Victoria Volunteers Recognized at Gathering

Victoria Volunteers Recognized at Gathering

John and Nancy Upton awarded the Community Builder Award during the annual Victoria Volunteer Gathering on June 10, 2024.

The 2024 Volunteer Appreciation Gathering recognized volunteer groups that have worked within Victoria, Minnesota over the last year. The gathering was held at the Charlson Thun Community Bandstand at Bayfront Park in downtown Victoria.

Group of people listening to the Mayor

During the event, Mayor Debra McMillan, gave special recognition to groups such as the Coach Pitch and T-Ball coaches for the Victoria Parks & Recreation Baseball Leagues, the Victoria Parks & Recreation Committee, the Victoria Planning Commission, the Victoria Senior Advisory Committee, and the 2024 Victoria Academy graduates. The mayor’s remarks were followed by a dinner catered by a local restaurant where everyone had a chance to meet other volunteers and celebrate this year’s Community Builder Awardees.

Community Builder Award 

The Community Builder Award was created by the City of Victoria in 2021 in honor of Sargent Michael William Notermann. Sargent Notermann was the only Victoria son or daughter killed in action during the Vietnam War. As the Grocer’s son, his loss was felt by all in the community.  

The Community Builder Award is awarded to honor those who give significant time and resources to building a welcoming community within the town of Victoria. These contributions have a ripple effect that spread throughout Victoria and impact our community members in different ways. 

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The award was received by John and Nancy Upton, who were nominated by neighbor and friend, Shelley Varner, for their continuous upkeep of Victoria’s Kirke Lachen Park.

Over the past two years, the Uptons have spent numerous hours beautifying Kirke Lachen. “They have done this on their own, their own sweat, and (mostly) their own money,” said friend, Shelley Varner. The Uptons have planted many plants and flowers such as Sunflowers, Impatiens, Black-eyed Susan, Turtlehead, Zinnias, Sedum, Jacob’s Ladder, and many others to bring color into the park. Recently, the Uptons re-stained and fixed up the covered bridge in the center of the park as part of their continuous efforts to make Kirke Lachen a beautiful and welcoming spot to sit and enjoy the beauty of nature in Victoria.

wooden park shelter on grass surrounded by landscape rocks and a park bench

Victoria is honored to have such great Volunteers. Thank you to all of our volunteers for your time and efforts toward keeping the city beautiful!



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Community Builder Award

Each year, the Community Builder Program recognizes an individual, group, business or organization that has, through their outstanding volunteerism or exemplary action, demonstrated an extraordinary commitment to making Victoria a better place today and for the future.

Learn how to make a nomination for the Community Builder Award.


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