Annie Plachta, a sophomore and co-vice president of the Minnesota Club at Notre Dame, has a hard time deciding what her favorite thing is about her home state. She can start, however, with the strong Minnesota presence on campus at Notre Dame. The Minnesota Club is one of only four state clubs on campus and has roughly 250 to 300 members. “The club puts on a lot of really great events,” Plachta said. “We work with the Minnesota Alumni Club every August to put together the freshman send-off, so pretty much everyone that attends that is already in the club.” This year’s freshman class from Minnesota is the largest in history. 81 freshmen came to campus this August from the state. “We just put on fun events, and try to have an event every month or so,” Plachta said. The club puts on the annual “Flannel Formal” in the early spring semester every year, collaborating with the Texas Club to host the event. Other events planned include a Minnesota Night at the Compton Family Ice Arena, in which the club will attend a hockey game. “The club is all about spreading ‘Minnesota Nice,’” Plachta said. “During finals week we organize goody bags for our members. We fill the bags with Frappuccino coupons and candy bars, for example, and deliver them door to door.” The club hosted an event last Thursday called the Northern Lights 5K run. Runners were given glow sticks and completed the run completely in the dark. The proceeds went to orphanages and promoted education for children in Africa, a cause advocated by another club officer. “We had about 50 people come out, which was great considering it was the first year we have had the event,” Plachta said. “We are hoping it will grow over the next few years.” Another perk of being a part of the Minnesota Club includes a strong connection to the Minnesota Alumni Club. The alumni and campus clubs “have a really good connection,” Palchta said. “They provide a bus home for fall, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and spring breaks, and they also sponsor tailgates for us. Anyone is allowed to come,” she said. In addition to connecting to students during their four years here, the Minnesota Alumni Club also provides a unique opportunity to members through the Go IRISH program. This program is designed to help members connect with jobs and internships. Members submit an application to one source and their application circulates to various offices around the Twin Cities area. “The program is a great resource for our members,” Plachta said. “The best part of the club is meeting other Minnesotans. We have a special bond and love putting on events that make Minnesotans feel almost like they are back home.” As for club membership, Plachta said that it is open to anyone who wants to join as well as anyone who wants to celebrate their love for Minnesota. “You don’t necessarily have to be from Minnesota,” she said.
LEWISTON — The Ellsworth boys’ indoor track team earned a third-place finish in Saturday’s Class B championship meet at Bates College.The Eagles recorded 41 points to finish behind first-place York (51 points) and second-place Greely (46 points) in the 30-team field. The result followed Ellsworth’s first-place finish in the Penobscot Valley Conference Small-School championships a week earlier.Ellsworth got an individual state title from Beck Deeny, who recorded a distance of 42 feet, 5 1/4 inches to win the triple jump. His winning mark was 2 inches farther than that of the second-place finisher, Jon Duso of Belfast.Prior to battling for the title in the triple jump, Deeny and Duso had fought for first in the long jump. Deeny’s distance of 20 feet, 4 1/4 inches was just 3/4 of an inch shy of Duso’s winning mark.This is placeholder textThis is placeholder textThe Ellsworth boys also got third-place finishes from Henry Scheff (55-meter hurdles) and Tulas Weaver (200-meter dash). For Mount Desert Island, Stephen Grierson took second in the 800-meter run with a time of 2 minutes, 5.80 seconds.On the girls’ side, Bucksport got a second-place finish from Addie Morrison (400-meter dash) and a fourth-place finish from Johanna Stiles (200-meter dash). MDI’s Zoe Olson placed third in the 400-meter dash with a time of 1:02.41.Qualified athletes will compete in the New England championships Feb. 29, at Roxbury Community College’s Reggie Lewis Track and Athletic Center in Boston.