Category Archives: News Stories

Coca-Cola partners with World Wildlife Fund in launch of Arctic Home Campaign

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Iconic red cans turn arctic white for polar bear habitat protection.

Coca-Cola has partnered with the World Wildlife Fund to raise awareness, funds and create a safe sanctuary for polar bears by turning red cans white.

Since the campaign launch Nov. 1, 1.4 billion of Coca-Cola’s red cans have turned white in honor of the world’s endangered polar bears.

The Arctic Home campaign combines Coke’s beloved polar bear icon, established in 1922, with a holiday initiative.

Coca-Cola will contribute $2 million to the World Wildlife Fund over the next five years and will match consumer donations made through the Arctic Home campaign until March 15, 2012.

The raised dollar amount is periodically updated on the Arctic Home website and is currently at $39, 574 thanks to consumer donations alone.

Along with the white cans, white caps will appear on bottles of Coke products including Diet Coke, Sprite, Mellow Yellow and Fanta.

The white cans will feature an image of a mother polar bear and her two cubs.

During the campaign, consumers can:

  • Look for white cans and caps on Coke products nationwide
  • Donate $1 by texting a Coke product code to 357357
  • Receive a free plush polar bear by purchasing six 20 oz. bottles
  • Donate Coke Rewards points toward the cause
  • Download the SnowBall Effect app via Facebook
  • Scan the QR code on a Slurpee or Big Gulp from 7-Eleven

Drastic Change for Earnest Cause

Coca-Cola  has never before changed the color of the classic red can. Protecting the polar bears is of great importance to Coke.

“When we see one of our cherished icons becoming endangered, we immediately put a plan into action. As sea ice continually melts, the polar bears and their communities are at great risk, ” said Kevin Gavin, Account Manager for the Home Market Division of Coca-Cola.

To create further awareness, Coca-Cola and the World Wildlife Fund are working to bring the story of the polar bears to the big screen with a new IMAX film, “To The Arctic 3D”. The film is produced by Academy Award nominated filmmakers MacGillavray Freeman Films and will premiere in 2012.

Coca-Cola will focus on reaching numerous demographic groups with the same message through the Arctic Home campaign.

“We have created a custom point of sale for each type of customer. For example, we have a different execution plan for grocery stores, convenient stores, workplace accounts, college universities and health hospitals,” said Gavin.

The campaign is scheduled into the 2012 marketing plan to be implemented next holiday season as well.

Coca-Cola and the World Wildlife Fund realize this is an ongoing effort to save the mere 20,000 – 25,000 remaining polar bears.

Story written and published by Kathryn Gavin and Brittany Brock.

Record enrollment, satellite campus spell success for Minnesota State

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7700 France

Representatives of MN State Colleges celebrate MSU's satellite campus, 7700 France

Total enrollment of 15,547 combined with Edina satellite campus expansion leads to success in 2011-12

Minnesota State’s  total incoming class enrollment this year is 4,067 compared to last year’s 3,984. Of this number, there are 2, 465 first year students, the second largest amount in the school’s 143 year history.

The nearly one percent increase from last year’s enrollment is triggered by the continued expansion of MSU’s 3-year-old Edina campus, 7700 France. Initially opening, the site enrolled 420 students, had six classrooms, a computer lab and conference rooms. This year, 700 students are enrolled and  square footage will be increased from 12,271 to 27,000.

The previous five-year agreement required MSU to pay $1.7 million. The new contract requires $3.2 million, yet will provide for nine more classrooms and a telepresence classroom that allows for off-site course participation by students.

“We knew when we moved here that there would be a lot of demand. This is all about classroom expansion,” said Copper-Glenz, MSU’s dean for the College of Extended Learning.

There has been a recent demand for increased mix of undergraduate and master’s level degrees at 7700 France.  The expansion will benefit undergraduate degrees in education and communication studies as well as graduate degrees in public and business administration, educational leadership, corrections and community health.

The MSU satellite campus has been a beneficial addition to the Edina community with master’s course enrollment almost doubling since 2009 with a jump from 282 to 539. Furthermore, 4,033 master’s credit hours are being taken compared to only 1,382 in 2009.

“It’s a nice fit with our local economy,” said Scott Neal, Edina City Manager.

Minnesota State was privileged to welcome 1,146 transfer students and 456 graduate students in 2011-12. By providing new opportunity, MSU has experienced tremendous growth and set measurable records.

The picture of representatives of the MNSCU system with the mnsu.edu bus during the 7700 France grand opening festivities was included in MSU’s October 2008 newsletter.

**In addition to this news story and JPEG, I would have included a web news video featuring footage of the 7700 France campus with interviews from both undergraduate and graduate students discussing their experience at the satellite campus. The interviewees would explain their personal situation to add both emotion and character to the multimedia element (both vital). I believe the video would further reader’s understanding about the Edina campus, answer questions and prove why a satellite campus provides convenience to so many students.

**The search terms I included on my original list and looked up were: enrollment, Minnesota State, satellite campus, Edina, student increase, university, undergraduate, graduate, master’s, economy. I mainly focused on including: enrollment, Minnesota State, satellite campus, Edina and student increase.

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Mankato Luther Honda experiences strong rebound

Auto sales continually soar due to increased consumer demand and dealership expansion.

In fact, local dealerships are celebrating for the first time since the 2008 recession.

Consumer procrastination has decreased and new vehicles are being sought. In fact, Mankato auto dealers topped the 1,000 mark in monthly auto sales, with 1,050 new and used cars and light trucks sold solely in July, well above last year’s 773.

“Since July we’ve doubled our inventory and more than doubled our sales, and our service department has been the same,” said Kerry Lindsay, general manager, Mankato Luther Honda.

The thriving farm economy is driving pickup truck sales and a jump is occurring in sales of the Honda Pilot SUV.  The new program at Mankato Luther Honda accepts trade-ins and also buys used vehicles from consumers out-right. This program combined with the newly expanded location creates opportunity for consumers seeking low mileage vehicles at affordable prices.

“We probably get 15 or 20 a month,” said Lindsay of trade-ins and out-right buys. “Some people already have a different car picked out from a private dealer, or maybe another dealer wont give them as much on trade-in as we’ll pay.”

This strong economical auto rebound provides great optimism for Mankato Luther Honda and other local dealerships while providing opportunities for consumers to buy automobiles for sale.

Local restaurants lose alcohol privileges

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Four restaurants added in September.

Numerous area restaurants have appeared on the list of tax delinquencies. With a presence on the list, restaurants are not able to legally buy alcohol from distributors, off-sale locations or other bars.

As of September, area restaurants on the list include:

  • Charley’s (Mankato)
  • China Buffet (Mankato)
  • The Boat Landing (Madison Lake)
  • George’s Fine Steaks & Spirits (New Ulm)
  • Jerry Dutler’s Bowl (Mankato)
  • Hammer’s Bar (New Ulm)
  • Cedar’s Grille (St. Peter)

This list acts as a warning to distributors and public safety officials, both able to investigate illegal sales of alcohol. “It doesn’t put them out of business. If they’ve got liquor in the back, they can continue to sell what they have available,” said Robyn Dwyer, director of the collection division, Minnesota Department of Revenue.