Organizers of the Republican National Convention in Minneapolis-St.Paul, Minnesota aren't experiencing any problems. They have been working on sprucing up the Twin Cities for the past 18 months.
A ''Spruce Up Spirit'' campaign encourages local residents and business owners to plant flowers and adding a fresh coat of paint. People have been picking up trash, removing graffiti and displaying the American flag. Residents or business owners who are judged to have their surroundings the cleanest will be awarded a Red Carpet convention package with tickets.
Teresa McFarland is a spokeswoman for the Minneapolis-St.Paul host committee. The Washington Times quoted her explaining the real purpose of sprucing up the Twin Cities: ''It isn't about the politics. It's
about the business of putting these cities out there and to showcase what they have to offer.''
The Xcel Energy Center is located in St.Paul, Minnesota and work to remove approximately 3,000 seats from the 20,000 seat stadium began two weeks ago. The media will be using 475,000 square feet complete with 25 miles of voice, data and coaxial cable and 135 miles of copper wiring. 102 hotels will be used and 16,000 rooms have been booked by the delegates and their families.
The penthouse suite hasn't been sold out yet. It costs $7,500 per night and amenities include two bedrooms, a full kitchen, a formal dining room which adds up to 2,200 square feet of space.
The St.Paul Hotel is hosting the delegates from Nevada and Arizona. 35 convention-week events and parties will also take place at the St.Paul Hotel.
If you're extremely wealthy and have money to burn, a shot of a rare Scoth called Macallan can be drunk for $525.00. Only 400 bottles of Macallan Scotch are produced on a global basis. 11/2 bottles have been drunk so far.
St. Paul Hotel General Manager David Miller told The Washington Times this bit of information concerning the GOP Convention and what he expects it will do for the downtown: ''We
hope to put our best foot forward and open the eyes of people to bring back their company business to the Twin Cities. I think everyone recognizes that it's a nice boost to the economy when otherwise it's not doing so well.''
Protestors will be prevalent too. The Coalition to March and Stop the War is expected to draw 50,000 people on September 01st. A public viewing area across from the Xcel Energy Center will be available for people to spew verbal venom. They can engage up to a 15 minute diatribe each day of the convention from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
The Republican Convention begins on September 01st which happens to be Labor Day. The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) will hold a concert that day with country artist Steve Earle and former Democratic presidential contender John Edwards will speak to the concert goers.
The city will try to make sure that residents who can't afford or don't want to attend the convention will know what is happening. The Washington Times reports that: ''The
St.Paul Public Library is hosting SaintPaulitics.org, a Web site offering a schedule of a series of speakers, movies and book clubs about politics. A copy of the Declaration of Independence will be on view at City Hall.''
Health insurance company Humana is offering free bikes for convention attendees. The host committee will be sponsoring a triathlon event led by the mayors of St. Paul, Minneapolis and nearby Bloomington. The conventiongoers can bike, swim and run with the mayors.