Volume 106 #24
This Week at Rotary
We Meet at Noon
Thursday, December 17, 2020
(Meeting Opens at 11:45)
(Link Sent Thursday Morning)
David Ross
President and CEO of Duluth Area Chamber of Commerce
Our Shared Path Forward
The Rotary Club of Duluth and the Duluth Area Chamber have a shared history. Our paths merged in 1911 when The Rotary Club of Duluth was established. (The Chamber was established in 1870.)  Over the years our organizations have risen and fallen together.  The future of our organizations is inseparably woven together with a shared challenge to lift up our community. Our future depends upon it.
Highlights from Last Week’s Meeting
By Al Makynen
40 Rotarians and Guests are gathered.  Some at work, some at home, some on cell phones.
With the meeting link activated at 11:45 there was the usual fellowship.  As always, just like at the tables of old, some Rotary business was transacted.  President-Elect Chana Stocke wanted to know how private the “Private Chat” option was.  Answer: to a degree but the host can see everything!  Following the lead of President Dean Casperson we all recited the Pledge of Allegiance and Rotary Four Way Test.  As the mute buttons had not all been activated it was a huge echo chamber, sort of neat, but not a word understood! 
Past President Mike Orman provided the Rotary Reflection on his personal journey with the COVID-19 lockdown.  By March 14th he was following the Governor’s orders and staying home.  To cope, his family turned to movies, documentaries, and TV programs. This resulted in the need for two new smart TV’s which required grandchildren to set up!  The family soon realized the staggering amount of content available.  Some not so good.  Some worth a second viewing.
Past District Governor Phil Strom introduced Bob Rogers from Bob’s Bikes to present him with a grant for $2,000   In the past 12 years, Bob’s Bikes has provided 2,525 bikes to children between the ages of 12 and 16.  This year was different.  With disruptions in the supply chain, the bikes would not arrive in time.  To meet the needs of youth, our grant will provide clothing and sporting goods to children served by the Salvation Army.
Past President Holly Sampson, International Service Committee, presented to Karl Everett, a Harbortown Rotarian, a grant for $3,000 for the Bolivia Medical Clinic Project.  A number of Rotary District 5580 Clubs are involved.  This project will provide medical services in a remote region where many residents fall below the UN Poverty Guideline. 
Paul Helstrom announced the December 21 Life House Outdoor Christmas Party.  Life House Staff will be distributing small gifts along with cookies and hot chocolate.  Members were asked to check their December 10th email for the specifics on how to help with cash donations, individually wrapped cookies, hot chocolate supplies, or $10 to $20 gift cards.
Rob Hofmann introduced our speaker, Riki McManus, Director, of the Upper Midwest Film Office.  Riki has a long history in the film industry including the casting of Purple Rain.  In 1996 she sold her casting company and moved to Duluth to start the Upper Minnesota Film Office.  The first thing you should note is the recent change in the name from Upper Minnesota to Upper Midwest. 
Riki McManus, Director, Upper Midwest Film Office
The Upper Midwest Office collaborates with Philip Gilpin of the Catalyst Content Festival to highlight area shooting locations and the post production capabilities.  Catalyst attracts people and submitted content from all around the United States and International.  Where Catalyst goes so goes Duluth. Workforce development is growing and with the right contacts, infrastructure, and tax incentives in place there is the potential to make film and TV production a core area industry rivaling timber, taconite and tourism.  The number of jobs associated with production is staggering.  It is more than scouting for locations and getting all the necessary permits. Every type of service and worker is needed including catering, hotels, carpenters, electricians, painters, artists and others – and the list goes on. 
To grow and to be competitive with other markets such as Georgia and Toronto, tax incentives are necessary.  The State of Minnesota currently has tax incentives.  St. Louis County is moving to put similar incentives in place.  There are currently 30 productions looking at Duluth.  Being able to offer incentives as part of a package will make more of them choose Duluth.  We have great assets.  Some, not all, need snow.  The forest and lakes provide great scenes.  For a production who need a train, we have trains including operating steam with owned track.  And we have the arts, arts development, and education with programs in eight different universities providing talent and a trained workforce.  With incentives and time we are in a strong position to grow the Minnesota Film industry from the current $27 million annual expenditure to something approaching Georgia’s $9.5 Billion.
Santa Elves (Rotarians) Bell Ringers for Salvation Army
By Jerry Pelofske
Ringing bells for the red kettles is one of the ways we provide direct service to our community. With COVID and Superior Street Construction affecting downtown businesses we redirected our efforts from the Skywalk System to Super One Grocery Store locations.  This Wednesday, December 16, our Club will cover all five locations between 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.  Please consider joining the effort.  Kettle locations are inside the vestibule and allow for social distancing.  Also consider putting your check in the red kettle while a Rotarian is at work. 
Phil Strom – One of the Rotary Elves Dressed to the Nines
Paul Helstrom using Two Bells to cover both Local and International
Jim Schwartz as the Masked Santa Elf from Carlton
Office Preparedness Plan
This Week's Meeting
Thursdays at 12:00 PM
Meeting Via Zoom
207 W. Superior St. Suite 201
Duluth, MN 55802
United States of America
Venue Map
Dec 17, 2020
Duluth Chamber of Commerce
Jan 07, 2021
Global Health Politics
View entire list
Upcoming Events
Salvation Army Bell Ringing
SuperOne Foods
Dec 16, 2020
10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Volunteer Opportunity: Community Food Distribution
Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank
Jan 13, 2021
4:15 PM - 5:30 PM
Volunteer Opportunity: Community Food Distribution
Second Harvest Northern Lakes Food Bank
Feb 10, 2021
4:15 PM - 5:30 PM
View entire list
Birthdays & Anniversaries
Member Birthdays
Elizabeth Simonson
December 2
Elaine Hansen
December 14
Holly Sampson
December 14
Suzanne Anderson
December 15
Harvey Smith
December 18
Dave Holappa
December 21
Paul Helstrom
December 27
David Clark
December 28
Tom Young
December 31
Join Date
Michelle Buria
December 1, 2005
15 years
Betty George
December 2, 1993
27 years
Mark Peterson
December 4, 2008
12 years
David Fulda
December 17, 1998
22 years
Elizabeth Simonson
December 18, 2018
2 years
Official Publication of Rotary Club of Duluth 
207 W. Superior St.
Suite 201
Phone: 218-722-0451
Duluth, Minnesota 55802
Editor:  Al Makynen
Rotary Office Hours
Monday 9 – 3
Wed. & Thur. 9 – 4
See Rotary's response to COVID-19