Monday, July 2, 2018

Saying Farewell to Camp #MnCities

On June 20, hundreds of city officials came to St. Cloud for Camp #MnCities—the League’s 2018 Annual Conference. Over the course of three days, campers discovered ideas during more than 20 educational sessions, created connections with other city officials as well as more than 100 vendors and League staff, and heard from inspiring speakers.

Look back at this year's conference, and share some of your own highlights in the comments below!

Autumn from Sassy Lassy Trivia & Events led the League's intergovernmental relations (IGR) team, plus League board members Mike Mornson and Heidi Omerza, with a fun quiz show exploring the ups and downs from the 2018 legislative session. 

Camp #MnCities kicked off Wednesday evening in the exhibit hall. Campers made s'mores, enjoyed live music around the camp fire, made crafts, and took part in other camp activities as they connected with fellow city officials, vendors, and League staff.

Camp started bright and early Thursday morning with a panel on the urban-rural divide. Moderator Darin Brodon from Tunheim led the discussion with State Demographer Susan Brower, Mayor of Bemidji Rita Albrecht, University of Minnesota Vice President of Matt Kramer, and Research Director with Growth and Justice Kate Searls.

Every year, the League and city officials say good-bye to outgoing board members and welcome new ones during the LMC Luncheon & Annual Meeting. On Thursday, 2017-18 League Board President Jo Emerson congratulates outgoing Past President Rhonda Pownell (top), and new League board president Heidi Omerza addresses city officials for the first time in her presidency (bottom).

Fox 9 Anchor Amy Hockert emceed this year's brand-new awards show and dinner. The evening recognized the winners of the 2018 City of Excellence awards, cities advancing in the GreenStep Cities program as well as the 2018 Sustainability Award, and the 2018 James F. Miller and C.C. Ludwig leadership awards.

Campers took notes during the closing session on Friday morning as keynote speaker Paul Schmitz. Paul engaged the crowd as he explored how communities can grow stronger through meaningful engagement and collaboration.

Already excited for the 2019 Annual Conference? Share your ideas for next year during an annual conference focus group this fall. Contact Laura Harris at by August 1 to take part.

(Photo credit Todd Myra Photography.)

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