MTA News Bytes

August 18, 2017

In This Issue

Meetings and Events

MTA Updates

Action Items

>> 2017 MTA Fall Conference
Online Registration Now Available!

>> MTA Fall Conference Sponsorship Opportunities

Peer Group Bulletin

>> Don't Miss These 2017 MTA Peer Group Investment Opportunities!

>> Upcoming Peer Group Events

Safety Corner

>> Safely Viewing the Solar Eclipse  

People and Companies

>> 4th Annual Never.Give.Up. 5k Fundraiser

>> Innovative Systems Video and Voice User Group Meeting

MTA Staff

MTA President/CEO:
Brent Christensen
Team Leader:

Jacquie Durant
Event Planners:
Julie Cygan Diamond
Carissa Wolf
Member Services:
Jeanne DeMartino

Anna Wrisky
Administrative Assistant:
Anne Christensen

Stay up-to-date on daily happenings at the MTA offices by following us on Facebook. From peer group meetings to annual conferences and everything in between, get the scoop on what’s happening at our offices!




Meetings and Events

September 13-15, 2017: 2017 TMG Peer Group Conference
Whitefish Lodge, Crosslake

October 3-5, 2017: 2017 CSR Fall Conference
The Inn on Lake Superior, Duluth

October 5-6, 2017: MTA Fall Conference
Minneapolis Marriott Northwest

November 20, 2017: Administrative Assistant Peer Group Fall Conference
AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Wahpeton, ND

March 26-28, 2018: MTA Annual Convention & Trade Show
Hyatt Regency Minneapolis

March 18-20, 2019: MTA Annual Convention & Trade Show
Hyatt Regency Minneapolis

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MTA Updates


2017 MTA Fall Conference
Online Registration Now Available!

2017 MTA Fall Conference

October 5-6, 2017 | Minneapolis Marriott Northwest, Brooklyn Park, MN

>> View Details and Register Online

This Summer continues to move too fast; it is already time to start thinking about fall. Getting ready for back to school, the Vikings, cooler temperatures, leaves turning color, and most importantly ... the MTA FALL CONFERENCE!

This year’s event will open with an exciting lineup on Thursday. The afternoon kicks off with a MTA Update from Board Chairman Dave Wolf. Dave’s update will be followed by a DC panel consisting of Mike Romano from NTCA and Derrick Owens from WTA. They will tell us what is going on in DC in a new fun format. Next up will be a presentation from Danna MacKenzie from the MN Office of Broadband Development. That will be followed by a Telecom Regulatory Panel moderated by MTA’s Regulatory Committee Chairman, Monty Morrow. Panelists will include staff from the MN Public Utilities Commission and the MN Department of Commerce. Fritz Hendricks from Inteliquent will give a presentation entitled: “Next Stage in the Evolution of Cloud Communications and Managed Services”. Thursday afternoon’s sessions will conclude with a panel discussion on FirstNet. MTA Board member Jim Walter will moderate a panel represented by AT&T and MN Department of Public Safety.

The MTA Event Planning Committee and staff have been working with the Video Peer Group and Office Managers/HR Peer Group for more opportunities to learn. Friday morning continues with separate tracks giving attendees the most current, up-to-date, information on Video and HR. Know you want to attend, but don’t know which sessions you want to attend? It doesn’t matter — you can mix and match sessions to meet your individual needs. Don’t wait! The event will conclude with keynote speaker Jesse Sullivan from CenturyLink. Jesse is heavily involved in planning for Super Bowl LII in 2018 at U.S. Bank Stadium. CenturyLink is the telecommunications provider for Super Bowl LII and has a unique industry perspective on this once-in-a-lifetime event.

>> Register for the conference today!

Lodging Information

Note: The hotel reservation cut-off is September 14

Minneapolis Marriott Northwest
7025 Northland Dr. N
Brooklyn Park, MN 55428

$144.00 single/double per night
Reservation cut off is September 14, 2017
Book your reservation online or call 1-877-303-1681 or 763-536-8300.

MTA Fall Conference Sponsorship Opportunities

October 5-6, 2017 | Minneapolis Marriott Northwest
7025 Northland Drive North, Brooklyn Park, MN 55428

Maximize your company's exposure to the MTA membership at the 2017 Fall Conference. The conference will be held on Thursday, October 5 and Friday, October 6 at the Minneapolis Marriott Northwest.

MTA members will come to Minneapolis from all over the state to learn more about the important issues facing our industry — and this is your opportunity to get your company’s message in front of them.

>> View complete Sponsorship details and register online.


If you have any questions about the sponsorship information, please contact Julie Cygan Diamond at

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Peer Group Bulletin
All MTA members are welcome to join a Peer Group

Don't Miss These 2017 MTA Peer Group Investment Opportunities!

MTA’s core purpose is to enhance the success and viability of its telecommunications industry members. You are an important part of helping us fulfill this mission. Here is your opportunity to maximize the impact of your event sponsorships for 2017.

Download the 2017 Peer Group Investment Opportunities for full details

Sponsor a Peer Group: Sign Up Online!

Upcoming Peer Group Events

2017 TMG Peer Group Conference, Little Things: Big Impact

September 13-15, 2017 | Whitefish Lodge, Crosslake, Minnesota
Big things start small — at TMG 2017 we’ll dig into some of the little things that will help your reinforce your brand. From new service offering ideas, and industry updates to web, SEO, video marketing, PR and more — there's plenty to learn, and great folks to network with.

>> Full Details and Registration

Rates: Members/NonMembers: $165 | Students: $82.50

Whitefish Lodge
14150 Swann Drive | Crosslake, MN 56442 | 218-692-2246
Rate: $99/night | Room block code: TMG17
Room block deadline: September 1, 2017

2017 CSR Fall Conference

Tuesday, October 3-5, 2017
The Inn on Lake Superior | 350 Canal Park Drive, Duluth, MN 55802

Administrative Assistant Peer Group 2017 Fall Conference

November 20, 2017 | AmericInn Lodge & Suites, Wahpeton, North Dakota

>> Full Details and Registration

Rates: $99 per person

AmericInn Lodge & Suites
2029 210 Drive | Wahpeton, North Dakota  58075
Call 701-642-8365; ask for Allison
Room block name: MN Administrative Assistants Peer Group

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Safety Corner

Safely Viewing the Solar Eclipse  

Unless you’ve been living in a cave the last few months, you know that the solar eclipse will be visible across North America on Monday, August 21, weather permitting. And as we know, during a solar eclipse, the moon blocks part or all of the sun. The whole continent will experience a partial eclipse lasting 2 to 3 hours.

solar eclipse

Halfway through the event, anyone within a roughly 70-mile-wide path from Oregon to South Carolina will experience a brief total eclipse, when the moon completely blocks the sun's bright face for up to 2 minutes 40 seconds, turning day into night and making visible the otherwise hidden solar corona (the sun's outer atmosphere) one of nature's most awesome sights. Bright stars and planets will become visible as well.

Minnesota will not experience the total eclipse, but the partial eclipse of 83% will be very noticeable at the peak time of 1:06PM.

Safety Reminders

A good reminder for everyone, including your family, is that looking directly at the sun is unsafe except during the brief total phase of a solar eclipse ("totality"), when the moon entirely blocks the sun's bright face, which will happen only within the narrow path of totality. The only safe way to look directly at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun is through special-purpose solar filters, such as "eclipse glasses". Homemade filters such as smoked glass or mirrors or ordinary sunglasses, even very dark ones, are not safe for looking at the sun.

Eclipse glasses and hand-held solar viewers must meet the ISO 12312-2 international standard to provide safe viewing.

Do not look at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed sun through an unfiltered camera, telescope, binoculars, or other optical device. Similarly, do not look at the sun through a camera, a telescope, binoculars, or any other optical device while using your eclipse glasses or hand-held solar viewer, the concentrated solar rays will damage the filter and enter your eye(s), causing serious injury.

If you do not have a solar viewer, you can project an image of the eclipsed sun using a pinhole projector.  And remember, always keep your back toward the sun while looking at a pinhole projection and do not look at the sun through the pinhole.

By following these simple rules, you can safely enjoy the view and be rewarded with memories to last a lifetime.

The chance of a total solar eclipse happening directly over where you live is about once every 375 years. If you miss this year’s eclipse because of work or clouds, the next total eclipse to cross the United States, from Texas to Indiana, will take place on April 8, 2024. 

Take Care,

Dan Berg, M.S.
Senior Safety Consultant

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People Companies

4th Annual Never.Give.Up. 5k Fundraiser

August 26 at 8:00 AM | Sebeka Public School | 200 1st St NW, Sebeka, MN 56477

JOIN US in an effort to raise funds for suicide awareness and prevention education. All race proceeds will go to area schools to bring suicide awareness and prevention education to our youth. Help support those who suffer so they will Never.Give.Up.

WHO WE ARE Never.Give.Up. is a non-profit organization. We are a group of professionals and community volunteers who are dedicated to preventing suicide. We have raised over $65,000 in the past three years. Those funds have helped New York Mills, Wadena-Deer Creek, Frazee-Vergas and Perham-Dent Public Schools set up programs for our youth teaching suicide awareness and prevention education.

ABOUT THE RACE All are welcome! Bring your kids, pets, and friends! This is a fun run/walk and appropriate for all age levels. Registration fee includes a commemorative T-Shirt*, refreshments, and a race bag. There will be a silent auction and concessions at the event also. 

*T-Shirts are guaranteed if registration is received by August 14; we'll do our best to accommodate your T-shirt size if your registration date is received after this date.

Register online | Download the Brochure | Sponsor

Innovative Systems Video and Voice User Group Meeting

August 21-23 in Mitchell, SD, at the Highland Conference Center

Innovative Systems invites you to attend the 2017 APMAX Voice and Video User Meeting in Mitchell, SD. This free annual event will keep you informed on the most recent releases, updates to the product, and ways to promote your services. Optional Training session on IP Networking for hosted services, breakout sessions and customer experiences with the APMAX will highlight this year's event.

The User Meeting is also a prime opportunity for you to meet face-to-face with our support team and to network with other Telco staff from across the country to see how they are utilizing Innovative Systems products.


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