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Open House, Board Election Ushers in New Era for Park Plaza Co-op Manufactured-Home Community

Residents of Park Plaza Co-op held their first membership meeting and celebrated buying their manufactured-home park with an open house.

Park Plaza Cooperative couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful day than Saturday for their first annual membership meeting and .

The sun was shining and there was plenty of food and activities as co-op members celebrated. 

Before the party got in full swing, the cooperative started with a meeting to elect a new board of directors.

Board Election
Eleven members were in attendance, according to Judd Matheson, the new vice president. He said he hoped that through outreach efforts more of the members would be able to come to future meetings.

“Our biggest concern is to really get the community involved,” he said, through such things as volunteer efforts and meeting attendance. The board's message to residents at Park Plaza is that everyone needs to come together as a whole to make the community the best it can possibly be.

Natividad Seefeld, who had served as the interim president of the board, is now officially the president, and Nikki Caldas is board secretary. Larry Reynolds is now  board treasurer, and Douglas Thompson, who had been director-at-large, is now operations manager.  The board is still seeking one more at-large board member, according to Matheson.*

One of the next steps for the board is to form committees, such as the finance committee the operations Committee. In addition, a committee is being formed that will establish a base of people willing to volunteer, according to Seefeld. A survey is being sent out to all members establishing what talents they may have and what their interests are.  

Speech!
After the membership meeting, there were speeches.

Fridley Mayor Scott Lund spoke about the future of land use, and gave examples of how Fridley is preparing for greater density, including improving infrastructure and planning for multi-use buildings and facilities. He congratulated the cooperative members on buying their community and creating a better destiny for themselves.

The mayor also said he believed land owners (as the co-op members now are) tend to be more involved in their community, and he urged everyone to consider becoming involved in their local government.

“Thanks for being a part of Fridley’s Future,” Lund said.  

Warren Kramer, executive director of Northcountry Cooperative Foundation, which and buy the manufactured-home park, also spoke. He said that the new cooperative members had achieved security through ownership, which will allow them to make Park Plaza the best community it has ever been.

Because the co-op model takes profit out of the equation, Kramer said, the residents would begin to see economic results, such as a reduction in lot rate increases. Kramer then presented Park Plaza Cooperative with a gavel to use at board meetings.  

Party!
After the speeches, people at the party ate hot dogs, chips and salsa and lots of goodies, while children played in a blow-up jumper house supplied by Tree Top Kids (Tony Geselle from Tree Top Kids also spoke at the event.)  

There was also plenty of food donated by General Mills being given away: boxes of cereal, taco shells, dessert bars and more.  

The party concluded with a rousing session of karaoke, with DJ TC Kelly of ProHost Entertainment.  

The next step now that the first membership meeting has occurred, said Matheson, is for the board to make maintenance improvements on the park—but also to really “make the place our own,” he said.  

One step is doing so is to create signage with the new name, changing from Park Plaza Estates to Park Plaza Cooperative.

* Editor's note: This article originally listed the new board treasurer of the cooperative, Larry Reynolds, as having previously been interim at-large board member. That was inaccurate: he is new to the board.

tc April 04, 2011 at 12:08 PM
I wish to thank everyone involved for having us at your cooperative event. Everyone had a great time with the games, food, the blow up castle, music and karaoke. Tc Kelly ProHost Entertainment
Pat S April 04, 2011 at 08:46 PM
Thanks for a great story! It was great to see the community celebrate such a great occasion. To clarify - Larry is new to the board of directors as he did not serve on the interim board of directors. He is a welcome addition to the permanent board.
Natividad Seefeld April 04, 2011 at 09:22 PM
It was a grand morning and afternoon all around. Thank you to all that who donated to this great event. I couldn't have put it together without your help. God gave us a sunny and warm day and we couldn't have asked for more this time of year. My heart was filled with all the kids laughing and playing. All the hugs from everyone filled me with great joy. The people who made this happen right down to our loved ones who had to take a back sit with all the meetings and time knocking on doors we had to do. Thank you to my daughter and Jobeth who made sure the kids were getting dinner and kept at my house while we held some of our meetings at Nikki's place. So much to be thankful for today. Thank you to all the board members old and new for all that you did and do. We have a big vision ahead with lots of great ideas to fill. I hope that everyone will come together to make our park an even greater place to live and enjoy. Thank You All So Much!!!!

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