I am leaving you now, after many years, my once quiet little town. My heart is heavy to see what you have become. Once a humble and simple little railroad town. A place where everyone knew their neighbors.
I will not forget the mural of small-town life that once graced the corner of Baker and Second. A place now where a woman screams political hatred at innocent drivers and pedestrians. I will not forget the pond behind the mall, where my children once caught frogs and deer would drink, now choked with drive-up coffee shops, high-rise condo buildings and traffic. I will not forget the open fields at the school where kids played flag football, now overcrowded with an array of high-density cheap housing units. Schools once free from political agendas, run by local Montana teachers. I will not forget you, now an overcrowded playground for the rich and those looking to exploit beauty for profit.
Your roads are crowded with out-of-state invaders, construction and moving trucks. Their arrogant demands immediately requiring change. Commercial coffee shops spreading like infection, storage units devouring fields, and the predictable black mindlessly designed modern houses for "want-to-be-Montanans," bleeding the splendor of this once little town.
You have been discovered, exploited and sold off to out-of-state bidders. Congratulations to you who wanted development, improvements and convenience. Goodbye Whitefish, another "last best place," lost.
Amy Fischer, Whitefish