January 3, 2021
By Greg Hugh.
It has been a long and uncertain journey, but Chinese American veterans who served their country in World War II were finally awarded the Congressional Gold Medal on Dec. 9, 2020.
Efforts to enact the Congressional Gold Medal Act for these Chinese American veterans first began in December 2016. An exploratory committee led by the Chinese American Citizens Alliance (CACA) set out to secure the support of members of Congress. The bill, first introduced to the Senate and the House of Representatives in May 2017, was ultimately passed on and signed by President Donald Trump Dec. 20, 2018.
NY Chinatown images
December 31, 2020
by China Insight.
While air travel is still risky health-wise and lockdowns are common, here is a chance for us to “travel” and see New York City’s Chinatown.
The Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA) and the Center for Jewish History (CJH) are co-hosting a new online exhibition, “An Unlikely Photojournalist: Emile Bocian in Chinatown,” at
Beijing 2020 Olympics
December 31, 2020
by Elaine Dunn, China Insight.
The 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing opened with great fanfare. It was China’s debut on the world stage, an opportunity to showcase its history, culture and its athletes to a global audience. Fast forward to the 2022 Winter Olympics. Once again, Beijing will be the venue. However, circumstances are quite different.
2021 Chinese Holidays
December 31, 2020
Compiled by China Insight.
China’s 2021 holiday schedule will, per tradition, include two week-long holidays: Chinese New Year, aka Spring Festival, which will take place Feb. 11-17; and the National Day Holiday, Oct. 1-7.
Society Fat Size
December 31, 2020
compiled by China Insight.
On Nov. 11, a netizen posted an image of an apparel size chart seen at a Taiwanese chain store in China, saying, “I was shocked when I saw this size chart at a RT-Mart today. Am I completely rotten?” That image and post went viral and it enraged the online community, causing the company’s China Division to issue a public apology the following day.
November 2020
by Bill Zajicek, president, Minnesota China Friendship Garden Society.

There were two large volunteer projects at the garden this summer/fall. As a result, the rock garden was completely weeded and mulched; the donor stanchion received a new coat of paint, the Hmong Heritage Wall was painted, and as a gift from the Minnesota Peony Society, nine peonies were planted: three each of herbaceous “Krinkled White,” herbaceous “America Red” and tree peonies (Fuji-Zome-Goromo, Renkaku, Tai Hai)!!!
November 2020
By Elaine Dunn

The Hong Kong University (HKU) appointed two mainland Chinese scholars to its governing council, one of whom is alleged to have direct ties to the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).
Book Review 202011
November 2020
By China Insight

You may notice the more-than-usual number of books included this issue. With Christmas giving around the corner and the snowy winter approaching, China Insight thought these titles may provide gift ideas or just material for a “good read” in front of the fireplace.
November 2020
– Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED) Commissioner Steve Grove announced the #GoodJobsNow campaign with Rick Trontvet from Marvin Windows in Warroad and Traci Tapani from Wyoming Machine in Stacy.
October 2020
Like other com- munities, our Chinese American commu- nity has been hit hard physically, mentally and economically.
Fall Colors
October 2020
In this year of coronavirus, we can find joy in the beauty of nature and celebrate festival traditions with tastes of mooncake on the trail.
Publisher Pronouncement
October 2020
With the 2020 U.S national election approximately a month away, will Asian American voters make a difference in the U.S. political fabric?
October 2020
The resolution “calls on all public of- ficials to condemn and denounce anti-Asian sentiment, racism, discrimination, and re- ligious intolerance related to COVID-19”
Canton Fair
October 2020
The 10-day virtual 128th session will go online from Oct. 15-24.
HK Press
September 2020
On June 30, 2020, the Beijing government stepped in on Hong Kong’s governance and enacted the Hong Kong National Security Law
Lauren Food Blog
September 2020
March 16, 2020, a Monday, is a day I will never forget; it’s the day all my jobs essentially vanished. At the time, I was living in New York City, auditioning and performing.
Chang Wang - CAAPM
September 2020
Chang Wang, a regular China Insight contributor, to the Board of Council on Asian Pacific Minnesotans (CAPM) to represent the Chinese Minnesotans at the Council and the State government.
China Garden
Septemebr 2020
These gardens are all more expensive than anticipated.

By William Zajicek, contributor

Hello, my name is Bill Zajicek and I am the new president of the Minnesota China Friendship Garden Society.  Linda Mealy-Lohmann passed on the torch this February and moved to a less demanding role of secretary of the organization.  She is definitely still active with the organization and you will no doubt hear from her from time to time. 

Cmty PhalenGarden XiangJiangPAvilion r72A little history as this project of creating an authentic Sister City China Garden in Minnesota represents a walk through the past 15+ years.  My own involvement started almost 10 years ago when the master plan for the Phalen/Keller Regional Park came up for revision.  As an active community member in the Phalen Lake area of St. Paul, I was involved in the revision of the Master Plan.  One footnote item in the plan called for a China Garden.  The East Side of St. Paul is generally the under invested end of town and to see the possibility of something as exotic as a China Garden at Phalen just seemed like an impossible dream.  Understand that I knew nothing about Chinese gardens at that point.  I just knew they could be amazing.  Four years later, I encouraged our Community Council to call a meeting about the possibility of a China Garden at Phalen Park as specified in the new Master Plan and met Linda Mealy-Lohmann, Mary Warpeha & Joyce Hsiao.  They did a presentation for 30 community members, including our State Representative Tim Mahoney and his wife.  The next year Tim and our State Senator Foung Hawj submitted a Legacy Bill for preliminary design of the St. Paul-Changsha China Friendship Garden.

The last five years have been a blur: trips to Changsha, fund raising, community engagement meetings. many meetings with Parks & Recreation, Peanuts sculptures to Changsha, replica of the Aiwan Ting to Minnesota, ground breaking, dedications, successes and failures and, in the end, certainly one of the most amazing single pieces of public art in the State of Minnesota, the Xiang Jiang Ting.  (‘Xiang’ is the name of the river that goes through our China sister city Changsha, ‘Jiang’ is river, and ‘Ting’ is pavilion.)

This year we are wrapping up the first phase of the garden.  We will be doing a planting on Sept. 26 & 27, and volunteers will be needed.  Email me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you are interested. 

These gardens are all more expensive than anticipated.  Talk to anyone who has been involved in one if you don’t believe me.  As a result, we have a promissory note with the City of St. Paul to pay off Phase I.  Donations, big and small, are welcome. ... If you donate $1,000 or more, you will become a Ground Breaker for the Garden and your donation will be recognized on the donor wall.  The Ground Breaker title will only be available for Phase I. 

Until the promissory note is paid, we can’t start Phase II: a Hmong Cultural Plaza, a Chinese Moon Bridge between the garden and Picnic Island, completion of the rock garden from the Pavilion to the water’s edge, and a permanent Gate/Donor Wall on the east side of the garden.  Ironically, we already have nearly $500,000 of restricted funds for Phase II, which we can’t use until the promissory note for Phase I is taken care of. 

The Saint Paul-Changsha China Garden of Whispering Willows and Flowing Water, “Liu Ming Yuan,’ was dedicated in July 2019.  Well before that, one of our Board members did his engagement there.  While weeding last month, we came upon a small wedding.  Apparently, there has been over a dozen such events at the location already.  In addition, there are the movies that have been made at the site, individuals in mediation, and always the families taking pictures. 

During our COVID morass, come out to Phalen Park and see the “Liu Ming Yuan.” The entrance is right across from the Phalen Golf Club House parking lot.  Bring your tea or lunch.  Spend a few minutes.  Visit Master Lei Yixin’s sculpture from Minnesota rocks “Meditation” at the other end of Picnic Island.  You will be far more hopeful and serene afterwards. 

The project started out as an engagement to build a garden and, instead, it has become an engagement to build a community.  Join us in supporting the Saint Paul-Changsha China Friendship Garden of “Whispering Willows and Flowing Waters.”


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