The Rotary Club of Excelsior met on Tuesday, July 20th with Tim Litfin & Staff presenting Tour deTonka 2021.  President Lou started the meeting to have Dick Glover be the Meeter –Greeter.  Dick had everyone sit as he read an excerpt from Red Skeleton on “What the Pledge of Allegiance Means” and then had the club say the Pledge and the Four Way Test.  We had one visitor and Don Draayer introduced Molly Lange whom he met at the 4th of July Firecracker Run and invited her to visit our club.  Molly was from our area and has worked in government accountability and now is a trained Yoga Instructor.                                                       
President Lou then whished Happy Birthdays to Randy Schumacher (7/22), Dick Glover (7/27), Linda Gustafson (7/22), and Kate Wilinski (7/18). Milestones were Kate Wilinski (5 yrs.), Elizabeth Nicol (6 yrs.) and Dick Glover (27yrs.).  President Lou reminded everyone that there are still two positions (i.e., Pres. Elect and Treasurer) and on the Foundation a Treasurer position is open.  Then President Lou presented Kate Wilinski with a Distinguished Service Plaque and a Past President’s lapel pin and thanks her on behalf of the Club for a great year under trying circumstances.
Our Program for July 20th was Tour deTonka with Tim Litfin and his Staff.  Each staff member took turns asking trivia questions and giving out lots of fun prizes.  We found out that Bob Boyer has been the longest running sponsor of the event and built the scaffoldings for the event and supplied the boom truck for the huge American Flag.  Also we learned that the first event 16 years ago had 818 and 32,809 have participated over the years.  This year there will be the following registrations for miles: 16-30-36-42-67-71 and 100!  Geographically all but 4 counties have had participants and riders from 46 states.                                         
Volunteers are needed this year due to the late start due to Covid.  Generally Tour deTonka needs about 600 volunteers.  The metro map of the tour involves for counties and Lester Prairie is the newest city on the route due to changing conditions and highway projects.  Tim reflected and showed a photo of Jerry Green what had participated many years in Tour deTonka and had it even mentioned in his obituary.   
So, The Tour deTonka is August 7th and online registration is open and the Staff is looking for volunteers to help with set-up, registration, corner guides and many other assignments.  Tim had everyone in the club who had helped with Tour deTonka stand and nearly everyone had served over the years.                          
On a totally different topic, Tim and Staff showed plans for the renovation of the playgrounds at MCEC in Deephaven.  The proposal includes new equipment and a buoyant poured in place solid surface that is ideal for the 2-5 year old children using it.  The Funding campaign is just getting started.  They currently have $125,000 and need to raise an additional $250,000.  It is Tim’s hope that Rotary will become one of the main sponsors and have our club’s name prominently displayed of the sponsorship wall.  They are currently having some challenges with the Minnehaha Water Shed District due to the impervious surface of the playground in ratio to pervious areas to deal with drainage.  Hopefully they can work this out and the 6,000 children will have and updated and safe area to play at MCEC.  During the Q&A it was suggested that a Rotary matching Grant be sought for the project and the Board will take up the idea at their next meeting in August.                                                                                          
President Graber ended the meeting by reminding them of the Party at John Hotvet’s home that night starting at 4PM and parking suggestions.  With that he ended by saying “Have a great Rotary Week!”