual Letter Carriers Food Drive.

The National Association of Letter Carriers, in conjunction with the U.S. Postal Service and the AFL-CIO, will collect nonperishable food items on May 10, for distribution to the Billings Food Bank.

People should leave their nonperishable food donations by their mailboxes on Saturday, May 10, and their letter carrier will pick up the food.

Letter carriers will receive assistance if needed. The goal is to surpass the 120,000 pounds of food collected last year.

Items frequently requested by the Food Bank needed are peanut butter, canned fruits and vegetables, pork and beans and one-can meals. But any nonperishable items will help area families.