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Access Press - Minnesota's Disability Community Newspaper

People and Places – September 2010

by // September 10th, 2010

Team gets a real field

The Courage Center Rolling Twins youth softball team will soon have a new paved softball field. The field will become reality thanks to the Minnesota Twins and a $200,000 Pepsi Refresh Grant.

The Minnesota Twins competed with other Major League baseball teams for the grant, which was won through online voting. Twins star Michael Cuddyer led the charge for the project.

The Pepsi grant will help to create a specialty softball field for Courage Center’s Rolling Twins youth softball wheelchair team, which currently plays in a parking lot and is in desperate need of a new home field. Pavement is needed because team members play in wheelchairs and need a hard, flat surface for their games.

Courage Center is the home of the Rolling Twins and the Jr. Rolling Twins. The youth team features players ages 7-16; the other team is for older players. The youth players learn fundamental softball skills of batting, fielding and base running in addition to the competition of games, some on a national level.

The adult team competes both regionally and nationally. In 2008 the team finished second at the national tournament.



PowerHockey Cup champs are from MN

North America’s elite PowerHockey teams played in Toronto to compete for the most sought after PowerHockey™ championship, the PowerHockey™ Cup. More than 20 athletes with disabilities represented Minnesota in the bi-annual tournament as members of the Minnesota Stars and the Minnesota Saints.

The Saints won the championship 6-4, in an exciting game over Michigan. The Stars placed fourth, falling to the Toronto Lake Raiders 3-1 in the third place game.

PowerHockey is a fast-paced, skilled sport for persons requiring the use of a power-wheelchair. The games are filled with everything from end-to-end rushes on goal, to stick handling and passing, to skillful defensive play. The ice is replaced with a gym floor and the puck is replaced with a waffle ball. Wheelchairs replace skates.

The PowerHockey Cup 2010 took place Aug. 6-9 at Ryerson University in the heart of downtown Toronto. The Minnesota PowerHockey League hosted daily coverage of both Minnesota teams on Facebook and Twitter. Coverage included pictures, videos, game summaries, player interviews and live tweeting during Minnesota games. It is still available online for those who missed the tournament.

The Minnesota Saints participation in the 2010 PowerHockey Cup marks their tenth year in existence as a tournament team. Founded in 2000, the Saints’ first tournament experience came at the 2001 PowerHockey World Cup in Minneapolis. Experience and an upgraded roster has led to better success in tournament play with third place finishes at Cup events in 2004 and 2008, and a 4th place finish at the 2006 PowerHockey Cup.

The Minnesota Saints 2010 roster includes Cindy Hugley, Minneapolis; Gordy Foster, Woodbury; Sarah Heinsch, New Hope; Dan Hugley, St. Paul; Joe Hugley, St. Paul; Dave Kaup, St. Paul; Josh Twite, Chatfield; Chad Wilson, Chaska, and Kristina Kent, Willmar. The Minnesota Saints are coached by Josh Holler of Minneapolis and Brian Little, Robbinsdale.

The Minnesota Stars were formed in 1993, and were the first power wheelchair-only hockey team in the United States. The Stars were also the first PowerHockey team from North America to participate in a European tournament. That tournament took place in Erlangen, Germany in 1993, and was the team’s first opportunity to play in a power-wheelchair hockey tournament.

The Stars won the 2004 PowerHockey Cup in Minneapolis and were runners-up in 2006 (Calgary) and 2008 (Minneapolis).

The Minnesota Stars 2010 roster includes: Wayne Baier, Crystal; Jacob Holmquist, Corcoran; Jeremy James, Minneapolis; Chris Kram, Cambridge; Craig McClellan, New Hope; Steve Onsum, Brooklyn Park; Luke Pedersen, Minneapolis; Josh Wimmergren, Maple Grove; Matt Wimmergren, Maple Grove, and Frankie McNamara, St. Paul. The Minnesota Stars are coached by Dan Enna, Crystal; Mike Hoschka, Golden Valley; Justin Bilden, Minneapolis and Dave Wimmergren, Maple Grove.



Intermedia Arts receives grant

Minneapolis-based Intermedia Arts has announced receipt of a two-year general operating grant from the Kresge Foundation, in the amount of $200,000. Intermedia Arts will receive $125,000 in the coming fiscal year and $75,000 in the following fiscal year. Intermedia Arts is a multidisciplinary, multicultural arts center, which supports a broad spectrum of artists, with a particular emphasis on voices audiences are unlikely to hear anywhere else.

The Kresge Foundation awards grants to small, mid-size, and large nonprofit organizations in six fields of interest: health, the environment, community development, arts and culture, education, and human services. Working with grantees, Intermdeia Arts endeavors to improve the life circumstances and opportunities for poor, disadvantaged and marginalized individuals, families, and communities.



Lane plans 2011 retirement

Mid-Minnesota Legal Assistance (MMLA) has announced that Jerry Lane will be leaving his role as executive director in 2011. MMLA is an urban-rural Legal Aid program serving 20 counties in central Minnesota, including Minneapolis. Lane has been with Legal Aid for a total of forty-one years, serving as Executive Director of MMLA for the past thirty.

MMLA will consider both internal and external candidates to fill the Executive Director position. Lane will continue in his role until his successor has been selected and then will assist with the transition.

“Legal Aid makes a difference in the lives of thousands of Minnesotans every year and will continue to serve our community’s most vulnerable.” Lane said. “I have been privileged to serve our clients throughout my career. Time and again they have set an example for me of dignity, courage and generosity in the face of adversity the likes of which I have never had to endure. I look forward to the next chapter in our history. I remain committed to our staff, our supporters and our partners. I hope to help build our resources so we can be there for our clients when they need us in the future.”

“I want to thank Jerry for his tremendous contributions over the past forty-one years and for his leadership in building a coalition of legal service providers, both locally and nationally,” said David Kantor, MMLA Board Chair. “Jerry has built a very capable and dedicated team to continue this important work.”

“No one has been a stronger advocate for the rights of underprivileged individuals, children, seniors and persons with disabilities,” said Mary Knoblauch, Chair of The Fund for the Legal Aid Society. “Jerry’s name is synonymous with justice and he has made an indelible impact on the quality of life for citizens of our state.”

During his tenure, Lane has played a significant role in the development of strong partnerships between Legal Aid and other legal service providers, the court system, local and state bar associations, law firms, the business community, the United Way, foundations, and local, state and federal lawmakers.



Arc award winners set

Every year The Arc of Minnesota honors outstanding individuals and agencies for their work in improving the lives and dignity of persons with developmental disabilities and their families. Recipients are selected from nominations submitted from across Minnesota. Winners will be feted Oct. 9 at a banquet at Breezy Point. This year’s recipients are:

Andrew R. Richardson Advocacy Award: Cheryl Ghionzoli of Home and Community Options in Winona, for speaking up for the rights and human acceptance of individuals with developmental disabilities and their families.

Betty Hubbard Family Advocacy Award: Kari Jo Johnson of Aitkin, for spearheading a “Spread the Word to End the Word” campaign to educate fellow students on her college campus about the offensiveness of the “R” word.

Bill Sackter Citizenship Award: Amanda Bernu of Virginia and Andrew Nightengale of St. Louis Park. Amanda and Andrew are two self-advocates who are living independently and contributing to their communities.

Boggs Mitchell Award for Inclusive Recreation: Coach Kevin Schagel and the St. Cloud State Men’s Basketball Team, for making Ryan Slingluff, a man with Down syndrome, their bench coach and an integral part of the team.

Community Innovator Award: Minnesota Works, for creating and implementing a fellowship program at the State Capitol in 2010 for people with disabilities.

Community Media Excellence Award: Rena Sargianopoulos of KARE-11 TV, for her sensitive reporting about people with disabilities over the past several years.

Distinguished Community Service Award: Dr. Daniel Rose from Pillager, for his long-standing commitment to providing dental services to people with disabilities.

Employer of the Year Award: Culver’s in Little Canada, for providing inclusive, competitive employment for people with disabilities.

Frances Klas Johnson Spirit of Giving Award: The Otto Bremer Foundation, for its many years of support for The Arc of Minnesota’s programs.

Government Partner Award: The Minnesota Department of Education Positive Behavioral Intervention Supports Team, for promoting and implementing positive behavioral programming in Minnesota schools.

Inclusive Housing Award: Mary David of Opportunity Partners in Minneapolis, for her support for individuals with disabilities living independently in apartments and homes

Irving Martin Professional of the Year: Jennifer Malm of ProAct in Eagan & Shirley Orth of TSE in Roseville. These women work in community-based services for persons with developmental disabilities. They have provided outstanding service that has increased the independence for people with developmental disabilities.

Luther Granquist Systems Change Award: Advocating Change Together, for leading the successful effort to pass a bill calling on the State of Minnesota to apologize for the past treatment of people with developmental disabilities in state institutions.

Teacher of the Year: (2 recipients): Lisa Lenhart-Murphy and Holly Hoey Germann of Benilde-St. Margaret High School in St. Louis Park, for providing volunteer experiences to their students to work with individuals with disabilities.

The Arc Family Award: Barb and Phil Lindblad of St. Louis Park, for 40 years of dedicated service to Arc Greater Twin Cities.

Volunteer of the Year Award: Diane Peters of Rogers, for her dedicated commitment to fundraising activities at Arc chapters in Minnesota.

For more information or to order tickets to the banquet, contact Mike Gude at mikeg@arcmn.org or 651-523-0823, ext. 113.

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