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 New Orleans Journal

Habitat for Humanity Trip - Back in Minnesota - Thank You to all

New Orleans Trip - Jan 14-Thank You - Jan 13 - Jan 12 - Jan 11
Jan 10 - Jan 9 - Jan 8 - Jan 7 - Before the Trip - Photo Slide Show

As we drove home on the bus we took a few moments to reflect on the trip and all the people who made it possible. The messages below are excerpts from the thank you letters.

Thanks to all who donated and attended our Deal or No Deal night and our auction. We could not have done it without you. Jaci Bernard

Thanks to all who contributed to the trip to New Orleans... this effort is doing a lot to fix the damage. Sean Booher

Thanks to everyone on the trip for making me feel so welcome. I came aboard knowing no one, and after one week I have come away with new friends and great experiences. Thanks to the people at Habitat for continuing to help when almost no one else is. The work is slowly making a difference. It is a great group of people and I am honored to have worked with them. Sarah Diener


jan14 jan 14 jan14
UMD was added to the mural wall at Camp Hope The dorm rooms at Camp Hope Shana Secory nailing floor joists

Thanks to those who made the trip possible. We were all greatly impacted by the experience. I am very fortunate to have done this. Katie Elton

I want to thank my grandparents and mother, who lived in New Orleans, for supporting me. Thanks to my father for waking up at 2 in the morning to drive me to Duluth to meet the bus. Gil Englebert

...Going to New Orleans was a great opportunity and a great eye opener. Niki Granger

Thanks to Phi Sigs for organizing the trip. It went smoothly and was a lot of fun. Thanks to Alpha Nu Omega alumni for helping get things organized. Thanks to American Refugee Committee International for the grant to allow us to go on the trip. Tom Kreuser

I would like to thank all the friends, co-workers, and family members that made this trip possible. The success that took place will shine in the lives of the beneficiaries for years to come. Aaron Lassila

We learned a lot and changed many lives. This trip meant a lot to everyone involved. Thanks alot. Jessica M. Lewis

Thanks to Phi Sigma Sigma for including Alpha Nu in this trip. Thank you to Alpha Nu Omega for your support and financial involvement in the trip. Thank you to ARC for the grant and for making this trip possible. Paul McGie


jan 14 jan 14 jan 14
Lindsay Siolka takes a break from roofing to watch the Maryland Band play at the site Katie Elton lays the plywood floor deck This is one of the flooded homes across the street from the construction site

Thanks to Brett for the amazing pictures. Jon Meiners

Thanks to Phi Sigma Sigma, Alpha Nu Omega, Gamma Sigma Sigma, Tau Kappa Epsilon, and Char Brown too. Leah Mirzamohammadi

This trip was a real awakening experience. Thanks for everything. Chris Perner

Thanks to everyone who made this trip possible. Bruce Regan

Thanks to Rachel King for giving us the kick-start to pull the trip together. Thanks to Shana and Lindsay for leading the group. Thanks to my family and the University Relations office for their support. Thanks to UMD's Chancellor Martin for the t-shirts and to Francis Heid for providing the farewell meal at Crescent City Brewhouse. Special heartfelt thanks to every person who came along on the trip. Everywhere we went, especailly at our campsite and at the jobsite, we were told what a great group of students came down from Duluth. They worked hard and had fun doing it. All of UMD should be proud of them. Cheryl Reitan

Thanks to Jay for giving me the opportunity to afford this trip and for supportng my decision to volunteer. Thanks to Cheryl for the work getting extra donations and enduring the pressure of being our leader. Jessica Rossing


jan 14 jan 14
David Wermerskirchen takes a break from nailing rim joists Siding

No one knows better than me how much Lindsay Siolka put into this trip. As her roommate I have watched the many hours she put in... Every dollar that we raised has gone through Lindsay... thousands of dollars in checks, all from different people. She was so well organized and in the end, it was much appreciated. Shana Secory

Thank you to my mom and dad, Captain Alligator, Magic Mike and our Cajun Pride tour guide Marty. Thanks for the donor who bought us a meal at the Crescent City Brewhouse. Kristin Semlak

To Rachel King: Without your dedication and diligence this venture would not have been possible. Even though you weren't in New Orleans, your work helped us represent our sorority... To Shana Scory: The work done at the job site and throughout the trip showed your diligence in every way. Lindsay Siolka

I thank God for this opportunity: safe travel, sightseeing opportunities, and a better understanding of the needs of the people of New Orleans. A big thank you to Diane Skomars and Bill Wade for being extremely supportive and a special thank you to Diane for the pumpkin bread. Thanks to Clint for watching my dogs so I could go. Lori Stroik

I'd like to thank my Grandma for her support, Habitat for Humanity for being such a wonderful organization, and to Camp Hope for making our stay an enjoyable one. Athena Westin

Thanks to Minnesota Coaches, Americorps, New Orleans Haunted Tours, my family and friends ... and UMD faculty, staff, and students. Courtney Wright

To Rod, Dan and Karen: Thanks for driving us around, to the site and to the French Quarter. Your service was much appreciated. To Cheryl and Lori: Thanks for taking responsibility for us and for putting this trip together. To Rachel, Shana Lindsay and all the girls of Phi Sigma Sigma: Thank you ladies for putting this trip together. It wouldn't have happened without you. To Brett: Thanks for coming along. We really appreciate you photography skills. Charles Zuluaga


THANK YOU to all who have made the trip possible.

THANK YOU TO the people and organizations who have made donations for the trip: Francis Heid (for sponsoring a farewell meal in New Orleans) Diane Skomars, Lucy Kragness, Denny Falk, Vince Magnuson, Peter Spooner, The UMD International Club, The UMD KSC Leadership Fund, The UMD Social Work Program, Brielle and Philip Stoyke, the American Refugee Committee International, Alph Nu Omega alumni, all the Hempels, the Hunters, the Johnsons.

THANK YOU TO DEAL OR NO DEAL DONORS (Mon, Nov 13): Bennett's Restaurant, Blackwoods Restaurant, EconoLodge, Festival Foods, Grandma's Restaurants, Great Clips, India Palace, Mt. Royal Fine Foods, Northern Shores Coffee Shop, Outback Restaurant, Perkins, Radisson Top of the Harbor Restaurant, UMD Stores, and the rest of the great business who have donated auction items! Special thanks to the Olive Garden, Daddios Pizza, Pizza Luce, and Bulldog Pizza. The night's band was "Derick, I like Red," and they were GREAT!

THANK YOU to the celebrities who donated a lunch to the highest bidder at the Friday, Nov 17 auction: Duluth Mayor Herb Bergson, Duluth News Tribune Editor Robin Washington, UMD Vice Chancellor Greg Fox, UMD Vice Chancellor Bill Wade, UMD SFA Dean Jack Bowman, UMD CLA Dean Linda Krug, UMD CSE Dean James P. Riehl, and UMD ITSS Director Linda Deneen.

Thanks to the Friday, Nov 17 auction donors: Joie Acheson, Baja Tanning, BAM Hair Salon, Blackwoods Restaurant, Bridgeman's Restaurant, CEC Theatres, Continental Ski Shop, Dairy Queen, EconoLodge, Edgewater Resort and Waterpark, Famous Dave's Barbeque, Grandma's Restaurants, Great Clips, Brett Groehler, Ground Round, La Rose Greenhouse, Northern Shores Coffee Shop, Old Chicago Pizza, Omnimax Theatre, Perkins, Red Lobster, Regis Salon, Neale Roth, Starbucks Coffee, Stacey's Healing Touch, Kay Smith Massage, Sunbear Spa and Salon, Sunset Grill, TCF Bank, Twin Ports Cyclery, Olive Garden, Taste of Italia Pizza, the UMD Print Shop, UMD Stores, University Service Car Wash, Vista Fleet, and the rest of the great business who have donated auction items!

Also thanks to the students who donated babysitting, shoveling, pet walking. Special thanks to auctioneer Skeeter Moore, UMD Athletics and the auction organizers: Charlene Brown, Mary Anne Carlson, Tali Lee, and Gail Trygstad.We lost the name of the person who donated the Terry Redlin painting and we want to thank her! If you know, contact Cheryl at 218-726-8996




UMD home page editor, Cheryl Reitan,
NEW RELEASES, UMD media contact, Susan Latto,, 218-726-8830


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