By Duncan Kinzie posted 02-22-2014 12:32

This past weekend I traveled to Minnesota for their state conference. This was a phenomenal conference. Their adult board is unified and on point, and their student board was energetic and effective. Despite the still growing nature of this state's thespians, I truly believe that Minnesota has a fantastic mindset that all other states, and national level, can take a page from.
When Kristin McFadden and I landed in the airport, we were met by Tommy Krueger, who is the adviser to the STO. Every state needs a Tommy Krueger. He is fantastic. His involvement with the STO is simply wonderful, and his leadership expectations of them gets great results. The board is comprised of 16 members, and runs as a unified board, no positions. Tommy Krueger says that he wants to see the STO start to do more in the community during the rest of the year. 
The schedule consisted of One Acts from the schools, workshops, vendors/ colleges, and free time. Day one was spent in a local high school, and day two was at the Guthrie in downtown Minneapolis. Both venues were incredible, and had remarkably generous and kind staff there to help.
Ultimately, I loved the environment at this conference most of all. The STO truly did set the tone, with support from the adult board, and it was an exciting, fun tone to be sure. It is apparent that the adult board is in full understanding of what the thespians are wanting, and are playing to that in an appropriate manner. They have given students all the right vents to release our notoriously rambunctious thespian energy, and as result the thespians behave appropriately and choose to make good use of their time and resources at conferences.
A big hand to Michael Sheeks and Tommy Krueger for their involvement with Minnesota Thespians.