Gov. Tim Walz has proclaimed April Military Child Month. More than 40% of military personnel have children who remain at home without their parents or guardians during deployments. More than 23,000 children in Minnesota have at least one parent or guardian currently serving in active military duty.  

Walz’s proclamation reads in part, “It is fitting that we recognize and honor their sacrifices, celebrate their spirts, and let our military personnel in uniform know that while they are taking care of us, we are looking out for their children. By recognizing Military Child Month, we pay tribute to military children for their commitment sacrifice and unconditional support for our troops. 


Here are four ways to get involved and participate in the celebration:


1. 7th annual art contest

Who: Open to military children (grades K-12) of active or retired military personnel and siblings of active service members 

What: Children should submit artwork that depicts the theme, “military pride”

When: April 1-30

Details: Send artwork and form to Laura Groeneweg at 600 Cedar St, St. Paul, MN 55101. Prizes will be awarded for first, second and third place for grades K-2, 3-5, 6-8 and 9-12. 


2. Photo contest

Who: Open to all military branches

What: Military families should capture a photo that depicts what life looks like for your military family. 

When: April 1-30 

Details: Email photo to Child and Youth Program Coordinator Mel Johnson at Be sure to include up to 250 words about the photo along with your name and phone number. Each photo will be judged on creativity, originality and whether it evokes the sense of service/support. Photos taken by professional photographers are not eligible. Contest winners will be notified via phone/email in May. 


3. Letter from the governor

Who: Open to all military connected youth (all branches, active and retired) 

What: Gov. Walz would like to express his appreciation for military youth and the important role they play in their military family. 

When: April 1-30 

Details: Register your military-connected child to receive a letter of appreciation from the governor by visiting 


4. Purple Up! 

Who: Everyone. 

When: April 15

What: Everyone is encouraged to wear purple on Thursday, April 15, to show support and thank military children for their strength and sacrifices. Purple indicates that all branches of the military are supported. Air Force blue, Army green, Navy blue, Marine red and Coast Guard blue all are thought to combine together as a single color, purple.

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