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City will say 'Thanks' to businesses

For the second year in a row the city of Rosemount will show that it appreciates existing businesses in town by treating them to lunch. The Rosemount Business Appreciation Luncheon will be held at 11:30 a.m. Oct. 23 the Rosemount Community Center.

This year the event will feature keynote speaker Charles Muscoplat. Muscoplat is the vice president of statewide strategic resource development at the University of Minnesota and will speak about the University's plans for the UMore property.

The university's board of regents approved a concept master plan in late 2008 for the University of Minnesota Outreach, Research and Education Park property that will have the college establishing a sustainable community of 20,000 to 30,000 people on the 5,000 acre property it owns over the next 25 to 30 years. More than 3,000 of those acres lie within Rosemount's city borders, the rest in Empire Township.

Community development director Kim Lindquist said they asked Muscoplat to speak to get accurate information about the plans out to business owners. She said there have been a lot of rumors surrounding the project and this would be a good way to get information straight from the source. Additionally, she said the project will have huge economic implication on the whole community.

In addition to Muscoplat, mayor Bill Droste will update businesses on what's going on with the city and goals for the future.

Lindquist said the city started the luncheon last year as part of the city's business retention program. The program, which falls under the umbrella of economic development, aims to keep businesses in Rosemount. In addition to the lunch, the city has started sending out a newsletter to businesses and city officials have been out visiting businesses.

Lindquist said the city wants to get to know existing businesses better and has started to reach out to them through on-site visits. So far city officials have visited more than 20 businesses. They hope to visit 50 by the end of the year.

The city sent invitations out to 250 businesses in Rosemount for the luncheon. Lindquist said they hope to get a similar turn out to last year.

"We understand people are busy so if we can draw about the same or grow a little, we'd be happy," she said.

The Rosemount Business Appreciation Luncheon will be 11:30 a.m. Oct. 23 at the Rosemount Community Center Ballroom.