Milwaukee, WI — This year the Wisconsin Tourism department awarded $25,000 dollars to the La Crosse Area Hmong Mutual Assistance Association (HMAA). This was to promote the La Crosse Hmong New Year Celebration to bring approximately 5,000 non-Hmong visitors, and to pump $360,000 dollars into the local economy through spending at the hotels, restaurants and stores. The organizer expected 20,000 to 30,000 spectators to participate in the event, based on the LaCrosse Tribune’s article published on October 13, 2012. The article continued that the La Crosse Area HMAA spent the $25,000 dollars for radio and billboard to promote the New Year.
Click here to watch Suab Hmong News exclusive full coverage of 2013 La Crosse Hmong New Year Celebration.
Correction our typo on the video lower 3rd: La Croose should be La Crosse.
Suab Hmong International Broadcasting Communication (SHIBC), a Hmong major news known throughout the Hmong community around the world and has been serving the Hmong community for more than 10 years, covered the La Crosse Hmong New Year Celebration for the two days, October 13 and October 14, 2012.
Based on SHIBC News eyewitness, an estimated 1,500 to 2,500 spectators participated during the first day, and less than 1,000 participated the second day due to the rain. This falls extremely short from what was mentioned in the La Crosse Tribune’s articles.
Many Hmong vendors complained about the few spectators who attended the event. They mentioned that the lack of spectators had a detrimental decrease in profit to their business. ‘I am about to break even on the first day, but today I don’t know about making any profit because it is rainy and hardly anyone is here… maybe I will leave early,’ said one of the vendor owners.
Many questions were asked from spectators and Hmong representatives if any of the $25,000 dollars that were given to the La Cross HMAA were given to SHIBC to help advertise and promote the New Year. SHIBC did not receive any type of funding from the La Crosse HMAA.
There were soccer and volleyball tournaments at the event as well as singing and dancing to entertain the spectators.