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New Brighton Mounds View

Our Club Motto: Service Above Self

Club meetings are held Tuesdays at 12:15 - 1:15 PM
The Exchange Food and Drink
500 5th Ave, NW
651-348-6289
New Brighton, MN 55112
United States of America
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Of the things we think, say and do:
Is it the truth?
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Will it be beneficial to all concerned?
 
Home Page Stories
Today was the first meeting for our new Club President, Ed James.  Ed opened the meeting with a quote from Winston Churchill: “We make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give.”
 
We weren’t able to view the Important Dates List during the meeting, but they are available to download by clicking here.
 
No-Plate Dinner Fundraiser report – Cindy emailed the No-Plate flyer to each of us last Thursday.  Please distribute it to friends and family.  Charlie Longbella will have the Fundraiser info on Facebook soon.  Please share it on your Facebook pages to give as many people as possible a chance to donate.
 
Geoff Hollimon reported that the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition made a $5,000 grant to CPY to help with the cost of their food distribution program in conjunction with Ralph Reeder Food Shelf.  He also noted that the Coalition’s Three Mile Community Virtual Run/Walk fundraiser will be held from Monday, August 3-Sunday, August 9, 2020.  Click the link above for details.  The Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition’s volunteer seamstresses have sewn 200 isolation gowns for the Ramsey County Care Center.
 
Our Presenter today was Tom Gable, UofMN Ph.D candidate and Project Director of the Voyageurs National Park Wolf Project.  The Wolf Project is a collaboration of the University of Minnesota and Voyageurs National Park.  The project’s goal is to better understand the reproductive and predation habits of the park’s wolves.  Because the wolves don’t recognize the boundaries of the park, the project actually covers all of Voyageurs plus a lot of land to the south of the park.  The project covers a total area of 13,000 acres!  Tom noted that 101 of the 103 landowners in the project area have agreed to cooperate with the project.  Tom briefly mentioned the wolf reproduction part of the project and referred us to the project website for more information.  His main focus for today’s presentation was the predation habits of the Park’s wolves.  There have been many studies of Wolf predation in wintertime, when wolf kills of deer and moose are easily identifiable in the snow from the air.  We don’t know much, however, about wolves affect on the smaller prey like beavers and small fawns that they prey on in the summer. Summertime foliage prevents aerial location of kills and the smaller prey are almost completely consumed by the wolves, leaving almost no evidence of the kill.  GPS tracking collars have now been employed that broadcast a collared wolfs location every 20 minutes.  Whenever there a two consecutive pings from the same location, researchers are confident that the wolf has made a kill.  Each 20 minute stop is investigated by researchers who have logged 15,000 hours of fieldwork and 17,000 miles of hiking to locate kill sites.  This work has yielded interesting summertime wolf kill data.  An average wolf kills 13-15 fawns and 9-11 beavers each summer, but there is great variability depending on number of prey, energy demand of their pups, predatory specialization and hunting ability of the individual wolves.
 
Tom feels that, in addition to the scientific value of the data accumulated by the project, there is also great value in the potential for outreach.  He said that the project’s Facebook page has already reached a total of 24.9 million people and continues to reach 91,000 more each day.  The page now has 58,000 followers worldwide.  He hopes that this kind of outreach will help to establish a long-term research project on the Voyageurs wolf population. 
 
Today’s No-Plate auction action had Denise Jacobsen’s $125 first round Running Aces package bid go unchallenged, so Denise is the winner of the package.  The first round of bidding for the $50 Tavern gift certificate was snapped up by Ed James with a full value $50 dollar bid (no need for a second round of bidding),
 
John Ordway said that son Dan and his new wife are expecting in February.  John will be a grandpa for the first time!
 
Jason Miller spent a week in the BWCA with family and friends
 
New Club President Ed James thanked outgoing President Dennis Connolly for his service to the club over the past year.  Ed noted that Dennis had also put together our submission for District Awards two years ago with great success.  He hopes we can renew that recognition effort for the coming year.
President Dennis Connolly opened the final meeting of his year as Club President  with a summary of upcoming events:
 
June 30, 2020 (Tuesday 7:00 – 8:30PM) - District Governor Ed Marek Installation, "Serious, Touching, and Funny" - Registration via Zoom - Click Here or watch on Facebook LIVE! - Click Here
 
July 1, 2020 (Wednesday 8:00 – 9:00AM) - SPECIAL FRIDAY FEATURE 
Because of the 4th of July, we are holding our District 5960 Friday Feature, on a Wednesday! Next July 1, join me and the rest of the District Governor line for a SPECIAL FRIDAY FEATURE as we take you through "A Year of Connecting." We want to celebrate all the positive activities, events, and fun that we had, and the impact we made, which was significant. It's a special day of the week, and time - 8 a.m. This is Prior Lake Rotary's normal meeting, co-hosted with the District.  Register in advance for this meeting at the link below:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
 
July 21, 2020 (Tuesday 12:00 Noon) NBMV Rotary Club Picnic Meeting (with social distancing) at Silver View Park, 2700 County Rd I, Mounds View .
 
August 7, 2020 (Friday 5:30 – 9:00PM) SAVE THE DATE - Join us at Canterbury Park in Shakopee for Rotary Race Day on Friday, Aug. 7th. Everyone is welcome—Rotarians bring your family and friends out to this great event! The gates open at 5:30 p.m., live horse racing begins at 6:30.  Cost for the event is $10, which includes admission, hot dog and soda. Children 17 and under get free admission, but must purchase the $10 ticket to get the hot dog and soda.  Rotary Race Day is a fundraiser for The Rotary Foundation's PolioPlus! Organized by Rotary Districts 5950 & 5960, 100 percent of ticket sales will benefit PolioPlus!  Tim Mulcrone will be singing the national the anthem at 5:30.
 
CPY’s 8th Annual Golf Ball Drop Fundraiser will be held on August 2nd, 3:00PM at Brightwood Hills Golf Course.  The winner will receive 20% of the ticket sales up to a maximum of $5,000. 1 Ball = $10, 3 Balls = $25, 5 Balls =$40.  To purchase tickets call 651-633-6464.
 
Geoff Hollimon said that the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition has approved grants of $10,000 to Sheridan Story and $10,000 to Ralph Reeder Food Shelf to help fund their missions to alleviate food insecurity.   He also noted that the Coalition’s Three Mile Community Virtual Run/Walk fundraiser will be held from Monday, August 3-Sunday, August 9, 2020.  Click the link above for details.
 
Dana Rebelein said that the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition’s volunteer seamstresses have sewn 200 isolation gowns for the Ramsey County Care Center.
Cindy Carlson announced that the flyer for the No-Plate Dinner Fundraiser is ready for distribution.  Click here to download the flyer and then forward it to anyone who might have an interest in supporting the club.  Online donations will be possible by just clicking a button on the digital flyer or on our Facebook page.  Each $50 donation will purchase one ticket for the $250 raffle drawing.
 
Auction News:
Last week, Maddison Zikmund was the winning bidder ($425) last week for the Sugar Lake Lodge stay and play package.  Cindy Carlson was the high bidder on round one of the Prestwick golf package.
Today’s auction had Mike Neeley winning the Prestwick golf package with a bid of $170.  Round one of the Running Aces overnight stay and dining package ended with Denise Jacobsen leading with a first round bid of $125. Next week’s bidding will feature round two of the Running Aces package and Round one of $100 in The Tavern Gift cards.
 
Ed James introduced his virtual guests:
Fiancée -  Rachel Igbaroola,
Sister – Olaseni Olutunwase
Daughter - Edith James
James Odalele
Kemi Aderinkomi
 
President Dennis thanked Ed James for his active participation in club administration, especially in Youth Service.  Dennis highlighted Ed’s involvement in Camp RYLA, Camp Enterprise, High School scholarships, Youth Exchange, Fourth Grade Foresters and Harvest Pack.  Due to computer difficulties, Ed’s message to the club was interrupted several times.  Ed was able to communicate that it is a joy for him to be a member of the club and that he is looking forward to his year as President.  He acknowledged that Covid-19 will present challenges but he is counting on everyone to double their efforts to keep things moving forward.  He thanked everyone for their continuing support.
 
Cindy Carlson reported that the Rotary Guatemala Literacy Project Global Matching Grant for 2019-2020 is more than $631,000!
 
John Ordway informed the club that Gerry Tietz has resigned his NBMV Rotary Membership.  We’ll miss you Gerry!  Gerry’s new address is: 
5601 94th Ave. N.
 Apt 407
Brooklyn Park, MN  55443
 
Mike Neeley has been named one of the 65 most influential people in the machining industry in Minnesota.  Congratulations. Mike!
President Dennis Connolly introduced Community Support Center Director Karen Meyer.  Karen is the sole staff person at CSC, but she works with many volunteers to help prevent homelessness and provide long-term financial counseling to minimize the need for future assistance.  CSC’s office is located in the Faith Christian Reformed Church at 16th and Silver Lake Road in New Brighton.  Its service area is New Brighton, Mounds View, North Oaks, Shoreview, and Arden Hills.  To receive support, CSC participants must:  
  • reside in the above mentioned service area,
  • have applied for county services,
  • have a financial situation which is sustainable with short term financial assistance and
  • demonstrate interest in making long term changes.
 
CSC receives referrals from Ramsey County, The United Way, churches, landlords, Ralph Reeder Food Shelf, schools, social services, police, and word of mouth.  Potential participants start with a 2 hour interview with volunteer active listeners to ensure that the above participation criteria are met.  If so, CSC partners with a variety of agencies to provide the short term financial support needed to prevent evictions and develops a plan to prevent eviction in the future.  When possible, the initial interviewer works long-term with the participant, guiding them to resources, working on budgets, goal setting, debt reduction, resumes and celebrating accomplishments.  Because of all this ongoing support, the average amount of financial assistance to prevent eviction is amazingly small at just $400-700 per family.  Compare that with the $3,000 per month to house a family of four in a Ramsey County homeless shelter.  Also notable is that there are 30-40 families on the waiting list for those homeless shelters.
 
Karen is seeing a greater need for CSC’s services as COVID-19 has stretched many poor family’s resources.  She anticipates an increase in eviction notices when restrictions are lifted.  CSC has received a $5,000 grant from the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition which will be helpful in managing the coming eviction crisis.
 
Karen can be reached at staff@communitysupportcenter.org or 651-387-8050
 
Upcoming Rotary Events:
See President Connolly’s weekly email for details.
The Rotary International Convention will be a virtual one this year.  Click here for details.
 
Margaret Feng-Ling Johnson has accepted a new position as Dean of University College and Associate Vice President for Student Success at St. Cloud State University, starting July 1.  Congratulations, Margaret!
 
Geoff Hollimon updated us on the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition.  He proudly reported that 11 Rotarians are involved in the Coalition.  Donations of over $51,000 have been received toward the $150,000.  Your contributions are needed reach that goal.  Personal and organizational donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       C/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. You will still get your tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Recent improvements to the Coalition’s website include a “Donate” button if you prefer the convenience of online donations. 
The Coalition’s Facebook page can be accessed by clicking here.
 
In addition, 50 reusable gowns have been sewn, by Dana Rebelein and other Coalition volunteers, for the Ramsey County Care Center and 150 more are needed.  If you can help sew gowns, contact Dana Rebelein.  The Coalition is holding a virtual run/walk fundraiser soon. Stay tuned for more details.
 
Charlie Longbella reported that an online donation function will be available soon. 
 
Charlie has also prepared a draft of a brochure for the No-Plate Dinner and Cindy Carlson has suggested some edits.  The final brochure should be available soon.
 
Today’s live auction resulted in a final bid of $200 for the Indian Hills Golf Package.  Jason Miller was the winning bidder.  Round 1 of the bidding for the Sugar Lake Lodge stay and play package ended with a bid by Cindy Carlson of $275.  Next week features the final round of the Sugar Lake Lodge package bidding and the first Round of the Prestwick golf package.  Don’t miss it!
 
The Board meets next Tuesday at 11AM by Zoom. 
 
Jim O’Brien’s granddaughters (who were our Egg Hunt Bunnies for several years) have graduated from college and are both employed.
 
Nyle Zikmund announced that he is running for Anoka County Commissioner, but keeping his day job as Mounds View City Administrator.  Good luck Nyle!
 
Your editor will be out of town next week, so you’ll have to attend the meeting to be in the know.
President Dennis Connolly opened the meeting with a summary of the upcoming Rotary online education opportunities.  A complete list of events in the near future is shown below:
 
June 12, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM-10:00AM) - Friday Feature - WW2, PFC Riley - A special presentation from Mounds Park Academy junior, Salmah Elmasry and Upper School teacher, Katie Murr, to hear the moving World War 2 story of PFC Riley from Minnesota.  
Register in advance for this meeting:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
 
June 18, 2020 (Thursday 11:00AM – 5:00PM) - Rotary Club Blood Drive at the White Bear Lake Armory.  Call Bryan at 651-402-8493 with questions.
 
June 19, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM-10:00AM) Friday Feature with Richard Huston, Faribault Rotary Club, " A view from the front lines: Polio eradication in Pakistan"
Register in advance for this meeting:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
 
June 20 – 26, 2020 – “Now More than Ever, Rotary Connects the World: The 2020 Rotary Virtual Convention" – Zoom On-line Meeting – More information to come.
 
July 12-18, 2020 – Guatemala Literacy Project (GLP) trip to Guatemala – Contact James Hunt rotaryhunt@gmail.com "Helping Hands Tour” Antigua GLP school.
 
July 21-26, 2020 – Guatemala Literacy Project (GLP) trip to Guatemala – Contact James Hunt rotaryhunt@gmail.com “Snapshot Tour” GLP schools, tourism, coffee farm.
 
Geoff Hollimon updated us on the North Suburban Emergency Response Coalition.  Three grants have been awarded so far.  The Community Support Center, Keystone Community Services and Neighborhood House have each received grants of $5,000.  Donations to the Covid-19 Response Fund (which provides the grants) have reached $50,000 toward its goal of $150,000.  Your contributions are needed reach that goal.  Personal and organizational donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       C/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. You will still get your tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Recent improvements to the Coalition’s website include a “Donate” button if you prefer the convenience of online donations. 
The Coalition’s Facebook page can be accessed by clicking here.
 
Dana Rebelein reported that Coalition supporters have sewn over 50 washable gowns for the Ramsey County Care Center and will make more as special fabric is available.  The Care Center only had disposable gowns and the 5,600 gowns used per month were a huge drain on the care center’s finances.
 

The No-Plate Dinner report was provided by Charlie Longbella and Cindy Carlson.  An online donation capability will soon be available for club members and friends of Rotary.  This will simplify donations for the No-Plate dinner and possibly streamline payment of dues and other club transactions.  The committee has decided to eliminate the dining gift card portion of the fundraiser.  We will instead sell $75 raffle tickets (non-deductible) and also offer the option of additional deductible contributions to the club via the Rotary Healthy Youth Foundation.  The $250 Raffle originally scheduled for August 4th will be rescheduled once we have promotional materials available. 

John Ordway announced that our member’s individual contributions to the Rotary Foundation have met the goal of $2,000.
 
Today was the first round of online live auctions of items which were originally donated to the Gold Plate Dinner.  Today’s item was 18 holes of golf with 4 carts at Indian Hills Golf Club.  The high bid for this first round of bidding was $180.  Next week we will have another round of bidding for the golf and the first of two rounds of bidding on a Stay and Play package at Sugar Lake Lodge (see below).
  • 2 nights lodging in a 2 BR course villa (can accommodate UP TO 4)

  • 18 holes of golf at Sugarbrooke for 2 people (per web site, extra golf available currently at $1.00 per hole without carts)

  • Dinner for 2 people at Otis’s (delivered to your Villa)

  • Available Sundays – Wednesdays

  • Expires August 31, 2021

  • $500 -$700 value (lower value in 2020 due to limited time discount)

  • $200 minimum bid

  • The resort is in Cohasset, MN near Grand Rapids…not far from Ruttger’s.

Bidders need to attend the regularly scheduled Tuesday Noon ZOOM club meetings.  Anyone can bid, so tell your friends and forward them the Zoom meeting invitation that you receive on Tuesday morning. Bids for Sugar Lake Lodge will be taken at the June 16th and June 23rd meetings to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to bid.  Future weeks will feature other donated items like glider rides, wine tasting events, horse racing packages, more golf and trap shooting.  
 
We are seeking speakers for upcoming ZOOM meetings.  If you are aware of good speakers, please relay that information to Nyle Zikmund.  Watch your email for program assignments for the new Rotary year which begins on July 1.
Today was our fifth virtual club meeting, and we were honored to have District Governor Paul Perez as our virtual guest.
 
Dave Hoel visited his workplace on Lake Street and reported on the incredible destruction in that area.  Jason Slama was part of the cleanup effort on Lake Street and he provided this written summary:
“I haven't been able to be active in Rotary lately due to work and family conflicts. But I wanted to pay a "happy fine" to the club. I was out cleaning Lake Street on Saturday morning and was absolutely humbled at the amount of people out helping each other. We were cleaning the sidewalks and streets as buildings were still burning. There were piles and piles of donated goods being gathered to help those who lost their local stores. Meals were being offered to those in need. Medical professionals were offering free services and transportation to those who needed it. By Sunday morning Lake Street, Nicollet Ave, and Midway neighborhoods were clean enough there was not a need to go back and clean. As tragic as the events over the past week have been, I just wanted to share how proud I felt to see so many people coming together to share their kindness and compassion.”
 
District Governor Paul Perez thanked us for continuing to be active Rotarians.  He said that our District is looking into ways that we can work cooperatively with neighboring District 5950 to address racial disparity issues highlighted by this past week’s events.  DG Paul also encouraged us to take advantage of the many online learning opportunities being made available by the District.   A complete list is available in President Dennis Connolly’s weekly email, but here is a list of this week’s learning opportunities:
June 3, 2020 (Wednesday, 4:30PM) - District 5960 E-club Cultural Exchange Enthusiasts talk to Tom Thorfinnson, Chief Strategy Officer at Rotary International
Topic: The Future of Rotary and COVID-19.  CLICK HERE for Link
June 4, 2020 (Thursday 7:30 AM) - Ethics Team presentation presented by St. Paul Sunrise Rotary Club featuring Burt Riskedahl, “Ethical decision making in clinical practice and supervision”  CLICK HERE for Link
Friday, June 5, 2020 (Friday 9am) - Friday Feature. This week our speaker will be Mike Gregory, The Collaboration Effect, his topic: Conflict Resolution/Civil Discourse.
Register in advance for this meeting:
After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
 
Our “No-Plate” Dinner fundraiser is taking shape.  Starting on June 9th, we will be holding online live auctions of items which were donated to the cancelled Gold Plate Dinner.  Bidders need to attend the regularly scheduled Tuesday Noon ZOOM club meetings.  The first auction item will be 18 holes of golf for four with four carts at beautiful Indian Hills Golf Club.  A $312 value, opening bid will be $80. Bids will be taken at the June 9th and June 16th meetings to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to bid.  The bidding will be open to Rotarians as well as non-Rotarians.  Future weeks will feature other donated items like lake lodge stays, glider rides, wine tasting events, horse racing packages, more golf and trap shooting.  Our August 4th noon meeting will include a $250 raffle drawing for those who have purchased a raffle ticket.  Watch your email for more details. 
 
Geoff Hollimon updated us on the North Suburban Emergency Response Coalition.  Three final grant proposals have been received and as many as a dozen groups are potential grantees.  Geoff indicated that the Response fund already has donations of $40,000 with a goal of $150,000. Your contributions are needed reach that goal.  Personal and organizational donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       C/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. You will still get your tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Online contributions of any amount can be made at GiveMN.org at this URL: https://www.givemn.org/story/Suburbanramseycovid19responsefund
The Coalition’s Facebook page can be accessed by clicking here.
 
Dana Rebelein added that the Coalition has already begun responding to the Covid-19 pandemic by organizing 14 people (including Dana) to sew reusable cloth gowns for the Ramsey County Care Center.  The Care Center only had disposable gowns and the 5,600 gowns used per month were a huge drain on the care center’s finances.
 
We are seeking speakers for upcoming ZOOM meetings.  If you are aware of good speakers, please relay that information to Nyle Zikmund.  Watch your email for program assignments for the new Rotary year which begins on July 1.
Today we again welcomed Roseville Rotarian Mary Jo McGuire to our meeting.
 
Cindy Carlson introduced our speaker, Meg Hobday, from My Very Own Bed.  My Very Own Bed (MVOB) is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing brand new beds and bedding for children, aged 2-17, of families that have recently secured stable housing.  Children having their own bed would seem like a given, but many families who don’t have stable housing also don’t have beds for their children.  In addition to the obvious sleep difficulties experienced by children without beds, many of these children also have social, emotional and educational problems which are, at least in part, related to the lack of a comfortable, safe place to sleep.  Better sleep has been shown to improve school attendance and performance, increase attention and promote emotional stability.  Kids also benefit from a sense of personal dignity and independence and are more likely to have friends visit if they have their own bed.  Clearly, a bed is much more than just a place to sleep. 
 
While working with homeless families for many years, MVOB founder Michael Allen was keenly aware of the need for beds and decided to do something about this problem.  In 2014, Michael started MVOB to provide proper beds for these kids.  The organization was founded on these values:
    -Relationships first
    -Get better before getting bigger
    -Focus on excellence
 
Each qualifying child receives a bed, box spring and frame, but also receives a “Dream Kit” with a brand-new pillow, mattress pad, bedding and blanket as well as a stuffed animal, books and a handmade card.  Over the past six years MVOB has steadily grown from providing 120 beds in 2015 to 667 beds in 2019.  They will easily exceed their goal of 750 beds this year.  Michael is cautious; however, that growth is sustainable and doesn’t interfere with excellence.  Each bed and Dream Kit combination costs $200 to provide, so contributions are vital to MVOB’s mission.  The Richard M. Schulze Family Foundation has agreed to match contributions of any amount up to a total match of $10,000.  Contributions to this matching program are just shy of $8,000 as of today, so there’s still a little time to effectively double your contribution.  Our Board voted this morning to donate $400.  You can donate by clicking here.
 
Check out this morning’s email from President Dennis Connolly for a list of upcoming Rotary events.
 
Cindy Carlson reported that members have so far contributed approximately $900 toward our Rotary Foundation goal of $2,000.  She reminded us that right now donations over $100 by individual NBMV Rotarians will receive double Foundation Recognition Points, speeding you on your way to the next Paul Harris Fellow recognition level.  Just send your checks, made out to the Rotary Foundation, to:
    MBMV Rotary
    C/o John Ordway
    3555 Willow Lake Blvd
    Suite 200
    Vadnais Hgts.,  MN 55110
 
Geoff Hollimon reported that the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition has received eight preliminary grant proposals and one final grant application.  The Covid 19 Resposnse Fund has so far received $38,000 of its goal of $150,000 in contributions.  Your contributions are needed reach that goal.  Personal and organizational donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       C/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. You will still get your tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Online contributions of any amount can be made at GiveMN.org at this URL: https://www.givemn.org/story/Suburbanramseycovid19responsefund
The Coalition’s Facebook page can be accessed by clicking here.
 
The No-Plate Dinner fundraiser continues to evolve.  You may have received Cindy Carlson’s email with the latest thoughts on the planned substitute for the Gold Plate dinner.  If not, click here to download it.
 
Treasurer John Ordway reported that the cancellation of the Good Plate Dinner Fundraiser (if that income is not replaced) would increase the already budgeted 2019-2020 deficit from $7,000 to a deficit of $13,500.  This deficit will be offset by No-Plate dinner donations.
We were happy to welcome Roseville Rotarian Mary Jo McGuire to our virtual meeting today.
 
President Dennis Connolly reviewed some upcoming Rotary events: 
May 22, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM – 11:00AM) - Dr. Ira Helfand - UN Nuclear Nonproliferation.  Register in advance for this meeting: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJ0sde6uqT4tyETCmLk1iC8U9pS_QRby3Q .  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
May 29, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM) - STRIVE: Investing in Our Future - Whether your STRIVE program is already successful, needs a boost or you are interested in starting one, the May 29th Friday Feature on STRIVE will be informative. Diane Ilstrup, Rochester Rotary Club and Brent Voight, Stillwater Sunrise Rotary Club will share successes, how challenges are addressed, or what they feel are the next steps in how the program is evolving.  Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0rce-uqjIoHtSPRiqR3T7g1ct5kx0VTxY_  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
A complete list of events can be found in Dennis’ weekly events email.
 
Geoff Hollimon reported that the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition’s Covid-19 Response Fund has received three grant request proposals.  If the coalition finds merit in a proposal, it will ask for a grant application.  Our Community Support Center (CSC) was the first to submit a grant application.  CSC’s mission aligns perfectly with the coalition’s focus on alleviating housing instability.  The Coalition has, so far, received $35,000 in donations but their goal is a total of $150,000.  Your contributions are needed reach that goal. Personal and organizational donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       c/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. You will still get your tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Online contributions of any amount can be made at GiveMN.org at this URL: https://www.givemn.org/story/Suburbanramseycovid19responsefund
The Coalition’s Facebook page can be accessed by clicking here.
 
Planning for the No-Plate Dinner (which will replace the Gold Plate Dinner this year) is ongoing.  What’s certain right now is that the event will be held, online, on July 21st at 12 Noon.  The Committee will meet again soon to fine tune the financial details.
 
Members present agreed that we would continue to hold the noon meetings online via zoom through June.  It was also agreed that we would try to have online speakers during the meetings.  We hope to have a speaker for the May 26th meeting.
 
The Board of Directors will meet via ZOOM at 11AM Tuesday, May 26th.
 
Ed James was sad that the high school scholarship awards ceremonies at Irondale and St Anthony will be closed events due to COVID-19, but he has prepared some remarks to be read by someone else at the ceremonies.  We hope to be able to get photos and perhaps thank you videos from the recipients.
President Dennis Connolly opened the meeting by reviewing some upcoming District online learning opportunities:
May 15, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM – 10:00  AM) - Suzi Howe, - Rotary International Director 2020-2022, Leadership in Action - Rotarians have the opportunity to be leaders in Rotary and in our communities.  Suzi will share a story of leadership in crisis and the critical elements that apply whether in crisis or calm.  Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZEscemvqzoqGN2O2VSBT7iG4Sw3pKdfCb3L .  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
May 22, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM – 11:00AM) - Dr. Ira Helfand - UN Nuclear Nonproliferation.  Register in advance for this meeting: https://zoom.us/meeting/register/tJ0sde6uqT4tyETCmLk1iC8U9pS_QRby3Q .  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
May 29, 2020 (Friday 9:00AM) - STRIVE: Investing in Our Future - Whether your STRIVE program is already successful, needs a boost or you are interested in starting one, the May 29th Friday Feature on STRIVE will be informative. Diane Ilstrup, Rochester Rotary Club and Brent Voight , Stillwater Sunrise Rotary Club will share successes, how  challenges are addressed, or what they feel are the next steps in how the program is evolving.  Register in advance for this meeting:
https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZ0rce-uqjIoHtSPRiqR3T7g1ct5kx0VTxY_  After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.
 
Geoff Hollimon reported on the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition.  The coalition is raising funds to help those in our immediate communities who are most negatively affected by the COVID-19 crisis.  The coalition’s focus is on the greatest areas of need, beginning with food insecurity and housing instability.  Geoff said that our club has directly contributed $1,000 to the coalition as well as working with the Arden Hills-Shoreview and Roseville Rotary Clubs to secure a special district Matching Grant which resulted in over $3,100 in contributions to the Coalition’s Covid-19 Response Fund.  Geoff noted that the Community Support Center here in New Brighton was the first organization to send in a grant proposal for $5000.  Their proposal was accepted and they are currently completing the full grant application. The approval of their proposal virtually assures their request will get final approval and make them the Response fund’s first grant recipient. Your donations to the Response Fund would be greatly appreciated.  Personal and organizational donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       c/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. You will still get your tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Online contributions of any amount can be made at GiveMN.org at this URL: https://www.givemn.org/story/Suburbanramseycovid19responsefund
The Coalition’s Facebook page can be accessed by clicking here.
 
President-Elect Ed James reported that our selection for our $1,500 at-large scholarship will be awarded to Kunga Sagmo from St. Anthony High School.  The selection criteria was “Service Above Self”.  She will study biology, society and the environment.  Thanks to those who helped in the selection process. 
 
There was considerable discussion about yesterday’s meeting to decide how to deal with the loss of club income due to the cancellation of this year’s Gold Plate Dinner.  The group decided that we will have a “No Plate Dinner” on Tuesday, July 21st at 12:00 (our regular meeting time).  The event will be held via Zoom.  The basic plan is to gather contributions from those who would have attended the Gold Plate Dinner, or others who have some connection with the club.  Contributors could select either a $150 contribution which would provide $75 in dining gift certificates plus a chance at several raffle prizes during the “No-Plate Dinner”  OR  a $75 contribution to participate in the raffle only.   More details are forthcoming.
 
Ed James announced that his son will be attending Brooklyn Law School.
Today was our second virtual club meeting and we are getting used to the technology.  It’s fortunate that the technology is available; imagine the impact of Covid-19 on business and society in the absence of teleconferencing!
 
Some of you may already be aware the Gerry Tietz’s wife, Marlys, passed away yesterday due to complications from Lupus.  Our thoughts and prayers are with Gerry and Marlys’ family in this difficult time.  A memorial service will be planned when gatherings are permitted.
 
Cindy Carlson reminded us that the NYFS Leadership Luncheon will be held “online” tomorrow (May 6th) from 11:30 to 1:00PM.  This year’s event features retired Star Tribune columnist and editorial writer Lory Sturdevant presenting: Minnesota: the State that Votes.  Contact Sandra Bahr at 651-379-3422 or Sandra@nyfs.org to get your invitation to the online meeting.
 
Geoff Hollimon reported that the ECHO Grant Final Report has been accepted by Rotary.  The $12,800 matching grant supplied a two wheel tractor and implements to the ECHO farm in Fort Myers.  Geoff said that eight clubs contributed toward the grant.  ECHO is extremely grateful for our continuing support.
 
Geoff also reported that NBMV, A.H/Shoreview and Roseville Rotary Clubs banded together to secure special district matching funds for a $3101.52 total contribution to the Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition’s Covid-19 Response Fund.  The coalition is raising funds to help those in our communities who are most negatively affected by the COVID-19 crisis.  The coalition’s focus is on the greatest areas of need, beginning with food insecurity and housing instability.  The Community Support Center, of which we are a founding member, was the first to apply for a grant from the fund.  Our club has donated $1,000 in addition to our $100 Matching Grant contribution and you are encouraged to consider a personal or business contribution as well.  Geoff asked us to consider using some or all of our federal stimulus checks.
 
Donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
       Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
       Response Fund
       c/o Carol Brown-Mills
       5845 St. Albans Court
       Shoreview, MN 55126
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. They will still get their tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
Online contributions of any amount can be made at GiveMN.org at this URL: https://www.givemn.org/story/Suburbanramseycovid19responsefund
 
You may also consider helping the Coalition in one or more of the following ways:
  • Identify potential donors and contact them with requests for support.
  • Consider serving on one of these working committees:
    • Communications
    • Events
    • Volunteer Coordination
    • Fundraising
                  
Check out the Coalition’s Facebook page by clicking here.
 
The Gold Plate Dinner has been cancelled for this year and this will leave a giant hole in our ability to grant charitable requests in the coming year.  The board recommends that members consider their $150 ticket payment as a fully deductible charitable donation.  Several members noted that the $75 Covid-19 dues reduction would also help to offset the donation.  President Dennis will convene an online meeting on Monday, May 11th, at 1:00PM, to plan ways to recoup the remainder of the funds that will be lost due to the Gold Plate cancellation.  Watch your email for an invitation to attend the online meeting.
 
After having no Rotary club meetings since March 10th due to the Covid-19 crisis, the Club held its first Zoom online meeting.  It was great to see and hear so many people that we haven’t seen in nearly two months.  It’s not the same as a regular meeting but it worked pretty well.  Many thanks to the District for providing the meeting platform and especially to Kathy Hughitt for getting the process rolling.
 
Dana Rebelein reviewed a proposal for multiple ways to support the newly formed Suburban Ramsey Emergency Coalition.  The Coalition brings together service clubs and foundations serving communities in the Mounds View and Roseville school districts, including Rotary Clubs, Lions Clubs, Optimists and Golden K’s.
The coalition is a unified effort to raise funds and provide goods and volunteers to help those in our communities who are most negatively affected by the COVID-19 crisis.  The coalition’s focus is on the greatest areas of need, beginning with food insecurity and housing instability. 
The proposal asked that we consider five ways that we could help in this effort:
  1. NBMV Rotary could donate $1,000 to the Suburban Ramsey COVID-19 Response Fund.  This was approved by the 13 or so NBMV Rotarians present at today’s meeting.
  2. NBMV Rotary could participate in a special District 5960 COVID-19 matching grant by contributing $100.  This had already been done in the interest of expediency.
  3. NBMV Rotarians identify potential donors and contact them with requests for support.
  4. NBMV Rotarians consider serving on one of these working committees:
    • Communications
    • Events
    • Volunteer Coordination
    • Fundraising
  5. NBMV Rotarians consider an individual or business contribution to the effort.
Donations of any amount may be made by check payable to the Suburban Ramsey Covid-19 Response Fund and mailed to:
               
                Suburban Ramsey Covid-19
                Response Fund
                c/o Carol Brown-Mills
                5845 St. Albans Court
                Shoreview, MN 55126
 
Carol is a board member of Shoreview Community Foundation and she’ll forward them to The St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation each day. They will still get their tax receipt from the St. Paul and Minnesota Foundation with tax ID # 41-6031510.
 
Online contributions of any amount can be made at GiveMN.org at this URL:  https://www.givemn.org/story/Suburbanramseycovid19responsefund
                  
The next meeting of the Coalition is by Zoom on Thursday April 30th at 3PM.  Let Geoff Hollimon or Dana Rebelein know if you’d like a Zoom invitation.   Check out the Coalition’s Facebook page by clicking here.
 
Northeast Youth and Family Services is holding their first ever “Online” Leadership Luncheon.  This year’s event features retired Star Tribune columnist and editorial writer Lory Sturdevant presenting: Minnesota: the State that Votes.  Contact Sandra Bahr at 651-379-3422 or Sandra@nyfs.org to get your invitation to the online meeting.
 
There was quite a bit of discussion about how to salvage some fundraising potential out of the cancelled Gold Plate Dinner.  Several ideas were discussed and it was agreed that we will address the issue later this year.
 
It was agreed that we will continue to hold our Tuesday noon meetings virtually for the near future.  Watch your email for the ZOOM invite.
 
Ed James let me know after the meeting ended that applications for this year’s at-large scholarships are the highest ever and five NBMV Rotarians have agreed to evaluate the applicants.
Our Guests today were Nanase Hirama and her host mom, Denise Jacobsen.
 
President Dennis Connolly reminded us that we’ll be having a club assembly at our noon meeting on March 31st.  Everyone is encouraged to attend.
 
Upcoming Event Highlights
  • Next week’s speaker – Theresa Cira, PhD, from the MN Dept. of Agriculture, talking about pollinators.
  • Sunday, April 5th 11AM - Egg stuffing for the Easter Egg Hunt at the Exchange.
  • Saturday, April 11th 10AM - Easter Egg Hunt – All hands on deck!
  • Saturday, April 4 8:30-11:30PM – District Grants Management Seminar at Family Means in Stillwater.  For those who want to make a day of it, the Global Grants Workshop will be held at Family Means that afternoon from 1:00-3:00PM)
  • Check out President Dennis Connolly’s weekly email for a complete list of upcoming events.
 
Cindy Carlson reminded us that it’s just one month until we need the final head count for the Gold Plate Dinner.  We all need to do our part to make sure that all 100 tickets for the event are sold.  Cindy also noted that we are in need of gift cards and certificates from restaurants to auction off in the Dine-Around-Town bundle.  Cindy also circulated a volunteer signup sheet for the event which will circulate again at the next few meetings.
 
Ed James said that we have not found a second host family for Nanase, so she will spend the entire year with the Jacobsen’s.  The club will take a year off from the Exchange program next year to work on building a host network.  Nanase has just started practices for the Irondale softball team and is excited to learn about the sport, which she has never played.  She will leave for home on July 7, so find a time soon to invite her on an outing. 
 
Jed Hamoud reminded us to get our fully completed Gold Plate Dinner ticket stubs back to him soon.
 
Happy Bucks Highlights
  • Jed Hamoud’s eldest daughter was in from Washington, D.C. for a visit.
  • Charlie Longbella was skiing in Vail with his family and his team just won the hockey championship.
  • Dave Hoel reported that wife Susan is recovering well from surgery to repair a broken heel.  Now both she and David have skeletons that are augmented with 8 titanium screws.
 
Our speaker today was New Brighton Parks and Recreation Director, Jennifer Fink.  She was here to preview the Park and Trail Comprehensive Master Plan Draft.  The draft plan is the culmination of extensive community input and, if approved by the City Council, will serve as the overall vision and road map for the next 20 years.  Jennifer emphasized that the Plan does not include funding mechanisms, which would be determined by the Council.  The planning process began in December of 2018 with data collection and community engagement.  WSB community planning consultants were hired to develop a coordinated plan based on staff and community input.  The plan is now ready for public review and will be brought to the council for final approval in April of this year.  If approved, changes would start this year.
 
As a part of the planning process, WSB evaluated existing trails, parks and structures on a number of criteria and most were found to be inadequate based on current standards.  The plan addresses these inadequacies and strives to create a sense of community, safe and inviting spaces, sustainability, unique and accessible recreational experiences all wrapped up in a fiscally and environmentally responsible package.  The recommendations include, but are not limited to, a major Community Center expansion, development of a Civic Campus to the South of the Community Center, major improvements to City parks and trails and improvements to the Brightwood Hills Clubhouse.  Jennifer and Mary Stewart are shown below.
Upcoming Event Highlights
  - Next week’s speaker – Jennifer Fink – New Brighton Parks and Recreation Director
  - Sunday, April 5th 11AM - Egg stuffing for the Easter Egg Hunt at the Exchange.
  - Saturday, April 11th 10AM - Easter Egg Hunt – All hands on deck!
  - Saturday, April 4 8:30-11;30PM – District Grants Management Seminar at Family Means in Stillwater.
Check out President Dennis Connolly’s Monday emails for a complete list of upcoming events.
 
Cindy Carlson reminded us to be on the lookout for Live Auction, Mini-Raffle and Dine-Around-Town items for the Gold Plate Dinner.
 
Nils Friberg announced an arrangement by which individual NBMV Rotarian’s additional contributions to the Rotary Foundation’s Polio Plus fund will earn DOUBLE Foundation recognition points.  This will get you to the next Paul Harris recognition level sooner!  See Nils for more information.
 
President Dennis asked us to think about how we might respond if schools are closed due to the Corona virus pandemic.  One problem would be that many students rely on the school’s free lunch programs for adequate daily nutrition.  There may be other issues as well.  Dennis welcomes your ideas on how we could be of service in our community as the virus spreads.
 
Dennis noted that he has a new granddaughter, Emily, born last Saturday.
 
Mary Stewart introduced Angela Fredrickson, Market Manager for the New Brighton Farmer’s Market.  In January of 2016, a meeting was held to investigate the possibility of a Farmer’s Market in New Brighton.  In March of that year, Angela and 3 others dedicated themselves to idea and by June of the same year the Farmer’s market had opened for business on Wednesday’s from 3-7PM in the parking lot of the United Theological Seminary.  The Farmer’s Market remained at that location until 2019 when the Seminary moved to a new location and the new owner of the property could no longer accommodate the Market.  Fortunately, the City of New Brighton Parks and Recreation Department offered to partner with the Market by offering to host the Market in the Community Center parking lot.  The new location and the support of the city have been extremely beneficial for the Farmer’s Market, leading to much higher traffic (often 1,000 or more patrons on a nice summer evening) and a larger number of vendors and activities for those attending the market.  It also allows the Market to be open on the second Wednesday of the winter months from 3-7PM.  Because of the increased activity, more volunteers are needed to supplement their five regular volunteers.
 
Angela is looking forward to 501(c)(3) non-profit status and the addition of SNAP and Electronic Benefits Transfer to make the healthy foods at the Market more available to those with public assistance.  Angela also looks forward to expansion of the popular weekly “themes”, entertainment options, food trucks, etc.  One very popular program is the “POP” (Power of Produce) program where kids receive a $2 token to spend on the produce of their choice.  This program successfully encourages kids to try new healthy foods.  Farmer’s Market Sponsorships are available from just $100 up to $1,000 and sponsors are recognized in several ways.  Visit the Facebook Page to find out more. Mary and Angela are shown below.
Cindy Carlson made us aware of the District 5960 Grants Management Seminar to be held on April 4th, 8:30AM-11:30AM, at Family Means, Stillwater, MN. This seminar is the perfect way to learn more about the Rotary Foundation and the district’s Matching Grants Program.  Also, the Board is looking for ideas for a local matching grant project for the coming Rotary year.  Contact any Board member with your ideas.
 
Cindy also noted that the Gold Plate Dinner is fast approaching and we need all hands on deck to make the Gala a success again this year.  One important way that you can contribute is by asking the business establishments you frequent to consider a donation for the event.  Download the Sponsor Brochure to help explain the need for donations.
 
Gold Plate Dinner Ticket Guru, Jed Hamoud, said he still has lots of tickets for us to sell.  Download the Invitation Brochure to distribute to friends, family and co-workers who might be interested in attending the Gala.  Once you have sold a ticket, PLEASE get the fully completed ticket stub back to Jed.
 
Nils Friberg distributed an interview with Bill Gates from The Rotarian magazine.  In the interview, Gates discusses his reasons for supporting Rotary’s Polio Plus initiatives and his optimism for completing the goal of polio eradication.  Nils reminded us that we have set a total goal of $1,500 for individual member contributions to the Rotary Foundation’s Polio Plus effort.  Contact Nils or John Ordway to make your contribution (checks payable to the Rotary Foundation).  Be sure to let John Ordway know if you make an online contribution so your contribution is recorded in the clubs contribution total.
 
Ed James reminded us that the 4th Grade Foresters Tree Giveaway is on Arbor Day, April 24th, starting at 11 AM.  See Ed if you can help distribute the trees.
 
Happy Bucks Highlights:
   - President Dennis is expecting a new granddaughter, Emma, by tomorrow.
   - Cindy Carlson treated Nanase to a Wild Hockey Game.  The Wild unfortunately lost, but Nanase had a great time.
 
Ed James celebrated his birthday this week.  We sang Happy Birthday to him but he somehow managed to avoid wearing the birthday hat.
 
Jed Hamoud introduced our speaker, Alan Gregerson, from the Communications and Liaison Division of the IRS.  For the last 22 years, Alan has made presentations to groups, businesses and tax preparers about tax policies and especially about changes in tax policy.  Alan said that the very first U.S. income tax return was filed in 1913.  It was a three page form with one page of instructions!  As we all know, the length and complexity of our tax returns have increased dramatically since that time.  Although we may be tempted to blame the IRS for this complexity, it should be noted that tax law is made by Congress, and the IRS does its best to administer and interpret the law.  The 2019 Taxpayer First Act was Congress’ attempt to improve the taxpaying experience.  It included digital modernization, reorganization of the IRS, cyber-security protections, 45 day warnings before enforcement action and a new W-4 certificate.  Alan noted that one of the challenges to improving the taxpaying experience is that the personnel levels at the IRS have been reduced to 1980 levels, making long telephone waiting times the reality.  He suggested that one way to avoid the wait is to set up a face-to-face appointment time online.  Start by locating your nearest local IRS office here.   Alan can be contacted at Alan.J.Gregerson@irs.gov
Dennis and Alan are pictured below.
Our guests today were:  Fridley Rotarian Gordy Backlund, New Brighton City Recreation Coordinator Ali Luken and Charlie Longbella’s new salesperson, Wren Jacobs.
 
Our presenters today were Beth Wiggins, Director of Caregiving and Aging Services and Jenny West, Community Educator for Caregiving and Aging Services at Family Means. Founded in 1963, Family Means is a non-profit helping individuals and families through challenges in all of life’s stages.  Beth and Jenny were here to give us a preview of a new virtual reality tool that helps caregivers and others view the world through the perspective of a person living with dementia.  This immersive sensory experience gives the user a firsthand experience of the short term memory loss, spatial distortion, disorientation, visual disturbances, communication problems, and cognitive difficulties experienced by those who have Alzheimer’s Disease.  Virtual reality simulation of these Alzheimer’s symptoms helps caregivers to better understand, create empathy and learn to be better caregivers.  Charlie Longbella agreed to wear the VR goggles for the demonstration and we were able to experience it with him on the big screen.  The software simulates the sensory distortions experienced by Alzheimer’s sufferers and we all shared Charlie’s frustration with trying to accomplish even simple tasks.   Jenny Beth and Dennis, and are shown below.
 
President Dennis Connolly reminded us that the Gold Plate Dinner Planning Committee with meet at 11AM on Tuesday the 18th at the Exchange.  All are encouraged to attend.  Cindy Carlson noted that we need several more GPD sponsors to equal our 2019 sponsorship total.
 
GPD ticket guru, Jed Hamoud, began distributing tickets to members at today’s meeting.  PLEASE return the completed stubs to Jed ASAP and start looking for friends, family and business associates that might like to join you at the Gala.  Let Jed know if you need more tickets.
 
Dennis also noted that the District 5960 Grants Management Seminar will be held in Rochester on May 14th, from 5:30-8:30PM
 
Check your email today for a complete list of upcoming activities.
 
It was Charlie Longbella’s 33rd birthday this week so he was roped into wearing the infamous birthday hat while we serenaded him with the birthday song (see photo below).
 
 
President Dennis Connolly began the meeting by announcing that the Thursday morning meetings have been discontinued due to low attendance.  Other options for flexible meeting times may be considered.  Dennis also noted that we will be evaluating our meal payment system.  A discussion ensued with Rotarians expressing varied opinions about the best method and the implications for membership, attendance and fiscal stability.  Your feedback is welcomed by the President and Board of Directors.
 
Cindy Carlson reported on this morning’s Gold Plate Dinner Gala planning meeting.  The committee has selected CPY Summer Camperships as the Fund-a-Cause for this year’s event.  Jed Hamoud is handling the tickets this year so see him if you have not received your ticket or need more tickets.  It goes without saying that we should all be looking for potential attendees and donors for the Gala.  Click these links to download the Invitation Brochure and the Sponsor Brochure.  All club members are expected to help in some way to make the Gala a success.
 
Jennifer Fink announced that there will be an opportunity to meet the finalists for the New Brighton City Manager position on March 18th, 5-7 PM, at City Hall.  Mark your calendars now and stay tuned for more details.
 
Today’s presenter was our own Jed Hamoud.  His topic was “The Middle East in a Nutshell”.  Jed’s explanation for the current situation in the Middle East is that the lack of education, industry, immigration, development and employment opportunities combined with a high birthrate have led to poverty for the vast majority of people there.  Jed described the “Arab Spring” of 2010 as a reaction to the disparities between the Middle East and more developed countries.  Jed believes that the cell phone increased Middle Easterner’s awareness of these disparities, contributing to the unrest.  The Arab Spring started in Tunisia and rapidly spread to other Muslim countries, leading to full-fledged civil war in Syria, Afghanistan, Libya, Somalia, Iraq and Yemen as well as civil unrest and protests in all other Middle Eastern countries.  Jed said that there are three common factors in all of these Arab Spring related events: Corruption, Poverty and Islam.  The unrest began as anti government dissent but Middle Easterners are now realizing that the Islamic leaders are the root cause.  Jed suggested that an article by Kim Ghattas provides an excellent overview of the situation.  You can download it by clicking here.
President Dennis Connolly opened the meeting by announcing that Charlie Longbella has accepted the nomination to serve as NBMV Rotary President for the 2021-22 Rotary year.  Charlie’s Rotary spirit and leadership skills have been very evident even though he is a fairly new member.  Congratulations, Charlie!
 
Dennis also highlighted some upcoming events which can be found in his weekly upcoming events email.
 
Dana Rebelein preemptively offered a $5 contribution to forestall wearing the birthday hat today, but Nyle Zikmund countered with a $5 contribution to compel her to wear it.  In the end justice was served as Dana complied (see photo of Dana and Nyle below). 
 
Our presenter today was Mark Kinde, M.P.H. an epidemiologist from the Injury and Violence Prevention Section of the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH).  Mark’s topic was “I can see clearly now … Injury & Violence Prevention in 2020”.  Mark said that the mission of the MDH is to Protect, Preserve and Improve the health of all Minnesotans.  Mark credited early 20th century visionary, Geoffrey Vickers, with the following quote: “Public health is the constant redefinition of the unacceptable.” Unfortunately, the opportunity to be healthy is not equally available everywhere for everyone in Minnesota.  Mark shared a lot of data and graphs with us and he graciously made his Powerpoint presentation available to share with our newsletter readers.  Click here to download the complete presentation.  Mark and Dennis are shown below.
 
Your bulletin editor was on vacation last week, but Ed James was kind enough to takes some photos of the week’s activities:
 
At last week's meeting, Nils Friberg presented John Ordway with a Paul Harris Fellow +6, signifying over $7,000 in contributions to the Rotary Foundation.  Congratulations, John!  (See photo below)
 
Ed also snapped some photos of the Rotary Holiday Party (see below).
 
President Dennis Connolly began the meeting by reviewing upcoming Rotary events.  
- The NBMV Rotary Holiday Party will be this Friday, January 24th, 6-9PM at Michelle and Mike Caron’s home.  Watch your email for white elephant gift dice game details.
- Our 19th Annual Gold Plate Dinner Gala will be held on Friday April 17, at the Mermaid.  The planning committee, led by Cindy Carlson and Nicole Ulrich, met earlier today.  Ticket sales and donations are the key to a successful event so be thinking about who might want to attend the event or donate an auction item. 
- Stillwater Rotary is having their “Taste of the Valley” fundraiser on January 30th, 6-10PM, at The Waterstreet Inn, 101 Water Street S, Stillwater.
- White Bear Lake Rotary is holding the 12th annual BEAR’ly Open golf tournament on ice.  The fun starts with a dance at 8PM at White Bear Country Inn followed by golfing on the ice at noon on Saturday February 1st at Ramsey beach on White Bear Lake.  All net proceeds go the White Bear Area Emergency Food Shelf.
- At 11AM on Friday April 24th (Arbor Day) we will once again give out free tree saplings to area 4th graders.  We’ll have 540 trees to give away this year so we’ll need lots of help.  Mark your calendars now.
- Gerry Tietz has an electronic radon tester that he’s willing to loan to club members who’d like to check their homes for radon.
Watch your email for a complete list of Rotary activities.
 
Happy Bucks Highlights:
- Dana Rebelein was thrilled to have two stepsons visit her this past week.
- Charlie Longbella scored a goal in the hockey league he joined recently.
- Paul Fournier just celebrated his 86th birthday!  See photo below.
 
Paul Fourier introduced his wife, Chrissy, to speak about her 20 year association with Lundstrum Performing Arts.  After retiring from Broadway musical theater, Chrissy joined the staff of Lundstrum Performing Arts as a way to give back to young people in gratitude for her wonderful career.  Chrissy revels in the opportunity to give North Minneapolis kids a chance to act, sing and dance.  Chrissy turned the presentation over to Tyler Anderson for details about Lundstrum.
 
Tyler joined Lundstrum a year ago to help get the word out to the community and civic groups.  Tyler began with some Lundstrum history.  It all started in the 1920’s when 15 year-old Dorothy Lundstrum took over Ascension School of Dance with her sisters, Lorraine and Marion.  For nearly 80 years, despite economic  changes in North Minneapolis, Dorothy remained committed to providing quality instruction in dance, charm and fashion.  When Dorothy passed away in 1998, she willed the studio to the Casserly sisters to continue the work she had started.  In 2000, the sisters created a non-profit and expanded the curriculum to specialize in musical theater training.  They wisely drew on the talents of instructors with Broadway experience, like Chrissy.
 
Lundstrum Performing Art’s mission is: “To cultivate a love and knowledge of the performing arts so that young people will discover their unique gifts, develop their depth of character and imagine new possibilities for their lives, ensuring access for all through scholarship support.”
 
For more information about Lundstrum Performing arts, contact Tyler Anderson: Tyler@Lundstrum.org
Chrissy, Tyler and Paul are pictured below.
President Dennis Connolly visited E.C.H.O. last week while in Fort Myers, FL and took photos of the two wheeled tractor and accessories made possible by the $12,000 District 5960 matching grant that Geoff Hollimon wrote.  Geoff was also responsible for securing contributions from several other Rotary Clubs to make the grant happen. The tractor will be a perfect fit for the small-scale farming tasks performed at E.C.H.O.
 
We received thank you notes from the Irondale Choir and Mounds View Festival in the Park for our contributions.
 
Past Presidents of the club will gather briefly after next Tuesday’s meeting to nominate someone for President-Elect Nominee.  This nominee would serve as Club President during the 2021-22 Rotary Year.
 
Ed James read a note from the Harvest Pack staff thanking us for our contribution and packing assistance for our recent packing event at Irondale.
 
Cindy Carlson invited us all to attend a planning meeting for the Gold Plate Dinner, 11AM next Tuesday at the Exchange.  She asked us to think about a project or cause for our Fund-a-Cause effort at the Gala.
 
Cindy also reminded us that the Community Support Center (CSC) will be having its annual “Sing for Our Neighbors” multi-choir fundraising concert on January 26th, 2 PM at Abiding Savior Lutheran Church, 8211 Red Oak Drive in Mounds View.  Nine community church choirs will perform for this benefit concert.
 
The Club Holiday Party will be held on January 24th, 6-9PM at Michelle and Mike Caron’s home.
 
Cindy Carlson introduced our presenter, Lauren Lombard, Director of Development for Headwaters Relief Organization. Headwaters Relief Organization (hereafter, Headwaters) began as a grassroots volunteer relief effort after hurricane Katrina ravaged New Orleans.  Their successes there drove a desire to expand their efforts to victims of other disasters both here and abroad.  Their international relief efforts began after the 2010 earthquake in Haiti.  Since then, they have responded to disasters, both natural and man-made, in the Philippines, Nepal, Greece, Jordan, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Puerto Rico, St. Johns as well as numerous states in the U.S.  Relief services include providing public health, psychosocial and medical support as well as clean-up and re-building.  Headwaters works closely with other organizations to maximize their effectiveness.
 
As they worked hard to clean up and rebuild after disasters, Headwaters saw that there was a need to address the effect that these disasters were having on children.  This prompted the development of a series of books specifically designed to help children cope with the trauma.  These story books are carefully designed to help parents and caregivers process what has happened and provide hope for the future and build resiliency in children and families affected by disasters.
 
Like most non-profit organizations, Headwaters relies heavily on volunteers and donations.  Their annual Gala is one way to contribute, or you can click here to donate in other ways.
 
Cindy and Lauren are shown below.
President Elect Ed James led today’s meeting in President Dennis Connolly’s absence.
 
Exchange student Nanase celebrated her 17th birthday last Thursday and we couldn’t resist having her put on the birthday hat while we sang a rousing rendition of the birthday song (see photo below).
 
Nanase has joined the Irondale cross country ski team and just returned from a competition in Michigan.  She’ll be traveling to Duluth with her host family this weekend.
 
Ed will be gathering applications for our at-large high school senior scholarship to be presented in June.  Ed will likely need some help to evaluate the applications.
 
Our second half exchange host family will be unable to host Nanase, so we need someone to step up and host her from the end of February through July 7th.  Please contact Ed ASAP if you, or someone you know, might be willing to host. 
 
Ed noted that our Fourth Grade Foresters Arbor Day tree giveaway will happen on April 24th, starting at 11AM.  Mark your calendars now!  Jennifer Fink suggested that we might want to coordinate with the New Brighton City Forester on future events.
 
Jennifer also reported that the vacant City Manager position has been posted and it’s expected that the position will be filled by April.
 
The date for the Gold Plate Dinner Gala is Friday, April 17th.  The venue will be the revamped convention center at the Mermaid.
 
The New Brighton Community Center Fitness Open House is on Saturday, January 11th from 9AM to 1PM.  Join us for Discounts, Free Gifts, Personal Trainers, and More.
 
Our Speaker for today unfortunately had to cancel shortly before the meeting.  Hopefully we can reschedule the presentation.
Our guests today were:
Chrissy Fournier, Susan Hoel, Debra Hollimon, Maureen O’Brien, Cheryl Neeley, Debbie Connolly Tina Risdall and Peg Friberg.
 
The Irondale High School Choir, with director Jason Etten and accompanist Steve Ferkus, graced us with four wonderful selections before leading us in a carol sing-along.  It’s fun to see the students year after year and also to hear the senior’s plans for the future.  Thanks go to David Hoel for once again planning the special meeting entertainment.  Dave presented the choir with a $500 donation from the club.
 
Life Prep Academy will hold a bake sale fundraiser and open house on Thursday December 19th from noon  to 8PM.  Join them for treats, beverages and fellowship at the Academy, 1628 County Highway 10 NE in Spring Lake Park.
 
Our Club Holiday Party is scheduled for Friday, January 24th.  Mark your calendars now!  Location TBD.
 
The Gold Plate Dinner planning team will have its first meeting on Thursday January 2nd at 5:30PM.  Join the team for dinner at the Exchange as they begin to plan the next Gala.
 
Jennifer Fink celebrated a birthday this past week and we couldn’t let that milestone go by without singing Happy Birthday (Jennifer is pictured below).
 
REMEMBER:  Because of the holidays, we will NOT be meeting on December 24th and 31st.  Meetings will resume on January 7th.  Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!
Our guest today was Karen Meyer from the Community Support Center.
 
Upcoming events:
- Our annual Irondale Choir Christmas concert is next Tuesday, December 17th.  If you are planning to attend and have not signed up yet, please contact Dennis so we can get an accurate count for food preparation.  The meeting is at Risdall Marketing, 2685 Long Lake Rd, Roseville.
- The District 5960 Mid-Term Meeting is a good way to learn more about Rotary.  This year it’s at Hamline University.  Click here to check it out.
 
Happy Bucks Highlights:
- Dave Hoel recounted his 9 ½ hour drive (normally 2 hours) from Denver to the ski resort in Beaver Creek, CO.  A rockslide coupled with blizzard conditions caused the traffic backup.  Once he arrived, the skiing was great and no bones were broken.
- Dave also noted that he had the Home Energy Squad do a energy efficiency analysis on his home and he was impressed (as were several other Rotarians) with the service they provide.  If you’d like to take advantage of this program, call 651-328-6220 or sign up online at https://www.mncee.org/home-energy-squad/sign-up/   According to Dave, the cost is $70 but you can save $5 by telling them that you found out about the program when C.E.E. presented the program at Rotary.
- Dana Rebelein enjoyed the Christmas Concert at Northwestern University.  Margaret Johnson chimed in that she had enjoyed it as well.
- Madison Zykmund was happy for S.B.M. Fire Department’s youth engagement during their Santa Week.
- Cindy Carlson was happy for our club’s John Marg-Patton Memorial Fund, which funded the majority of the Harvest Pack food packing event to be held later today at Irondale.
 
On behalf of the club, President Dennis Connolly presented Karen Meyer, Executive Director of the Community Support Center, with a check for $1,000 to help fund the excellent work that CSC does to prevent homelessness and solve financial crises for families in our community.  Karen said that, because of decreased support from government and other agencies, CSC has seen an increase in the need for financial support and counseling.  Karen thanked us for our ongoing support.  Dennis and Karen are shown below.
 
Nyle Zikmund introduced our speaker, Mitch Killian from the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC).  Mitch began by saying that most airports in the U.S. are controlled by the city in which they are located.  The Twin Cities area airports are unusual in that they are controlled by the Metropolitan Airports Commission (MAC) composed of 8 metro area representatives, 4 outstate representatives, one mayoral office representative each from Minneapolis and St. Paul and 1 chairperson.  The MAC has a staff of 650.
 
Mitch said that MSP International Airport sits on 3,300 acres and has four runways with 8 departure ends.  The airport is growing steadily, currently handling over 38 million passengers per year, making it the 17th busiest airport for passengers served in the U.S.  Forty five routes have been added since January 2017.  Many of these additional routes are international routes, which has great benefit for the airport as well as for the communities it serves.  MSP’s very low cost per passenger helps airlines to be more profitable and this is why there are seventeen carriers serving Minnesota passengers.  The competition between these carriers keeps airfares low.  MSP is also beginning a major remodeling to improve parking and passenger flow, and the new Intercontinental MSP Hotel will make the airport even more convenient for travelers. 
 
Six metro “reliever” airports are also controlled be the MAC.  Anoka County-Blaine, Crystal, Flying Cloud, Lake Elmo, Airlake and St. Paul Downtown airports handle much of the corporate and private traffic which would create congestion at MSP.  For more information about the MAC, click here.  Nyle and Mitch are pictured below.
 
Addendum:
 
At least seventeen Rotarians, family members, and our exchange student Nanase,  participated in the Harvest Pack food packing event mentioned earlier in this newsletter.  Together with Irondale students, we packed 36,160 meals to be distributed locally to our neighbors with food insecurity.  Congratulations to all who helped to plan, fundraise and pack food.  See photo below.
Our guest today was Ruth Marg-Patton.
 
It’s no secret that Dean Lotter is leaving after 12 years as New Brighton’s City Manager to take a new position as City Manager of Eureka, California.  On our club’s behalf, Cindy Carlson thanked Dean Lotter for his service to the city of New Brighton and presented him with an official NBMV coffee mug to remind him of his time as a New Brighton Mounds View Rotarian.  She also presented him with some bite size Salted Nut Rolls to sustain him and Wendy on the road trip to their new home. The final gift was a warm pair of Minnesota themed socks which should be perfect for the surprisingly cool northern California weather.  California has long held a special appeal for Dean and Wendy.  Wendy went to school there, they have vacationed there and they were even married there.  Dean explained that he was drawn to the relaxed lifestyle of the small coastal community, but actually felt “called” to help the community address its homelessness and opioid abuse issues.  Dean appeared justifiably proud of the impact that he and his staff have had on New Brighton during his tenure.  One major accomplishment is the introduction of financial management principles which have generated cash on hand, allowing the city to make acquisitions and even maintain city streets without incurring costly debt.  Dean is also proud of New Brighton city administration’s “can-do’ organizational culture.  He feels that he can transition to his new position with confidence that he’s leaving New Brighton in excellent organizational and financial condition.  A farewell party is planned for Friday, November 22nd, 5:30PM at the New Brighton community Center. Click here to view the details.  Dean is pictured below.
 
Cindy also had the pleasure of inducting New Brighton Parks and Recreation Director Jennifer Fink as a Rotarian.  Jennifer was formerly a Rotary Designee under Dean’s membership but will assume Dean Lotter’s city government classification.  Congratulations, Jennifer!  Jennifer is shown with Dennis and Cindy, below.
 
Charlie Longbella has been working on our Facebook presence.  Today he showed us our page and he described how he has arranged a fundraising partnership with Harvest Pack to help fund our Food Packing event in December.  Our goal is to raise $1,000 through this partnership.  To donate or get more information click the following link:   https://www.facebook.com/donate/739909009860872/
 
Our newest Rotary member is John Johnson and he gave his classification talk today.  John grew up in St. Anthony and lived there until 1991, when he moved to his current home on Long Lake.  His first employment was with his family’s 4th generation business (Johnson Wholesale Supply).  After that he worked at Cargill as a project manager for 18 years.  During his time at Cargill he also worked part-time as a real estate investor/realtor for 14 years before becoming a full-time realtor with Edina realty in 2013.  Ruth and John Marg-Patton had been relentless in trying to get John to be a Rotarian for some time, but the great experience of hosting Maria last year seems to finally have convinced John to take the Rotary plunge.  John and his family remain in touch with Maria and plan to visit her in Norway this summer.  John’s primary reason for joining Rotary is that it offers him a greater opportunity to make a positive difference.  John’s secondary reason is to increase Swedish representation in the club.  John is married to Dana and between them they have three daughters and one son.  John is a total lake rat, enjoying anything lake related.  John and Ruth Marg-Patton are shown below.
President Dennis Connolly reviewed upcoming event highlights.  See Dennis’ events email for details on all of these events:
-  White Bear Lake Rotary’s Thanksgiving Meals on Wheels program is in its 49th year.  About 20,000 meals will be prepared and distributed to 400 families on Thanksgiving Day.  Of course, a program of this size requires many volunteers, so they could use your help in preparing and delivering the meals.
-  Forest Lake Rotary is holding their 3rd annual Turkey Trot at the Forest Lake City Center, 1408 Lake St S. in Forest Lake.  To register or get more information, click here.
-  The giant Hmong New Year celebration will be on November 30- Dec 1 at the St Paul River Centre.  Click here for more information.
-  Don’t forget our Harvest Pack Event on December 10th.  All Rotarians, family and friends are invited to join in the event.  Please take the time right now to register yourself, and any helpers.  Click here to complete your registration.
-  The District Mid-Term meeting is set for January 11th, 8:30-3:00PM at Hamline University.
-  Our annual Irondale Choir Christmas Concert and Carol sing along will be at Risdall Marketing in Roseville on December 17th at 12:15PM.  An awesome meal will be catered by the exchange.
 
Happy Bucks Highlights:
-  Dave Hoel was happy about travelling to Puerto Vallarta and about his 74th birthday tomorrow.  He generously treated us with cake to celebrate his old age and we treated him by singing happy birthday.
-  Cindy Carlson was happy about her trip to Asheville, North Carolina.
-  Dennis Connolly visited the Bentleyville Christmas light show with his grandkids.
-  Jason Miller was happy to have his daughter home from school for the holidays.
 
Our speaker today was historian and author, David Yorks.  His topic was; “The Warren Commission Report: Fact or Fiction”.  Just days after the assassination of President Kennedy, President Lyndon B. Johnson created a commission to investigate the assassination.  Seven men agreed to serve on the commission but, according to David, six of those appointed were reluctant to do so for either political or personal reasons, or both.  Only Gerald Ford was excited to participate.  David believes that the Warren Commission suffered 3 major disadvantages:  1. Since most of the Commission members were reluctant to serve in the first place, their attendance was poor, with  each individual commissioner attending around 50% of the hearings.  2. The Commission had an unreasonable deadline and was grossly underfunded.  3.  Many government agencies withheld information or outright lied to the commission.  Since the Warren Commission, there have been five more government investigations into the events surrounding the assassination.  The most thorough investigation was conducted from 1976-79 by the House Select Committee on assassination (HSCA).  Unlike the Warren Commission investigation, the HSCA was not hampered by financial or time restraints, and new film, audio and previously classified documents were available to the HSCA.  The HSCA disagreed with the Warren Commission’s findings in the following ways:  While the Warren Commission found no evidence of conspiracy, the HSCA found that there must have been a conspiracy but could not specify who was involved.  The Warren Commission decided that only three shots were fired but the HSCA determined that four shots were fired.  The Warren Commission determined that the autopsy was properly conducted but the HSCA disagreed, since neither of the doctors involved had ever performed a gunshot autopsy before.  The Warren Commission determined that Jack Ruby had acted on his own in shooting Lee Harvey Oswald and that Ruby had no ties to organized crime but the HSCA could not rule out either possibility.  David pointed out several other inconsistencies and improbabilities of the Warren Commission’s findings.  He stressed that all the members of the Warren Commission and the HSCA were honorable men who were doing the best job that they could and didn’t imply any conspiracy in either investigative group.  But the question remains: what are the true facts surrounding the JFK assassination.  David and Dennis are shown below.
Our guest today was Paul Fournier’s wife Chrissy.
 
President Dennis Connolly displayed our new banners representing 100 percent club participation in Polio Plus and Every Rotarian Every Year (EREY) participation.  These Rotary Foundation awards were presented at the recent Foundation Dinner.   These recognitions signify our strong support for the Rotary Foundation. November is Rotary Foundation month, and each of us is encouraged to maintain or increase our Foundation giving.  Stay tuned for information on how you can double your recognition points for additional foundation contributions in November and December of this year.
 
New Brighton City Manager (and NBMV Rotarian) Dean Lotter was featured in a recent St. Paul Pioneer Press article
 
Dean is leaving to be the City Manager in Eureka, CA, and we’ll be bidding him a fond farewell at next Tuesday’s noon meeting.  Rumor has it that there may be cupcakes.  At the same meeting we’ll be inducting John Johnson into the club.
 
President Dennis reviewed our club service projects.  One project that has stalled a bit is our Financial Literacy class at CPY.  We hope to re-energize the program this year.
 
Speaking of service projects; our next Harvest Pack event is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon on December 10th.  Our club has earmarked $4,000 for the event and the Lions and Eagles are also likely to contribute.  API Group has generously committed $1,000 toward this project.  You’ll soon be able to register online or sign up at the club meeting.
 
Mary Stewart thanked everyone who attended the CPY Game Night Gala.  Initial reports indicate about $22,000 in much needed funds for this program that is so critical for area youth.
 
Ed James has accepted the President Elect position and will begin his presidential term on July 1, 2020.  Congratulations, Ed!
 
Jed Hamoud is celebrating 41 years of wedded bliss this week!
 
Denise Jacobsen introduced our speaker, Japanese exchange student Nanase Hirama.  Nanase is one of three children.  Older sister Ami is a freshman in college; younger brother Haruki is in 7th grade and Nanase herself is in 11th grade and enjoys cooking,  music, camping and exploring beaches and mountains with her family.  Her father works for an energy company and her mother works at a hospital.  Nanase lives in Tomiya, a city of about 53,000 in Miyagi Prefecture on the Northeast coast of Japan.  Nanase attends a 600 student all-girl Christian school which was established in 1886.  Nanase’s Japanese school day schedule was very long and packed with built-in study time and extracurricular activities. 
 
Japan is a very populous country, with 126 million residents (according to Wikipedia).  The Japanese flag is a large red circle (love) on a white background (purity).  Nanase said that the voting age is 18, drinking is legal at 20 and the legal age for marriage is 16 for girls and 18 for boys.  The national currency is the yen and 100 yen is approximately equal to one U.S. dollar.  Japan has sixteen national holidays and numerous festivals.  Nanase’s home is within 10 miles of the location of the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and the resulting 130 ft. high tsunami that devastated Sendai city, killing nearly 16,000 people.  Fortunately, the earthquake was less severe in her hometown than in Sendai.   Ed James, Nanase and Denise Jacobsen are shown below.
Our guests today were: Charlie Longbella’s Brother Ted, and St Paul Rotarian, Valdi Stefanson.
 
While Ed James was in England he returned to the Harrow Rotary Club, which he had visited a year ago.
 
The Harrow Club is hosting our Global Scholar, Ellen Dunn.  This time Ed came prepared to present the Harrow club with a NBMV Rotary mug.
 
Our Club was well represented at the District’s Foundation Dinner last Saturday, with 17 Rotarians, 2 Exchange host parents and our exchange student Nanase in attendance.  The photos below show quite a few of the attendees.
 
President Dennis Connolly is shown below as he proudly accepts the EREY (Every Rotarian Every Year) award, signifying that every member of the club contributed at least $25 to the Rotary Foundation and the average annual contribution per member was over $100.
 
Geoff Hollimon thanked everyone who attended the CPY Game Night last Friday.  Final numbers aren’t available yet, but it looks like the event was a great success.
 
Cindy Carlson reported that our motivational sweatshirt sales at the Foundation Dinner raised over $600 for the Rotary Foundation.  Thanks go to Cindy and others who helped to transport and sell the sweatshirts, as well as to Mayor Val Johnson, who donated the sweatshirts.
 
Valdi Stefanson, District 5960 Matching Grants Mentor, presented Geoff Hollimon with a check for $4,923 which represented the District’s matching contribution for our 2 wheel tractor grant for E.C.H.O. which was recently approved by the district.  Geoff worked extremely hard to promote contributions to the grant from eight area Rotary clubs.  Great work Geoff!
 
Geoff followed up by presenting our club’s contribution of $500 toward St. Paul Rotary’s (Valdi’s home club) Matching Grant project which will provide an ultrasound machine for a Congolese refugee camp.
 
Jennifer Fink reported that Long Lake Regional Park will be the location for the Ice Castle this year.  Stay tuned for more details.
 
On Thursday, November 22nd from 7-9PM the Ralph Reeder Food Shelf will host a free Thanksgiving concert by Rubber Soul, a Beatles tribute band. The concert will be held at Peace Methodist Church, 5050 Hodgson Rd, Shoreview.  No admission fee or registration needed.  A free will offering will benefit The Ralph Reeder Food Shelf.
 
The November 19 noon meeting will feature new member John Johnson’s classification talk as well as a farewell to Dean Lotter, who is leaving to take the City Manager position in Eureka, CA.
 
Mike Neeley noted that he joined Rotary 48 years ago and has maintained perfect attendance for that entire period.  Amazing!!!
 
Nyle Zikmund introduced our speaker, David Schultz, Professor of Political Science at Hamline University.  David’s topic was the case for “swing state” status for Minnesota in the 2020 presidential election.  Starting in the early 70’s, and for the following 45 years, Minnesota had the most reliably Democratic Presidental voting record in the United States.  We were pretty much ignored by both the Republican and Democratic campaigns since the voting results seemed almost predetermined.  “Swing states” like Ohio and Florida, among others, have the potential to go either Republican or Democratic so they get all the campaign attention.  The Electoral College system accentuates the importance of these swing states.  David argues that the political climate in Minnesota began shifting in 1998 and culminated in Donald Trump’s stunning performance here in the 2016 election.  David notes that Minnesota party affiliation poll gaps narrowed from double digits in the 60’s to 4 or 5 points today.  Democrats and Republicans have become more divided by geography and age, resulting in flip-flops in legislative majorities in recent years.  Minnesota also has a high percentage of independent voters, which also increases its potential to become a swing state.  David thinks we are looking more like Florida and Ohio every day.  He believes that Minnesota’s 10 Electoral College votes are up for grabs in the 2020 Presidential election.  If our election ads are the only ads we see in the coming months and presidential candidates actually make campaign stops here, we’ll know that David was right and we have become a swing state.  We’ll soon know the truth. Dennis and David are shown below.
Club Information

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New Brighton Mounds View

Our Club Motto: Service Above Self

Club meetings are held Tuesdays at 12:15 - 1:15 PM
The Exchange Food and Drink
500 5th Ave, NW
651-348-6289
New Brighton, MN 55112
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Upcoming Events
Programs
Dana Healy - CTV Executive Director
Jul 14, 2020
Marketing/Engagment/Community
Summer Park Picnic Meeting
Jul 21, 2020
Silverview Park - Mounds View
Kevin Watson
Jul 28, 2020
United States Army Corps of Engineers
Tara Jebens-Sing
Aug 04, 2020
New Executive Director Northeast Youth and Family Services
Whitney Clark
Aug 11, 2020
Friends of the Mississippi
 
 
 
Club Meeting Options
In addition to the traditional lunch meetings on Tuesdays, the club's "Flex Group" meets from 7:15-8:15 AM at the Bro House.  Watch this website for meeting dates.
 
Attend either a morning or lunch meeting and find out how much fun it is to be a Rotarian.  New members are always welcome. Click on the "Membership Inquiry Form" in the upper right corner and our membership team member will follow up and answer any questions.
 
Interested in Joining?
Contact Membership Director:
Cindy Carlson
ccarlson@western-bank.com
651-290-7867
 
Club Executives & Directors
President