Good morning, Milwaukee.
Here is the view this morning outside my hotel room in the Beer City. OK, so I’m not overlooking the Riverwalk, Miller Park, the Milwaukee Art Museum or any of the other sites they brag about here. But it’s better than the blur of flashing lights and orange barrels I drove through Monday night to get here. It seemed as if every mile of road from Madison to Milwaukee was under construction.
I’m learning by doing in my new gig as a development officer for Loras College. After a trip last month to Chicago, I decided it would be best to arrive in Milwaukee the night before my first appointment at 9 a.m. today. But the Loras Network of Dubuque’s 40th annual golf, dinner and auction fundraiser was held Monday so I didn’t hit the road until after 7:30 p.m., which meant pulling into the hotel at 11:00. (Note to self: Be kind to your old eyes, leave earlier the next time and avoid driving at night through endless miles of road construction.)
Speaking of the fundraiser, it’s an unfamiliar experience to attend that kind of event and know hardly anyone in the room. But I had a good time. How can you go wrong when Gary Dolphin, the voice of the Iowa Hawkeyes AND a Loras graduate, is the master of ceremonies? And next year will be a different story — I’ll know most of the people in the room by then!
But even in an unfamiliar room, the world is pretty small. One of my new Loras colleagues, Kim Roush, a graduate marketing specialist, took my photo in a group with Loras President Jim Collins and others. And then Kim told me we have a mutual friend, Kim Drautz, president and chief operating officer at Stoney Creek Hotel & Conference Center and a friend of since seventh grade.
A final note: Team MCSA, the group I took on RAGBRAI last month to raise money for Muscatine Center for Social Action, raised at least $7,500 this year and garnered some nice publicity today. When it’s all said and done, the effort should raise closer to $9,000, which will bring Team MCSA’s three-year total to more than $20,000. Thank you to everyone who has participated in this effort in any way.