A friend and coworker recently moved home from southern Montana and was pleasantly surprised at how much Missoula has changed in just a decade. It seems even Missoulians who are only away for a year, like relatives who only come home during the holidays, are surprised at how frequently Missoula changes.

Some are fans and some are not. You've got old school Missoulians who just want things to stay the same, and others who are fans of advancement and new, exciting opportunities. When I was a kid, going to Kmart on Brooks or to the Southgate Mall was "going all the way across town" and north Reserve was all fields where runners would go to enjoy nature away from traffic.

Things have really changed in Missoula over the past decade with so many new businesses and advancements throughout town. It's this time of year that I really miss Hastings, I know you do too. An entirely new business has opened and closed in that space, we were sad to see the Flying Squirrel go out of business. A major highlight for those who work downtown was the addition of the parking garage on Front near the Holiday Inn. The Wilma has been beautifully renovated, Macy's went away and we came full circle with The Merc becoming The Merc once again. Many new businesses have opened and closed along Higgins and the Hip Strip, even Hellgate, Missoula's original high school, looks different.

See below for comparisons of some of the most notable changes that have taken place over the past decade or so. What would you add?

LOOKING BACK: Photos of Missoula and How It's Changed

Check out these photos of how Missoula has changed over the past decade.

I Bought an Old House in Missoula: It's My First Time Renovating

As with any renovation project, we ran into a few mishaps when we began renovating the 1952 ranch-style home we bought in Missoula, but some of the changes we made were easy and immediately rewarding.

7 Charming Montana Places to Explore on a Three-Day Weekend

Montana may be a big state that's far away from big cities, but with only three days you can find a lot of places worth exploring. Check out this list of charming locations you might not know about: