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HomeCommunityTwo Harbors Moose Lodge #1463 hosts Minnesota Moose Association 77th annual Mid-Year...

Two Harbors Moose Lodge #1463 hosts Minnesota Moose Association 77th annual Mid-Year Conference

Submitted by Jessie Dewey

Two Harbors, Minnesota –– On Tuesday, March 19th, the first of many attendees arrived in Two Harbors to prepare for a Moose Le­gion training session on Wednesday. The confer­ence officially kicked off Thursday with a meet and greet for Official Visitor, Moose International Board of Directors Bruce Snider, out of Woodward, Oklaho­ma. Local musician Tra­cy Parks, performed in the lodge social quarters fol­lowing the meet and greet. Friday morning session was called to order by Minneso­ta Moose Association Pres­ident Kaye Anderson, with colors posted by American Legion Post 109. The Na­tional Anthem was per­formed by Warren Miller of Harbor Insurance Agen­cy, followed by the playing of the Canadian Nation­al Anthem. In attendance were members from all 15 Minnesota Moose Lodg­es – Baudette, Coon Rap­ids, Albert Lea, Faribault, South St. Paul, St. Charles, St. Cloud, Braham, Maple­wood, Grand Rapids, Proc­tor, Cloquet, Aitkin, Orton­ville, and of course, Two Harbors. There was even a group that drove down from Thunder Bay, Ontar­io! In addition to the Of­ficial Visitor, was another special guest from Moose International Board of Di­rectors, Kirk Schoepp out of Williston, South Dako­ta. There were a total of 92 members registered for the conference overall, which is a great turnout despite the predicted winter storm.

The local members in­volved in planning really wanted to showcase our amazing town. Each reg­istered attendee received a Lovin’ Lake County Guide­book and donations from participating local business­es were included in raffle baskets. One evening, Sue Bott loaded up her car and drove a group of dignitar­ies around to see a docked ore boat, Edna G, steam en­gines, and other landmarks in the area. They were ex­cited to learn about the Harbor Cam so they could watch the ore boats after they returned home. Many members talked about re­turning to the North Shore with their families.

At each conference, the hosting lodge provides a list of non-profits in the area for the Association Heart of the Community Committee to choose from. One organi­zation is chosen to receive donations collected from all the participating lodges and chapters. This year, North Shore Horizons was chosen as our Heart of the Commu­nity project. To help sup­port the cause at this event, Lovin’ Lake County lit up downtown purple for Do­mestic Violence Awareness. Donations were collected and presented to Jean with North Shore Horizons at the closing banquet on Sat­urday.

Another tradition is the be­loved MN Moose Associ­ation mascot, Mortimer. This mischievous, over­sized, plush moose is the responsibility of the Asso­ciation President for the en­tirety of their term in office. At each event, he tends to go missing, and the Pres­ident is faced with a fine, bail, or ransom depending on the situation that arises. This is just another way that Moose Members make it fun and raise money for Moose Charities. Mortimer made the most of his time in Two Harbors, visiting many local attractions!

This year, THHS senior Rebecca Blaisdell received a standing ovation during the Friday afternoon ses­sion when she shared her experience participating in the Moose Youth Aware­ness Program. With The Moose being a family fra­ternity, her story began talking about memories of being at the lodge as a young child alongside her grandfather, Ron Blaisdell. She agreed to share her sto­ry at the conference to help encourage other lodges to participate in the program designed to promote safe­ty and health for youth ages 4-9 through “kid talks” created and presented by teens in grades 9-12. Bec­ca will be representing the MN Moose Association and Two Harbors Moose Lodge #1463 at the Youth Aware­ness International Congress in the state of Virginia later this month where she gets to compete with approxi­mately 60 other high school age kids across the country for a chance to earn one of six scholarships, with first place being $12,000! The trip is fully funded be­tween the Association and the lodge, and she will be awarded a $500 scholarship from the MN Moose Asso­ciation for being chosen for the International Congress.

After the closing ban­quet Saturday, both local and visiting members stuck around the lodge to enjoy live music by Ricky Sund­strom, of Ricky Carl Music. On Sunday morning a group of women participated in the Higher Degrees, Academy of Friendship conferral, in­cluding local members of Two Harbors Women of the Moose Chapter #109, Cher­yl Sundstrom, Jessica Carl­son, Kathy Oberg, Sue Bott, and Holly Booterbaugh.

The Moose organization founded and continues to support Mooseheart Child City & School, a 1,000- acre community and school for children and teens in need, located 40 miles west of Chicago; and the Moose­haven retirement commu­nity, a 65-acre campus for qualified retired members and their spouses, located near Jacksonville, Florida. Additionally, Moose Lodg­es and Chapters conduct nearly $90 million worth of community service (count­ing monetary donations and volunteer hours worked) annually.

The Two Harbors Moose Lodge #1463 and Wom­en of the Moose Chapter #109 would like to extend a huge THANK YOU to Tim Bott and the THHS DECA Club students and parents for helping in the kitchen and dining room all day on Friday and Saturday; Lodge and Chapter members and their families for all the vol­unteer hours put in for this event, and the amazing bar­tenders and janitors for all their hard work. Also, thank you to Superior Shuttle Service for providing safe, efficient transportation all weekend between the lodge and hotels, and courteous service to visiting mem­bers. Thank you, Lovin’ Lake County, for providing a grant to help with some of the expenses needed to make this event a success!

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