Chinese in Twin Cities

Updated on September 13, 2009
C.D. asks from Saint Paul, MN
7 answers

Hi all,
We are considering moving our family to the Twin Cities area. I am Chinese (born in China but raised on the East Coast), my husband is mixed anglo from the midwest region and we have a 4 yr old son. Just want to get the inside scoop on the chinese/asian community and resources in the area. Some questions I have:

How big is the chinese population there? I know the Hmong group is very large but what about chinese?

What is the chinese population like - i.e. are they mostly US raised (like West Coast) or do they tend to be more recent immigrants (East Coast)?

Are there many mixed ethnicity children there?

My son is taking Mandarin immersion classes now. How are the language schools there? I found several online but just curious to hear from those you have actually taken classes at any of the schools.

Any insights would be very helpful!

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So What Happened?

Thank you all for all your responses! It sounds like there are many chinese and mandarin opportunities for me and my family and lots of open and welcoming minds. Thank you for taking the time to answer my questions!

More Answers



answers from Minneapolis on

Hello Cher - I'm married to a Chinese man who grew up in Hong Kong and moved here as a adult. The Chinese population in Minnesota is around 10,000 - slighltly less than the largest group which is Indian. The population is evenly spread among professionals working for big companies, restaurant operators and students and professors at the universities. U of M used to be the biggest and the only university that could admit students from mainland China in the 70's. At it's height, there were 8,000 students.

As far as mixed ethnicity goes there are no official statistics but one can tell from visits to Chinese restaurants and grocery stores that there are a lot more pure Chinese than mixed race kids.

Twin Cities has the first, and one of the only two, public school districts that provide Chinese immersion and Chinese language classes. The other city being Chicago. We have a 4 1/2 year old that will be attending kindergarden in the fall of 2010. So we are in the process of deciding which program to enroll him in. There are also two private schools that offer Chinese programs for an additional cost on top of the tuition.

I hope this information is helpful to you and your husband. Please feel free to contact me with any additional questions. Good luck, L. Lo



answers from Minneapolis on

I can't answer much, but will try. Yes, there are mixed ethnicity children here, it is common. And there are some Chinese Immersion schools here, so you could look into that. Other than that, I cant help. Sorry.



answers from Minneapolis on

My husband is Chinese--originally from Taiwan--and I am white. We have two bi-racial children; I have found the St. Paul/Minneapolis area to be one of the most accepting, safest places to raise our family that I have come across. There is a significant Chinese population here--both immigrants as well as students at the various colleges and universities in the area, ABCs, and adults who immigrated here as kids. Most of the established Chinese immigrants here immigrated directly to the Twin Cities area, but there are also a great deal of coastal transplants as well. There are numerous cultural groups for both adults and children (including Ying Hua Chinese Immersion Academy in Minneapolis, CAAM dance and cultural theater, to name a few). My neighbors actually send both their kids to Ying Hua, (they are a white family) and LOVE the school. We live in a suburb of St. Paul (West St. Paul) and feel totally comfortable and at home here. I am originally from this area--you see many, many mixed racial families around....the white/Asian combination is very prevalent. The population numbers here are not obviously as significant as say, San Francisco or other large West coast cities; but I have found, personally, that the Chinese population in bigger cities is far more segregated than here in the Twin Cities. So, while we don't have a devoted "China Town" or large Chinese population, the Chinese people here are fully immersed and integrated into society, while also retaining their cultural uniqueness. Good luck with your decision!



answers from Minneapolis on

Hi Cher,
Our adopted daughter is Chinese/Vietnamese/Caucasian, and the Montessori school she attends has a Japanese/Caucasian student. Our daughter was born in the USA, but I know that Minnesota has the highest number of adopted children from China. The University of Minnesota runs a group called "Daughters of China" for adoptive parents and their Chinese children. My daughter attended ballet class with an Asian girl, whose Mom and Dad were born in China and immigrated to the USA as adults. Other than that, I don't have any other information for you. Sorry! Good luck with your relocation.



answers from Minneapolis on

I am an American Mutt, but my husband is Thai Dahm. Our girls are mixed. Our three year old loves languages and learns them quickly. I have been able to find a Spanish preschool, but Chinese is more difficult. There is a language school in the cities, Concordia Language Village.

Here in Minnesota, people are more open to a mixed race family. I especially like that my daughters live in a part of the US that is such a "salad bowl."



answers from Minneapolis on

There is at least one very good Chinese Charter school in the northern metro. If you want more info, I'll find out the name for you. I've found this city to be very diverse and accepting.



answers from Minneapolis on

We're out in the suburbs and my daughter has had a few Asian friends not sure what exactly they were but they were not hmong. My daughter loves the Asian culture and has a mentor with a husband who's from Vietnam and they take my daughter to lots of different Asian festivities and such. There are alot of Asain restaurants I know this because my family loves chinese food. There is also alot of Somalians in Minnesota too like the hmong. I think Minnesotans are very accepting of different cultures and nationalities. I know I have 2 Asian markets/stores less than a mile from my house where you can buy authentic food and ingrediants. I think you would like it and here and be accepted.

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