6th Annual Hmong Resource Fair
September 29, 2007
Aldrich Arena
St. Paul, MN 10 AM - 2 PM
Visit the new Hmong Resource Fair Website

4th Annual Hmong Resource Fair

The Hmong Resource Fair held Saturday, Oct. 22, 2005 from 10am till 2pm
at Arlington Sr. High School in St. Paul, MN was a tremendous success and the largest
Hmong Resource Fair held to date.

The Hmong Resource Fair held Saturday, Oct. 22, 2005 from 10am till 2pm at Arlington Sr. High
School in St. Paul, MN was a tremendous success and the largest Hmong Resource Fair held to date.

The 2005 Hmong Resource Fair focused on providing resources and assistance to the new Hmong
refugees, their sponsor or host (anchor) families and other providers along with the general Hmong
community in Minnesota. Bilingual staff from more than 110 organizations/agencies were available to
provide assistance to members of the Hmong community and to those who work with them. Information
resources related to health and nutrition, mental health, education, employment, legal and government
services, as well as many other services, were available to participants.

Over 1,000 people attended the Hmong Resource Fair during the 4 hours the event was held likely
making the event the most sizable and heavily attended event of its kind in the entire United States. It is
estimated 200-300 recently arrived refugees from Wat Tham Krabok attended the fair where they and
other members of the Hmong community learned about available health, educational, legal,
employment, housing and other community services/programs.  A large number of Bilingual volunteers,
many of them high school and college students, provided translation assistance for recently arrived
Hmong families as they visited exhibitor tables.  Popular activities were also held for children
(face-painting, balloon-animal making) and culturally appropriate food including fried rice and egg rolls
were available for all attendees.

School board member Kazoua Kong-Thao and Bo Thao of the Federal Reserve Bank served as
emcees for the event. Guest Speakers at the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair including Saint Paul Mayor
Randy Kelly, Saint Paul Mayoral Candidate Chris Coleman, and School Board members Elona
Street-Stewart, John Broderick and William Finney. Entertainment on the main stage was provided by
the Hmong Cultural Center dance troupe, the Hmong Cultural Center Qeej Troupe and Hmong
spoken-word performers F.I.R.E.

Mark E. Pfeifer, Director of the Hmong Resource Center at the Hmong Cultural Center and co-chair of
the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair stated: "The 2005 Resource Fair was very, very successful at
accomplishing its mission of getting education, health, employment and other information resources to
the Hmong community. We are particularly pleased at how effective our outreach efforts were to the
Hmong who have arrived in Minnesota from Wat Tham Krabok over the past year. We estimate the
recently arrived Hmong attendees at the 2005 Resource Fair to be in the hundreds. We successfully
arranged free transportation contracting for 4 buses to pick up and drop off dozens and dozens of
families who have recently moved to Minnesota from the Wat. The demand for transportation to the
event by former Wat families new to Minnesota was so high that we started pickups of families at 8 AM
and did not finish dropping them off at home after the event until 4 PM. Many of the newcomer families
arrived with members of all ages ranging from infants to elderly and everyone found activities and
services to keep them very busy. The donated door prizes we awarded this year including children's
books, numerous toys, coloring books, and gift certificates for groceries also proved very popular
among many of the newcomers and other families who attended."  

Kazoua Kong-Thao noted that it was the giving nature of the Hmong community that made the event
such a success. The entire planning committee for the event consisted of volunteers who worked for
several months to put the event together. In the week before the event, planning committee members
and other volunteers put in long hours working phone banks in the evening to call Hmong families to let
them know about the event and arranging free transportation.

The planning committee of the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair consisted of the following individuals:
Kazoua Kong-Thao, and Mark E. Pfeifer co-chairs, Kin Vang, May Seng Cha, Juha Thao, Bo Thao,
Jesse Kao Lee, Mee Xiong Yang, Mo Chang, Raoul Ramos, Maisian Schiung, Fue Heu and Koreena

Financial Sponsors of the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair included: UCARE Minnesota, Medica, and U.S.
Bank. Partners in the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair included Hmong Cultural Center, St. Paul Public
Schools, MN Dept. of Human Services, MN Dept. of Revenue, Ready 4 K, MN State Colleges and
Universities, UCare  Minnesota, Boys & Girls Clubs of the Twin Cities, Portico Healthnet,
Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Hmong American Partnership, Southeast Asian Community
Council, Council on Asian-Pacific Minnesotans

Click here to view the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair Exhibitor Program Brochure

For further information about the annual Hmong Resource Fair please contact Kazoua Kong-Thao at
651-215-1278 or
kazoua.kong-thao@state.mn.us or Mark Pfeifer at 651-917-9937 or
Hmong Cultural Center's Qeej Instrument Troupe performs on the entertainment stage.
Hmong Cultural Center's Dance Troupe captures the attention of the crowd including many
families who are newcomers to Minnesota from Wat Tham Krabok in Thailand.
Hmong Cultural Center's dance troupe performs somersaults in one of their 3 dances during
the 4 hour event attended by more than 1,000 members of the Hmong community.
A juggler performs for children on the main floor of Arlington High School's Great Hall during
the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair.
Hmong spoken word group FIRE performs for the densely packed crowd on the floor of the
2005 Hmong Resource Fair.
Information resources about a wide range of educational, health, legal, housing and
employment services are shared with the Hmong community at the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair
Saint Paul Mayor Randy Kelly addresses the crowd at the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair
Saint Paul School Board Vice-Chair and 2005 Hmong Resource Fair Planning Committee
Co-Chair Kazoua Kong-Thao addresses the crowd with Saint Paul School Board members
Elona Street-Stewart, John Brodrick and William Finney with her on stage.
Scenes from the 2005 Hmong Resource Fair