Annual Ridgeview celebration raises $1 million

By Todd Moen, Editor

Whether it was playing a round of golf, participating in a bridge or bunco tournament, bidding in the silent and live auctions, or enjoying the Taste of the Ridgeview Region and a buffet dinner, hundreds of people took part in Ridgeview Foundation’s 27th annual Golf & Taste Celebration held at Island View Golf Club in Waconia on Monday, June 25.

The event raised more than $1 million in support of Ridgeview’s Innovation for Generations campaign, which will help Ridgeview Medical Center fund new initiatives and expand and improve its facilities to maintain Ridgeview’s legacy of outstanding patient care.

The focus of the campaign is to support the renovation of Ridgeview’s nearly 50-year-old medical/surgical wing.

All patient rooms on the renovated wing will be designed to serve as "universal rooms" – allowing flexibility for the hospital as all the rooms will have similar layouts and equipment, yet will offer unique features to meet individual patient needs.

Bob Stevens, president and CEO of Ridgeview Medical Center, said the $3.5 million renovation project would bring the oldest part of Ridgeview up to the standards of 2012. He said the renovation is still in the design phase and Ridgeview is looking to start the project this fall. It will take about one year to complete the work.

Stevens thanked those who supported Ridgeview Foundation by taking part in the Celebration.

"We’re really grateful for the community support. It has helped us stay true to our mission to serve the community and stay independent," Stevens said. "The event has really taken off and over the past couple of years, we’ve hit $1 million totals. It’s phenomenal."

Since 1986, the Celebration has raised more than $4.7 million and helped make a significant difference in the quality of health care for Ridgeview patients and their families. Approximately $1 million has been raised in each of the last three Celebrations.

Steering Committee member Dave Philp has been involved in the Celebration since it began in 1986. He noted that an event such as the Celebration would be impossible without the people who volunteer their time to make it a success year after year.

"It gives a vehicle for people to come and support Ridgeview," he said of the event’s 170 volunteers and hundreds of attendees. "It’s not just about the money, it’s about raising friends and awareness. A medical center is important to the fabric of a community, not just Waconia, but also the greater community it serves."

Lakeview Clinic and Mount Development Co. were mega sponsors of the Celebration, meaning each donated $25,000. Other high end sponsors included Leo A Daly, Wigen Water Technologies, and Mortenson Construction.