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History
Minnesota National Guard
City, Military Unite

"Today, the Armed Forces Reserve Center is a reality," Cambridge Mayor Marlys Palmer announced last week during a long anticipated ceremony

The July 28 event served as the official ground breaking for the new Cambridge Armed Forces Reserve Center, to be constructed just west of the Anoka-Ramsey Community College Cambridge Campus

The center is planned to be a joint facility shared by the Minnesota Army National Guard, US Army Reserve and the Cambridge community

Each of these groups has a different level of interaction with the general public, said CPT Jess Ulrick, commander of the Guard's 850th Horizontal Engineer Company, who served as master of ceremonies at the ground breaking

Shared facilities, he continued, will consist of a gymnasium, fitness center, banquet/reception center and several classrooms for community-related events

The Armed Forces Reserve Center will further house 175 Soldiers from the Guard's 850th HEC and 50 more from the Army Reserve's 704th Chemical Company

Construction on the proposed $10 million center - a 56,000 square-foot facility estimated to occupy about 25 acres on the west side of County Road 70 - is scheduled to begin this fall and reach completion around winter/spring 2009

Federal, state and city governments are sharing the cost

"Today is an important day for Minnesota National Guard history," said Col Joseph Kelly, executive director for the Guard, speaking at the ground breaking ceremony

He noted the National Guard has been interested in pursuing a long-term relationship with the city and neighboring communities through the Armed Forces center project

"Since we've been in Cambridge, we've been glad and fortunate to be here," Kelly added "This has been a model project and we offer our thanks to (the Kelly and Hokenson families) for their patriotic donation of 25 acres of prime land

"We plan on being here in Cambridge for a very long time," he finished

It began with an idea

The project began with a brainstorm some 15 years ago in part by Minnesota National Guard Command Sergeant Major Robert Boone He had served on the city council in the later 1980s and early "˜90s

"The city council talked about (the Armed Forces center) then Hope was there

"It took an instrument like this to get it going," said Boone after the ground breaking ceremony

Further, the support of the community and region has been "nothing short of phenomenal," added Boone, speaking on behalf of the National Guard "We're here for the long haul New buildings and communities are not chosen lightly This is a very long-term commitment

"The senior leadership of the Minnesota Army National Guard couldn't be more pleased with the Cambridge-Isanti community"

Other proposed plans

As a focal point, the joint facility will offer a sizeable assembly hall, which may include the gym for basketball and volleyball or perhaps a banquet and reception area for community use

Other proposed and future enhancements at the center may involve a kitchen, swimming pool, child care center, indoor play area, information visitor center, outdoor ice hockey rink and general ice, warming room and locker/restrooms for outdoor ice complex

Concepts also include athletic fields, located just east of the center and bordering what will be become Spirit River Drive South

By Jon Tatting
Wednesday, 01 August 2007
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Article source:
http://isanticountynews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=1425&Itemid=1



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Posted: 2017-12-13  10:11 AM
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Posted: 2017-12-12  11:29 AM
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