Rotary Club of Northfield, Minnesota  |  Thursday, May 14, 2020

This Week's Meeting

This week's speaker is a classification talk by new member Amy Goerwitz hosted by Larry Vorwerk. We look forward to hearing Amy on our Zoom call!




Barb Wornson (5.10.2018), Dale Ness (5.12.2005), Janet Hanson (5.14.2014)

ZOOM in Thursday, May 14, 2020
Meeting ID: 858 8392 9278
Password: 866745
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The meeting was joined by 53 Zoomers. There were no guests.


Mark Abbott gave a kernza update. His son Christopher is developing process capability through crowdfunding. To get involved and get your own supply, visit Kernza is a perennial grain that will be climate positive.

Happy News 

Beth Kallestad’s daughter Julia will attend North Dakota State in Fargo in the fall.

Richard Maus’s son and daughter-in-law had COVID-19 and both are now past it and have the antigens. Their two children, 5 and 7, had no sign of it. 

last week's speaker 

Beth Kallestad, Renewable Energy Challenge.

Beth has lived in Northfield for 23 years. She grew up on the East Coast and attended graduate school at the University Iowa. Her husband is from southern Minnesota.

She led the Cannon River Watershed Partnership for about 10 years. She’s now Program Coordinator with the City of Northfield. A main focus of her work is the city’s climate action plan.

She offered thanks to Rotary for help with the EV station. The second one has now been approved, again funded with Rotary help, and will be installed soon at 5th and Washington. She asked us to thank the city council. 

The City of Northfield's Climate Action Plan

Beth reviewed the goals of the city’s climate action plan: 100% carbon-free electricity by 2030 and 100% carbon free overall by 2040. The plan includes some sequestration and carbon neutrality components.

The sustainability page on the city's website is a good resource for more information.

City emissions 2017 - biggest sources are building energy - commercial/industrial, and residential. 

If you interested in the Environmental Quality Commission, contact Beth or follow on city website.

Anyone can join the Energy Action Team — Cows, Colleges, and Clean Energy!

The Home Energy Squad can't visit homes right now, so they are working on audits from a distance. Virtual visits are free. Visit or call 651-328-6220 for more information.

For people in manufactured homes, the city is partnering with Home Energy Squad. Based on income, the service may be free. Growing Up Healthy, in their efforts to foster  social connectedness and neighborhood leadership, is working with mobile home parks to winterize pipes so that residents don't have to leave water running to avoid freezing pipes. The City has contracted with GUH, and many families in Northfield and Faribault are showing interest. 

Some people at Emmaus have gotten some training to help with some projects - faucet replacements, etc.

Renewable Energy Challenge is on now thru June 15. Enter at

1. Take an action - sign up for WindSource, start the process for a solar site assessment, etc. Community Solar Gardens (city can't advocate for any specific developer).

2. Get recognized – but you can remain anonymous

Coming soon: more info about an upcoming Renewable Energy Webinar re energy reducing DIY projects around your home. 5/27, noon to 1 p.m. 

The goal is 100 new subscriptions for 100% renewable energy to their house.


A poll Rotarians taken during the meeting showed that 23% are currently participating in WindSource 49% have had a Home Energy Audit.

Barry Carlson, President

Barry's Buzz

Welcome to Barry’s Buzz now coming to you in the online Northfield Rotary Club Cogwheel!
Here are some updates on happenings in our club:
Our Club working with Rotarian Krista Danner from Northfield Area Family YMCA was able to “capture” some of the District Disaster Response funds from the foundation to help with providing day care to children in the Northfield community. The Y is working closely with the school District to make sure Tier 1 and Tier 2 children have safe affordable daycare. Our club was granted $933.84 from the District and we provided $500. Over 33 District clubs applied for these grants totaling $65,000 dollars where grant money only totaled $25,000. Grants were awarded proportionally by requested amounts (ours $2,500) and amounts clubs put in. Thanks Krista for doing the “legwork” on this grant!
Since we have not been meeting in person our continuing dues have gone each week to our caterer Maria for her local business and employees ($500) and an additional $500 each week to the CAC’s Food Shelf. After discussion at our last board meeting and follow-up discussion with our local grants committee we will continue to support Maria and her staff each week with $500 and the CAC Food Shelf $250 and BUT also support another different local nonprofit entity each week (as recommended by our local grants committee) $250. This week $250 will go to Rice County United Way -Covid19 Fund.
A couple other updates from our local grants committee. They finished using their committees grant money with recent grants of $500 to Hope Center, $500 to Ruth's House and $450 to Health Finders. They have work closely with the school and awarded two Northfield  Rotary Scholarships of $3,000 each . . . as these scholarships have not yet been announced I will hold off from providing names yet! Lastly, the Good Neighbor has been chosen . . . but the committee determined that we will wait until we can again meet in person and award it in person. Stay tuned!
All our fundraising committees have met and all three fundraisers are “on hold” until we know more of how Covid19 plays out. We will look again in early June what the next steps are.
We are still co-sponsors of the postponed State of the City address.  Look soon for it to be done virtually!
As you can see, we may be meeting via Zoom . . . but our club is still making a big impact here locally and around the world.
See you Thursday. Stay safe and keep serving.
PS Next week an update on our International Guatemala project . . . and that our club is sending 1,000-2,500 face masks to them!