Today it is not unusual to interact with many different faces and cultures but in 1958 Minnesota that was NOT the case. As one of the first infant Korean adoptees in Minnesota this was groundbreaking. Back in the late 50s there were approximately five adoptees living in the state and the state was not exactly a hotbed of diversity. Today, Minnesota is home to one of the largest number of Korean adoptees in the nation. As a result of such an influx, Korean Culture Camp and like programs were established to enable the children to learn about their heritage.
The adoptions mark an era that would transform how Minnesota would look in the future. As someone once commented to me, "You don't look like it but you sure sound like that movie, Fargo!" And my annual trip to Engebretson's at Christmas usually earns me a few double takes. It has been a learning experience on both ends, I believe.
~Marla Solender, St. Louis Park, MN
Since the 1950s, Minnesotans have welcomed tens of thousands of Korean adoptees to the state. This is far more than any other state in the country. Long before international adoption became widely accepted by the rest of the country, Minnesotans were opening their arms. These children became the first non-native American minorities in many of the small communities across the state. Minnesota became known as a state with people willing to open their arms to the world.
~Keri Nelson, Menasha, WI