October 27, 2020 Update from the Executive Director
The combination of the pandemic and last weekend’s weather would have made a good horror movie. Luckily, the weather will be warming up in time for Halloween and Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead). Simple celebrations can lift your spirits, recharge your energy and allow you to connect with people you care about. Find a way to do some kind of holiday activity this week that is special, creative and COVID safe

A few ideas for Halloween include continuing the long Irish tradition of making jack-o’-lanterns. Carve a pumpkin and light it up to ward away evil spirits (use a battery-operated light for safety). Dress up your pet, your grandchildren or yourselves and send us pictures to share. You can also enter your costumed canines in the Halloween Hounds contest – see below. And think about delivering special treats to friends and family – tricks not required!

Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a holiday that calls to mind loved ones who have passed and reminds us to keep their memories alive. It is a joyful celebration honoring friends and relatives who are no longer living, but who continue to guide and influence your life. Consider joining in the online events Mia will be hosting over the weekend, make a small display of items honoring someone you have lost, deliver a favorite family dish to friends and/or listen to music that reminds you of your loved ones.

Safely celebrating in some way this holiday weekend will bring you smiles!

MILL CITY COMMONS: We learn. We share. We engage. We give.

~ Elise Linehan (612) 455-3329, 125 Main Street SE, #339, Minneapolis, MN 55414
Upcoming Virtual Programs and Events
Virtual via Zoom: Last Tuesday MCC Member Mixer
Tuesday, October 27, 5:00 - 5:30 pm
Register to join us for a NEW! 30-minute MCC Mixer designed to give you a chance to meet and greet new and old MCC friends. Using breakouts, we will disperse into a series of smaller groups and rotate through the questions below. Fast and fun! Bring your favorite beverage and a smile.

  • What person, living or dead, would you like to have happy hour with?
  • If you were stranded on an island, what food would you have to have with you?
  • What characteristic or quality in yourself has come out more strongly during COVID?

MCC members can click here to find the Zoom link.
Virtual via Zoom: Men's Coffee and Conversation
Thursday, October 29, 7:30 - 9:00 am
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. This week's conversation will be led by Frank Wilkinson. Frank will introduce his guest speaker, Tom Evers, ED of the Minneapolis Parks Foundation. Tom will speak to us about the RiverFirst campaign and how it is transforming our Upper Mississippi waterfront into a cultural and recreation destination, as well as being a source of economic growth.

**Note: it's also time to start thinking about our annual Men’s Breakfast Book Review scheduled for November 12. Please come with one book recommendation, of any genre, to share with the group. Given the stresses of COVID-19, we’d especially like to hear about books of good humor or wit, as well as off-beat stories. Each person will have 2 minutes to describe his book recommendation.

MCC members sign up here; guests email MCC. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
Virtual via Zoom: Exploring the Four Dimensions of Racism
Thursday, October 29, 7:00 - 8:30 pm
Jack Nelson-Pallmeyer is professor (emeritus) of Justice and Peace Studies at the University of St. Thomas. His op ed piece “Counterpoint: I am a racist. So is Katherine Kersten. She can't admit it” appeared in the July 28 edition of the Star Tribune. Join us as Jack helps us explore the four dimensions of racism and how we can all examine the roles we play and choices we make within a thoroughly racist society and culture.

MCC members sign up here. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
Virtual via Zoom: Rendezvous Readers' Book Chat
Wednesday, November 4, 10:15 - 11:15 am
Join us to discuss The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett. Looking well beyond issues of race, The Vanishing Half considers the lasting influence of the past as it shapes a person's decisions, desires, and expectations, and explores some of the multiple reasons and realms in which people sometimes feel pulled to live as something other than their origins.

If you'd like to read ahead, choose a mystery by Ian Rankin. We’ll read and discuss an assortment at our December book chat. Have a book suggestion for the Book Chat? Email Marsha Blumenthal.

No registration required. MCC members can find the Zoom link here.
Virtual via Zoom: Meditation Circle
Thursday, November 5, 9:15 - 10:15 am
Leader: Terry Pearson will provide guided meditation via zoom.

Fee: An additional fee of $10.25 is required for this class to cover instructor costs.

Attendance Policy: A minimum of 3 registrants are required for this program to run. If there are less than 3 registrations 24 hours prior to the start of the program, the following will occur:
  1. the program will be cancelled and the calendar will be updated
  2. registrants will be notified via email that the program is cancelled
  3. registrants will not be charged

Cancellation Policy: If you cancel your registration less than 24 hours before this program is scheduled to take place, you will be charged for attendance. To avoid being charged, please cancel your registration at least 24 hours prior to the program start time.

MCC members sign up here. Registered members will receive the Zoom link in their confirmation email.
Virtual via Zoom: Women Connect Chat
Thursday, November 5, 2:00 - 3:00 pm
Women Connect Chat is a less formal, shorter, more intimate group chat. We’ll catch up on fun topics and share ideas in 45 minutes to an hour. This month’s topic: Feed Me! Bring your favorite easy recipes. Seafood. Pasta. Beef. Veggie. Chicken. Something saucy. Something cheesy. Something spicy. Something easy. Join us if you are seeking new ideas and if you’ve got something yummy to share.

MCC members sign up here. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
Virtual via Zoom: LivingWisely LegacyJourney® Workshop
Thursday, November 5, 7:00 - 8:30 pm
Our LegacyJourney® pathways provide the foundation for creating engaging and transformational personal experiences. The program will inspire you to create meaningful documents to share your values, life lessons, insights, wisdom, hopes for the future and generosity. This hands-on workshop will explore the three LegacyJourney pathways (Ethical Wills/Legacy Letters, Life Reflection Stories, and Making a Difference Plans), and include writing exercises for participants to begin the process of creating their own LegacyJourney documents. The workshop will be led by Barry Baines.

MCC members sign up here. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
Virtual via Zoom: Giving Care to Caregivers
Monday, November 9, 10:30 am - 12:00 pm
November is National Caregivers’ Month. Many MCC members are providing this important role to family members, friends and neighbors. While it is a vital role in the health and well-being of our society, caregiving can often be an invisible, thankless, expected, and challenging job. Please join us for this important discussion as we hear perspectives from both caregivers and a “caregivee” as well as explore tools and strategies to support the caregivers in your life. And, if you are a caregiver, join us to learn ways you can find the help and support you need.

MCC members sign up here. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
Virtual via Zoom: COVID-19: Updates and Q&A with Michael Brennan
Tuesday, November 10, 9:30 - 10:30 am
As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, MCC Member and retired physician Michael Brennan is keeping a close watch on all medical and health developments put forth by the CDC, NIH and MN Department of Public Health. Join us for this every-other-week meeting where Michael will share the most recent information available, his perspective of how to keep ourselves safe and healthy, and answer questions.

MCC members sign up here. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
Virtual via Zoom: Women Who Make a Difference: Melanie Ebertz
Tuesday, November 10, 7:00 - 8:30 pm
Melanie Ebertz is probably the best unpaid, unofficial Minneapolis Concierge you can meet. She will warm your heart and put a smile on your face with her rich stories about life as an advocate for the arts, the farmer’s market, indigenous cultures and her connections to many MCC members. For many years, she has greeted thousands of people at the Mill City Farmers Market and formed friendships over the incredible Peruvian hand-loomed rugs that she sells. When she initially connected with Peruvian artists, she became aware of their needs for nutrition information and early childhood education. This led her to establish a foundation and connect many Twin Cities residents with local artisans in Peru thru hosted tourism. The foundation’s hard work and the rising level of living in Peru eventually concluded the foundation’s work. Melanie is joining us to share reflections on pivoting during the time of COVID - a time when we may actually have more disadvantaged community needs in Minnesota than the Peruvian artisans.

MCC members sign up here. The Zoom link can be found in the program description after logging in.
What’s Your Story?
The Tell Me A Story program will be taking a break in November and December. We hope to bring the program back in 2021—but we need YOU! Since June, members have been sharing high points, low points, and intriguing and uplifting stories from their lives to enthusiastic response from members. Help us continue this great zoom program that helps us get to know one another a little bit better, especially when we can’t be together in person. There’s no limit to what you might tell – or read. What facet of your life would help us know you better if we heard your story? We need ONE MORE storyteller in order to run a January program.

How it Works
It’s simple! Each monthly program consists of three storytellers who each get 5-15 minutes to tell/read their story, followed by brief Q&A from the audience.

When crafting a story or mining one in your archive you may consider the following:
  • Most rebellious thing I ever did
  • Smartest thing I ever did
  • Stupidest thing I ever did
  • An incident that made a certain travel experience memorable
  • A person you met only once with whom you wish you could connect again
  • An early “dead end” job from which you learned something important
  • An ancestor or young childhood friend who had a huge impact on your life

Email Bethany Boom to sign up for a January story slot, or suggest a month that would work for you.
Ongoing MCC Activities
Dutch Treat Social Hour
4:00-5:00 pm
Drop in for an afternoon coffee or drink and a casual chat. Click here for the Zoom link.
Rendezvous on 5
9:00-10:00 am
Drop in and join your friends and neighbors for a morning chat over Zoom. Click here for the Zoom link.
Men's Dutch Lunch
Alternating Thursdays,
11:30 am-12:30 pm
This casual, dutch treat lunch alternates weeks with Men's Coffee and Conversation.
Click here for the Zoom link.
River Walkers
Tuesdays and Thursdays,
8:00-9:00 am
Stone Arch Lofts Riverside Parking Lot
All levels of walkers are welcome for this early morning walk -with pandemic protocols-along the banks of the Mississippi River. An MCC volunteer leads each walk.
Strength, Balance & Stretch (SBS)
Mondays and Wednesdays
2:00-2:45 pm
An exclusive opportunity for members, this class focuses on keeping you fit and strong. First time participants, please contact G-Werx at (612) 767-4415. Cost varies depending on commitment.
MCC Community Care Resources
MCC Caregivers' Support Group
2nd and 4th Wednesdays,
September-December, 10:30-12:00 pm
A way to support members and non-members who are in a caregiving role.

Members will be contacted with a Zoom link to join the meeting.
Member-to-Member Volunteering
If you want to support other members, you can sign up to become a volunteer driver or member-to-member volunteer.

If you are in need of volunteer services, let us know. Mary Texidor can help arrange a ride, meals, grocery shopping, visits and more.
Medical Equipment Loan Program
If you have a medical need, we may have the equipment you are looking for. Consider contacting the office before you buy or rent a piece of equipment. We have a shower chair, raised toilet seat, walker, bed assist rail, cane and grabber available.
Go to MCC's COVID-19 Response page to see resources, Zoom tutorials and recommendations from members on things to do while staying at home.
News from and for Members
MCC member Will Craig shares that civil rights leader Josie Johnson presented for the University of Minnesota Retirees Association recently on how racial injustice and systemic racism have affected African Americans since their forced importation into what is now America. The program recording can be viewed here.

MCC member Patty Canney shares that California Dreamin' is happening online this year starting November 6. Visit artists' studios and shop from the comfort of your home. Click here to learn more.

MCC member Bill Van Essendelft recommends Nixta Minneapolis for takeout. He and his family have been regularly enjoying picking up family dinners for 2-4 people. If you go on line you can view weekly menus and place your order for pick up. It is a slick system and the food has been unique and delicious each week, especially their homemade tortillas. What about you? Do you have other restaurant recommendations that offer curbside pick up? We'd love to know and share in an upcoming Musings. Email us with your recommendations.

MCC member Marilyn Broussard visited the American Swedish Institute to see their current exhibition of quilting art titled We are the Story: We Who Believe in Freedom. Beautiful and powerful, Marilyn recommends you visit the exhibit before it ends on November 1. Click here for reservations and details. The Textile Center also has a quilt exhibit as part of this initiative called We are the Story: Gone but Never Forgotten: Remembering Those Lost to Police Brutality that honors lives that were violently ended due to police negligence and brutality. Make an appointment to visit the Textile Center here.

Are you interested in a new opportunity? The city of Minneapolis Advisory Committee on Aging (MACOA) provides oversight, monitoring and evaluation of the Minneapolis for a Lifetime Strategy. The committee brings senior citizen concerns to the attention of the Mayor and City Council. MCC member Dick Kavaney has been the Third Ward representative on MACOA and his term ends this year. If you are interested in replacing him, please let him know. He will make a recommendation to Minneapolis City Council member Steve Fletcher. 

MCC member Chris Bray, as Chair of the Care Community (CC) committee, shared the results of a survey the committee completed and the top three priorities (see attached) for the group as immediate next steps. Thank you to the MCC members who have been participating with the CC committee and to the MCC members who have volunteered to work on the priorities. If you are interested in getting involved with the work, please email us
Around Town
The Biology of Aging and Our Body's Readiness for COVID-19 Vaccines
October 28, 12:00 pm, virtual
Understanding how the human system ages, and how older bodies have responded to shingles, flu and pneumonia vaccines can help improve vaccine effectiveness in older adults. Join Immunobiologists Jenna Bartley, PhD, and Janko Nikolich, MD, PhD, AFAR Senior Scientific Director Steven N. Austad, PhD, and Grantmakers In Aging CEO John Feather for a discussion. Register here to receive the link to the program.

Halloween Hounds
Submissions due tomorrow (Wednesday), October 28 by midnight
Enter a photo of your cute canine all dressed up for Halloween and submit here for your chance to win prizes in three categories: Cutest Costume, Scariest Costume and Best Overall Costume. If you submit a picture, let us know so members can vote for your dog.

Virtual Artists' Talk
October 29, 7:00-8:00 pm, virtual
Form + Content Gallery presents Together/Apart, the second group exhibition of work in a variety of media mounted this fall by gallery members and interns. At this confusing – confounding – exhilarating point in time, art seeks to shed some light on the sacred and the profane, the past and the future, our local community and the wider world. A "tour" of the exhibition by the artists will include questions and answers. To sign up and receive an invitation link, please email formandcontent@gmail.com.

Amreeka: Election Night Comedy Special
November 3, 8:00–10:00 pm, virtual
Tune in on the night of 2020 Presidential election, for an evening of live comedy by Theater of Public Policy and stand-up comics Suzie Afridi, Usama Siddiquee, and Amer Zahr. The performers will comment on the incoming election news coverage, as it happens, and reflect on the state of “Amreeka,” as the word is pronounced in Arabic. Click here to learn more.

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.
Get Your Vote in Early!

MCC Members have volunteered to help other MCC members by driving them to the polls or delivering their absentee ballots to a safe mailbox. Email us if you are interested. 

  • You can vote early now through November 2. Click here more information on location and hours. 
  • If you want to get an absentee ballot, the Secretary of State website makes it easy. 
  • If you are interested in helping your community get ready to vote through a non-partisan voter education program or by signing up to be an election judge, click here
Contact Us
Elise Linehan, Executive Director, eliselinehan@millcitycommons.org
Mary Texidor, Business and Member Services Admin, marytexidor@millcitycommons.org
Bethany Boom, Program and Events Manager, bethanyboom@millcitycommons.org
(612) 455-3329