The Minnesota Military Museum gives visitors an opportunity to look through a window into Minnesota military past. This unique museum located at historic Camp Ripley, Minn. is a volunteer staffed museum. Last year alone the volunteers logged over 2,500 hours, working in all areas of the museum. The busy season is just around the corner and the museum is looking for volunteers for this year.
"We have definitely improved the visitor experience and have been able to finish projects we never could have completed without our volunteers," stated executive director Jeff Thielen. "As a small non-profit we struggle with having the funds to do many things, and volunteers allow us to accomplish a multitude of tasks."
According to Thielen, volunteers take on a variety of tasks in the museum. For instance, volunteers play major roles in managing the library, leading tours for visitors, caring for and preserving artifacts, developing exhibits, working in the store and transcribing interviews with veterans.
The Minnesota Military Museum is the only military museum in Minnesota representing all branches of service having exhibits from frontier days to the present.
"Preserving the history of our military men and women is an important and honorable task", said Maj. John Donovan spokesperson for Camp Ripley. "Veterans, drilling Soldiers, family members and concerned citizens are all warmly invited to support the museum in preserving and telling Minnesota veterans' stories."
The museum needs volunteers to continue to entertain and inform visitors of our Minnesota military history.
Anyone interested in volunteer opportunities at the museum can visit their website at MNMilitaryMuseum.org. or call 320-616-6050.
By Army Maj. John Donovan
Camp Ripley Visitor's Bureau
Feb 6, 2013
Posted: 2015-10-07 11:02 AM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - Seven retired members of the Minnesota National Guard were recognized before their fellow service members as they were inducted into the Court of Honor, Oct. 4, 2015, at Camp Ripley.
"It is our pleasure to have the opportunity to recognize these select leaders who have served our communities, state and nation with distinction," said Col. John Kolb, chief of staff for Joint Force Headquarters.
The Memorialization Board selects individuals for their service to the Minnesota National Guard as well as continued service to their communities. The board reviews the nominations received and forwards their recommendations to the Minnesota Adjutant General for approval. These inductees join the names of more than 300 others, since 1933, who have demonstrated their unwavering dedication, loyalty and distinguished service to the Minnesota National Guard.
Posted: 2015-10-05 11:04 AM FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 5, 2015
More than 150 Soldiers from the Minnesota Army National Guard's Willmar-based 682nd Engineer Battalion will deploy for an eleven-month mobilization in support of Operation Spartan Shield.
"The deploying Soldiers of the 682nd Engineer Battalion are eager to begin the deployment to Kuwait. This will be the first deployment for two-thirds of the unit, they are ready to create their own deployment experience," said Lt. Col. Keith Ferdon, battalion commander.
"Our battalion will be part of Task Force Wild in Kuwait. As a Minnesota hockey fan that is pretty cool. Our battalion has the mission of managing engineer sustainment operations throughout the Middle East, meaning we manage road and building infrastructure maintenance for coalition forces," said Ferdon.
Posted: 2015-10-05 09:26 AM CAMP RIPLEY, Minn. - The Minnesota National Guard on Sunday dedicated its new combat medical training center in honor of Brainerd-native and famous WWII nurse Hortense McKay. She is the first female soldier to have a building named for her at Camp Ripley.
The Medical Simulation Training Center, which opened in May of 2014, specializes in training soldiers how to treat wartime wounded. It caters both to soldiers whose main role is being a combat medic (called "68Ws" in Army parlance) and to regular frontline soldiers looking to learn rudimentary lifesaving skills. Eventually, staff hope to train 2,500 people a year in the art of repairing bodies broken by combat.
Like the rest of Camp Ripley, the MSTC puts soldiers through the most stressful testing simulation possible. Strobe lights and loudspeakers recreate the distracting stimuli of combat, and the mannequins soldiers operate on display gruesome wounds that spew blood.
Posted: 2015-09-30 01:56 PM ST. PAUL, Minn. - Master Sgt. Michael Stephen Phillips, the last Vietnam-era veteran to actively serve in the 133rd Airlift Wing, was honored for his 35 years of service at a retirement ceremony at the 133rd's dining facility, Aug. 23, 2015.
An 18-year-old Phillips first joined the active-duty Air Force on Sep. 18, 1973, as a security police specialist and was stationed at the 148th Fighter Wing (when it was still an active duty base) in Duluth. Following a seven-year break in service after his initial four-year enlistment ended, Phillips' wife saw an ad on television for a special program in the National Guard, prompting his return to service.
"Back then they had what was called the Try-1 program for prior active duty members to join the Guard. It allowed you to sign up for a year and see if you liked it," said Phillips. "If it didn't work out, you could get out, and if it did ... well, I ended up staying for another 31 years!"