News release: Commissioner Ehlinger to pitch horseshoes, public health in International Falls

News Release
August 10, 2015

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Commissioner Ehlinger to pitch horseshoes, public health in International Falls

“Pitch the Commissioner” event set for International Falls on Thursday, August 27, 9 a.m.

Minnesota Health Commissioner Dr. Ed Ehlinger will visit International Falls on the morning of Thursday, August 27, to host the latest in his series of popular “Pitch the Commissioner” events, where he talks about public health with community members over a friendly game of horseshoes.

Aitkin, Itasca, Koochiching Community Health Services will host the event starting with the Commissioner pitching horseshoes at Kerry Park horseshoe pits, at 11th Street and 5th Avenue, from 9 a.m. to 9:50 a.m.

Participants will be able to pitch their ideas to Commissioner Ehlinger about improving public health in their community and how the state can help them accomplish their goals, while pitching horseshoes. The games of horseshoes will be followed by a presentation at the Backus Community Center, 900 5th Street, where Commissioner Ehlinger will engage local officials in a discussion on “What Does Minnesota Need to be Healthy?” After the presentation there will be a tour of the Rainy Lake Visitor Center and Ethno-botanical Garden, located in Voyageurs National Park 11 miles east of International Falls on Highway 11.

A focus of this year’s “Pitch the Commissioner” series will be what the state can do to strengthen communities’ capacity to create their own healthy future. Commissioner Ehlinger says the goal of “Pitch the Commissioner” is to create a conversation between local officials, community members and state government officials, about how to advance public health around the state by starting in communities.

“Pitching horseshoes is a fun and easy way for people to be physically active and engage in conversation at the same time.” Commissioner Ehlinger said, “I want to hear what Minnesotans have to say about what their communities need to be healthy and I want to highlight the achievements of local public health.”

All “Pitch the Commissioner” events have a similar format but are tailored to highlight the area’s public health initiatives. Events are planned and carried out in partnership with local public health officials.

This is the fourth year of the Pitch the Commissioner series. Previous summers have featured visits across the state, from Winona to Marshall to Grand Portage. This year, in addition to International Falls, Commissioner Ehlinger is visiting Hennepin County, Washington County, Dawson, and Crookston.


Media inquiries:

Michael Schommer
MDH Communications