Alexandria has a new policy for baseball field and park naming rights – Alexandria Echo Press

ALEXANDRIA – At a meeting Thursday, August 11, Alexandria City Council adopted a naming rights policy for Knute Nelson Memorial Park and Fillmore Park/Dean Melton Field.

This links to action the council took on July 25 when it agreed to support a community fundraising initiative to improve parks and fields. The Alexandria Youth Baseball Association is leading the effort. The city did not contribute direct funds to the campaign.

The policy states that the city names facilities to honor and recognize organizations or individuals who have supported park facilities through distinguished efforts or substantial financial contributions of at least $50,000.

Facilities include buildings or parts of buildings, such as concession stands, scoreboards, restrooms, batting cages, field lighting, stadium seating, dressing rooms, dugouts or press stands. Naming rights can also include outdoor spaces – patios, playgrounds, driveways, parking lots or playgrounds.

All naming rights requests must be submitted to the city in writing to city staff for consideration. A committee will also review an application and make recommendations to the park board. The park superintendent will submit his recommendation to the council.

The physical display of the name will be decided or negotiated on a case-by-case basis.

Naming rights will normally only be in place for a maximum of 15 years. The Board and Park Board may authorize exceptions. Naming rights may be renewed by mutual agreement of all parties.

The City reserves the right to terminate naming rights, without refund, prior to the scheduled termination date. The Designated Party may also terminate its acceptance of Naming Rights prior to the Termination Date.

The Alexandria Park Board recommended that the board approve the AYBA fundraiser with one stipulation – the name, Knute Nelson Memorial Park, must remain as is.

The following items are from the August 11 meeting and have not been included in other council stories.

MnDOT wants to replace 4 bridges on I-94

At the request of the Minnesota Department of Transportation, the council agreed to send a letter supporting MnDOT’s request to receive a federal grant to replace four bridges along Interstate 94.

The bridges are located east and west on I-94 on the Canadian Pacific Railway and on County Road 23.

The back-to-school parade gets the green light

The Alexandria Area High School Homecoming Parade will take place on Friday, September 30 from 3:30-5 p.m.

The council issued a special event permit for the parade, which will begin at the fairgrounds and continue up Broadway and up 12th Avenue to Jefferson Street, ending at the Alexandria College parking lot.

Police will provide traffic control and barricades and cones will be set up.

Organizers also applied for a parade permit from the Minnesota Department of Transportation, as Broadway is also a state highway.

About 2,000 participants are expected.

The council has also issued a special event permit for the “Feed the 5,001” event which will take place on Saturday, August 27 from 2-9:30 p.m. at the Common Ground Coffee House.

It will offer free food, a car show and music.

Hawthorne Street between Fifth and Sixth Avenue will be blocked off for the event.

Rating “Welcome”

The board learned some highlights from a “Welcoming and Inclusive Community Assessment” that was conducted in Alexandria by the University of Minnesota.

The city’s cultural and inclusive committee participated in the evaluation.

Committee member Kelli Minnerath showed the city a chart measuring the degree of inclusion of various groups in Alexandria, based on surveys. For example, the school system and law enforcement had a high level of inclusion while local government and religious organizations had a low level.

“There are some things we do well and certainly some things we could do better,” Mayor Bobbie Osterberg said.

For more information on the assessment, watch the Alexandria Lake District Chamber of Commerce’s one-hour virtual “Listen and Learn” broadcast on Wednesday, August 31 from noon to 1 p.m. The event is open to everyone and is free. Register by visiting the Alexandria Chamber website at


The impact of the Mid-West Initiative

The West Central Initiative continues to make a difference in the Douglas County area, including Alexandria, according to Samantha Van Wechel-Meyer, Development Specialist for WCI.

She presented an annual report on the activities of WCI. Some highlights:

  • WCI administered 31 COVID grants in the region from the Department of Jobs and Economic Development for a total of $345,000.
  • Since 1986, WCI has provided 655 grants totaling $4.2 million in Douglas County and loans totaling $8.9 million.
  • WCI-supported projects include the Early Years Initiative, Leadership Alexandria, Safe Routes to School, COVID Resilience Fund grants, and small business relief grant distribution.

For more information on WCI, visit


The council proclaimed Saturday, August 13 “3M Day” in Alexandria.

The proclamation notes that 3M opened its Alexandria abrasives plant in 1967 in a temporary facility and moved a year later to its current location at 2115 South Broadway. The original building was 60,000 square feet and was expanded six times to its current size of over 320,000 square feet.

The company employs nearly 400 people from Alexandria and surrounding communities.

The company also gives back to the community, according to the proclamation. It supports K-12 education, health and social service programs, arts and culture, and the environment. Employees also volunteer with local projects such as Math Counts, Lego League, Earth Day, Science Fair, YMCA, Habitat for Humanity and the Food Department.

Alcohol sales allowed at hockey games

The council gave final approval to a change in city ordinances that will allow the sale of liquor licenses to the Blizzard of Alexandria, a junior league hockey team, allowing owners to serve beer and wine forts at the Runestone Community Center during Blizzard games.

Unbeknownst to the city, the state legislature passed a law in the last session stating that the city “may” issue a license to the owner of a junior league hockey team.

Pre-RCC practice was for Blizzard to contract out alcohol service at RCC to a local Liquor for Sale Licensee who also has a state-issued restaurant license.

City staff have determined that it is preferable for the city to issue the license directly to the supplier rather than have the liquor served through a vendor hired by the junior team who has a restaurant license.

The license will only be in effect for junior hockey games, players ages 16-21, and excludes high school hockey games. Alcohol would only be available to those 21 and over and must be consumed at the RCC.

Other events at the RCC would still need to use a different supplier for alcohol service.

In a related action, the board approved The Blizzard LLC’s application for a license to sell beer and wine to the RCC.

The license will cover the duration of the season – from October 15, 2022 to March 3, 2023. There is potential for more home games if the Blizzard makes the playoffs.

The board welcomed its first full-time information technology specialist, Maureen Miller.
She lives in the Carlos area and she said she was thrilled with the opportunity of her new position.

Transitional Merchant License

The board approved an application for a passing merchant license from Brandon Hetland of Osakis.

Hetland, which is also a real estate agent in the area, will go door to door to offer fiber internet to residences.

The request was reviewed and approved by the Chief of Police.

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