Midtown Business Association February 18

Meeting Notice
    Midtown Business Association
    Tuesday, February 18, 2014
    Noon at the Sheraton Hotel, 2901 Chicago Ave. S.
    Midtown Business Association
    Next Meeting Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Minutes from January 21, 2114 meeting:
After everybody had introduced themselves, Dave J. asked about new businesses in Midtown.  Some new restaurants have opened and were discussed.
Dues for 2014: About half a dozen businesses paid dues last year.  Dave will send out dues invoices at the same rates as last year.  There was discussion of wreaths and talk of lit trees like in the Uptown area–which costs them about $100 per tree per year.  There was discussion of possible posters on the Sheraton property to catch notice of people on the Greenway to let them know about events that might be going on, and better signage in the Greenway to let people know where they are.
Basim Sabri is reported to be trying to organize a business group around 4th & Lake St.  That area is not part of a special service district, and the area looks run-down as a result.  Sabri has been reported as currently being opposed to special service districts.
Baba asked about a Midtown website.  We don’t have one, and Dave J. wants to tie it in with the Lake St. Council site to hold down cost.  Nick urged getting something going on the website this year, and perhaps doing a featured business of the week.  Joseph asked if the city could do anything to help us.  Aisha said she would look into it, but the city website is not very sophisticated, so she is not optimistic.  Uptown has a very active website.  Julie uses the same company that Lake St. Council uses.  Most others have an employee who has the ability to spend part of their time working the company website.
Heart of the Beast is looking at internships for teenagers this summer and is interested in business partners.
John said we ought to do more outreach to the Hispanic businesses in the area, even though lots of them are so small that they probably can’t afford the time to be active.
Baba said the music festival will probably be July 19 this summer, and he’s already started fund raising.  There was discussion of how to get more ethnic attendance.  The festival has been trying to have music to appeal to all the ethnic groups in the area.  Baba also talked about the Thursday night events at the Global Marketplace.  Joseph urged more social media distribution of information about what’s happening when at the Global Marketplace.
Police report: They appreciate the support from Midtown people and businesses.  Third Precinct had a large decrease in crime for 2013.  Five beat officers (including 2 Somali and a Spanish-speaking officer) will be working the Phillips area, especially near 24th Ave. and the Chicago-Franklin area.  John passed around a photo sheet for a guy who gets arrested about once a week, mostly near Franklin Ave.–needs impact statements.
There was discussion of robberies, break-ins, prostitution, etc.  It’s important to call 911 when you see something suspicious.  Even if you don’t see a police officer immediately, enough 911 calls can result in undercover police attention to the area.
Nick asked if the Minneapolis police were following the London model of lots of cameras on the street, especially in businesses facing the street.  Not so much, except in downtown.
Thursday, February 11, meeting at Heart of the Beast for the May Day Parade.
Current balance in our bank account is $3314.95.
Don Blyly            Uncle Hugo’s Science Fiction Bookstore
Dave Johnson            Chicago-Lake Dental
Andy Finsness            Sheraton
Loren Niemi            Heart of the Beast Theatre
Baba Letant            Global Marketplace
Mark Simon            Roberts Shoes
Dave Burrill            Ryan Companies
Julie Ingebretsen        Ingebretsens
Lt. Mike Taylor        Third Precinct
John Bauman            Midtown Safety Center
Nick Settich            Renewal Laser Clinic
Aisha Gomez            City of Minneapolis (CM Cano’s office)
Joseph Spangle