Our celebration of HRH Queen Elizabeth II's 60 years on the Throne was a rousing success!
Good American patriots that we are, still, we thought enough time had passed since our Revolution that we could comfortably pay respects to Elizabeth II, who has served as Queen of England for an admirable 60 years. Ours is an Anglophile lodge, thus it was fitting for us to wish the dear woman well. From her youthful wartime support of her countrymen, to her steady hand on statecraft that has served through eleven prime ministers, Liz is a credit to The Firm, as insiders call the Royal Family. Now, at 86 years of age, her public appearances have hardly tapered. And it's not all been tea and crumpets; in her youth she could repair her own lorry transmission, and is reportedly as tough as they come. She can programme (or reprogramme) her own iPod, and by all reports she is a wonderful grandmother, too.
Hence, our Lodge planned an enjoyable afternoon on the water and in the Pub in celebration of her long reign, one of only two such celebrations to be held in the United States. We even got ourselves listed on the Queen's Official Jubilee Website!
We gathered at Jake O'Conner's Pub on Water Street in Excelsior, at 2PM on Sunday, June 3rd, 2012. Our one-hour boat cruise departed from the Excelsior Docks promptly at 3:45PM on the historic Minnehaha. Brother Michael Hilden played the pipes as we embarked, and Brother Nickolai Kolarov played a few numbers on his cello. Our sturdy ship flew the Queen's ensign off the stern, especially for our tour. Fifty brethren and guests were present, including our friend, KSTP's own Jason Davis of On The Road fame. The group was dressed for a summer picnic, smartly casual, as we snapped photos with [a likeness of] the Queen!
Dinner, back at the Pub, was held in the intimate Wine Room, where guests enjoyed a topical British Trivia contest, vying for lovely prizes. A heartfelt toast was offered by Wor. Paul Hardt, who reminded us that Queen Elizabeth II is a living connection to our patron, Sir Winston Churchill. WB Paul's remarks knit together for us another of his wonderful stories about Churchill, along with warm words to praise England's Monarch. Finally, leading the processional to le bateau and back to La Pub, Chief Organizer, Wor. Jason Berger, pictured above with the Queen, performed (ahem) admirably, in putting this event together for the group. A wonderful time was had by all. Many Twin Citians learned of this event on the local news, too: Though we were just disembarking the boat at that time, we made the 5PM news, on KMSP-5 TV. --You can see us on the web. Our segment comes up toward the end of this 22 minute clip, at about the 4:06 minutes remaining mark.
Click on the graphic below for our event poster.