Montana wrestling champion celebrates 33 years officiating sport - KULR8.com | Montana's News Leader | Billings, MT

Montana wrestling champion celebrates 33 years officiating sport

Posted: Updated:

With hundreds of athletes and thousands of fans, it takes many hands to keep Montana's largest sporting event, the all-class state wrestling tournament, on the mat.

Two of those hands belong to Dean Thompson, a longtime official at the annual event using wisdom and whistles to keep athletes in line and keep his passion for wrestling alive.

"I grew up wrestling," Thompson said. "It's one of the greatest sports."

Thompson said his passion for wrestling began before grade school, with an older brother helping teach him the sport as a young child. Thompson later claimed a Montana state wrestling title with Superior High School in 1983. Five years later, MetraPark initiated the all-class tournament, and Thompson was eager to be a part of the combined class competition.

"I refereed the first (all-class) state tournament here...it would have been 29 years ago," Thompson said. "This atmosphere just gets bigger and better every year. Billings does a great job!"

Now, 33 years into officiating his sport and nearly 3 decades refereeing the state tournament, Thompson said the large group inside Rimrock Auto Arena each year represents one big wrestling community he is happy to be a part of.

"That's why I enjoy this sport," Thompson said. "It doesn't matter where you go, you know someone involved in the wrestling program."

Thompson said the state tournament's organization and staff make it comfortable for officials involved in the two-day event, and he may continue to serve as referee for years to come, that is...if he doesn't decide to leave the mats for the stands.

"I bring my freshman son, and i've got a third grade son, so I may want to be the official as they come up through or I may want to just come and watch my kids wrestle."

Montana's All-Class State Wrestling Tournament continues in Rimrock Auto Arena at MetraPark this Saturday, February 11th, with scores and stories on KULR-8 News and kulr8.com.

  • LocalMore>>

  • Safety tips for getting your children to school on the first day

    Safety tips for getting your children to school on the first day

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 9:10 PM EDT2017-08-23 01:10:46 GMT
    Kids head back to school on Thursday for District 2 in Billings but have you talked about safety with your kids yet? Meadowlark Elementary School parents and students got to meet their teachers and tour their school on Tuesday night to help get adjusted. Building familiarity with your child's school is a big part of ensuring that everyone kicks off the new school year safely. Meadowlark principal Stacy Lemelin spoke about what parents need to do to ensure their child's safety gettin...
    Kids head back to school on Thursday for District 2 in Billings but have you talked about safety with your kids yet? Meadowlark Elementary School parents and students got to meet their teachers and tour their school on Tuesday night to help get adjusted. Building familiarity with your child's school is a big part of ensuring that everyone kicks off the new school year safely. Meadowlark principal Stacy Lemelin spoke about what parents need to do to ensure their child's safety gettin...
  • Keeping public parks safe in Billings

    Keeping public parks safe in Billings

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 9:00 PM EDT2017-08-23 01:00:48 GMT

    Parks and Recreation have been working around the clock to keep needles out of parks.

    Parks and Recreation have been working around the clock to keep needles out of parks.

  • Powerball jackpot increases to $700 million

    Powerball jackpot increases to $700 million

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 5:27 PM EDT2017-08-22 21:27:24 GMT

    Your chance to be a multimillionaire is almost here!

    Your chance to be a multimillionaire is almost here!

  • Most Popular

  • Most Popular StoriesMost Popular StoriesMore>>

  • Verizon tweaks prices, cuts video quality on unlimited plans

    Verizon tweaks prices, cuts video quality on unlimited plans

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 2:45 PM EDT2017-08-22 18:45:06 GMT

    Verizon is raising the price of its unlimited plan while introducing a slightly cheaper, more limited version as wireless carriers battle each other for customers.

    Verizon is raising the price of its unlimited plan while introducing a slightly cheaper, more limited version as wireless carriers battle each other for customers.

  • Here's what you can do with your solar eclipse glasses

    Here's what you can do with your solar eclipse glasses

    Monday, August 21 2017 8:43 PM EDT2017-08-22 00:43:59 GMT

    Now that the solar eclipse has passed over our state, you might be wondering what to do with your solar eclipse glasses.

    Now that the solar eclipse has passed over our state, you might be wondering what to do with your solar eclipse glasses.

  • Powerball jackpot increases to $700 million

    Powerball jackpot increases to $700 million

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 5:27 PM EDT2017-08-22 21:27:24 GMT

    Your chance to be a multimillionaire is almost here!

    Your chance to be a multimillionaire is almost here!

  • Man who shot Ohio judge was father of player convicted of rape

    Man who shot Ohio judge was father of player convicted of rape

    Monday, August 21 2017 9:55 PM EDT2017-08-22 01:55:29 GMT
    Records show an Ohio judge shot and wounded outside his courthouse was overseeing a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the man suspected of shooting him. Authorities say suspect Nathaniel Richmond was fatally shot by the judge's bailiff during the Monday altercation. The judge also fired shots. Jefferson County Judge Joseph Bruzzese (bruh-ZEEZ') Jr. underwent emergency surgery after the shooting and is expected to survive. Richmond was the father of a Steubenville High School football...
    Records show an Ohio judge shot and wounded outside his courthouse was overseeing a wrongful-death lawsuit filed by the man suspected of shooting him. Authorities say suspect Nathaniel Richmond was fatally shot by the judge's bailiff during the Monday altercation. The judge also fired shots. Jefferson County Judge Joseph Bruzzese (bruh-ZEEZ') Jr. underwent emergency surgery after the shooting and is expected to survive. Richmond was the father of a Steubenville High School football...
  • Yellowstone County garbage rates could increase

    Yellowstone County garbage rates could increase

    Monday, August 21 2017 10:28 PM EDT2017-08-22 02:28:12 GMT

    The Yellowstone County Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing September 5 to determine whether to raise residential rates by five dollars. The discussion involves increasing the fee charged by the county solid waste disposal district from 15 dollars to 20. The county commission wants to increase the fee because of projected increases in the cost to dispose of the waste.

    The Yellowstone County Board of Commissioners will hold a public hearing September 5 to determine whether to raise residential rates by five dollars. The discussion involves increasing the fee charged by the county solid waste disposal district from 15 dollars to 20. The county commission wants to increase the fee because of projected increases in the cost to dispose of the waste.

  • State releases long-awaited radioactive oil waste disposal rules

    State releases long-awaited radioactive oil waste disposal rules

    Tuesday, August 22 2017 11:38 AM EDT2017-08-22 15:38:12 GMT

    The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) last week published draft rules to oversee the disposal of radioactive oil waste in the State of Montana. 

    The Montana Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) last week published draft rules to oversee the disposal of radioactive oil waste in the State of Montana. 

  • Our Apologies

    The page you requested is currently unavailable. Pages on this site are constantly being revised, updated, and occasionally removed. You may have followed an outdated link or have outdated pages in your
    You have reached a page which is currently unavailable. We apologize for any inconvenience. Please use your browser's BACK button to return to the previous page
  • Lolo Peak Fire faces potential thunderstorm

    Lolo Peak Fire faces potential thunderstorm

    Monday, August 21 2017 9:28 PM EDT2017-08-22 01:28:40 GMT

    Lolo Peak Fire has grown to more than 31,000 acres and gained more than 5,000 acres over the weekend.

    Lolo Peak Fire has grown to more than 31,000 acres and gained more than 5,000 acres over the weekend.