Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Eden Prairie

fw10COyellowribbonEden Prairie, one of the few communities in the metro without an American Legion or VFW post, will soon be able to offer resources to veterans and service members throughout the community thanks to a recently-approved Beyond the Yellow Ribbon designation.

“We have laid the foundation, but we really want to raise awareness and reach out to veterans, ” said Bob Danielson, co-chair of the steering committee for BTYR. “It feels good to have approval and be able to move forward providing additional resources to those who have served our country.”

The chapter received approval from the National Guard last week after two years of gathering support from local businesses, resources and organizations. An action plan created by the BTYR steering committee, which is made up of members of city service clubs and nonprofits, was garnered approval from the State of Minnesota Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Action Plan Review Board.

“The Eden Prairie BTYR Steering Committee is to be commended for their outstanding efforts, ” City Manager Rick Getchow said in his blog. “Please consider getting involved by volunteering, providing services or sponsoring this important program.”

A Beyond the Yellow Ribbon community creates a comprehensive network connecting and coordinating agencies, organizations, resources and employers for the purpose of proactively supporting service members and military families. This is done by creating awareness through the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Community Campaign and synchronizing sustainable community support networks, according to the statewide program website.

“A lot of people don’t realize that when a spouse is deployed, these families still have the same challenges that we all deal with, ” said Bob Danielson, co-chair of the steering committee for BTYR.

In order to make the designation, the steering committee needed to show support from city leadership, public safety, faith-based organizations, veteran organizations, civic organizations, businesses, social services and education.

The committee is now planning upcoming events to celebrate becoming a Beyond the Yellow Ribbon community. The events will also allow the group to spread the word that it exists to assist veterans and their families throughout this city.

Veterans, service members and military families will be honored at the Eden Prairie-Wayzata football game at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11. Prior to the game at 6:40 p.m., individuals and families will be recognized and honored for their service and sacrifices.

Veterans and service members should stop by the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon tables outside both gates to receive a free admission ticket. The event is sponsored by the Eden Prairie High School Athletic Department and the Eden Prairie Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Committee.

Additionally, the group is planning to conduct a proclamation event, possibly at Grace Church on Saturday morning, Nov. 16, during their “Salute to Veterans” event. Plans are still in the works for the proclamation, which will involve putting a sign at the city limits announcing the designation.

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