Cade Menter

FORT BENTON (KPAX) - The Grand Union Hotel in Fort Benton is celebrating its 140th birthday. The Montana landmark opened in November 1882 along the Missouri River.

Friday night was the first of their three-day celebration featuring live music and a regular dinner service.

"The Grand Union is a special place, and we just knew that we had to celebrate our 140 years. It's a long time to be standing here, and the Grand Union has a special place in Montana history, and we definitely wanted to honor her this weekend," owner Colette Longin said.

The website states:

The Grand Union has had many lives. It has been 'the most luxurious' hotel between St. Louis and Seattle. It has been a 'run-of-the-mill' hotel. It has been a 'virtual flophouse' with rooms to rent for two bits. And it has suffered years of derelict closure. Today the grand old lady of Montana hotels shines brightly, restored to its golden era glory with modernity carefully folded in.

Colette said the first night of celebrations was a great success.

"We've just been buzzing all night," she said. "Members of the community are stopping by, lots of familiar faces coming in for dinner, and listening to music."

Colette and her husband Tony have owned the hotel since June 1st of 2022.

They described their experiences as owners of the historic hotel

"The summer was really busy which is fantastic," Colette said. "We took ownership June 1st and we basically just jumped in and held on for dear life, I'd like to say, but it was good, and it's just continued to be steadily busy through the fall with hunters and through the holidays."