Register to Attend

November 12 – 14, 2023

Cragun’s Resort on Gull Lake | Brainerd, Minnesota

Join us as we celebrate the strength and impact of Greater Minnesota education and share practices and programs. MREA’s Greater Education Summit is the only conference in the state that brings together educators, administrators, school board members and other advocates across Greater Minnesota for quality professional development, networking, and career recognition.

Register for three days of inspiring educator recognition, timely and relevant professional development, and networking with education peers from throughout Greater Minnesota.

“I had great conversations with a variety of professionals—superintendents, principals, teachers, school board members. I LOVE the professional energy in celebrating and learning from success!”

Full Summit Highlights

  • Kick-off Celebration & Awards Banquet honoring educators and the innovation we’re seeing in Greater Minnesota schools. Join us in person or via the livestream on November 12.
  • Keynote Speakers to help you celebrate rural vitality and explore your role in creating a welcoming work environment.
  • 35+ Breakout Sessions on a variety of relevant topics for teachers, school administrators and school board members.
  • Summit Showcase vendor exhibits of best practices for schools today.
  • Networking with education professionals next door and across the state
  • All meals are included Sunday Awards Banquet through Tuesday breakfast
  • Northern Minnesota location that is restful, yet invigorating

Early Bird Savings Through August 15

MREA Members who register through August 15 will save 10 percent off admission rates. No refunds will be given for cancellation of Early Bird registrations.

Add Summit Showcase to Show & Share

MREA Members who register for the Full Summit can host an information booth at the Showcase for no additional charge. Check the “Showcase” box when registering. Member registration for the Showcase Only (no full Summit registration) opens August 16.


  • All admission fees are per attendee, and each attendee must be registered.
  • Team admission requires at least 3 non-discounted Summit registrations for employees/Board from the same MREA member organization.
  • All guests accompanying attendees must reserve and pay for meals consumed at Cragun’s. Guest dining reservations open in October.
  • Registration closes October 23.
Register to Attend
Register to Attend

Full Summit Registration


MREA Members

    • Early Bird Rate – $315 (through Aug 15)
    • Standard Rate – $350


    • Standard Rate – $1,200 per person (Registration Opens Sept 1)

Teams (3+ people from same organization)

MREA Members Only

    • Early Bird Rate – $247.50 per person (through Aug 15)
    • Standard Rate – $275 per person

Showcase Only Registration

MREA Members

    • Standard Rate – $250 (Registration opens Aug 16)


    • Standard Rate – $800 per person (Registration opens Sept 1)

Substitutions & Cancellations

  • EARLY BIRD registrations are not refundable.
  • SUBSTITUTIONS are welcome any time, even onsite at the Summit. Call the MREA office when known in advance.
  • CANCELLATIONS through October 31 will incur a $35 processing fee per person. No refunds will be provided after Oct. 31 for any reason.
  • NO-SHOWS will not receive a refund and will be invoiced for outstanding fees.

**Registration closes for all rates October 23.*


2:00 pm Future Educators Workshop – Tech 1 (students only)
4:00 pm Summit & Hotel Check-in Begins – Poolside & Hotel Lobby
5:30 pm Social Hour – Event Centre
6:00 pm Awards Banquet – Event Centre
7:30 pm Honoree Reception & Dessert – Poolside


7:00 am Breakfast Begins – Main Dining Room
8:15 am Welcome and Opening Keynote – Event Centre 
9:45 am Break – Event Centre
10:00 am Breakout Sessions 1
11:15 am Breakout Sessions 2
12:15 pm Lunch – Main Dining Room
1:30 pm Breakout Sessions 3
2:45 pm Break – Poolside
3:00 pm Mindstorm – Poolside
4:00 pm Legislative Session – Main Dining Room | Sam Walseth
5:00 pm Summit Showcase & Light Dinner – Event Centre (view 2022 vendors here)
7:00 pm Member Meetup – Poolside


School Spirit Day! Wear logo apparel from the school from which you graduated or from your current school.

7:00 am Breakfast Begins – Main Dining Room
8:15 am Breakout Sessions 4
9:30 am Closing Session – Event Centre 
10:30 am Closing, CEU pickup

Below are the Keynote Speakers for 2023.

Monday, November 13, 8:30 am

Rural People as Powerful Agents of Change

Opening Keynote – Tuleah Palmer


MREA is excited to welcome Tuleah Palmer as the Opening Keynote for the 2023 Greater Education Summit. Tuleah will be addressing the macro rural issues affecting education and how to transition old and new values so Greater Minnesota doesn’t become lesser Minnesota.

Tuleah is the President and CEO of Blandin Foundation, where she oversees grantmaking, public policy initiatives and stewardship of foundation resources. Throughout her 20 years of nonprofit executive experience, she has focused on community and economic development, workforce development and systems change. Previously, she served as the executive director of the Northwest Indian Community Development Center in Bemidji and has led numerous organizations through strategic planning and program redesign. She has secured and managed over $100 million in grants and successfully acquired funding more than a dozen times at the state capitol.

Tuesday, November 14, 9:30 am

Cultivate Youth Well-Being for the Future of Education

Closing Keynote – Brandon Jones

Brandon Jones will close the MREA Greater Education Summit on Tuesday morning, November 14. Brandon’s keynote, “Cultivate Youth Well-Being for the Future of Education,” will motivate and inspire educators.

Brandon is the Minnesota Association for Children’s Mental Health Executive Director & consultant. He specializes in Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs), Historical and Intergenerational trauma, Social/Emotional Intelligence (EQ), Leadership, and Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI). Brandon holds a B.A. in Sociology from the University of Minnesota, a Masters’s in Community Psychology from Metropolitan State University, and a Masters’s in Psychotherapy (MFT) from Adler Graduate School. Brandon is also a 2013 Bush Foundation Leadership Fellow. He lives by the motto of “Live Life with Purpose on Purpose.”

Session 1: 10-11 am, Monday, Nov 13


Session 2: 11:15 am-12:15 pm, Monday, Nov 13


Session 3: 1:30-2:45 pm, Monday, Nov 13


Session 4: 8:15-9:15 am, Tuesday, Nov 14

Cragun’s Resort on Gull Lake

11000 Craguns Drive
Brainerd, Minnesota 56401

Room Rate: $96 per night + tax

We are thrilled to welcome attendees to Cragun’s Resort on beautiful Gull Lake. Cragun’s has been updating rooms and cabins to provide an exceptional experience for all guests. Register early to ensure on-site lodging!

Bringing a team? Cragun’s has great options for groups of attendees who want to have common areas for socialization with separate sleeping spaces.

Room Types

Main Lodge Rooms Overlooking Gull Lake or indoor pool; two double, two queen or one king bed; TV, coffeemaker, refrigerator, microwave.

Cabins 2-7 bedroom units outside the main lodge; with 1-6 bathrooms, kitchen facilities, separate living and dining area, deck overlooking Gull Lake. 

Indicate your preferred room type, all special requests, rooming partners, and accessibility needs by completing the online reservation form. Cragun’s staff will reach out with questions.

Cragun’s can also help arrange lodging at nearby Brainerd/Baxter hotels when Cragun’s lodging capacity is reached. Request assistance from Cragun’s if needed.

Reserve Lodging Now

Member registration for the Showcase only opens August 16. Non-member registration opens September 1.

Summit Showcase

Monday, November 13
5:00 – 7:00 pm
Cragun’s Event Centre, Brainerd

Businesses and organizations can increase their reach with professional educators while creating a strong network of associates by exhibiting at the Summit Showcase. When you need to talk with school superintendents, administrators, school board members, or teachers, the Showcase is your place to successfully connect. It’s held concurrently with a light dinner on Monday, allowing vendors more interaction time with conference attendees.

Register Soon

  • Register for the full Summit with a booth included, or register as an Exhibitor only.
  • Exhibiting is FREE with full Summit registration. (Check box during registration.)
  • Registration closes October 15 or earlier if all spaces fill.
  • Exhibitor booth numbers are assigned at setup on Monday and are not available prior to the Summit.

Plan Your Booth

  • One 8 ft. long by 30” wide covered table and two chairs are provided. Skirting, dividers, and drapery are not provided.
  • Electricity and Wi-Fi are available at every table. Vendors should supply power strips if they have multiple electrical items.
  • Table-top banners and displays work best. Floor-standing banners and exhibits may be accommodated behind tables or replace tables.
  • Confetti, glitter, rice, and bird seed are not permitted. Open-flame candles must be contained, and no fog/smoke, gas or propane devices are permitted.
  • Any provision of food or beverages must be pre-approved by Cragun’s.
  • Booth giveaways must be limited to $5 or less per individual to comply with Minnesota’s gift law for public officials.
  • Bring a small (1/2 to 1-inch) stamp or sticker to validate participants’ Showcase Passports after they visit your booth. Completed passports qualify schools to win additional prizes.

Set-up & Take-down

  • Set-up is from 3:00-5:00 pm Monday in the Event Centre. Booth displays must be set up by 5:00 pm Monday.
  • Exhibitors and all Summit attendees are provided a light dinner during the Showcase.
  • Booth take-down is from 7:00-8:00 pm Monday. No booths may remain after this time.

View the Registration tab for more Summit details and to register.

Non-member registration is only available as space allows. Call the MREA office at (833) MNVOICE for membership information.