To the Editor,

It takes a village…How fortunate for us that village is New York Mills.  In June, we hosted 38 visitors from Finland, Sweden and Norway who stayed in New York Mills for five days during the Apostolic Lutheran Church convention.  They traveled here after time in the Twin Cities, a waystop in South Dakota and were then on to tours of Lake Itasca and the Park Rapids rodeo before returning home.  

Beyond us, we were grateful to the local people that opened their homes to the visitors, Elma and Jim Keskitalo, Miriam and Irene Mursu, Mary and John Aho, Jake Aho, Jan and Bernie Demarais, and Tammy and Tom Mursu. A special thank you to Bonnie Dykhoff of Centennial Realty who generously loaned us an RV when we had more heads than beds.  Peter and Amy Mursu entrusted us with a bus big enough to carry the youth group.

Our goal was to show off our small town at its best to the 28 youth and young adults, as the older adults were more involved in attending the church convention. Thanks to Chad and team at the bowling alley, Jeff Rimpila and the school for access to bicycles, Bob Sonnenberg and his tree farm operations, Holly and the tour guides at Lunds, Blaine Novak with his extraordinary discussion about American education and tour of the school, Cheryl and Lindsay hosting a fabric printing class at the Cultural Center and Mursus for their tour of a state-of-the-art dairy farm.  

We sometimes forget the recreation and innovation that’s all around us in New York Mills. The hospitality we had here isn’t available elsewhere.  I am glad we had the chance to be reminded. 

Teresa Muckala,

New York Mills