The traditional Saturday-before-the-convention-starts media party at a national political convention is the first opportunity for the host city (or cities in this case) to impress the largest group of attendees — the media. Last Saturday night, Denver hosted its party at an amusement park.
On Saturday night, the MSP 2008 host committee held its party on a plaza between the Guthrie Theater and the Mill City Museum. The reviews? The Twin Cities wins. “Bad beer and bad food” one wag told me of the Denver party. There were no such comments about the Twin Cities’ showing. Without the traditional media partner, the committee was able to pull together Minnesota restaurants and specialty food shops, in an impressive setting.
People like Carolynn Kimmes and Mooraly Baradan, of Edna’s Caramels.
With plenty of help from volunteers. There was a concern some months ago that the Twin Cities wouldn’t have enough volunteers. In June, they were still 4,000 volunteers shy of their goal. But organizers found plenty. Many, like these three, were hoping to get an assignment inside Xcel Energy Center. No luck. They got stuck with us media. No complaints, mind you, but they all want to do more events in the coming week.
This was also the first chance to see the “low key” police presence for the convention, compared to Denver. There, Secret Service agents in kevlar vests greeted the media. In Minneapolis, there were plenty of police, but they didn’t appear ready to stage an assault. Inside the party, the only obvious police officers were Chief Tim Dolan and Deputy Chief Sharon Lubinski.
These kids appear to be the youngest media members at this week’s convention…
Hawal Arjiri, Myles Miller and Anna Arena, from New York, are covering the convention for Children’s Press Line. Give the link a click; they do some pretty good work, and don’t pull any punches.
Here’s a few more snapshots…