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Moving to Minnesota


About Minnesota - Minnesota is the 32nd state of the minnesotaUnited States, having joined the Union on May 11, 1858. Its name is from the Dakota people's name for the Minnesota River, mini sota, variously translated "smoky-white water" or "sky-tinted water."

Minnesota is the largest state by land area in the Midwestern United States and is in the sub-region known as the Upper Midwest. The most significant metropolitan area is known as the Twin Cities, which contains more than half the state's population. The Twin Cities refer to the state's most populous cities: Minneapolis and Saint Paul, along with multiple "rings" of suburbs. The remainder of the state is generically referred to as "outstate Minnesota", by analogy to upstate New York. The state is a major food producer for the country, and has a number of natural resources that have been greatly exploited in the last two centuries.

Living in Minnesota

The extremes of the climate contrast with the moderation of Minnesota’s people. The state is known for its moderate-to-progressive politics and social policies and its civic involvement and voter turnout. It ranks among the healthiest states by a number of measures, and has one of the most highly-educated and literate populations.

People of Minnesota - As of 2005, Minnesota has an estimated population of 5,132,799, which is an increase of 36,253, or 0.7%, from the prior year and an increase of 213,307, or 4.3%, since the year 2000. This includes a natural increase since the last census of 161,252 people (that is 358,012 births minus 196,760 deaths) and an increase due to net migration of 54,032 people into the state. Immigration from outside the United States resulted in a net increase of 70,800 people, and migration within the country produced a net loss of 16,768 people.

As of 2004, 6.1% of Minnesota residents are foreign-born (compared to 11.1% for the nation)

Most of the state's population is centered in the Twin Cities metropolitan area.

The racial makeup of the state:

  • 88.2% White
  • 3.5% Black
  • 2.9% Hispanic
  • 2.9% Asian
  • 1.1% Native American
  • 1.4% Mixed race
  • According to the 2002 U.S. Census, the largest reported ancestries are German (36.7%), Norwegian (17.2%), Irish (11.2%), and English (6.3%).

More recent immigrant communities include the third-largest Hmong population in the United States (from the Laos/Thailand/Vietnam region) and the second largest urban center of Hmong population in the world (concentrated in St. Paul), and a large community of Somali refugees.

Origin of the name
The word Minnesota comes from the Dakota name for the Minnesota River, mnisota. Mni, or sometimes mini, or Minne can be translated as "water". Mnisota is then translated as sky-tinted water or somewhat clouded water. The Native Americans demonstrated the name by dropping milk into water and calling it mnisota. Many other locations in the state contain the Dakota word for water, such as Minnehaha Falls ("Waterfall", not "laughing waters" as is commonly thought), Minneiska ("White water"), Minnetonka, ("Big water"), Minnetrista ("Crooked water"), and Minneapolis which is a combination of mni and the Greek word for "city", polis.

Minnesota's Climate
Minnesota has cold winters and warm summers. The state's climate is affected by the jet stream which can give the state winter temperatures lower than some parts of Alaska! As Minnesota is located far inland, its climate is unmoderated by large bodies of water except for highly localized effects near Lake Superior.

Minnesota is exposed to blizzards during its long winter, and thunderstorms the rest of the year. The latter can spawn tornadoes, especially during the peak months of May through July, and the state is located on the north edge of tornado alley.

Temperature extemes range from a low of -60 °F measured at Tower in the north on February 2, 1996, to highs of 114 °F reached in both 1917 and 1936 in the western part of the state. The average temperature in January (the coldest month) is 11.2 °F, and the average in the warmest month, July, is 73.1 °F; averages are cooler in the north and warmer in the south. The average annual precipitation is 28.32 inches, with a snowfall figure of 49.6 inches.

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