MINNEAPOLIS (Aug. 17, 2011) War veterans from around the world and across the nation will begin arriving next week for activities surrounding the 93rd National Convention of The American Legion, the nations largest veterans organization.
We expect nearly 10,000 members of The American Legion Family to take part in convention activities between Aug. 26 and Sept. 1st, said Michael E. Walton, chairman of The American Legion National Convention Commission. Legionnaires and their families will actually be attending three different, but simultaneous, conventions The American Legion convention of wartime veterans, the American Legion Auxiliary and the Sons of the American Legion.
Blue-capped Legionnaires will be seen primarily in the downtown area where they will be housed in a number of hotels consuming 20,000 room nights as they meet in business sessions at the Minneapolis International Convention Center. They are expected to contribute between $17 million to $22 million to the city economy through shopping, dining and tourism during their stay.
We are delighted to be back, Walton said. Since holding our very first convention here in 1919, this marks the sixth time The American Legion has returned. Minneapolis is a great city with plenty to see and do. Most of all, Legionnaires truly enjoy the outstanding hospitality extended by everyone in this beautiful city.
In addition to the first 1919 convention, the nations largest veterans organization has gathered here to conduct its business in 1924, 1959, 1975 and 1994. The Legion plans to return again for its 2018 national convention.
Job-seeking veterans, National Guardsmen, reservists and their spouses in the upper Midwest are encouraged to attend a "Hiring Our Heroes" job fair during the convention. The hiring event, co-hosted by the Legion, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and Twin Cities-area chambers, is set for Aug. 27 at the Minneapolis Convention Center, 1301 2nd Ave. S. Hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
About 100 employers are tentatively expected to be represented at the job fair. They will be from a variety of industries, ranging from insurance firms and government agencies to high-tech companies. Pre-registration information is available at http://www.legion.org/careers/157996/convention-job-fair-registration-now-online.
Additionally, a free business development workshop for veterans will be held Tuesday and Wednesday, Aug. 30 and 31, starting at 9 a.m. at the Hilton Minneapolis Hotel, Marquette Ballroom on the second floor.
Veterans of all five branches of military service who have served in uniform during wartime are invited to join The American Legion and participate in the convention activities. Just stop by the national offices in room 200 of the convention center anytime from Aug. 23 through Sept. 1 or join online at www.legion.org.
With a current membership of 2.4-million wartime veterans, The American Legion was founded in 1919 on the four pillars of a strong national security, veterans affairs, Americanism, and youth programs. Legionnaires work for the betterment of their communities through more than 14,000 posts across the nation.