Tibetan Community Cultural Center to Open in Minnesota
Phayul[Friday, August 01, 2003 10:30]
Tibetan Community Cultural Center
Tibetan Community Cultural Center
MINNEAPOLIS, Minnesota - On July 16, 2003, the Tibetan American Foundation of Minnesota (TAFM) purchased a property which will be officially known as the Tibetan Community Cultural Center. Minnesota Tibetans can now look forward to having a place of their own for learning about Tibetan culture, language, history and religion. The Center will also be a gathering spot for Tibetans of all ages and a place to welcome non-Tibetans who want to learn about Tibet and Tibetan culture.

The 7500-square foot building is conveniently located at 1096 Raymond Ave, St. Paul, near the Minneapolis/St. Paul border. Renovation plans call for offices, classrooms, a prayer hall, a library, a full kitchen and a community hall that will seat 250 people

TAFM currently conducts its programs in rented and donated spaces scattered throughout the Twin Cities. The programs include the Tibetan Cultural School, Tibetan dance and music classes, commemorative and holiday celebrations, Tibetan films, workshops on practical and cultural topics, lectures by visiting scholars and dignitaries, and Tibetan dance and language classes for non-Tibetans.

The TAFM office will move into a portion of the new building in mid-August. Jigme Taythi, Executive Director of TAFM, thrilled at acquiring the center said, "it is a great source of pride for the Tibetan community to find a home--and one that is the right place for Tibetan culture to flourish in Minnesota for the benefit of both Tibetans and non-Tibetans. Now there will be an appropriate space to hang the thankas given to the community by the Private Office of His Holiness the Dalai Lama." TAFM Board Member, Karma Wangchuk, who is the Director of the Tibetan Cultural School, had this to say, "The new building will provide an excellent learning environment for our students. This solves one of our major problems - a permanent location for classes"

In 2000 a committee began to meet to plan for a future center. Pema Takza, who has been the Chair of the committee since its inception said, "The Tibetan Community Cultural Center committee has worked hard and it has been a long quest, but I believe that we have found a place that will serve the community well." HH Sakya Trizin Rinpoche conducted a blessing ceremony when he visited the center on June 29, 2003.

His Holiness the Dalai Lama, well aware of the Minnesota Tibetans' efforts to find a home for their activities, gave the project his blessing. His visit to Minnesota in May 2001 provided a substantial base of funding for the Tibetan Community Cultural Center project. In addition, each Tibetan adult in Minnesota is contributing $200 for the Center. A Capital Campaign is underway to raise funds for building renovations, equipment, and an endowment.

For more information about the Minnesota Tibetan Community Cultural Center and how to become a part of this project through a donation, please contact

Jigme Taythi, Executive Director
Tibetan American Foundation of Minnesota
2344 Nicollet Avenue South, Suite 350
Minneapolis, MN 55404, US
+1-612-872-8177
+1-612-872-4866
Email: tafm@mtn.org

The Tibetan American Foundation of Minnesota is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization governed by the Tibetan community. All TAFM board members are directly elected by the Tibetans in Minnesota. TAFM is the sole owner of Tibetan Community Cultural Center.

Submitted by Kalsang Phuntsok for the Tibetan American Foundation of Minnesota. Mr. Phuntsok can be reached at kalsang01@att.net

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