Billings Gazette arts and entertainment reporter Anna Paige’s five fav…


Arts and entertainment reporter Anna Paige presents her five favorite stories of 2020.

When I left Billings in mid-March, headed to Chicago to cover the opening of “Apsáalooke Women and Warriors,” the largest exhibition in the Crow Tribe’s history curated by a Native American scholar in collaboration with her community, the country was still, for the most part, business as usual.

The plane ride home was significantly different. From New York to Chicago to and Billings, cities across the country had responded with aggressive steps to slow the spread of COVID-19. The mood was tense, and with museums, gathering places, restaurants, and city amenities shutting down, many Americans would begin to “shelter in place.”

In the quiet absence of live shows, eating out, going to the movies, and just being together, I turned to my bookshelf. My records. My friends streaming their songs from the bedrooms.

In this pandemic, there have been so many overwhelming waves of grief and loss, but the one constant has been the reminder that I am not alone. In the art that’s been made, the songs being sung, the inventive ways we are still sharing our creative endeavors with one another, I have come to feel less lonely. 

And, even when we’re outside in the backcountry, we’re still looking after one another, as Sweets can attest to. 

You’ll notice there are six stories in this collection. That’s because that Women and Warriors story was a two-part tale. We bent the rules a bit on that one.

(6) updates to this series since



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