We had a number of guests today.  John Risdall invited Don Eitel from Risdall Marketing.  Dean Lotter invited Joe Hatch, administrator at New Brighton City Hall.  Jeff Benson hosted Winnie Bradford of 5LinX Products and Services for her second visit to the club. 
Margaret was back at the helm after two weeks away and read a thank you note from the Rice Creek Boat Club ($250 donation) as well as one from the Ralph Reeder Food Shelf, for our efforts in collecting 1,846 pounds of food and $625 in donations.  Well done, Rotarians!
A reminder to all that next weeks meeting will be held from 4-7 PM at DD's in conjunction with our Rotary Day celebration of donors and volunteers for our successful Holiday Food Shelf Drive mentioned above.  All NBMV Rotarians should attend this meeting.
Our February 10th meeting will be held in the Risdall Marketing Conference Room at the regular time.
The Gold Plate Dinner tickets were distributed at today's meeting.  Each Rotarian is responsible to buy one ticket for themselves and do their very best to sell as many more tickets as they are able.  Get started talking to friends and business associates now!
Val canvassed the meeting to assess support for running the bingo concession at Stockyard Days again this year.  The vote was affirmative, so we'll be looking for number callers to staff the concession.  We'll donate the first $1,000 to Stockyard Days and anything over that goes to Rotary.  I was nervous about doing it last year, but I had a blast.  I hope you'll give it a try.
Dean was understandably excited about New Brighton finally reaching an agreement with the Federal Government about how New Brighton will be compensated for ongoing expenses related to the Army's contamination of the water supply.  The agreement, yet to be ratified by the N.B. City Council and the Federal Government, would result in a minimum of 59.4 million dollars paid to New Brighton over the next 30 years.  This issue has consumed a huge amount of time for Dean and his staff, and they are obviously pleased to be able to put it behind them.  Our collective gratitude goes out to Dean, City Hall Staff and legal counsel for their tireless pursuit of a fair settlement from the extremely parsimonious Feds!  Click here for more details.
After a beautiful (for us) rendition of the Birthtday Song to honor Dana's birthday, Jeff spoiled the afterglow by fumbling with his camera and making Dana wait to take off the hat, which she was anxious to do, as you'll see in the photo below.
Our speakers today were Kathy Blegen-Huntley and Joan Elwell from the Lakeshore Players Theater.  Joan and Kathy filled us in on Lakeshore Players capital campaign to fund the construction of a new 16,000 square foot, 240 seat, performing arts facility.  The campaign is called "Light the Stage" and it's goal is to create a multi-generational entertainment venue to replace their current facility, which to put it kindly, is suffering due to it's age, lack of handicap accessibility and inadequate parking.  The proposed 2.76 acre site is four blocks north of the White Bear downtown business district at the current site of Twin City Nursery, and next door to the White Bear Center for the Arts.  John Ordway's wife, Marla, is on the Capital Campaign Committee.  For information about Lakeshore Players Theater Productions, click here.  Kathy and Joan are pictured with Margaret, below.