Minneapolis American Indian Center staff outside the newly renovated center.

A legacy in Minneapolis

Founded in 1975, the Minneapolis American Indian Center has a rich history as one of the first urban American Indian Centers in the country, providing services otherwise often unavailable for urban American Indians. The center was initially formed by community members, and it continues its roots today with majority American Indian leadership and staffing.

The Minneapolis American Indian Center is focused on serving a large and tribally diverse urban Native population, numbering well over 35,000 in the 11-county Minneapolis-St. Paul metro area. More than 10,000 people visit the center annually, and the center provides comprehensive services to more than 4,400 American Indians from 43 different tribes. 

Our mission is to provide critical services within a foundation of cultural values that meet the needs of the American Indian community. It is lived out through youth, elder, and intergenerational programs that help provide stability, strengthen connection to culture and community, improve health and wellness, achieve academic success, and establish pathways to living wage jobs that break the cycle of generational poverty. Programs and services are provided at no cost to participants.

A renovation to support future generations

The Minneapolis American Indian Center reopened in May 2024 after being closed for more than a year for a historic renovation project that restored, preserved, and expanded the facility. Programming and resources available at the center have grown in the past few years, and the renovation sets us up to continue meeting the needs of the community for future generations. Watch the video below by Loeffler Construction and Consulting to learn more about the renovation and to see the space.

The historic renovation was made possible thanks to the All Roads Capital Campaign, which has successfully raised $29.5 million of our $32.5 million goal as of June 2024. 

Explore the murals and signage in the center

George Morrison Mural

George Morrison mural

In 1974 and 1975, George Morrison (Grand Portage Ojibwe) created a mural for the Minneapolis American Indian Center that is based on a feather turning in space. During the center’s renovation, the mural was carefully taken apart and shipped to Montana where each piece of cedar was restored before being reassembled on an exterior wall of the center. 

I See Generations: Keep Tobacco Sacred Mural

The mural was designed using feedback from more than 100 local Native youth around themes of who they are, health, traditional tobacco, and their hopes for the future. It reflects the strength of the community’s collective wisdom and hope for future generations. 

Room signage in Dakhóta and Anishinaabemowin

Many of the room signs in the Minneapolis American Indian Center include QR codes that can be scanned to hear the room name in Anishinaabemowin and Dakhóta. A committee of Minneapolis American Indian Center staff, community members, and project partners decided to include audio versions of the room names because the languages are traditionally oral. There also may be different spellings for certain words depending on region/tribe.