MEMBERS DUTIES—June, 2018-July, 2018


This Week, June 26, 2018
No Meeting Next Week! July 4 Holiday

                                Invocation: Schreder
                                Program: Changing of the Guard

Meals on Wheels: Schreder  (6/29)

BIRTHDAYS -   June 1 - Jerry Low, June 2 - Tim Willson, June 9 - Tom Agnes, 6/29 -Cathy BallotAnniversaries ---    

Anniversaries:  6/30 Myrna Kauth 11 years,  7/1 Dr Orn 4 years

Rotary President Agnes and Patrick Lambertz of MATTOO

Rotary Agnes and Lambert

6/19/2018  Patrick Lambertz a representative of, which is an non-profit organization that exists to educate mostly men, and raise international public awareness that leads to effective public policy and cultural changes---and employs the power of innovative business to assist eradicating the human trafficking industry.

He explained that social business 101, would state “if there is no demand, there is no seller---if  there is no seller, there is no victim.”  That of course, is a very simple, but basic approach to attempting to educate men of the problems brought to society by this modern-day slavery.  Ninety percent of human trafficking is sex based and can be in plain sight or underground with the traffickers controlling their ‘product.’

The organization works with business and strategic partners for financial support and education support, by building awareness through public and private events such as rallies and marches, seminars and other methods of reaching out to tell the message.  They provide direct help to those who have been trafficked to transitional housing, vocational training and after-care facilities.  Thank you Patrick for your presentation, and Byron for inviting him.  Learn more at and on Facebook.

Previous Programs  

6/19/2018 Our program was about Damascus Way---a re-entry center for people being released from prison and its mission is to help them adjust to a new way of life.  Damascus Way was begun because too many men were returning to prison, jail, or treatment after-spending enough time in lock up.  A group of Christians put together a program to help men find jobs, housing, and God in a structured but caring and supervised way.

Begun 40 years ago, Damascus Way is fully accredited by the State correction system and is about two-thirds funded by the Department of Corrections, the rest comes from donations.  National research tracked 404,638 prisoners in 30 states after their release from prison in 2005.

 This research found within three years of release about 67.8 % of those released were rearrested---within five years of release, 76.6%---of those rearrested 56.7% were arrested by the end of the first year.  The percentage of residents who successfully completed the Damascus Way program and have not committed a new crime in the State between 1/1/2007 and 6/1/2011, is 93%!

This success rate is important for many obvious reasons, and one in particular is the cost.  The State cost of prisons in the year 2010, was $395.3, a cost to citizens of $41.364 for the average annual cost per inmate.

Pat McCurdy is the operations person for Damascus Way who explained the program and its importance to our communities, and the individuals in the program---it’s located in Golden Valley and plans are underway to build a new facility on land donated for the project.  For more information contact Pat.McCurdy@  Thanks to Ellen for bringing this important program to the Club. 


6/5/2018 Tom Tamura of the Rotary Districts 5950 and 5960 North Star Youth Exchange program was our speaker.  Tom a retired dentist was born about 50 miles north of Tokyo, and immigrated to the US, meeting his wife who was previously a resident of BC!

The Rotary International Youth Exchange Program was pioneered by Rotary clubs in Denmark and France in the late 1920’s and introduced by American clubs in 1958.  The Exchange sends approximately 9,000 students from nearly 100 countries, building cross cultural connections that make the world a smaller and better place. 

Host families are the anchor of the program, opening their home to provide students with a first-hand experience of life in a new culture abroad and welcomes dozens of students from around the world to the US each Year!

Local clubs supervise their part of the program, working with schools and other services to provide inbound students with a monthly stipend and a host family to stay with during their three to six month stay in the US.   Tom works with individual clubs in the district to determine their interest and works with RI and local schools and facilities to obtain host families for the incoming students.

Students are required to attend school and participate in school activities.  They are expected to follow their host family’s rules and help with household chores as do the host children.  Exchange students are not permitted to drive and are required to follow all US laws and regulations.

RI carefully screens students prior to acceptance into the program, and conducts extensive orientation programs to insure exchange students are aware of their responsibilities.  Serious

5/29/2018 Dr. Jeff Jaeger and his wife, Leslie an MD working in the North Memorial System, became interested in volunteering their time, treasure and talent at a hospital in Limbe, Haiti, the same city that fellow BC Rotarian Ellen Scherer visits to help the local women learn to sew and make items to earn a living for their families.

Dr. J had a slide presentation that featured the Hospital Bon Samaritain in Limbe, which was begun in April, 1958, by Bill and Joanna Hodges, missionaries from California, with a lot of help from churches, volunteers and donors.  The Hodges each took a winding route on their way to Limbe and were sanctioned by the Evergreen Baptist Church in Berkeley who appointed them medical missionaries to the Limbe hospital.  Their legacy is being maintained by Joanna’s grandson Shawn who since 2006, has chosen to follow in his grandmothers steps.  There are concerns about the hospital’s future because many of the donors are growing old or passing, and interest by a new group of support is needed.

The Jaegers go to Limbe to volunteer regularly, with Dr J having been there about a dozen times and is the only dentist to visit regularly.  He said his dental work consists of pulling defective teeth in 75-85% of the patients he sees.  He also said that since American food is a main food supply, that children in the 14 year-old range have more cavities!

He also showed pictures depicting the poverty, unemployment, transportation modes, and the unsanitary conditions the people have to cope with daily.  Other medical personnel meet up with the Jaegers and they form surgical and medical teams to treat the citizens.  It is obvious that the Jaegers and Ellen are very dedicated to helping the people of Limbe, and we all should be very helpful and supportive of their ‘making a difference’ dedication.  Thank you Jaegers!    

5/22/2018 Josh Anderson Director of Business Development for Minneapolis Northwest Tourism which represents BC, BP, MG in promoting the area attractions to tourist groups and individuals was our speaker.  The Staff includes President Dave Looby Rotarian, and a Marketing Team with creative services, communication and social media functions and the Business Development Team.

Hotels they promote includes the DoubleTree by Hilton Minneapolis North, Embassy Suites Minneapolis North, and other venues including Earle Brown Heritage Center, Elm Creek Park Chalet and Central Park, and the 50’s Grill.  Activity locations include WhirlyBall and Bowlero, Edinburgh USA and Rush Creek Golf Club,

To promote local business and tourism they work with associations, corporations, small business, government and religious organizations as well as sports teams.

Brooklyn Center events they support include the Dudley Softball Tournament, Mastermind Education Conference, North American Hockey League, US Handball Nationals and USA Racquetball.   Thanks to our hotel GM Michael Glass for bringing the program and Josh!  

5/8/2018 The approval of BC school District 286 bond issue, approval by the voters last fall, has set the scene for the construction planned for Earle Brown Elementary and BC High School---Von Peterson the architect, explained the project which is set for completion in 2019, he is in the middle in the photo and Jim Langevin is the construction sup-Pres Tom on the right. 

The need for the expansion is obvious, EB is over crowded with 300 students more than the school was built to accommodate! 

At BCHS the space is available, even though the student population has increased---but is in the wrong places, and is not very compatible to fit the STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics access points for guiding students) education plan which is the model used for the curriculum and education process in the school. 

Also at BCHS, the middle school does not have a clear identity and students share entry and other space with the high school students.  The age and maturity difference between the middle and high school kids is significant---and can present problems limiting the education and development experience.

Security for students, staff and buildings is the highest priority for the District, and both BCHS and EB will get entries that will greatly increase the safety for those involved.  Both buildings will have space redefined pod areas developed and common areas improved.  At EB early childhood, preschool, family and other common spaces will also be addressed. 

In all, lots of changes, based on several years of examining the issues and combining facility, students, staff and building needs has taken place and the process goes on to provide the best educational opportunities for the District.  Thanks to Superintendent Carly Baker for arranging this very interesting program.     

5/1/2018 Incoming President Lee Gatlin took us through a Rotary Club Health Check (questionnaire) which is designed to help clubs diagnose areas that need attention before they become a problem, and prescribe remedies.  By using this health check to gather information, we are taking a step to insure and maintain our Club’s activities, and preserve and increase our value for members and the community!

Each attendee received a health check package which included several areas of activities: Your Club Experience, Service and Socials, Members, Image, Business and Operations, and “What’s Next.”  We were then asked to read the check lists and check the activities we felt were appropriate for the Club.  The information from the health check areas will be totaled and provide the basis for an action list of activities for consideration for future projects.

Under the Club Experience area questions included---Our Club meeting programs are relevant, interesting, and varied, also---Some of the members of my Club are my close friends.  For each of the categories a prognosis is suggested to help develop improvement.

The Service and Socials-category was explained that participating in service and having fun with fellow members are the primary reasons Rotarians join and stay in Rotary, and goes on to further develop that theme!

At a later meeting the outcomes of the Health Check will be provided for discussion and action activities developed.  Thanks, Lee for a very interesting activity as we reach the beginning of a new Rotary year.

4/24/2018 Our program was John Emery from the Islamic Resource Group an organization that wants to “Build bridges of understanding between Minnesota Muslims and the broader Minnesota community through education.”  Their belief is that a deeper understanding of different religions and cultures contributes to peace and harmony in the world.

He explained Islam is a way of life coming from the Arabic meaning peace through compliance with God’s will.  A common greeting among Muslims is (in English) “And peace be upon you, too.”  Muslims believe that there is only One God and they worship the same God as Abraham as is explained in biblical history.

There are 1.8 billion Muslims worldwide, approximately 25% of the world’s population. Thirteen percent of the Muslim population is in Indonesia, 11% in Pakistan, 11% in India, 9% in Bangladesh and .2% in the United States.  There are 3.3 million Muslims in the US, which is about 1% of the population, and 160,000 live in Minnesota.  Two major factors in the lives of Muslims is there is one religion-but many cultures and the culture affects the life of Muslims.

They believe in God, Angels, Prophets, Holy Books, Day of Judgment Divine Decree, and ‘Allah” is the Arabic word for God who is most Merciful, all Forgiving and Loving.  John explained the descendants of Adam-with Jesus and Mohammad coming from that source.  He explained that Judaism, Islam and Christianity all have the same or very similar sources and the three religions are more alike than different.  He described the Quran the holy book of Islam and the five Pillars in Islam--Faith, Prayer, Charity, Fasting and Pilgrimage.  He said also the overall objective of Islam is to strive for universal peace.

An interesting program!  Thanks to John for his presentation and explanations-and to Byron for contacting and bringing us the program.    

4/17/2018 The Salvation Army is an international movement basing its message on the Bible and Christian gospels in the name of Jesus Christ to meet human needs without discrimination.  SA had its beginning in 1865, in England by an itinerant Methodist minister William Booth.  He welcomed those of faith who were not invited or able to afford to belong to a Church.  Members of the new method Church became soldiers for the Lord and believed that anyone hungry, in need of shelter or clothes or in need of other care to become able to welcome Jesus into their lives Chris McArdle, SA Donor Relations Manager and our speaker, explained.

Today the SA serves in more than 120 countries and came to the Twin Cities in 1886, it has eight centers here, five of which are located in the most impoverished neighborhoods.   Basic needs the SA provides includes meal programs and food shelves, clothing, food stamp help, rent and utility assistance, employment assistance and transportation and medical assistance.  The Housing services program includes emergency and transistiona housing and permanent supportive housing.

The SA also provides Youth Services including after school programs, character building programs, teen drop-in centers, music opportunities and a North woods camp environment.  In the area of rehabilitation, SA provides adult rehab centers, Harbor Light Center shelter and prison ministry.  The SA also is one of the first agencies to provide emergency disaster services in areas hit by storms, floods, etc.

Just as they never turn down people who need assistance, they also welcome all volunteers who can help with meals serving, food distribution, emergency services, senior and youth programs, mentoring and Bell Ringing.

BC Rotary has teamed with SA for a number of years in the Christmas Season Bell Ringing project, and since 2006, our Club has collected $6,315.11 for the SA with our volunteer effort!  This translates to 631 hot meals, 3 days of meals for 421 people, 371 new coats for kids, feeds 42 families for a week or provides shelter, meals and a shower for 210 people at the SA’s Harbor Light Center in Minneapolis, the largest homeless facility in the State!

Bo Powell also from SA also spoke, telling us about one of SA’s most challenging locations, Broadway and Lindale, which has many community needs.  Thanks to Myrna and the SA for bringing us this informative program.  

4/10/2018 Have you ever thought about going about 50 mph down a steep hill, then jumping at the proper time to launch yourself into the air to make an unsure landing without a guarantee of safety?  That, of course, is the simplified version of what we may think when we watch Ski Jumpers in action.

That’s what our speaker Jay Martin has been involved in-as he calls himself “ski jumper for life.”  Jay has been a prominent person in the sport for 50 years, as an athlete, promoter, jumper, builder, coach and official, which all began when his father signed him up for jumping lessons at the age of five. 

He became a regular at the local venues, Moon Valley and Theodore Wirth Park, and later Bush Lake, participated in the National Junior Championships, accepted a full scholarship to the U of Wyoming, worked his way to be National Champion, and was a member of two US Olympic Ski Teams!

Jay became the first ski jumper to wear a speed skating hat to reduce friction, increasing speed down the jump, and posted a first in Vogel, Austria International, event in 1964, and won five second place finishes in International competition in Norway in ’64, ’65.  He also holds ski jump records at Berlin, New Hampshire, and Winter Park, Colorado.

He brought current ski jumping equipment, including skis, boots, and plastic and metal aids to properly prepare the landing areas for jumpers so they will not get hurt because of irregularities in the landing zone.

He has a long lifetime list of activities, awards, honors and associations to promote, regulate and train jumpers---and represent the sport.  Thanks to Jay for his fascinating descriptions of the sport, and to Byron for bringing his long time friend who trained his two boys to jump!                   

4/3/2018 State Representative Debra Hilstrom, from House District 40B, representing BC and BP was our speaker and told of her concerns to get things accomplished within the session time remaining, because of the strong divisions in the House and State Senate on policy and the one representative majority in the House!

Rep Hilstrom has served on the BC City Council and in the State Legislature for 25 years-17 in the Legislature representing our City and community interests. She earned her Law Degree while serving, and had considered running for State Attorney General until current State Attorney Lori Swanson announced she would run again!

She thanked us for the honor of serving the community at the Minnesota State Capitol, and said they are about half way through the session with significant work to be finished! With the wisdom of her experience she commented on:  Passing a public infrastructure bill---working the recent budget forecast projecting a $329 million surplus---addressing the federal tax legislation---ensuring safety for seniors---and taking steps to end the opioid epidemic remain incomplete issues.

Back to the State Budget-she said the economic outlook for the State is good for families and the unemployment rate is at an historic low.  We outpace most states on the list of good places to do business, retire and raise a family.

Rep Hilstrom also highlighted education saying that is the future for next generations and that investment in recent projects has proven to pay off---Capital Investment (bonding) bills contain infrastructure improvements for our State assets including all types of buildings, prisons, bridges, dams, roads, affordable housing which are in need of repair and maintenance---and a robust $1.5 billion bill has been proposed.

Other highlights included improving Health Care coverage for low and middle-income families and better access to care---along with action to combat the Opioid Epidemic which is being led by Senator Chris A. Eaton who represents Dist 40, including BC and BP.

Taxes have been outlined by Gov. Dayton which would deliver tax cuts to 2 million Minnesotans, and finding a way to deal with the Federal tax law changes---Transportation is always a big issue and is compounded at this time by the Minnesota Licensing and Registration System (MNLARS) system for handling vehicle registration.  Thank you to Representative Hilstrom and to Cathy for inviting her.   

3/27/2018 We were honored to have Officer Gregg Nordby of the BC Police Department and two Explorer Post members Will McCada and Cheyenne Lee tell us about the Post which is sponsored by the BC Police. The purpose of the Boy Scout Explorer Post is to interest youth in the department and to consider policing as a career, while learning about police work and mature as citizens.

Officer Nordby supervises the program of 11 Explorers-and he was in the Explorer program in Blaine while he was a student.  The program provides experiences in all areas of policing for the Explorer volunteers as they work in the program which includes experiences in SWAT procedures, mock interviewing, patrol activities, K-9 program, National Night Out, community trash pick-ups, and scheduling and running their own programs with Officer Nordby’s supervision---and other areas as they learn how to serve and protect in the community!

Explorer McCada is from California where he was an Explorer with the LA Police for three years before coming to BC, and Explorer Cheyenne Lee has been in the program for six years, and is interested in becoming a Police Officer, and will be leaving the Program as she becomes 21 this year.  She said the BC Police Explorer Program really built her character.  The program is partially funded by the Department, but needs donations to carry out their efforts!

3/20/2018 Our speaker was Melvin Anderson a member of our Club---he gave us an update on present and future activities of Youth Determined to Succeed, a non-profit organization founded by him a number of years ago.  YDS is presently developing a ‘Battle Obesity Certified Business Model.’

This program will emphasize behavior changes for those battling obesity.  The program will feature intervention as the primary method of combating obesity.  Currently, most weight loss and obesity programs are passive, such as bariatric surgery, which doesn’t change the harmful habits of those who are obese! 

A startling statistic is that 27% of Minnesota kids/families are obese.  The YDS program will last 12-18 months with wellness intervention and collaborative care.  It will implement best options for program participant’s success.  THANK YOU, TO MELVIN, FOR AN INFORMATIVE AND INTERESTING PROGRAM.  Thanks also to Bill Swanson for the meeting notes.    

3/6/2018 Ellen brought us up to date on her magnificent international program of helping the women of Haiti in learning sewing skills and producing products to sell to earn money for their families.  The project with sanitary kids for girls, and the products have been expanded to included carry bags and baby blankets! 

Twenty Rotary Clubs in our area have contributed and with the matching grant program which Ellen is working on receiving, she is well on the way to her goal of obtaining over $100,000 to improve work place environment, product line and training of seamstresses.  She said the project is a learning process for all involved and gives her ladies confidence and status in the family and community.

Clubs donating include Bloomington, BP, Buffalo, St. Michael, Alexandria, Monticello, Burnsville noon, Chaska, Maple Grove, Wabasha and White Bear Lake and the list keeps growing as Ellen presents the project.  With the grant doubling process in the District and RI, each dollar is matched with two!

Ellen is in the process of collecting supplies and storing and shipping them in a ‘big blue box’ which was donated for the project by Bill K.  She needs material, soccer balls for the youngsters in the area to use and anything else shippable that can be used in this poor country!  The house/processing area has been given a second floor and a third floor canopy is in the ‘’works”.

Dr. Jaeger told of his nine trips to the region to perform dentistry in conjunction with his wife’s project of ‘Helping Haiti Work and incoming President Lee Gatlin has also visited and helped in the area.  This is an amazing project Ellen is producing for the ‘sewing ladies.’

3/13/2018 Our speaker was Mary Sellke of Surly Brewing.  She is in charge of the philanthropic arm of Surly and this has the catchy phrase of “Surly Gives a Damn.”  Actually she is the executive Director!

Surly’s charitable foundation focuses on four areas:  Arts and Culture; Education; Environment; and human service.  The charity started in 2009, and they began doing charitable projects in 2010.

In 2017, the charity did 55 projects in seven states, and over 4500 volunteer hours contributed to the projects.  (Their volunteers do get a free Surly beer).  Projects are mostly located in Minnesota, but this past year six other states received the benefit of Surly’s largesse.  In 2017, Surly Gives a Damn gave away $100,000 to needy charitable organizations and also $50,000 worth of merchandise and beer.

Thanks to Mary for a very informative presentation and let us all raise a glass to Surly for their charitable work.  Thanks also to Bill Swanson for his write up of the program and announcements!

2/6/2018.  “I Have a Dream” speech by Martin Luther King, Jr., echoed from the Lincoln Memorial across the Mall toward the Capitol and over all Washington, D. C., on August 28, 1963, as we saw on a video of the historic event.

The March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1963, had brought thousands to the nation’s Capitol for a chance to hear Dr. King.  The “I Have a Dream” portion of the speech was given after he pushed aside his notes after hearing a plea from Mahalia Jackson---world renowned gospel singer who was on the Memorial steps, to---“Tell them about the dream, Martin”.  He did in his words—            

“I say to you today, my friends…I have a dream…deeply rooted in the American dream.  “I have a dream that one day…sons of former slave and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

            “I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi sweltering with the heat of injustice…will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

            “I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but the content of their character.

            “I have a dream today…”

            “This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a new meaning, “My country, ‘tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing….from every mountainside, let freedom ring.”

            “Let Freedom Ring…Let Freedom Ring…Let Freedom Ring…

            And when this happens, When we allow freedom to ring…from every state and every city…we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

(These notes do not do justice to the atmosphere and the complete speech, because of space limitations---but copies of the speech and notes about Dr. King and his preparation, and his improvised most famous words---“I Have a Dream” were available for pick-up at the meeting--- you can also go on line and find it.) 

1/30/ 2018Matt Oquist covered a lot of self improvement topics and led off with a recap from the last time he spoke to us.  He said planning is a process with goals and triggers that happen-requiring plan changes and dealing with other alarms.  To develop your plan you need a mission statement, assessment of life goals, a board of directors (family, friends, co-workers) that help keep a person on track---also a daily review of where you are and your three summary ‘to dos’ at the end of the day.  Also, use a calendar, journal your activities, and review all your activities on a regular weekly basis.  These activities will ‘Get you on the Path.’

He also told us about repeating your mission statement and life goals, and releasing tension about them, by asking what do I want and intend to bring to the next activity---can I do it with excellence---and how can I enjoy my life activity process more?

Also, ask yourself three morning questions:  What can I be excited about today; What might trip me up or cause stress; Who can I surprise today with a thank you gift or moment of appreciation?  Be aware of trigger alerts on your activities, and take action to improve or correct them.

Get regular exercise, which helps your immune system, increases your brain functions and makes you feel good.  Avoid screen time one hour before bed, sleep in a dark room, do not check your phone at night, and if sleep is disturbed get a sleep study to help you develop new habits that will produce better rest and sleep.  Eat healthy, drink sensibility, don’t smoke, be positive and organize your life activities to reduce stress!

Choose to be excited, purposeful, healthy, clear in what you do, positive, and full of energy and let You enjoy Your Life!  Matt distributed handouts which include a one page productivity planner which is a great outline for accomplishing projects and life goals.  Thanks, Matt, well done!    

1/16/2018. Jerry Low provided one of his great informational programs, this time on the steamboat “Minnehaha” the big yellow wooden boat gliding along with passengers between Excelsior and Wayzata on a summer day in.  The boat is 70 feet long and her beam is approximately 15 feet wide-she weighs about 62,000 pounds.  The long design slices through even choppy water efficiently and calmly.  The Minnehaha’s engines are very quiet, almost odorless, two ton triple expansion steam engines!

The Minnehaha was part of a six boat fleet of ‘street car’ boats, designed by the company who provided street car transportation from the growing metro area to Lake Minnetonka, where living and vacationing were big during the early 1900’s.  As the street car and boat transportation gave way to the affordable automobiles, the need for the street car fleet dwindled.  In the summer of 1926, three street car boats were scuttled in deep water north of Big Island, three were scrapped and one, the Hopkins sold.

The scuttled street car boats lie forgotten at the bottom of Lake Minnetonka for several decades in sixty feet of water until 1979, when a pro diver, Jerry Provost recovered the Minnehaha which was in relatively good condition because of the low oxygen levels found in deep water.  Provost’s vision was for the salvaged boat to be restored and returned to passenger service. 

Through the red tape, her voyage continued---until the 1990’s, when for six years volunteers worked to restore the Minnehaha back to her original condition.  All the rotten wood was replaced, a new keel installed, split cane seats recovered and returned to the main cabin.  Steamfitters, electricians and engineers brought the propulsion and navigation systems back to life and installed a vintage steam engine and modern boiler into place which weighs about twelve tons.

Finally in 1996, with recovery and testing complete---on May 25, with thousands of onlookers cheering her on---the Minnehaha returned to passenger service for the first time in over seventy years, signaling the rebirth of a bygone era on Lake Minnetonka!

The Minnehaha sails regularly from Excelsior and Wayzata throughout the summer and autumn, a vivid reminder of Lake Minnetonka’s colorful history!  Thanks, Jerry!

1/9/2018 Dr. Orn brought Rebecca Nixon, Care Coordinator/Facilitator at North Memorial Clinic BC, who brought handouts, for all of us regarding Advance Care Planning and Health Care Directives.

A Health Care Directive is a document that provides your health care requests, if you were ever unable to make health decisions for yourself.  A selected Health Care Agent legally speaks on your behalf about your wishes, with documentation of your goals and values.

Part of the package she brought was a Q&A about Health Care Directives which answers the Why, What, and Limits to what can be put into your health care directive.  For example, a HCD should name someone you trust, have a backup, define your goals and values and wishes, types of med treatment you want or do not want, where you want to receive care, instructions about CPR, statement about organ donations, and funeral arrangements.

A HCD lasts until you change or cancel it, destroy all copies of it, or tell at least two people that you want to cancel it.  HCD prepared in other states are legal if they meet the MN requirements---Stating the full name, the date it was written, witnessed and notarized by a notary public.  Rebecca also brought a POLST-Provider Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment which is suitable to be attached to the front of the refrigerator, so EMT’s know what your wishes are to be.  Very interesting program, if you need more information call Rebecca at 763-581-5648.  Thanks to Dr. Orn and Rebecca for great information.  

1/2/2018 Byron brought four guests to our meeting---from CEAP were Kalleah and Rachael who brought us information about their Christmas offerings of food and gifts for their guest families.  CEAP provided Christmas for almost twice as many families as the last year and are planning already to serve even more guests next year.

Representing the United Way of Minneapolis were Kim Stone and Nathan Labet who are VP’s of Advanced Gifts and Planned Giving respectively who described the effects of the new tax law on contributions to non-profit organizations. 

Approximately 30% of the Federal Income Tax filers itemize their donations, which include charitable contributions.  The provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) take effect on January 1, 2018, so they will not affect the 2017 taxes.

However, the full impact of the bill will not be determined until it is in effect for a year or more-but research is being done and comparisons made-and the result is the non-profit organizations feel they will be subject to lower contributions because the standard deduction is being raised to $12,000 for singles and $24,000 for married couples filing jointly.

A study by the Indiana University School of Philanthropy concluded the changes will reduce charitable giving by 1.7 % to 4.6 %, which is an annualized reduction between $4.9 and $13.1 billion.

Individuals give over $281.86 billion or 72% of the money contributed to these non-profit organizations.  This subject will most likely gain more headlines during the year.  Thanks to Byron for bringing this interesting program!  Handouts were provided.   

12/19/2017 Retiring Superintendent Mark Bonine gave a Rotary Membership Pin to Carly Jarva Baker, his replacement as District 286 Superintendent.  Michael Glass Double Tree GM was pinned by Gerry A.  Welcome to these two new members-let’s all make them feel at home with BC Rotary.

Matt Oquist presented a program on our new Membership Plan, and explained the approach and need to continue to renew and enlarge our membership so we can do more in the community---such as begin a Summer Music Program at Centennial Park to provide revenue to support additional and other programs.

Matt also showed us slides of two projects that are under the radar that support the community.  ‘Shop with a Cop’ is a project by BC Police Department who take children in need shopping for their family Christmas-and they provide a surprise gift for the kid shopper that they don’t know they will get to open at Christmas.

Another project by a Club supported entity is CEAP---who distributed ‘Toys for Tots’ that the U.S. Marines collected-and they also provided gifts and food for all family members.

Matt and his committee have targeted some businesses for potential members including:  Boston Scientific, Medtronic, Caribou Coffee, Showdown Displays, Top Golf, local Clergy and other opportunities.  So be prepared to help Matt ‘work the market’ to make our Club stronger and able to provide more community support.  Thanks Matt, we will await your updates! 

12/12/2017 Our program was the BCHS choir who sang five songs from various parts of the world with different students announcing the background and other information about each rendition.  Special thanks to Principal Josh Frazier and Choirmaster Eckstrom for producing this annual BC Rotary/BCHS event.

12/5/2017 Diane Specter, first female president of BC Rotary was our presenter-she now works for Wenck Engineering and formerly was on the BC City staff.  Her current company is owned by approximately 250 employees in six states, including the Dakotas and Colorado.  They are primarily in water projects, including environmental policy, water shed management and water treatment and purity issues.

In dealing with 67 square miles of Northwest Hennepin County they work on 16 lakes and creeks, including Shingle Creek for quality, flooding prevention, fish life and other factors to control and improve water purity.  Public Policy was evolving and developed 15 years ago with nine Cities in the county, which came after the 1965 floods, during which, the lakes, streams, creeks and rivers flooded into dry land and caused major flooding and uncontrolled runoff all the way down the Mississippi River!

State legislation in 1982 and 1984, had set in motion provisions for water shed districts or joint powers agreements with input from other interested government agencies and levels, to monitor and protect the environment in controlling surface water and its behavior and purity.

Diane said steady progress has been made in working with developers, property owners, water resource users, and cities in managing water runoff and-improving purity by treating lakes and cleaning up streams and controlling water runoff.  Thanks Diane, good to have you visit and present, and to Troy for inviting you-come back and visit again!              

11/28/2017 President Elect Lee Gatlin brought State Senator Bobby Jo Champion who explained activities of the last legislative session, and what he expects for the coming session-which is not a budget year-and that the legislature does not convene until February 20, 2018. 

However, the budget, although passed by the legislature for 2017 and 2018, as we all know was vetoed by Governor Dayton.  The budget as passed was for both years and next year was to be a ‘policy’ year (clean up discrepancies, new policy issues, etc.).  The law suit filed when the Governor took out the funding for the legislature was heard by a judge-who ruled in this instance the Governor has the right to line item veto funding of the legislature.  This could change the agenda so stay tuned for this one!)

Senator Champion’s District includes about half of downtown Minneapolis, the Near North Side Neighborhoods and the Bryn Mar area.  He is an attorney and graduated from William Mitchell law, he has been in the Senate since 2012, and was reelected in 2016, prior to his service in the Senate he served in the Minnesota House for two terms.

Questions going forward include a potential override of the Governor’s legislature funding veto, passing a bonding bill, and of course the 2018 elections.  Policy items of interest to the Senator include a clear path forward for the State including tax issues, unlawful detainer laws, jobs, economic development programs, providing a budget surplus for emergencies, and clarification of the use of the line item veto.

Thank you to Senator Champion for his passion and work in the State Senate, and for sharing his enthusiasm with our Club.  Thanks also to Lee for inviting the Senator to our meeting!

11/21/2017 A man who truly loves his job and community was our program…

Gary Eitel came back from his short presentation two weeks ago which was cut short because of a full Veterans Day agenda, and took us on a tour of his favorite Brooklyn Center development projects. 

Gary said something like---I have six grandchildren and I can’t pick a favorite, in answer to what was/is his favorite development project---However, he did come with a list of 13 Community developments---the almost 11 year Business and Development Director for BC explained for us---

His first listing was the Brooklyn Blvd. North, Mid, South redevelopment which included the NE corner of B Blvd. and 70th Ave, Slim’s Restaurant, Bridgeman’s, Sanctuary of BC, trail and streetscape improvements, intersection improvements, C-Line Rapid Transit Line and other improvements.

His next site is the new Luther Mazda/Mitsubishi Dealership going in West of their Buick/GM dealership, New Millenium Academy Charter School and Twin Lakes Regional Trail connections and extensions.  Also a favorite for redevelopment is the Sears Store parking lot, and architectural improvements and connections to the regional trail.

The former Kohl’s site is being redeveloped and will house HOM Furniture with improved entrance and pedestrian walk ways along with Shingle Creek enhancements and additional water features.

Other sites for redevelopment include:  Jerry’s foods, the former K-Mart, OfficeMax, and Minnesota School of Business-and also the 57th and Logan location.  The Marriott-Fairfield Inn, Earle Brown Lanes redevelopment along with the Humboldt Ave corridor and the redevelopment of the Regal Theater to Top Golf are also in Gary’s favorites list!

The City of BC has been very fortunate to have Gary to lead the way along with Mayor Willson and City Manager Curt on the redevelopment of the community and to continue BC’s long time reputation of ‘A City that Can.’  Gary will retire at the end of the year with over 44 years in public city development.  Thanks, Gary for all you have done for BC-it’s been great progress!

11/7/2017 Our meeting host was President Elect Lee Gatlin, and our program had our announcements and three other sections.  The first section of the program was the opportunity for all present to pay homage to the members of their families and friends who had participated in our Armed Forces, as part of Veterans Day week.  

The second section of the meeting was the introduction of the Students of the Month---and their heartfelt feelings they have for BCHS, their friends, other students and the teachers and administration!  

The third section of the meeting featured Gary Eitel from City Planning, and he answered some quick questions as we were out of time and he agreed to come back 11/21, to give his full summary of the City and its redevelopment!

Those commenting on their family and personal involvement in the military included: 

Curt Boganey who said his uncles and father were all in the service---Mark Bonine said he had family who served---Jeff Carson named his service members---Tim Gannon said he had served on active duty, Lee said he had close relatives and friends who served---and Myrna told of her active duty service for three years as a Navy WAVE.

Byron said his two sons were in the service, one of whom is a Navy Seal---Baylon told of his experiences in WW II---Matt Oquist related his family members who served---Bill S told of his active duty in the US Army---Karen explained her family military connection---Dr. Orn said he reported, but not inducted as conflict was winding down---Cathy commented about a change of duty station for her nephew who is career---Gerry told of his Air Force experience.  

In his absence, it was explained that Bill Kirkpatrick has donated our Flag and its maintenance since his becoming a member 19 years ago, in memory of his uncle who is MIA SE Asia.  Also, Charter Members who have passed, Henry Dorff, Bronze Star recipient for action in WW II---and Don Rosen of Pilgrim Cleaners who also served in WW II, and started “Coats for Kids” which instantly became a City wide program to collect, clean and distribute winter coats for children in need. 

Photos include our members who served on active duty---Karly Jarva, BCHS principal and the Students of the Month, and a photo by Cathy on delivery of hats, mittens and gloves for grade school children. 

10/31/2017  Melvin Anderson told us through discussion, slides and video, about the amazing work he is doing in setting up organizations and projects for young people, to help them develop their potential for successful living and contributing to our community.

One such program is a partnership with BC School District in an after school program, Youth Leaders of Change.  This engages several youth leaders in an integrated leadership and personal development workshop to develop entrepreneur skills.  In the workshops the students develop a product business plan and actual businesses.  An example is the youths in the program developed a logo, tag line and t shirt production budget and process and engaged other youths to help develop and sell the products.

The Minnesota Elite Track (TME) program Melvin mentors is highly successful-and this year hosted three track events for students with 1,300 participants, 3,200 visitors and 42 meet records set!  More than 150 gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded, and produced 70 national meet qualifiers, 48 student athletes participated in the national meet.

TME produced 12 AAU All Americans winning 22 national medals, produced four national champions and 11 student athletes received honorable mention.   TME also produced 12 student track athletes who because of their hard work, training, learning and competing are going on to colleges, including Columbia University, U.S. Naval Academy, UofM Duluth, NDSU and others! In total TME currently has 45 former students enrolled in college!

The Youth Determined to Succeed (YDS) program Melvin manages is planning to develop a Sports Performance Center to be a permanent facility in partnership with Mayo Clinic and others, which will include work out space and a clinic for weight, obesity and diabetics, an  indoor track, and a fitness training center.  Our thanks to Melvin for his presentation and for his efforts to help our youth grow and develop their maximum potential!  

10/24/2017 Superintendent Mark Bonine of School District #286, hosted us at the District Offices to give us the current status of the District, and outline information regarding the November 7, 2017, Election Referendum, to provide much needed funding to support the BC school system.

The District Mission is to equip every student with the knowledge, life skills, and global perspectives to contribute to society and respond to the needs of an ever-changing world.

The BCHS graduation rate is higher than the state average (87.4%), has the only ‘full service’ community schools model in the state including full medical service for students, and is implementing STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics) this year.  The jobs of the future are STEAM jobs and the demand for trained pros in these fields will outpace the supply of trained workers.

The Referendum decision to move forward was a unanimous school board decision, and the request is based on a facilities study, budget projects, enrollment and a Strategic Plan.  Mark indicated that the enrollment in the District has increased by 450 students in the last few years!  This school funding request is for two areas---Operations and Buildings.

The current Operations situation is a need for more space, implementing STEAM to engage, empower and inspire students, support for teachers training, replacement of aging school buses, provide additional security needs for buildings, separating the middle school from the high school and update deferred maintenance.

Mark showed a slide in his presentation that indicated the District school funding property levy is lower that Fridley, Spring Lake Park, Columbia Heights, Richfield and particularly St. Anthony which is double the mil operating levy for BC District #286!

He continued, explaining State education funding is not keeping pace with costs or inflation, increasing enrollment, academic changes and aging facilities have led to safety, academic, crowding and maintenance needs.  Voters have not approved an operating levy increase for the District in more than 15 years, the last time voters approved construction was in 2001!

Passage of the Referendum would provide operating funds to improve STEAM instruction for all students, expand teacher training to improve academic achievement, increase academic opportunities for all student and replace aging buses to ensure safe and reliable student transportation.

Passage would also provide Building construction funds to add classroom space, improve school entrance security, remodel existing classrooms for STEAM, create separate areas for middle school and high school students and address deferred maintenance at the schools.  Plans have been developed to accomplish these issues and are ready for implementation when the Referendum is approved.

+++The impact of the Referendum passage would raise the property taxes on the average district home ($135,000 value home) only less than $7 per month!!!

Mark closed by answering questions and saying it is a proven fact by many sources that Strong Schools=Strong Communities.

Election Day voting is on November 7, from 7am to 8pm, at BC Middle School and High School, 6500 Humboldt Avenue North.  Absentee voting began on September 22.  Voting questions, call 763-450-3389.  Additional information at: or

Thanks to Mark for his leadership as Superintendent of BC School District #286, he plans to retire at the end of the year and will be missed.

10/10/2017 Last week we “Rotated” to tour the new City Water Treatment Plant which has been in operation for about one year, and cost approximately $20 million, according to Jim Loomis the senior plant operator who gave us the tour.  The plant is located on City property, on Camden Avenue, near Evergreen Park, has a brick facade, and is enclosed by a fence.  

The purpose of the plant is to improve the safety and aesthetics of the City’s water supply by removing excess manganese and iron from the water through its system of filters and purification---which was not done by the old system---and continuing to add chlorine and fluoride to the water in the new treatment plant.

The system has nine well sites that transport the water to the plant for filtering and processing, then the water is either stored in tanks at the facility---or if the automated management system calls for it, transfers water to one of the City’s three water towers---and then the purified water is distributed to the community users.  One of the City towers located next to highway 100, near Bass Lake road, is currently off line and is being renovated inside and out.

The average manganese level in BC tap water was 380 parts per billion in recent year’s, the level is now lower than the 300 ppb limit recommended by the Health Department.  The City borrowed the money for the water plant through the Minnesota Public Facility Authority loan program at a one percent interest rate!  Thanks to President Agnes for arranging this very interesting tour.

10/3/2017  The Hennepin Theatre Trust was established as a nonprofit organization in 2002, and since has evolved into a recognized leader of arts and culture development in downtown Minneapolis and the nation.  The stated mission of the organization is to create positive change through the arts, by bringing together people, businesses and organizations to create and enjoy cultural experiences.

The organization brings value to the community through their three theaters, the Orpheum, State and Pantages, and joint partnerships with schools, and others.  The organization brings more than 500,000, people to the West Downtown MLPS Cultural District (WeDo-tm) to enjoy the attractions and activities.

Vanessa Agnes, an Education Assistant for the Trust, and President Tom’s daughter, brought the information to us about the Trust, telling us about the highlights of their activities and productions for this theatre season!

The Trust works to bring the best of Broadway, international, national and local entertainment to Minneapolis---connect people to art experiences like the Bob Dylan mural, and art in underused spaces around town---provides community education programs that bring arts and culture to more people---strengthen partnerships with businesses, organizations, local leaders and others to bring more ‘wow’ to the downtown.

The Trust has values including---striving for excellence---practicing inclusiveness---succeeding through collaboration---embracing new possibilities---acting as good stewards of their mission.

Vanessa stressed the educational functions of the Trust, which has four components:  Production Assessment, Showcase, Masterclasses, and Critical Review.  She explained each:  Production Assessment provides trained professionals to watch and assess musical productions of Spotlight schools and strengthen the skills of students in production---Spotlight Showcase is a two night event featuring the work and talent of the students, teachers, families and community members in musical theatre, over 1,600 students participated on and offstage at the 2017Showcase---Masterclasses give Spotlight schools insights and inspiration from local and touring theatre professionals---Critical Review gives students the opportunity to attend and review touring Broadway productions and learn from the local theatre critics, playwrights and actors who teach workshops on lighting, acting and choreography.

Vanessa also explained some of the theatre blockbusters for this theatre season:  Aladdin, School of Rock, Waitress, Phantom of the Opera, Jersey Boys and Chicago.  Thanks to Vanessa for describing to us the ‘backstage’ side of activities of the Trust and the scheduled outstanding shows for the season.  For additional information go on line to!

9/26/2017 Retired BC Mayor Myrna provided a documentary story produced by the Federal Bureau of Investigation called ‘Chasing the Dragon,’ which details the opioid epidemic in America as told by the direct testimony of young addicts, their family members and friends.

Myrna feels the story needs to be told to every school child and parent in our community and all throughout the nation!  This documentary is available on You Tube, and Myrna also has a cd. 

Chasing the Dragon in the Chinese culture means the use of opiate based drugs of which thousands of people die from overdoses of every year in the U.S.  (Last week CBS had a story on the amount of drug shipments coming to our country each day, mostly from China, at the largest entry point-JFK airport in NYC, which has trained dogs to check every incoming package!)

The opioid crisis is particularly prominent in younger social communities where a lack of drug education and a desire for experimentation increasingly has lethal consequences.

The addicts profiled in the film come from good homes and loving families.  Many began their descent into drug addiction with the use of marijuana.  They then graduate up the drug scale to opioids that maybe seemed harmless at first---and are often stored in family medicine cabinets.  First usage leads to misuse, and quickly evolves into full addiction from which they are powerless to escape, and dominates every moment of their lives.

One young woman in the story tells of a crack house she shared with other ‘druggies’ and when they stepped into a bathroom they discovered a dead body in the tub---but to get their ‘fix’ they merely went into another room!  Another in the documentary told of her challenges in maintaining a 40 pill a day habit---and a new mother admits to getting hooked when her daughter was just seven months old!

Once in the throes of the disease, family, relationships and future goals take a back seat and many of the addicts resort to theft, assault, and prostitution in order to maintain their destructive lifestyle.  The addicts profiled in the story are in recovery, some are struggling to reclaim stable lives with their families, some have slipped back into addiction, some are behind bars, and one has passed.

Chasing the Dragon is a gripping account of a destructive process that threatens many lives, families and citizens---because of the horrific consequences of the addiction problem.  Thank you to Myrna for securing this presentation, and to the FBI for publishing a very scary and upfront and personal account of actual victims of opioid addiction.    

6/20/2017 Our program was the “Changing of the Guard” as the gavel was passed from Bill Kirkpatrick to new President Tom Agnes.  Also, others were recognized for their contributions to the Club and Rotary Foundation noted below.

 (This Rotary year is very important because, in February 2018, we will mark the 20th anniversary of the Chartering of the Brooklyn Center, MN, Rotary Club.)     

In his comments, outgoing President Bill Kirkpatrick said---

“We are in good shape as a club.  I believe it’s important that we keep in mind the founding ideas of Rotary.  That is, to meet men and women from other professions to share ideas, fellowship and service.  I think we do that very well in our Club.  Big numbers are no substitute for quality members who respect each other and share common goals.”

Bill went on to list the following as our accomplishments---

We met Rotary Foundations goal of $131.54 average donation per member for the Rotary year.  This helps fund many Rotary efforts from Ellen’s Haiti project, to district initiatives, to International efforts such as Polio Plus.  Polio Plus is in the news recently because Rotary International has pledged $1.26 to eradicate polio in the World with $150 million to be raised in the next three years including $108,000 from our District!

Bill went on to say we have instituted some goals from Past President Curt’s visioning plan including quarterly social meetings, a new concert fundraiser that President Tom is guiding and other efforts such as a weekly greeter of members, guests and speakers.

Also, we continue to support with our time, treasure and talent schools with our Students of the Month program---Donations to CEAP and weekly delivery of Meals On Wheels---BC Crime Prevention---Earle Brown Days---Salvation Army Bell Ringing---Centennial Park Clean-up---YDS community track event and many other projects in the community.

He thanked everyone for their effort during his year as President and particularly---Jerry Anderson for behind the scenes leadership, bulletin editor, hotel liaison and Mr. BC Rotary---Tom Agnes for taking the leadership on concert fund raising efforts and the 100 year RI celebration---Keith Lester for goofy birthday songs and web master---Jerry Low for his Johnny on the spot printing, Matt Oquist for membership and greeter activities---Myrna Kauth for bell ringing and park clean-up---Babs Honorary Rotarian for serving us every Tuesday---and last, but not least, Cathy Ballot our Treasurer, Poinsettia Fund Raiser leader, and all around hard worker to make function efficiently!

Thanks to Bill for his leadership and guidance during his year as President especially, and for all the efforts in the past years and coming years as he nears the 20 year membership mark in 2018! 

6/13/2017 Our meeting for last week had been canceled in favor of attending the St. Cloud Rotary Club band concert, as observers of their major fund raiser, but that trip was postponed due to timing.

So, we had a great opportunity to reschedule and have a Club Service Event where our members in attendance got the opportunity to talk to their table mates for the entire Rotary lunch time.  At the half way point in our normal time President Kirkpatrick announced the senior members stay seated and the younger members find a different table to join the others in conversation.

Everyone enjoyed the opportunity to speak to everyone, and many conversations continued after our Rotary Bell was rung!  Some suggested we do it more often, similar to our evening social events!

6/6/2017 Police Chief Tim Gannon gave us a presentation on the current standards his officers have been trained on to properly arrest, book and identify offenders,      so that prosecutors will be able to obtain proper justice.  Twenty-first century policing has become very scientific according to Chief Gannon and that’s why the department looks for best practice methods to train officers in the conducting their business. 

He showed us a series of short videos from the Norwood, MA, police department demonstrating the proper way to deal with eye witnesses and other data at the crime scene, apprehension event or interview location.  One of the videos depicted the proper way to go from a sketch, to a line-up, to DNA use in the process of identifying the proper suspect, and providing ample proof to back up any charges.

Other best practice methods include searches, patting down and frisking, and crime scene cameras to back up eye witness accounts.  Using a photo array of alleged suspects, is also carefully administered-even the administering officer does not know who the suspect is in the photos he is showing to witnesses.  This reduces the opportunity for bias in the process.  Thanks Chief for a very informative presentation!

5/23/2017 Nearly two decades ago, after a great personal family loss, Chuck Slocum our guest presenter, and his wife began to intentionally mentor young people.  Two near Northside Minneapolis kids they met in the early days of their journey are still a major part of their lives.

Chuck was a newspaper columnist for the Strib and for many years had been actively engaged in relating to and enjoying kids, and welcomed some training and a more formal relationship arrangement.  Mentoring became a driving force in his life and he has mentored young people, some nearing 40, for as long as they would have him!

At age 50, Chuck began devoting one third of his time and income to being a mentor, which he explained worked both ways.  He worked with the community to support kids already identified as being on a failure track because of their life and living factors such as education, family and personal growth.

Mentors include schools, churches, nonprofits, government agencies and others as their resources to help kids find their way in life.  While many children have support, every kid could use a caring adult to be a part of their lives.  Mentoring takes on many shapes and forms, depending on the child and circumstances, but is a consistent way to share friendship, fun and experiences valuable on the way to becoming an adult.  The Mentoring Partnership of Minnesota ( is a resource for individuals and groups interested in mentoring.  Thanks, Chuck! 

5/16/2017 Sam Grant an instructor at Metropolitan State University since 1990, and other teaching, business and consulting projects, spoke to us about his project of passion - providing helpful solutions for the economic disparity that exists in many African countries - and he told us specifically about Sierra Leone.

The country is depressed, very poor, trying to find itself economically and politically after a ten year civil war.  Sam has mentored some of his students on how to relate to the society - to teach the citizens to provide for themselves by effectively using the natural renewable resources rather than relying on harvesting the rain forests, which are now 95% gone!

In helping to develop a ‘Mutual Ecological Democracy’ these former students help establish ground up projects to sustain the water supply, agriculture, and environment, which in turn strengthens the economy and culture as people are able to farm renewable crops for food and trade.

Another part of Sam and his students’ efforts is to establish schools and find and train teachers for kids from pre-school and up -  to develop educated citizens who will emerge and develop businesses and industries to raise the overall welfare of the country.  Sam now has student group coops working in nine other African nations!  Thanks to Sam on his fascinating program and Curt for inviting him.

5/9/2017 Stephanie Smith from the Bloomington Day Makers Club brought us a presentation on Stem Bunnies.  Stem Bunnies stands for science, technology, engineering and math and is an outgrowth of the BCHS program STEAM, recently presented by Superintendent Mark Bonine to the Club - whose leaning objectives are similar.

The STEM program, Stephanie explained, is to engage children in active, fun, “hands on-minds” learning, sparking an interest in how the world around them works and demonstrating how Stem education tools can help children solve challenges.

This is a Minnesota organization started by and led by elementary and middle school children! 

They provide bunny rabbits to classrooms, families and other events, so children can have a hands on experience on the nature and nurture and responsibility a live animal provides! 

These Stem Bunny experiences provide a practical piece of living and offer great learning experience for children in this age group.  Additional information is available on the web at!  Thanks to Cathy and Stephanie for bringing this non- traditional learning approach to us!    

5/2//2017 Superintendent Mark Bonine explained with a slide presentation a new strategic plan developed by the District to move from their International Baccalaureate education model to a new model called “STEAM”.

“Science & Technology interpreted through Engineering & the Arts, all based in Mathematical elements” - is a framework for teaching across the traditional disciplines.  The program is to align student learning, which is most important, with the changing education and job skills needed in the advancing technology environment and society in today’s world!

With the cell phones, tablets, lap tops and other instant information available, students can become bored, and STEAM is a way to get students to think together about developing solutions rather than just finding one right answer. 

In this model which is being prepared for introduction in the District, the teacher becomes a facilitator and encourages students to develop multiple approaches to learning and problem solving across traditional boundaries, and that a failed attempt is still a learning opportunity!

STEAM is a change from the traditional educational philosophy based on standardized test scores, to a modern ideal which focuses on valuing the learning process as much as the results.  Students are challenged to dare to be wrong and try multiple ideas, listen to alternative opinions and create a knowledge base that is applicable to real life as opposed to a simple exam.

Mark a very interesting philosophy and model for education.  Please keep us informed of the progress, thank you!

4/25/2017  Steve Makowski from Centerbrook Municipal Golf course manager told us about the 28 acre course next to the water tower -  that he called a unique spot and the most attractive City park!  The nine hole par three course is a in very natural venue and is perfect for ‘holes in one’ according to Steve.

The costs and time to play the course are very inviting to players and he said that there is a Sunday Family Time rate of $28.  Featured is open golf, organized leagues for men, women, youth and seniors, lessons are also offered and provisions are made for corporate outings and golf tournaments.

Centerbrook also recommends reservations, offers gift certificates, has electric and pull carts available, a snack bar and limited pro shop.  Fees vary depending on the day and time, and fit seniors, adult and youth rates.

Steve is very enthusiastic about the course and offerings and said that the website offers more information.  He invited all to come to see the course and play!

The BC Crime Prevention Program will have their Annual Golf Tournament in Memory of BC Rotarian Chris Johnson, at Centerbrook on Friday, May 19, 2017. 

The tourney has had citizen support for 34 years and has helped pay for rewards, newsletters, telephone tip line, awards night, neighborhood watch programs, youth activities, police explorer groups and more.  Luther Brookdale 

4/18/2017 Homeless is affecting many underage children in the BC and BP areas with inadequate facilities to accommodate all who need a place to sleep!  To help with this problem an organization, Avenues for Youth which is now working the situation - along with CEAP and BC-BP Rotary Clubs are all working on providing a safety net for these children as they seek stable lives.

This joint effort is being developed into a program for implementation, and all the parties are attempting to help provide solutions for overcoming this problem in our communities.

Troy Fritz a member of the St. Cloud Rotary spoke to us about the community celebration they have created to provide a band concert 12 Wednesday nights during the summer.  The funds that they raise have been used to clean up the Lake George area, where the concerts are held in St. Cloud, and turned it into a gathering destination in the City that the citizens view with great pride!

Troy took us through the development of the process that has led to the Lake George renovation and the concert series - that provides funds through vendor fees, beer sales and donations from sponsors.  The Club has worked hand in hand with the City on their Lake George project and other others. 

The concert series will draw an expected 140,000 visitors this year, is free, and so is the parking!  Approximately 40 volunteers are needed each Wednesday and the Club provides most of the volunteers from their membership of approximately 140.  The event is self policed for the most part by the event attendees, community leadership, and promotes respect for the other concert attendees.  

The vision and buy in of the Club members, the City of St. Cloud, its citizens, police, vendors and entertainers has provided free, consistent quality events for the community as well as the funds for other community projects!

The Collaboration in our Communities is to come up with a workable model and process by the development organizations to fund a stronger homeless program for our youth!  Thanks to Tom and his contacts for the leadership on this vision.

4/11/2017 Chad Henderson an attorney from the Henningson & Snoxell firm who has been practicing for 35 years -  recently joined the firm that began in BC – told us about estate planning and the individuality of each plan.

Chad described many estate situations, including problems with no will (intestate) and wills (testate).  He said the purpose of the legal process involving estates are to provide for the orderly process of distributing the estate following the desires of the maker.  Each situation is different and there are a number of solutions that can be provided for each situation - depending on the directions provided in the legal documents including wills and trusts.

Distribution of property may include homestead, personal property, monetary allowances, spouse and children considerations, property and unexpected circumstances as outlined by the will or trust.

Back to will or no will---what is a will, what constitutes a legally valid will, must a will be probated, how is a will revised, who should make a will, what are the provisions for survivors - are all questions that differ in almost all situations!

And don’t forget the tax issues that often come up in estate situations – property taxes, Federal estate tax, Federal gift tax, Minnesota estate tax and the good news – there is no Minnesota gift tax!

Chad presented a lot of information which was not intended to be specific legal advice, but general information - and you should always retain and consult an attorney before taking any legal action.  Thanks Chad!   

4/4/2017 Kirsten Kjome from the BP League of Women Voters was the presenter and told of the purpose and activities of this national organization.  She has 14 years in the LWV and has been moderating election candidate forums for 10 years.  She said the organization is over 90 years old and began to help women’s right to vote become the ‘law of the land.’

LWV is a volunteer non-profit, non-partisan organization that encourages everyone to be informed and to go out and lead in the community!  They promote registering voters legally, educating on local issues, and hold Candidate Forums where issues are discussed prior to elections.

They also work on protecting voting rights, cutting down the time it takes to vote and supports accurate elections.  LWV studies issues including redistricting, protecting resources, judicial independence, equal rights for all, and citizen education about our government process.

Thanks to Kirsten for her informative program, and to Karen for bringing LWV to our attention!  You can learn more at

3/28/2017  Our Presenter was Kathleen J. Hotakainen from the FBI who told us about the Bureau’s program to counter child predators that operate on line and use many tricks and ruses to lure kids into their control as they commit their crimes against these children!

Communicating online is a way of life, yet it comes with certain risks for children who may encounter inappropriate conduct, contact or content.  She explained that parents need to start y to warn children of the dangers of playing games watching shows, and communicating while using a phone, mobile device or computer.

She said the best way to protect your kids online is to start early talking to them, initiate conversations of use regularly, communicate expectations and be patient and supportive  Also, parental controls are available with filtering and blocking, limiting time browsers for kids, kid search engines and tools for monitoring

Kids socialize online sharing pics, videos, thoughts, plans, and their whereabouts with friends, family and the whole world.  Over sharing is a pitfall of being online too much, too long and too free with information.  Kids need to be supervised to prevent every type of cyber crime including bullying.

Parents and kids can should use secure networks, websites, etc., and be aware of being safe and secure in all their communicating activities.  Kathleen handed out booklets provided by the FBI including “Net Cetera” Chatting with Kids About Being on Line---FBI-SOS Taking Action to Prevent Crimes Against Children---The FBI’s Child ID App---and NetSmartz Workshop to Educate, Engage and Empower.  Thanks to Myrna, Kathleen and the FBI for this important information.

3/21/2017 Our program was a video provided by Tom Agnes of Rotary International Vice President Jennifer Jones, as she spoke to a Club about the direction and future of Rotary.

 She said Rotary is changing like never before with relaxed attendance and classification rules---and since we are all volunteers, members should tailor their Rotary participation as it works for them, realizing it takes manpower and joint effort to reach our Club goals!

 Membership is a top priority for all Clubs and she points to identifying and recruiting young people to join our Rotary effort to improve communities world-wide.

What is our Rotary Core---Who are we?---We are service Clubs that are each unique and different in our community---and we need leaders with vision, networking skills, community contacts and effort to further our Rotary goals!

3/14/2017 Our program was brought to us by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office. Deputy Adam Hernke and Lieutenant Dorpha Copeland conducted the program.

Both officers emphasized that the Sheriff’s office works for the people of Hennepin County. Their presence is felt in all 45 Cities in the County and they do coordinate with 27 separate city police departments.

Deputy Hernke was the primary presenter. He has been with the Sheriff’s office for ten years. He has worked in the jail, court security, water patrol and now is working in community engagement. He is an EMT and a rescue diver.

The primary focus of the program was the opiod epidemic that is present in the county as well as all of Minnesota. The primary culprits in this epidemic are prescriptive narcotic drugs and heroin. The heroin currently being seen is very pure and is cheaper than a lot of other drugs. Very addictive. Also, if it gets laced with Fentanyl, it becomes lethal.

A sobering statistic is that of the overdose deaths in the county last year, the youngest was 16 and the oldest 92. There were 115 overdose deaths.

To fight the epidemic the Sheriff is working to curb and plug the distribution chain.

A primary source of the prescriptive narcotic pills is that they are stolen from residences or individual aggregate prescription scripts and accumulate the drug in that fashion.

The battle against these killer drugs is continuing. Like a lot of crime, one avenue is closed off and the criminal element always tries to find other ways to get their product into circulation.  Thanks to the Sheriff’s Office for an interesting program.

3/7/2017 Our speaker was RT Rybak, the current President and CEO of the Minneapolis Foundation since 2016. Many of you probably know that he was the Mayor of Minneapolis from 2002 until 2013. As CEO of the Minneapolis Foundation he oversees the management of over 700 million in Foundation assets. The Foundation distributes more than 50 million dollars annually in grants.

Rybak is the author of “Pothole Confidential” about his twelve years as Mayor of Minneapolis. He recounted one of the chapters in the book dealing with then Governor Jesse Ventura and two firefighters from New York that visited Minneapolis shortly after September 11, 200l. The gist of the chapter was that the firefighters were significantly over served at several locations in Minneapolis by our fine citizens wanting to buy them drinks and Jesse, well, being Jesse, was not a hidden presence at a Timberwolf game he attended with the firefighters.

RT really likes the Rotary concept of “giving” and how it reflects trying to find “common ground.” His current passion is getting all school children a good education.

When he was Mayor, he always tried to be available and to show up, not for a publicity stunt, but to try to assess the situation and in traumatic result situations like homicides, letting the family of the deceased know that the City grieves along with them.

A great presentation was made to us by RT Rybak. It was interesting, informative and entertaining. Thanks much Mr. Mayor.

The upcoming meeting will feature Hennepin County Sheriff Rich Stanek as our speaker. This should be another great program. Let us know if you are bringing a guest.

Our Students of the Month from BCHS were in attendance and they are as follows: Martor Collins, is active in school activities, including volleyball, and she was also a finalist in the State of Mn for an Act 6 Scholarship. She didn’t win, but gave it a good run. She intends to attend Augsburg College and major in school social work.  She commented on the positive effect BCHS teachers have had upon her and he education experience. 

Kionta Faudous—has attended BC schools since the 7th grade.  He has played varsity football and basketball and was the 2016 Homecoming King.  He interacts with other students and helps those students that need assistance.  He will attend Concordia University in Chicago and plans to major in nursing.


2/28/2017 Byron Laher presented the program and discussed his fascination with collecting sports memorabilia. He told us about a man named Frank Ciresi, who was a judge in New York. Ciresi was the curator for the National Sports Gallery for a number of years. Baseball was his biggest passion. He stated, “Statistics without certificates is myth”. In other words you need something more to back up your claim likes photos, interviews, writings, etc. Byron brought in about 10 exhibits that he bought from Frank Ciresi, including Walter (Big Train) Johnson pitching to Babe Ruth in Yankee Stadium in a 1942 exhibition. Both men are members of the Baseball Hall of Fame. Babe Ruth clobbered many of Johnson’s pitches into the stands after which Johnson stated: “Sure, Babe hit it a bunch out, the people came to see the Babe hit and not to see me pitch.” As usual, when Byron speaks about collecting, Knute Rockne somehow gets mentioned. As usual, this was a great presentation. Thanks, Byron.

Our Students of the Month from BCHS were in attendance and they are as follows: Martor Collins, is active in school activities, including volleyball, and she was also a finalist in the State of Mn for an Act 6 Scholarship. She didn’t win, but gave it a good run. She intends to attend Augsburg College and major in school social work.  She commented on the positive effect BCHS teachers have had upon her and he education experience.

Kionta Faudous—has attended BC schools since the 7th grade.  He has played varsity football and basketball and was the 2016 Homecoming King.  He interacts with other students and helps those students that need assistance.  He will attend Concordia University in Chicago and plans to major in nursing.


2/21/2017 Our speaker was Dave Looby who gave us a history of the “Wastebasket Review” which is an annual variety show put on by educators and friends of School District 279 (Osseo District). The show raises scholarship money for seniors attending Park Center, Osseo, Maple Grove High Schools and also the Alternative Learning Center. The first show started in 1967 and it has continued since that time. Dave is the President of the Wastebasket Review. A total of $1.1 million has been distributed to date. This year 300 people will work to bring the show to the stage. A big thanks to Dave and to our Rotarian Jerry Low, another performer, for helping.

2/14/2017 Our program was brought to us by Baylon L.  He gave us a history of Valentine’s day and like most holidays having some basis in religion, it started as a pagan festival.  There are many legends surrounding the creation of Valentine’s day but it does seem most historians believe it got linked with love in the 14th century and that good old  Geoffrey Chaucer got in the act around that time also.

Valentine’s day cards started to become widespread in the United States in the 1850’s.  Baylon closed his presentation with a quiz, there were interesting questions and surprising answer

Thanks to Myrna for bringing chocolate heart candy for all attendees.  By that comment you should all know Myrna is now up and around after her hip replacement and we were happy to welcome Myrna back to the pack.

2/7/2017 (Byron brought our speaker Sam Blackwell, the United Way Community IMPAC Program Manager, who told us the United Way began in 1887, in Denver with the purpose of uniting charitable organizations to develop and pool efforts and raise funds – to provide aid for those in need!

He went on to say that in St. Paul it all began in 1915, as the Community Chest, and has evolved into the Greater Twin Cities United Way including Minneapolis and nine surrounding counties.  The United Way creates a strong safety net of anti-poverty programs by helping individuals and families get the support they need to stabilize their lives and move toward self-sufficiency.

The safety net of programs include food security, housing stability, optimizing health, independence for Seniors and people with disabilities, safety from family violence and legal services.

In 2015, one in four people in the nine county metro area experienced poverty, 2,800 youth were homeless on any given night in the metro area, and 1.8 million citizens visited food shelves.

The 2015 United Way effort was supported by 100,000 volunteers, made 500,000 referrals for essential needs, including housing, utility assistance, food access and health care, and increased access to job training programs for adults to increase job opportunities and wages.  Thanks to Sam for his presentation of a vital program in our community.

1/3/2017 Troy Gilchrist City Attorney gave us a mountain of information and insight into the structure and function of local governments in the State. 

He said local governing rights, authority and options, are from the State Constitution, enabling ‘grass roots’ determination of the processes and laws governing specific territories - and the subsequent legislatures have been very accommodating and aware of how local governing is conducted!

Troy has been working with municipalities for over 25 years and has detailed knowledge of the working and differences in types of local governments.  He said the name ‘village’ is not ‘official’ anymore, even though some locations have kept it in their name such as St. Anthony Village.

He said some things such as regional airports, are governed by joint powers agreements or legislative action, such as the Met Council, and school districts who’s boundaries different from municipal boundaries.

Taxing and Bonding authority for local governments is granted by the legislature, and provides the ability for the entity to provide local services such as roads, water, sewer, lighting, etc. 

There are 87 counties in the State that provide the infrastructure and government to link communities.  Territory and population are primary in determining the type of local government a community will have.  There are approximately 1,800 townships, 1,781 towns, and 700 cities in the State.  Population classes are under 10,000, 10,000 to 20,000, 20,000 to 100,000 and over 100,000.  Strong or weak  mayor  forms of governing and Charter government systems outline the individual jurisdiction rules for a community as detailed by the State.  The common purpose of all sizes is to provide planning, zoning and infrastructure, citizen protection and policing, and taxing authority for providing local services already mentioned.

Complicated, yes, but the system works!  Thanks, Troy for the interesting info and you prove again that some of our best programs are given by members!

12/27/2016 Our presenter was Lena Gardner, a local resident who is a member of Black Lives Matter.  She told us about her family and her background - raised by parents who were both employed by the U of M, and she was taught their parental values.  Lena said she is racially mixed, and has seen and felt the effects of oppression all her life. 

 She discussed the problems with police-citizen arrests and shootings, and said that social justice is the aim of BLM, along with concerns about equal economic opportunities. 

 BLM locally, is one of 42 chapters in the country, in a network of affiliations of groups with additional or multiple objectives.  However, they all share the BLM common agenda of freedom and justice for all.  There are other groups that associate with BLM on different issues with various chapters.  They do, however, all have freedom and justice for black people as the common goal. 

She said the local group includes LGBTQ people who often have additional values and objectives for their particular interests as well as BLM interests.  The BLM core locally consists of approximately seven members that include founders, workers, influencers and fund raisers.  Thank you, Lee for an interesting guest.

12/20/16 Police Chief Tim Gannon was our presenter and told us about the police in vehicle camera system (Mobile Video Recording System) and the plans to add officer body-worn cameras in the future. 

The department has been using the vehicle system for several years and has had great success using it.  The system has a feature to record inside the vehicle which offers some interesting information when two suspects are placed in the back seat simultaneously.

The current system is fourth generation and offers wireless recording with no loss or erasure capability, and the department has thirteen systems acquired at a cost of $85,000.  There are 5,000 similar systems in operation in various agencies in the US, and 35,000 systems are deployed.

Operations Policy has been developed and is in place:  Who has the info, Where does it begin and end, Who has access to the video information, How long is it retained and How does the Policy meet State statutes?

The vehicle cameras are adjustable for range, scope and timing and have maximum uptime with only a less than 1% failure rate.  The usage by the officers has been universal, and viewed as a tool for their duties.  They log in at the shift start, and the system collects the data, and uploads to the retention system in a tamper-proof manner, which also features play back, upload and export of the data to storage.

The system provides a management and administration function that also includes a flexible search feature, and has vehicle info such as GPS location, speed - and has officer usable information regarding his shift and any incoming current info.  Thanks to Tim for this interesting information.  

12/13/16 We were the guests of Superintendent Mark Bonine and the District at BCHS for our annual concert by the students.  This year the sixth graders sang songs of the season for us, including some from other cultures, in the commons area.  BCHS Principal Jarva introduced the new choir instructor to us and he explained the program which featured different students on each song.

After the concert we were treated to a tasty lunch by the staff in the library and had our announcements.  BCHS student Christina Gilbert described her Camp Enterprise experience. 

She said there were several ice breaker events to open the experience and then the dividing the attendees and assigning teams to tackle the problems that were presented to them by the staff. 

The presentations by the teams were rated and rankings were announced.  She said that even though her team did not win their problem solving exercise, they formed strong bonds and completely enjoyed the experience.

Camp Enterprise is sponsored by the Rotary district and Edina club, and teaches students teamwork, thinking, planning and presenting problem solving solutions developed around a work, business and job environment.

11/29/16  Reggie Edwards, special assistant to the BC City Manager Curt Boganey, was our presenter, and he outlined the City’s project of ‘branding and identifying’.

 The purpose is to determine the process of identifying and branding the significant positive factors of BC, and presenting them to the community for use in the daily activities of the City and its assets.  A finely tuned ‘package’ of information that is presented when the name Brooklyn Center appears in print, video, social media and all other identifying methods of recognition and becomes the reputation of the City.

 In other words, adding up all the pluses in the community and packaging them so the reputation of the City will be a positive for the community residents, businesses and to others who are outside the City, and may be considering BC for their particular needs.

 An outside consulting firm has been obtained to help with the process which Reggie explained has four major components-

  • Research including surveys, mailings and focus groups addressing the question of “What (Who) do you think we are?” and should be?
  • Engagement of reaching out through the above methods including the sending out of 12,000 post cards for the community to respond directly to the  process and television and advertising contributions.
  • Reconcile of information and how to align the information to reach the vision of the City to move into the future and attract growth!
  • Consistent message by making the branding and identity so clear and positive, that all the City knows what it is - and the community says ‘welcome, welcome, to all who hear or have contact with BC its residents and businesses. 

 Thanks to Reggie for his interesting and informative program!   

11/22/16 OUR PROGRAM was Gene Johnson a friend of Cathy and her visiting twin sister Pat and her husband, who told us about his ‘Out of the Blue’ heart problem as he was standing in his drive, watering the grass and went ‘straight down.’  His wife looked out the window just about that time and spotted him on the pavement, and his daughter was also there-and they called 911.

 Gene told us more---his story, and being saved by a Policeman who’s squad car was equipped with a defibrillator!  But the story doesn’t end there, as Gene has become the #1 advocate in Minnesota for spreading the word about the “Chain of Survival” for aiding people with Sudden Cardiac Arrest (SCA)!

 He had SCA followed up by his heart going out of rhythm (lower chambers).  To explain, SCA is a condition in which the heart stops abruptly without warning, usually caused by ventricular fibrillation, an abnormality in the heart’s electrical system.  In this state the heart fails to pump blood to the body’s other vital organs and death usually follows within minutes.

 A victim of SCA will often complain of being dizzy or faint during exercise or stress, and will rapidly have breathing trouble and perhaps lose consciousness.

 If someone collapses and is not breathing:  Call 911---start chest compressions---get an automated external defibrillator---turn it on and follow the voice commands as every second counts.

 Gene speaks to many groups about surviving SCA which is when the heart stops, as opposed to a heart attack when the heart continues-but is impaired by a blockage or some other cause.  Defibrillating or resetting the heart in either case is necessary as quickly as possible, so Gene lobbies for public location of automated external defibrillators (AEDS)---supporting survivors---advocating policy makers to work with communities for placement and training and use---and increasing everyone’s awareness of saving lives by being knowledgeable of these SCA and other heart events.  Thanks to Gene for his presentation and his advocacy!

11/15 District Governor of 5950, Mark Hegstrom was our presenter who told about his commitment to Rotary; objectives for his Rotary Year, and filled the room with his enthusiasm!  Mark grew up in Edina and graduated from Edina HS in 1983.  He earned his degree from UofM in Economics and he and his wife Colleen have two Children and two grandchildren.

 He joined the Edina Morningside Club in 2002, was President in 2008-2008, and has served on numerous committees for the District and Rotary.  He strongly supports the Rotary Foundation and he and Colleen are Major Donors and Paul Harris Society Members.

 His goals are to increase membership in the district by having each club +2 new members over the last year---Increase giving to The Rotary Foundation (TRF) by 5% over last year, and add two new PHS Members---PolioPlus donation of $2,650 per club ---and be Great, on Purpose, Be Vibrant, capture your Club vibrancy (fun service) in pictures and communicate your Club’s efforts on our website!  He also suggested we work toward additional and younger members by going where they go and tell the Rotary story.

To further explain membership he said vibrant clubs attract more like-minded people who want to give back, have fun, and experience fellowship.  Post members have fund doing service on our website and people will be attracted to the club.

 Mark said about 10 years ago he made Rotary his Charity of Choioce and decided to fund the Pa;ul Harris Society by setting aside $20 per week and after ten years he had given $10,000 and joined Major Donor status.

Back to PolioPlus---he said only two countries have experienced polio cases this year and only two dozen have been reported---thirty years ago, there were 400,000 Cases---this is the reason for the goal of $2,650 for PolioPlus for this Rotary year!    

10/25 Bruce Ballanger General Manager of the Earle Brown Heritage Center was our program and he told us of the origin and functions of the Center.  The Center was a farm that was the property of Earle Brown, long time county sheriff among other activities, and was donated upon his death to the University of Minnesota.  Subsequently it was negotiated to the City.

The Center has been the property of the City since April 4, 1990, when the transfer was completed.  Since that time the number of events has increased rapidly and has hosted more than 500 events and 150,000 attendees.  The staff according to Bruce is very loyal and many employees both full and part time have been with the center since 1990.

The Heritage Center is also known for its friendly staff and confines, and the unique design and architecture of the properties.  Additions of more than 40,000 square feet have occurred in 1994, 2000, and 2010 which have enhanced the property and provided space and facilities for larger events.

 Flik international caterers have handled the food facilities since 1999, and have a contract to continue to 2020.  Bruce and his staff work hand in hand with Flik and both consider excellent product and service as top priorities!

 Ninety-five percent of the Center’s business is repeat, from satisfied clients!  And Bruce said they survey and work with all clients to insure continued service of the highest standards.  Specifically, they survey booking process, professional staff, the facility, overall satisfaction and comparison to competition. 

 Bruce has worked to provide the Earle Brown Heritage Center with a highly recognizable brand, which accents the unique features, and the determination for successful events, the entire staff works to attain.  The operation is profitable and Bruce has a strategic plan to continue to update and improve the facility in the future through the web site, on line advertising, inbound marketing and social media!  Thanks to Bruce and future success-and to Tom for inviting him.   

10/18 Jim Soderberg from Soderberg Apartment Specialists was brought by Karen and told of his business, and the successes his company has had in reducing disturbances and police calls at the properties they obtain, reconstruct and upgrade, and rent to those who qualify or re-qualify.

 His company has about 3,000 rental units, 25% are located in BC, and a number in the South Metro, with Bloomington being the second largest concentration of their units.  They are interested in buying distressed properties, or doing a tax exchange, because of the lower purchase investment---and then redo the units from the studs out to include new paint, flooring, appliances, fixtures, granite counters, etc., in current styles and eye pleasing to renters-all, of which Jim called “A” finishes!

 He began his real estate ventures in the early 1980’s after college with eight four- apartment units as one of eight owners of the project.  He said he learned the business in administering those units, and found that to have a successful rental property you must control surrounding areas.  (In a previous Club visit, he indicated fencing the properties is essential in controlling traffic in the area and discouraging trouble.)

 Jim is proud of the effect his projects have in lowering crime and police calls to his properties, which is a very positive effect his company has had on the communities.  He described the apartments they have reconstructed in BC and noted with pride the positive effect within the community!  Additionally, to attract good people to their apartment buildings, Soderberg Apartment Specialists include controlled entry in and out, surveillance cameras, appropriate lighting for the area, clean and litter free, well maintained, grounds and parking areas!

 BC Mayor Tim Willson thanked Jim for his company’s role in reducing crime in BC and is a “Good Neighbor.”  Thanks to Karen and Jim for updating us on his program of producing good housing and neighborhoods for citizens!    

10/11 Dan Wascoe worked for the Star Tribune for 40 years as a reporter, feature writer and columnist, and retired several years ago at age 62.  During his career he was also a foreign correspondent, business reporter, and electronics writer.

One of his favorite projects, which became a staple of the newspaper, was the Minnesota Poll, which he developed and was a barometer of the thinking of Minnesotans.  The Poll measured the citizen’s attitudes in a number of areas and topics over many years, and the information was used to determine and shape the attitude, thinking and reputation of the communities and the State.  

The Poll surveyed readers specific attitudes, and what they thought were important topics for discussion---including crime, legislation, neighborhoods, business, personal relationships, and a host of other topics of general interest about us and what we, the community and citizens were thinking.

Dan said he prepared for retirement by organizing his thoughts into several areas---including Health, Passions, Talents, Service, Relationships, Reasonable Risks, Resources, and Building Blocks.  He gave his views on each of the areas and said he has adjusted to retirement after a short period and doesn’t miss having “deadlines”.  Thanks to Dan for sharing his career and thoughts with us and to Byron for scheduling Dan’s visit to our Club!

10/4 Ellen Schreder brought us up to date on her most recent trip to Haiti on her Days for Girls project, which helps women learn to sew---she provides sewing machines and materials for them to create products and sell them, to help provide for their families!  (In the photo Ellen shows a die cutting board used to cut out pieces for product production.She was very happy to announce that she was able to provide about a dozen of the seamstresses $150-$ 200 for their previous productivity, and from the sale of their products!

She also said she was working with some of the local residents to secure better facilities for the ladies to set up their production, and hopefully obtain electricity to use some of their electric machines that have been modified so they have treadles and can be used by foot power.

 The space available to permanently locate needs to have the floor raised, the roof raised and electricity to keep the rain and weather out of the space and provide a dry place for the project production and storage, as well as improving the working conditions for the sewing ladies.

 Another source of pride for Ellen is to see the ladies she has trained, are training girls and young women on the sewing skills and have introduced the project to a second village.  Ellen is working to expand the product line and to grow the project, and join with Dr Jeff Jaegers wife who is also involved in projects in Haiti!

 Ellen will review her project with our Board to determine the scope and funding going forward, as she puts together a package of info to take to the District and other Clubs asking for their support.  Ellen will keep our Club updated on the progress of the project!  Thank you Ellen for your great work!  

9/27 Barry La Grave, Director of Public Information Services of the Minnesota House of Representatives was our speaker and told us of the history of the annual State Fair Poll; how questions are chosen, how they have changed over the years, what is done with the information, and the 2016 Results.

 The poll is developed and conducted by the nonpartisan House Public Information Services Office, and is an informal unscientific survey of issues current-and possible future-in legislative sessions.  Of the 6,550 people participating in the 2016 opinion survey, 60.6 percent expressed support for a least a dime increase in the state’s 28.5 cents per gallon gas tax, 32.2 are opposed and 7.2 percent are undecided or have no opinion.

 This leads to the transportation issue, which was major during the 2016 session and after.  The Legislature and Governor Dayton could not reach agreement on how to fund road and bridge improvements across the State and how to fund additional bus and light rail lines in the Twin Cities metro area!

 Of those polled, 86.2 percent believe criminal background checks should be required on all gun sales, including private transactions and those made at gun shows. 

 Almost 75 percent of polltakers believe an ignition interlock device should be required for anyone convicted of DWI to get their driving privilege reinstated.  Currently, a person with three DWI convictions in 10 years, or four or more must use ignition interlock---which tests for the presence of alcohol---for a prescribed period of time before seeking reinstatement.

 Of those polled, 59.6 percent support an increase in the metro area sales tax to fund mass transit, including the bus and light rail projects.

 Polltakers also believe:

  • An independent citizen only council should set Legislator salar
  • Schools and businesses should not be able to require individuals to use restroom and locker room facilities based on biological sex as defined at birth-59.2 percent         
  • It should be illegal to talk on a wireless device while driving-51.6 percent;    
  • Legislators should be elected with political party designation-46.4 percent; 
  • Employees in workplaces with six or more workers should be able to earn one hour of sick leave for every 30 hours worked.  

Thanks to Barry for his timely presentation and Byron for securing his visit!  To learn more about the Minnesota Representatives 2016 State Fair Poll, go to the House

9/20 Tim Willson, new member but ‘old’ BC Mayor was our speaker and gave his classification talk (New member tells Club about himself, job, family, etc.).

 He grew up in Kasota, MN, population 750, and became a city council member there, and was fighting to regulate and clean up strip mining of sand in the 80’s. He worked as a landscaper, chef, dishwasher, in plastics, and went to college for three years. 

 In about 1990, he became interested in information technology and got a job with the State Board of Medical Practice, 30 years later, (this past summer) he retired from the State as a Director of Information Technology!  Also, along about this time he became Chairman of the BC Planning Commission, ran for Mayor in 2006, and took office as Mayor in 2007!   

 Along the way his wife, State Senator Chris Eaton said it was time to go back to school and graduate, which he did.  Tim and Chris had a son and daughter and his son is in the process of buying his first house!  Their daughter passed in 2007, a victim of a drug overdose.  The person who was with her was afraid to call for help because of the possible consequences! 

 Tim and Chris are working continually against the opiate crisis, whenever and wherever they can make a difference.  Chris was the sponsor for getting a “Good Samaritan” bill through the Minnesota Legislature which protects against prosecuting citizens who take the chance and effort to help someone who is having a drug medical emergency.  Our condolences to Tim and Chris, as they share their family story, and their efforts to help others by educating the community on the dangers of illegal street drugs!

 Tim says he has a hometown in BC and plans to stay in the City as long as he is able!  He works consistently on jobs, housing, and economic issues as Mayor, along with increasing low wages paid in BC to minority workers to get their compensation to a level to successfully support their families!

 He commented on redevelopment of the Brookdale Ford location he hopes will begin with phase one next year, which he said will help provide jobs in the City.  The housing will be market rate built to City standards.  He also said the Brooklyn Blvd purchase of properties for redevelopment is ongoing.

 Tim said his hobbies include computer technology, and on line games for Star Wars, he is also qualified as a drone pilot!  We are honored to have Tim as a member of our BC Rotary family.  Thank you and Welcome!    

9/13 The City of BC has a committee consisting of Mayor Tim Willson, City Attorney Troy Gilchrist, Robbie Hintz Animal Control officer and Jerry Low, citizen of the world, who deal with dog bites in the City.  Jerry and Troy explained the process!

 If you have a dog that bites someone and is reported to the City, the owners are visited and the dog is registered.  The dog may be required to be enclosed, leashed, muzzled and signs put up to indicate a ‘beware of dog’ situation.

 The owner then appears before the committee named, and explains the circumstances of the bite, and explains or appeals to the City committee for relief or compliance with their determination.  The City has a written process and also ordnances guiding dog bites.

 Part of the hearing procedure is the determination of whether the dog is a ‘dangerous dog’ which means the dog has without provocation inflicted bodily harm on a human or domestic animal on public or private property: been found to be potentially dangerous, overly aggressive or has been previously determined to be a dangerous dog by any other jurisdiction.

 A ‘potentially dangerous dog’ means that when unprovoked, has inflicted a bite on human or domestic animal, has chased or approached a person on a bike, street, sidewalk or any public or private property in an apparent attitude of attack, has a known propensity for attack, or has been determined to be potentially dangerous by another jurisdiction.

 Dogs that are repeat offenders may require that the owners obtain $300,000 liability insurance, and other possible solutions to require dogs within the City to be under the owners’ control!  Certain fees may also be applied to owners who do not manage their pets within the City ordnance.  Thanks to Jerry and Troy for explaining the necessity and workings of a dangerous dog situation.  

9/6 Sally Abrams, Co-Director of the Speakers Bureau for the Jewish Community Relations Council for Minnesota and the Dakotas was our presenter and showed slides depicting the nation of Israel.  She pointed out that Israeli’s are 78% Jewish, 16% Muslin, and 6% other religions and number about 8.5 million citizens.  Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip are 1/6 the size of Minnesota and are next to the Mediterranean Sea.

 Israel is a free society and shares many values with the U. S:  Democratic process, free speech and press, diversity, woman’s rights, independent judicial system, freedom of religion, freedom of assembly, and are viewed as a parliamentary democracy.

 Other Israel and U. S. shared areas include defense and security, energy and water research, homeland and cyber security information, defense methods and  agriculture development, seeking alternate fuel sources, and renewal of resources and living life efficiencies.

 Israel is sometime referred as a ‘Start Up Nation’ because of its formation in 1948, and its development of technologies such as 3D facial recognition, new medicine development, computer operation and language, file storage and smart cards, digital chips, messaging software, cardiac stents and firewall protections. 

 Israel knew that to develop and compete in the modern world, they would need to rely on their development of scientific information and methods to produce useful product, because large supplies of natural resources for use in building a nation and international trade were not available in the country.

 Sally explained the Israel way is to build teams and educate for problem solving as a road to society development and economic expansion!  She said males post high school, are required to spend three years in the military and women two years in the military, or some form of government service. 

 It is in these transition years for youth, that they learn the values of the society, including team building and problem solving, learned in their military experience which helps the transition to adulthood.  They also develop a strong sense of responsibility through stronger family ties, higher education incentives, taking action and chutzpah (never say never). 

 Thanks to Bill K for inviting Sally for this interesting presentation.

8/23 Dawn Knoll a Social Science Teacher, District Assessment Coordination and manager of various other educational functions in the Paynesville, MN, Secondary School was our speaker.  Dawn is also close personal friend of Melinda, and told us about her experience this summer attending the Summer Teachers’ Institute in Washington, D.C., at the Library of Congress!

 The Library of Congress is the world’s largest library with over 162 million items, and receives about 10,000 new submissions per week.  There are not enough shelves to provide space for all the items, and it is not a lending library.  All materials have to be viewed in the LOC or an approved off-site space.

 The collection includes:  books, maps, sheet music, comic books, posters, artifacts, motion pictures and much more.  Many items are now available in a digital format accessible by computer. The LOC is a working library and anyone can apply for a Reader’s Card which grants you access to the Reading Rooms and most items!  The LOC website is

 The Summer Teachers’ Institute is to provide an understanding of the various ways to use primary source materials in our schools, to expand the learning process and assist our students in the methods of independent thinking.

 Primary Source materials are an artifact, a document, diary, manuscript, autobiography, recording, or other source information that was created at the time period being studied.  These Primary Source Materials allows individuals to be curious and discover their own perspectives based on observation, previous knowledge, association, inquiry and many other higher level learning skills.

 The purpose of the Summer Teachers’ Institute and the use of the LOC is to educate students to THINK, rather than learning facts, and to use Primary Source Materials, rather than most books and curriculum material that are used in the classrooms of our schools today -  which are secondary source material that has been interpreted by someone else!

 Dawn told us some interesting factors about current students: 

 The majority of the jobs that the current first graders will have as adults do not even exist today! 

 Total information in the world is growing at an explosive rate:  At the end of WWII, the doubling rate of information was 25 years.  Today, the doubling rate of information is less than 12 months!!

 Information can be acquired at a faster and faster rate.  How the information is used is as powerful as the information itself!   

 Thanks to Dawn and Melinda for providing a very informative program.

8/16  Gary Eitel from City planning was our guest who told us about the plans and development in store for the City in the next few years!  In all, there are 22 projects listed on the Community Development Activities & Projects Map 2016, which includes enhanced roadways, additional motels, business area improvements, senior housing opportunities recreational improvements and other amenities for existing and proposed properties.

Gary, who was brought by Myrna and who has visited in the past, said the plans for development, both tax payer paid and private enterprise supported, must be true to the City’s vision outlined and published in the Community Development Plan as noted above---and provide minimum risk to private and governmental developers, and be able to be financed within current market standards!

Large projects include the Sanctuary at Brooklyn Center a senior residential structure with 158 units, 130 of which for general assisted living and 28 units for a higher level of care for residents.  Also, a 108 unit four story Embassy Suites II is planner near the current site, and near the Earle Brown Heritage Center.

A second hotel which is a Fairfield Inn & Suites by Marriott is planned for location south of the Embassy area and is scheduled to be completed by the time the Super Bowl comes to U. S. Bank Stadium in January 2018!

Maranatha Senior Living Community Phase II plans include a 34 unit senior independent living facility adjacent to the current location and adding parking spaces.

(This tremendous continuing revitalization of BC has been led by the vision of former Mayor Myrna Kauth and current Mayor Tim Willson, an engaged City Council, daily management by City Manager Curt Boganey, an interested active community - and a leading school district, with initial plans and progress developed by former Supt Keith Lester and the Board, and continued and grown by current Supt Mark Bonine!  This leadership and support of the community has put BC on the map as a desirable City to live in as evidenced by the increasing property values and higher home sales prices. Editor’s note.)

The Brooklyn Blvd Corridor north of 694, includes three projects at the NE corner of BB and 70th avenue, also including BB market, a 6,700 square feet pad site, and four to six lots north of Slim’s restaurant---and on the west side of BB space for a new Luther Group auto dealership to be located directly south of the US Post Office!

There are additional projects for Brooklyn Blvd corridor with a MID plan and a SOUTH plan which includes highway 100, to the City boundary, projects for the old Brookdale Ford location, Sears location, Shingle Creek and trails, Humboldt Corridor, Evergreen Villas, Industrial park area study, Twin Lakes Trail extensions and connections and other areas.  Thanks to Gary for his visit and update. 

8/9 Our program was a Club Memorial and Remembrance of Chris Johnson.  BC Mayor Tim Wilson was the first of several speakers who spoke about Chris and his willingness to help others, and his work on special projects in BC, in and behind the scenes!

President Bill Kirkpatrick provided the following statement:

 “Chris was a Rotarian that we all looked forward to seeing every Tuesday.  He very rarely missed a meeting.  He would always arrive early so as to have a bit more time for fellowship (and in the summer, to show off his red sports car).  He’d have a smile and a handshake or a hug for the ladies.  His main topic of conversation would be centered around the servicemen in his family, a trip he was taking to visit his brother, or an all-important family get together!  He was always willing to help the Club as he could, whether cleaning the park or helping to keep us on task with our strategic plan.  The fact that Luther made him the face of their company to the service clubs, tells you what they thought of him too!

“The loss of a good friend, Rotarian and man like Chris has us all pause to remember what we enjoy about each other’s company.  Like the other Rotarians we dearly miss, Chris will be fondly remembered in our Club for years to Come.”

Also telling their experiences, and special stories about Chris were:  Bill S, Byron, Dr. Orn, Cathy (who displayed a certificate citing a paver brick the Club purchased to be placed in the BC Amphitheater foundation with Chris’ name inscribed), Jerry L, Gerry A, Tim, Matt (who had slides of Chris and his projects), also City Manager Curt, who hosted the meeting - and wrapped up the feelings of the Club and our members toward their departed friend and fellow Rotarian! 

 Chris’ daughter representing his family, including his other daughter Jodi, and son Brad, thanked the Club and members for their friendship and affection for their father.  RIP good friend!

8/2 Matt Oquist brought Rob Williams, Executive Director of the Sheridan Story, an organization he incepted and orchestrated for “Fighting Child Hunger”.

Rob determined over 200,000 children in Minnesota don’t always have access to the nutrition they need to learn and grow -  and his organization focuses on the weekend food gap, when children don’t receive the free and reduced meal programs they participate in at school.

 The Sheridan Story began at Sheridan School in Northeast Minneapolis, and is expanding to other schools, as organizations become sponsors.  The Sheridan story provides the tools, resources and expertise required to make an effective impact on child hunger.  At the end of each school week they provide each child in the program with 4-5 pounds of substantive, nutritious food by putting it in the child’s backpack in their locker discretely.

 Community groups and sponsors work directly with the schools and build relationships and partnerships with them.  Sponsors provide part of the funding as mentioned, and enlist volunteers to work the program.  Sponsors include churches, companies, clubs, non-profits, and others.

 The Sheridan Story manages the operations and logistics of the weekend food program – they source the food, inventory, manage and pack, store, and deliver to the schools.  They provide hands-on guidance and expertise and information materials as needed

 The food is based on nutritional data and includes vegetables, fruits, proteins, rice, pasta, oatmeal, soups, etc.  By providing a consistent source of nutrition, children can focus on school, including attendance, higher learning and improving test scores, all of which can help lead to positive self-esteem and successful citizens.  Thanks to Rob and Matt for providing this grass roots program.    

7/26 Isaiah L. Goodman, financial rep for NW Mutual was our main speaker and told us about “Becoming” a program designed to help youth develop.  He is identifying several students for a ‘lifelong internship’ starting with understanding finance matters and then to other areas of personal development.

The “Becoming” program is a process of becoming something, or beginning to be ‘in’ change, growth and development!  It concentrates on developing faith, family, fitness, freedom, function and as mentioned finance.  Isaiah’s motto for the program is “I’m Getting Better” which he adopted from his father, Les Goodman a former Green Bay Packer running back who suffered a medical set back, and when asked, replies with his mantra. 

Isaiah explained survey information has revealed that 68% of adults do not have a professional advising on finance, and that is the reason that financial matters are high on the list of educating the participants for these life time skills!

The next steps of Isaiah’s efforts are to develop and fund a pilot program-identify students, and expand to other Rotaries and other cities.   

The process hits on “Things you wish you learned in school” and provides for students helping each other, and others, with presentations and workshops for furthering individual development.  He is hopeful to be able to provide scholarships and endowments for educational purposes.

Isaiah attended Holy Angels, graduated from Washington and Lee University where he played varsity basketball, worked for Target for five years and is now with Northwestern Mutual.  Thanks to Chief Tim for organizing this informative trio of speakers!

7/19 Our program speaker was Jacob Beitlich meteorologist from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) who presented slides and video of weather, and how it is forecast and published for the public’s use!  Located in Chanhassen, the agency constantly monitors the atmosphere and its effect on Minnesota and throughout the country.
Technology has given a big boost to forecasting and its accuracy, and provides for easier distribution of the information to the public.  Jacob asked the group what they thought the worst type of weather is-and got all the answers-then he showed slides of a violent tornado that hit an interstate in Oklahoma, and destroyed nine lives of people in their cars, trying to escape the onrushing storm!
He also showed the path of the Fridley tornado which struck on May 6, 1965, and a quickly changing recent summer storm, and the warning sequence NOAA issued to protect people and property!  He said the strong summer storms are developed when cool dry air hits warm moist air causing instability (rising air) and wind shears caused by the changing winds within the rising air.  NOAA also uses advanced Doppler radar, and does post storm damage and assessment so that information can be accumulated to help define future weather events!

7/12 Our program was by the members in attendance, in what Rotary calls a ‘club assembly.’  By table, the groups discussed:

Club Projects/Contributions—

Club Development/Membership

 At the table, members discussed the topics, then the floor was opened to all, and the following items of interest were noted, and will be reviewed by the Board and reported back to the Club!

Fund Raisers           Wine Tasting            Continue Poinsettias Sales
Donations                 Estate Planning      Income and Recurring Revenue                       
 Disc Golf tourney  Executive Golfing   Pursue available Grants
Develop other Events to build relationships and increase membership

Recognition to increase community awareness

Rotary benches in BC/City Road signage advertising meetings

Update information packet and application form for members to use in recruiting-Have seed dollars available for Major Fund Raisers!

Matt Oquist agreed to Chair a Marketing Committee to work in conjunction with the Membership Committee and members to identify opportunities to increase visibility, donations and membership!  Take pictures and video promoting our