She might be gone … but the ‘legend’ lives on

Dayton to memorialize Susan McLean

Susan McLean, 63, nationally renowned music promoter and talent buyer, died in May from a long battle with cancer, but her memory will forever live on in Dayton with the Langer Golf Tourney she founded and the renaming of a city park.

McLean was raised in Dayton, the daughter of a tavern owner and a schoolteacher whose family roots date back to the 1800s. She forged a career in the music industry spanning over 30 years, focusing on cultivating Minnesota based talent, and formed strong friendships with names like Edda James, Lyle Lovett, and Jonny Lang. A week before she died, she managed to book Willie Nelson, and was known as the most prominent female talent buyer in the country, if not the world.

The 16th annual Langer Golf Tournament, which McLean founded, will memorialize her at the Daytona Country Club noon Friday, Aug. 9. The tournament has honored members of the community who have died, including area individuals who were highly active and contributing in the community, aptly dubbed “The Legends.” Fees for the tourney are $70 and already there are more than 150 golfers signed up for the event, and 25% of the attendees are under 30.

Tournament Director Rick Durant, offering his perspective on McLean’s life, described her as a visionary in her industry, a strong and sweet woman that made you a better person just by knowing her. “She was out of my league!” he said.

He said that she was a constant contributor to the Dayton city Heritage Days and was “one of the most inclusive people you will ever meet … she was very generous.” She was honored by the City of Minneapolis, riding in the lead car in the St. Patrick’s Day parade several years ago, and her company, Sue McLean and Associates, Inc., started to “become a powerful brand,” Durant said.

She will also be honored on at Dayton Heritage Day, Sept. 21 this year, with the renaming of a small area along the river near the historic village of Dayton called Mississippi Park the into the Susan McLean Park for her great contributions to the city and impact on the lives that she touched throughout her life.

McLean is survived a young daughter, Lilly, 12, who has been generously supported by donations from friends, family, and the public, creating a substantial college fund when she grows up.