March 5, 2019
Update from the Executive Director

MCC Trial Memberships are back! Mill City Commons is offering the opportunity to "try on membership" again this year! Trial Memberships offer a 3-month opportunity to receive full member benefits for the modest fee of $100. The trial membership period runs from April 1, 2019, through June 30, 2019. If at the end of the trial membership period you decide to convert to a full membership, the trial membership fee of $100 will be applied against the annual fee. Such a deal! For more information, click  here. I hope you'll join us!

Earlier this year, I informed the Board of my decision to retire in June. It was a difficult decision to make, but the right one. While health issues continue to be a consideration, so, too, are my grandchildren. I'm sure many of you can relate! 

Mill City Commons is in the process of looking for a new Executive Director.  If you know of someone who would be interested in learning more about leading this wonderful organization, please direct them to our website.  All pertinent information, including application, can be found on the home page directly to the right of the  main photo www.millcitycommons.or g. Click here to view the job description. 
MILL CITY COMMONS: We learn. We share. We engage. We give.

~ Joan Wright
MCC Evening Book Club
Tuesday, March 5, 7:00 - 8:30 pm
RiverWest Social Room, 401 1st St S
Join us to discuss TransAtlantic by Colum McCann. Newfoundland, 1919. Two aviators-Jack Alcock and Arthur Brown-set course for Ireland as they attempt the first nonstop flight across the Atlantic Ocean, placing their trust in a modified bomber to heal the wounds of the Great War. Dublin, 1845 and '46. On an international lecture tour in support of his subversive autobiography, Frederick Douglass finds the Irish people sympathetic to the abolitionist cause-despite the fact that, as famine ravages the countryside, the poor suffer from hardships that are astonishing even to an American slave. New York, 1998. Leaving behind a young wife and newborn child, Senator George Mitchell departs for Belfast, where it has fallen to him, the son of an Irish-American father and a Lebanese mother, to shepherd Northern Ireland's notoriously bitter and volatile peace talks to an uncertain conclusion. These three iconic crossings are connected by a series of remarkable women whose personal stories are caught up in the swells of history. Beginning with Irish housemaid Lily Duggan, who crosses paths with Frederick Douglass, the novel follows her daughter and granddaughter, Emily and Lottie, and culminates in the present-day story of Hannah Carson, in whom all the hopes and failures of previous generations live on. From the loughs of Ireland to the flatlands of Missouri and the windswept coast of Newfoundland, their journeys mirror the progress and shape of history. They each learn that even the most unassuming moments of grace have a way of rippling through time, space, and memory.

The MCC Evening Book Club meets on the first Tuesday of the month. Upcoming gatherings are on June 4, September 3 and December 3.

MCC members sign up here.
Rendezvous Readers' Book Chat
Wednesday, March 6, 10:00 - 11:00 am
Abiitan's Porter Cafe, 428 S 2nd St
Join us to discuss Dear Mrs. Bird by AJ Pearce. Emmeline Lake and her best friend Bunty are doing their bit for the war effort and trying to stay cheerful, despite the German planes making their nightly raids. Emmy dreams of becoming a Lady War Correspondent, and when she spots a job advertisement in the newspaper, she seizes her chance. But after a rather unfortunate misunderstanding, she finds herself typing letters for the formidable Henrietta Bird, renowned advice columnist of Woman's Friend magazine. Mrs. Bird is very clear: letters containing any Unpleasantness must go straight into the bin. But as Emmy reads the desperate pleas from women, many of whom have Gone Too Far with the wrong man, or can't bear to let their children be evacuated, she begins to secretly write back to the readers who have poured out their troubles.

April's book is Clock Dance by Anne Tyler (originally scheduled for February Book Chat, which was cancelled due to weather). Have a book suggestion for the Book Chat? Email Marsha Blumenthal.

MCC members and guests. No registration required.
Technology Workshop: Did You Know Your iPhone Could Do This?
Wednesday, March 6, 1:00 - 2:30 pm
American Academy of Neurology, Training Room B, 201 Chicago Ave
Explore hidden features of your iPhone in this workshop, where you'll learn tips and tricks that will expand your use of your iPhone. We'll cover safety features such as advanced emergency calls; health features such as the built-in steps tracker; practical features like faxing, scanning, and using your phone as a magnifying glass, and many more. It's recommended that you have an iPhone 6S or newer and an operating system of iOS 12, as some of these features are specific to newer phones and operating systems. Time will be reserved at the end for asking questions and sharing your personal favorite tricks and tips. This class will not cover basic how-to's and functionality.

NOTE: If you update your phone, there may be changes to how your phone looks--you can't go back. If you're unsure, please consult Tech Tutor, the Apple Store, or a friend. Before upgrading, complete a backup (Settings app, tap your name, tap iCloud, tap iCloud Backup, and tap Back Up Now while connected to wifi).

Registration is now closed. To be added to the cancellation list, please email Betsy Wray at
M en's Coffee & Conversation
Thursday, March 7, 7:30 - 8:30 am
Elsie's Restaurant, 729 Marshall St NE
It's caffeine and camaraderie for the male members of MCC and guests! This group meets every other Thursday and is hosted by various members who get the conversation going. Please register by the Monday prior to Men's Coffee and Conversation. This week, MCC member Bill Fox hosts guest speaker R.T. Rybak. Rybak, former Minneapolis mayor and current president and CEO of the Minneapolis Foundation, will discuss several important issues facing the city and state. Topics may include marijuana legalization and the criminal justice system.

MCC members sign up here; guests email MCC.
Dinner for 5
Sunday, March 10, 6:00 - 7:30 pm
Smith & Porter Restaurant, 428 S 2nd St
If connecting with and getting to know other MCC members in a smaller, more intimate social setting interests you, this Sunday night dinner just might be for you! This month, join other MCC members for a casual evening of dining in Abiitan's Smith & Porter Restaurant. The meal is dutch treat. Space is limited, so register early!

If this event is filled when you try to register, contact Betsy Wray ( if you'd like to be placed on the wait list.

MCC members sign up here.
Driven to Discover: Headquarters Economy - Why the Twin Cities Are a Leader
Monday, March 11, 7:00 - 8:30 pm
Minnesota Tech Center, 1100 Washington Ave S
Why are the Twin Cities such a strong center for corporate headquarters? Myles Shaver, professor of strategic management and entrepreneurship at the U of M's Carlson School of Management, will share insights into this question, based on his research into the Twin Cities headquarters economy. The answer lies in understanding the essence of headquarters--the managerial pool that guides and governs these companies. Shaver, who holds the Pond Family Chair in Teaching and Advancement of Free Enterprise Principles, is the author of the just released Headquarters Economy: Managers, Mobility and Migration.

This is one in an ongoing MCC program series under the banner "Driven to Discover." The series features University of Minnesota faculty and students sharing current research and programming at the University.

MCC members sign up here.
Meditation Circle
Tuesday, March 12 & 19, 9:30 - 10:30 am
Mill City Quarter Club Room, 322 2nd St S
Mill City Commons members are invited to join in a weekly drop-in meditation hour. This is a time for self-guided meditation; if you're new to meditation, we'll provide a brief explanation to help you get started. Our hope is that meditating with each other may help each of our practices and create a shared energy among participants. Drop-in sessions are on Tuesdays from 9:30-10:30 am at Mill City Quarter, across the parking lot from Abiitan. An MCC member will be there to greet you at 9:30 a.m. Please register for sessions you plan to attend so we have an idea of how many to expect. All sessions are free.

MCC members sign up here for the March 12 session; members sign up here for the March 19 session.
"The Body in Soviet Art" at The Museum of Russian Art
Tuesday, March 12, 11:00 am - 12:00 pm
The Museum of Russian Art, 5500 Stevens Ave S
Join us for a tour of "The Body in Soviet Art." This exhibition examines the depictions of the human form in Soviet art, featuring more than 50 works created from the 1950s to 1970s. Representations of the human body have varied over time and across cultures; Soviet art placed a unique emphasis on the working body as part of a Soviet collective. Docent Ruth Ann Benson will be our guide. You're welcome to invite guests! Admission is free for TMORA members, $8 for seniors (65+) and $10 for adults.

MCC members sign up here; guests email MCC.
Social Bridge
Wednesday, March 13, 3:00 - 5:00 pm
Washburn Lofts, 700 2nd St S
Join bridge players for a round of social bridge; levels of expertise and experience vary. Bring a partner if you can, and remember to register both yourself and your partner. Questions? Contact Carol Jordan at

MCC members sign up here; guests email MCC
Protecting Minnesota's Seniors from Abuse and Neglect
Thursday, March 14, 3:00 - 4:30 pm
Mill City Quarter Club Room, 322 2nd St S
For the last two years, AARP Minnesota has been at the State Capitol asking lawmakers for stronger protections for Minnesotans in long-term care residential facilities. Lawmakers have pledged to work in a bipartisan way to pass legislation this year that establishes new license requirements for assisted living residences and strengthens the rights of older Minnesotans to protect them against retaliation when they or their family members speak out about poor quality care. Come learn more about how a broken regulatory system has allowed abuse and neglect in long-term care facilities to persist and how Minnesota can better protect older and vulnerable adults. Speaker Erin Parrish is Associate State Director for Advocacy and Outreach for AARP Minnesota.

MCC members sign up here.
Sunday Soiree
Sunday, March 17, 5:00 - 7:00 pm
La Rive Party Room, 110 Bank St SE
Join your friends and neighbors for the Sunday Soiree, hosted by La Rive members John & Sonia Cairns, David & Sheryl Evelo, Barbara McBurney and Mary Moos. Please contribute to the potluck by bringing a hearty hors d'oeuvre, main dish salad or dessert to serve at least 8. As you register, let us know what you'll bring by answering the "Question" that will appear on the screen. You are welcome to bring your own wine or beer to share.
MCC members sign up here.
Great Decisions: The State of the State Department and Diplomacy
Monday, March 18, 7:00 - 8:30 pm
DeLaSalle High School, 1 DeLaSalle Dr
During the Trump administration, the usual ways of conducting diplomacy have been upended. Many positions in the State Department have never been filled, and meetings with foreign leaders such as Kim Jong-un and Vladimir Putin have been undertaken with little advance planning. What effect are these changes having now, and how will they affect ongoing relationships between the United States and its allies and adversaries? Speaker Tom Hanson is a foreign policy consultant and former career U.S. Foreign Service Officer. Currently, he serves as program secretary of the St. Paul-Minneapolis Committee on Foreign Relations, advisor to Global Minnesota's Great Decisions program, and Diplomat in Residence at the University of Minnesota -Duluth.

Registration on the MCC website is required for Great Decisions members. Sorry, not open to guests; to join the MCC Great Decisions Discussion Group, email Betsy Wray at

MCC GD members sign up here.
MCC Program Calendar

View the full calendar of MCC's March events here.
News From Members 

You are invited to join  MCC member Bud Hayden , Board Member of Think Small, for their upcoming Small Talks breakfast event on Tuesday, March 12, from 7:30-9:00 am at the Midpointe Event Center located at 415 Pascal St N, St. Paul. The event will feature a panel discussion followed by audience Q & A on the topic of Minnesota's Workforce: How Businesses Benefit from Early Childhood Education.  Admission is free, register at . For more information or if you have questions, email  or call (651) 641-3543.  

MCC member Peg Kavaney wants to let members know about "A Morning with Dr. Robin DiAngelo" taking place at the Guthrie Theater on March 15 from 7:30-9:00 am. Come hear Dr. Robin DiAngelo talk about a term she calls "White Fragility," a state in which even a minimal challenge to the white position becomes intolerable, triggering defensive responses, instead of a prompt to reach for humility and grapple with how to engage in intentional action. Learn more and purchase tickets here.

MCC  member Lou Burdick invites members and friends to join in singing with the Mill City Singers on Saturday afternoons from 2:00-3:30 pm at the Guthrie Theater on the 8th Floor. Rehearsals are open to all and directed by the talented musician JD Steele and the accompanist Fred Steele. All are warmly welcomed regardless of singing experience and together we make wonderful music and have FUN! They meet in March on the following Saturdays: March 16, 23 and 30. The group performed at Orchestra Hall last year and will do so again this year on Thursday, April 4, at 10:00 am. It's an experience you won't want to miss!

MCC member Will Craig has two new publications that might interest MCC members. Both appear in the recent publication of the CURA Reporter, a publication of the U of M's Center for Urban & Regional Affairs:  K-12 Achievement Gap Is a National Problem, comparing state Black/White test scores across the country, and Minnesota's Changing Consumer Economy, a look at the vitality of cities across outstate Minnesota.
Ar ound Town

First Books Reading
March 14, 7:00-8:30 pm, Weisman Art Museum, 333 E River Rd
The Creative Writing Program's First Books event features Minnesota writers who recently published their first books. This year's readers are Maureen Aitken, Caitlin Bailey and Donte Collins. In addition to these featured readers, MFA alumnus Connor McNamara Stratton will read from his aunt Michelle McNamara's posthumous I'll Be Gone in the Dark. For more information, click here.

Cantus: When I Grow Up
March 15, 7:30 pm, MacPhail Center for Music, 501 S 2nd St
What kind of person do I want to be? How do I find someone to share my life with? What happens when I make mistakes? When I Grow Up explores the path of self-realization. From childhood through adulthood, Cantus reflects on the cycle of life. Exploring themes of adolescence, companionship, parenthood, masculinity and morality, When I Grow Up considers how we become who we are. Tickets can be purchased here.

Mill City Times  is a local website devoted specifically to our neighborhood and a place to go to find out what's happening, whether it's a new restaurant opening, a local event, proposed construction, volunteer opportunities and more.  
Volunteer Opportunities 
Click here  for community volunteer opportunities on the MCC website!  
MCC Ongoing Social Opportunities
Dutch Treat
Social Hour
Mondays, 4:00-5:00 pm
Jefe Urban Hacienda
219 Main St SE
Drop in for an afternoon coffee or drink and a casual chat. No reservations

Readers' Book Chat
1st Wednesday of the month, 10:00-11:00 am
Abiitan's Porter Cafe
428 2nd St S
    No reservations required. The next  book is
Dear Mrs. Bird
by AJ Pearce

Guthrie Play Reading
North Star Group
Wednesday, March 27,
6:30-9:30 pm
Reading Cyrano de Bergerac  this month.

Rendezvous on 5
Wednesdays, 9-10 am
Guthrie Theater Level 5 Express
Drop in and join your friends and neighbors for fellowship at this neighborhood haunt. This weekly adventure requires no reservations!

Social Bridge
Every other Wednesday, 3:00-5:00 pm
Washburn Lofts,
700 2nd St S
Enjoy a round of social bridge. Be sure to register on the website!

Men's Coffee and Conversation
Elsie's Restaurant,
729 Marshall Street NE
Caffeine and camaraderie for the male members of MCC! This group meets every other Thursday at 7:30 am and is hosted by various members who get the conversation going.

MCC Women Connect
Join MCC women as they connect and grow, sharing experiences and learning from each other as they adapt to life's changes and transitions. This group meets the fourth Thursday morning of the month.
  Mill City Commons
Ongoing Fitness Opportunities

SBS Class
                 9:15-10:00 am
G-Werx Fitness,
428 2nd St S, #100
An exclusive opportunity for members, this weekly class focuses on strength, balance  and stretching to keep you fit and strong.
First time participants, please contact G-Werx Fitness at (612) 767-4415 and arrive 20 minutes early to complete paperwork. Cost varies depending on commitment.
  River Walkers
Tuesdays and Thursdays,
7:30-8:30 am
Stone Arch Lofts Riverside Parking Lot
All levels of walkers are welcome for this early morning walk along the banks of the Mississippi River. An MCC volunteer leads each walk.

Meditation Circle
                         Tuesdays             9:30-10:30  am
          Mill City Quarter,
322 2nd St S
 Join us for a weekly
self-guided meditation hour.
Ongoing Member-Led Activities

MCC Caregivers' Support Group
2nd and 4th Wednesdays,
10:30 am-12:00 pm
A way to support members and non-members who are in a  caregiving role.
For more information, contact  Betsy Wray

Men's Dutch Lunch
Abiitan's Porter Cafe
428 2nd St S
Alternating Thursdays at 11:30 am
March 14 & 28
 This casual, dutch treat lunch alternates weeks with Men's Coffee and Conversation. No reservations required! Questions? Contact  Allan Burdick.
Mill City Commons | 125 Main St SE, Suite 339, Minneapolis, MN 55414 |  
(612) 455-3329