When complete the project will feature 11 war memorials, athletic fields, a history museum and a 200,000 square foot banquet hall and education center
CANNON FALLS, Minn., May 5, 2022 /PRNewswire-PRWeb/ -- Toufong Lor, founder of the recently created nonprofit; American Veterans Memorial Park announced today the organization has closed on the purchase of 95-acres just south of Cannon Falls, MN in Goodhue County. The land will be developed into one of the largest Veterans Memorial Parks in the United States. A groundbreaking ceremony is scheduled for Saturday, May 7, with construction slated to begin this summer.
The project, set to be completed in phases, is envisioned as a destination attraction. It will eventually feature several miles of bike and hiking trails; an RV Park; a 200-thousand square feet banquet hall and education center; open 365 days a year that is open to the public and can be booked for any event including veterans holiday memorials, weddings and reunions. The center will also display war artifacts and have a small theatre with a seating capacity of 250 for speakers and presentations. In addition, developers will commission the creation of 11 U.S. war memorial monuments strategically scattered around the property. A first-of-its-kind Hmong Soldier War Memorial is also planned to pay tribute and honor to all Hmong-Americans who paid the ultimate sacrifice in battle.
Later, Phase Two of the project will bring athletic fields for soccer, football and lacrosse, along with pickle ball courts and an on-site hotel development.
"This is a project I am extremely proud about," said Toufong Lor. "This will be a place for all people. We fully expect people from all over the world to visit."
Toufong Lor explained that his father is the inspiration for this large-scale project. Xia Yeng Lor was born in Laos and worked as a crop and hog farmer before being recruited by the CIA in the early 1960s. U.S. Military in Thailand trained him to help defeat communism during the Vietnam War. Reaching the rank of Senior Commander, Xia Yeng Lor was stationed on the highest peak in Laos to deter attacks on United States Radar and Communications infrastructure. He also served as boots on the ground to help rescue any fighter pilot shot down in the region and rush them to medical assistance. During one such mission he stepped on a landmine and was severely injured in the blast that killed seven of the nine soldiers at the scene. His injuries were so bad that one of his legs needed to be amputated. In 1980 he immigrated his family of nine to Minneapolis.
"My father is my hero. His sacrifices helped to give me and my six brothers a better life," said Toufong Lor. "There are so many soldiers who gave up so much to ensure American freedom. I hope this park is a place people go to learn and remember those sacrifices."
The project is located just south of Cannon Falls, a community just 40 minutes from the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul. City officials are excited for what the project could mean to their community.
Cannon Falls Mayor, Mayor Jon Atlhoff, a U.S. Air Force veteran, says he is looking forward to the project taking shape. "We expect this park will put our community on the map and bring people to town," he said. "The scope of the project is robust, and its mission is sincere."
City Administrator Neil Jensen said he believes the park will bring people to the area and allow them to explore the many things Cannon Falls has to offer. "The economic impact for Cannon Falls is going to be tremendous," he said. "The plans for this project will make what's happening here a destination."
While it may be some time before the project is fully complete, Toufong Lor is confident that when complete the park will be unlike any other.
"This is a labor of love and a tribute to all veterans," he said. "We cannot wait to transform this property into a venue for all people. It is something that will enhance the area greatly."
Save the Date:
What: American Veterans Memorial Park Groundbreaking http://www.amvetsmempark.org
When: Saturday, May 7 at 1p.m.
Where: Just South of Cannon Falls off Hwy 52 where CC Rd 14 intersects
Who: Vet Park Founders, City & County Officials and all branches of the US military will be represented and honorably recognized.
Why: A formal groundbreaking ceremony featuring all stakeholders and brief speeches from honored guests. Huey Helicopter landing ? adds to this fabulous Photo Opp.
About American Veterans Memorial Park:
The American Veterans Memorial Park located in Cannon Falls, MN will be the largest veterans commemorative park of its kind in North America and is the vision and commitment of founder Tou Fong Lor and his six Hmong brothers. The Lor Family immigrated to the United States and specifically Minnesota in the summer of 1980. Following in his father's patriotic footsteps, Toufong Lor enlisted serving over a decade in the U.S. Navy and served four tours of duty during the Gulf War. In memory of their father and the freedom they all live under today; the family is dedicated to developing this 95-acre farm field into a massive tribute to all US Veterans.
Robb Leer, Leer Communication & Consultants, 6127010608, [email protected]
SOURCE American Veterans Memorial Park
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