Lake City, Minn.  – Lake City’s Lincoln High School will be home to a suicide awareness event on Monday, May 13, beginning at 5:30 pm. 

Bringing Light into Darkness, A Community Conversation about Suicide will feature speakers, free food, opportunity to connect with others, and the chance to learn about community resources. The event will be hosted by the Hiawatha Valley Mental Health Center (HVMHC) and a group of local Lake City area residents. 

The evening begins at 5:30 pm with registration and community resource tables in the school’s foyer area. “We are excited to have more than a dozen resource tables staffed by agencies that provide services in the greater Lake City area join us for the evening,” said Erik Sievers, HVMHC Executive Director. 

One of the highlights of the resource tables will be therapy dogs. Guests will have the opportunity to learn about the benefits of therapy dogs and interact with several that will be on hand. 

At 6:00pm Tim Hunter, HVMHC Deputy Director and Mac Baird, retired Family Therapist and Family Physician, will speak briefly on suicide, mental health, healing, and loss, and connecting with others in the school’s theatre. 

Lake City residents Bill and Jen Apley along with Danielle Hegge will share their personal family stories around suicide. The Apley’s and Hegge will then participate in a question-and-answer panel session along with HVMHC personnel. Attendees will have a chance to ask the panel questions and hear the answers live. 

Following the speakers portion of the night guests are invited back to the foyer for picnic style smoked chicken and pulled pork sandwich meals. There will be gluten free and vegetarian options.  

The final portion of the evening is a breakout session where attendees will meet in the gym in small groups based on the topic they selected at registration. The groups will define the resources available within the greater Lake City area and the resources missing from it.  

There will be a healing room on hand and counselors available for those who may become overwhelmed during the evening and need a break or the opportunity to speak with someone. 

Thier is no cost to the event thanks to the evening’s sponsors: Lake City Lions Club, Lake City Kiwanis Club, the Greater Lake City Community Foundation, HVMHC, Go Lake Pepin and the Lake City Library. 

Hiawatha Valley Mental Health Center (HVMHC) has been a trusted provider of mental health and substance use services in Southeastern Minnesota since 1965. HVMHC is a regional leader in providing exceptional, responsive, consumer focused behavioral health services. Today, HVMHC provides a diverse array of services and support designed to meet people where they are at in their recovery journey. 

HVMHC’s combination of housing programming for adults, clinic-based services including therapy, psychiatry, counseling, as well as community-based services including case management, skills services, and school based mental health services are uniquely provided by HVMHC across the region. HVMHC serves Goodhue, Wabasha, Winona, Houston, and Fillmore Counties in Southeast Minnesota. 

If you would like additional information on HVMHC and the services they provide, please go to or call 1-800-657-6777.  If you or someone you care for is struggling with their mental health and/or experiencing thoughts of suicide, help is available 24/7 through the 988 National Crisis Line or by dialing 1-844-274-7427.