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Letters to the editor: Thanks for supporting Park theater trip

Thanks for supporting Park theater trip

Two weeks ago, a group of kids from the Park High School Thespian Troupe 6136 got the thrilling privilege to travel on a bus to exotic Lincoln, Nebraska. This doesn't sound very thrilling, right? But for us, this was our wildest dream coming true. The International Thespian Festival was long awaited for us. We went to the University of Lincoln Nebraska where we met student thespians from Los Angeles to Dubai. Thanks to donations by friends, family and members of our community, we were able to attend this festival to showcase our talent and achievement. We represented the entire state with our One Act Play, and a few of us competed with kids across the globe in individual monologues, musical pieces and presentations.

Along with our exciting performances, we saw other schools' shows and filled the rest of our days with master classes, where we got to learn about pretty much anything from people who did it professionally. I took classes on special stage effects from people working in stages across the nation. I learned choreography and dance techniques from actual professional dancers, singing and acting from working performers and even woodworking skills from people who build sets for stages nationwide. If that was not enough, I learned budgeting and marketing for live theater in classes from Broadway workers themselves. We all learned unique things that are going to help us choose colleges and career paths that will make us happy and hard-working adults.

We learned so many skills, and frankly, I can't believe we made it. None of this would have been possible without the support of our community. We were able to raise all of our funds to go on this trip with donations from community members and fundraisers. For many of us, this was a dream come true. When we first began to fund raise, this dream seemed so far-fetched, but thanks to our donors, we went cost free. This was truly special, and we would like to thank every single donor and supporter. We sincerely thank you. Your donations went far and wide, and the kindness you showed will stay with us forever.

Grace Pust

Park High School student


Lohmer a partisan ideologue

In her June 21 viewpoint, Rep. Kathy Lohmer went after Sen. Dan Schoen for standing up for Gov. Mark Dayton in the budget feud that will now go to court. First thing about Lohmer is that she has ties to former Washington County Commissioner Autumn Lehrke as both got support from the Voices of Conservative Women and co-wrote an opinion piece together in the Woodbury Bulletin in 2011.

Also, Lohmer has been well known to rage ideological and partisan warfare. She blamed Dayton in 2011 for the state government shutdown, has been aligned with former U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann, worked with tea party groups, supported voter ID, opposes tax increases, has been praised by the right-wing Minnesota Taxpayers League, wants massive budget cuts and founded a home-school cooperative. She puts her right-wing ideology above Minnesota's economic welfare. She also supported the North Carolina Bathroom law that cost that state billions in revenue.

Interestingly, she beat a centrist Democrat in Julie Bunn to get elected in 2010. The stunner is that local Republican legislators are trying to prove they are like Bunn when it is obvious Republicans like Lohmer are controlling the Republican Party, given the items that got snuck into the budget bills, such as ending the inheritance tax.

It is time to hold local Republican legislators accountable because of partisan ideologues like Lohmer.

William Cory Labovitch

South St. Paul

Labovitch is outreach director for the Senate District 54 DFL Party.