Meet the Candidates

It goes without saying that the 2020 election will be momentous, with the U.S. Presidency at the top of the ballot. In Minnesota, voters will also elect a U.S. Senator and all 201 members of the State Senate and House of Representatives as well as hundreds of county, city and school district leaders.

Here in the Brainerd Lakes Area, your Chambers of Commerce are proud to partner with the League of Women Voters and the Brainerd Dispatch to bring you a series of local candidate forums. The events listed below are free and open to the public. We designed them to be neutral, diverse and interactive so you can make an informed choice at the polls.

What to Expect at the Forums

Registration isn’t required, but RSVPs are appreciated for planning purposes. See the links below to RSVP for certain events. You may also RSVP to Colleen Dols at 218-822-7107 or

Due to COVID-19 safety concerns, we will stream the forums live on various Facebook pages. Special thanks to the Brainerd Lakes Area Community Foundation for helping to fund this service.

We are committed to following COVID safety rules as detailed in Minnesota’s executive orders. Face coverings will be required unless a person has a health condition. Candidates and audience members will have socially distanced seating. Disposable masks and hand sanitizer will be available. If you’re not feeling well, please stay home and view the live broadcast.

Candidates will make opening statements before a moderator presents a series of prepared questions written by our planning committee. We will rotate the order of responses to ensure fairness, and all responses will have strict time limits. The candidates will then answer audience questions and conclude the forum with closing statements. Expect most forums to last about 90 minutes. 

Attendees will have an opportunity to submit written questions in person or by typing comments on Facebook. They must be polite and directed to all candidates. Question screeners will select the most popular topics and may combine or reword questions for clarity. We also ask that attendees refrain from applauding to ensure fairness and time constraints. Disruptive or disrespectful behavior will not be tolerated.

If you attend the event in person, candidates are usually available before and after the forum to meet with attendees.

Contact Brainerd Lakes Chamber President Matt Kilian, 218-822-7111 or

Cuyuna Lakes Chamber

Crow Wing County Board*

5:00 PM | Tuesday, September 15th
Hallett Center, Crosby
*No RSVP required.

Cuyuna Lakes Chamber

Crosby Mayor & City Council*

5:00 PM | Wednesday, September 16th
Hallett Center, Crosby
*No RSVP required.

Pequot Lakes Mayor & City Council

5:30 PM | Monday, September 21st
Breezy Point Resort, Minnesota Room (first floor)

Nisswa Chamber

Nisswa Mayor & City Council*

7:00 PM | Tuesday, September 22nd
Nisswa Community Center
*No RSVP required.

Crosslake Chamber

Crosslake Mayor & City Council

6:00 PM | Thursday, September 24th
Crosslake Community Center

Brainerd Lakes Chamber

State Senate & House of Representatives

6:30 PM | Thursday, October 1st
Grand View Lodge, Gull Lake Center

League Of Women Voters

Brainerd Board of Education (ISD-181)

6:00 PM | Tuesday, October 6th
The Woods Event Center, Merrifield

Brainerd Lakes Chamber

Brainerd Mayor & City Council

6:00 PM | Wednesday, October 7th
The Woods Event Center, Merrifield

Our Partner Organizations

Business Voting Guide

Compare candidate views on business issues, organized by race and presented by the Brainerd Lakes Chamber.

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