Great American Think-Off weekend set

The four finalists will argue their side of the question, “Which is more important: to win or to play by the rules?”

Great American Think-Off
Debaters in the 2018 event. This year's New York Mills Regional Cultural Center Great American Think-Off is scheduled Friday-Saturday, June 11-12. Submitted Photo

NEW YORK MILLS — The New York Mills Regional Cultural Center will host the 28th annual Great American Think-Off weekend Friday-Saturday, June 11-12.

The weekend kicks off at 5 p.m. Friday with a New York Mills walking tour and then a 6-8 p.m. reception honoring finalists and artists. The great debate is at 7 p.m. Saturday at the New York Mills School Auditorium, with a reception to follow at the Cultural Center. The auditorium allows ample space for audience members to spread out safely and enjoy the civil debate in comfort, a news release stated. This year’s moderator is Tami Vigesaa, a college sociology instructor and co-host of the Flyover Logic podcast from Fergus Falls.

The four finalists will argue their side of the question, “Which is more important: to win or to play by the rules?” The debaters arguing that winning is more important are AJ Gil of Atlanta, Georgia, and Angie Stehr of St. Paul. Arguing that playing by the rules is more important are Bill Sutherland of Eden Prairie and Daniel Tschida of Minneapolis.

Tickets to attend the debate are $12 in advance by going to , or $15 at the door, $5 for students. All audience members get to vote in the contest to decide who makes the better argument and is ultimately named America’s Greatest Thinker for 2021.

Friday’s walking tour is hosted by Otter Tail County Historical Society and the cost is $6 per person. The reception that follows will include an exhibit on display in the gallery titled “The Happiness Project.” During the reception, which is free to attend and open to all, people may enjoy a variety of regional art on display, live local music by local brother/sister duo Levi and Nora Rosenthal from 6-7 p.m., and artist talks beginning at 7 p.m. Refreshments will be provided and a cash bar is available.


The Cultural Center continues to follow guidance from the Minnesota Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Minnesotans who are not fully vaccinated are strongly recommended to wear a mask. Fully vaccinated Minnesotans should follow CDC guidance. Masks are not required at the Think-Off, but will be available.

For more information, call the Cultural Center at 218-385-3339, visit the center's website at .

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