By Ron VandenBoom
The Hill County Republican Central Committee continues to move forward with preparations for the annual Lincoln Day Dinner and fund-raiser to be held Feb. 27, at the Duck Inn.
Central Committee chairman Brad Lotton, at the committee's regular monthly meeting Tuesday, confirmed the list of dignitaries scheduled to attend the event.
Keynoting the dinner will be former Lt. Gov. Dennis Rehberg, Republican candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives. Rehberg is running against Democratic candidate, Superintendent of Public Instruction Nancy Keenan.
Also tentatively scheduled to attend will be Montana Sen. Conrad Burns, who is also slated to attend the Lincoln Day Dinner in Chinook on the same evening. Burns' office has tentatively confirmed that the senator will try to attend the Havre dinner after speaking in Chinook, Brad Lotton, chairman of the Central Committee said.
Also scheduled to attend will be candidate for lieutenant governor Tom Keeting. It is not known at this time whether Republican candidate for governor Rob Natelson will accompany Keeting.
Candidate for state auditor Bruce Simon, will attend the dinner along with Jim Rice, candidate for attorney general.
Also on the guest list will be Bob Brown, candidate for secretary of state and office of public instruction candidate Bob Anderson.
Elaine Sollie Hermann, Republican candidate for superintendent of public instruction will join chief justice candidate Karla Gray and Montana Supreme Court justice candidate Chris Tweeten at the dinner.
Lotton said Judy Martz, Republican candidate for governor, and her running mate, Carl Ohs, have also confirmed they will be attending the dinner.
Letters informing known Republicans of the dinner and offering tickets will be sent out during the first part of next week. Anyone wanting to purchase tickets and not receiving a letter can call Schafer Insurance at 2654344, Lotton Construction at 265-7362, or Tempo Electric at 265-5900, for free delivery. Cost of a ticket is $17.50 and will include prawns, prime rib, or chicken.
Other business discussed at Tuesday's meeting included the announcement that Merlin Wolery, Republican candidate for HD 90, has recruited Terry Schend and Robert Toner as co-chairmen for his campaign and Ray Patrick has joined the team as treasurer.
Work has began on printing up brochures and Wolery announced that he is ready to start raising funds for his campaign.
In addition to Wolery, Lotton told the committee that another candidate who will be running for HD 91 is almost ready to announce. He added that a Republican candidate who will be seeking the District 3 County Commissioner's seat is also, he believes, almost ready to announce.
Confirmation of both candidates is hoped for by the time of the Lincoln Day Dinner.