February Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Newsletter

Attached you’ll find February’s Edition of the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Newsletter.  This month’s issue includes saluting healthy hearts for the month of February. The resources of the month are Military OneSource and the MN Military & Veteran Exchange. There is also news from Yellow Ribbon companies and from across the state! 


Ellyn E. Emde
Yellow Ribbon Reintegration Program OIC
MN Family Programs, J1
(O): 651-268-8538
(C): 651-334-0302

147th Human Resources Company
Rear Detachment Commander
Arden Hills, MN

Military OneSource Webinars

Military OneSource Webinars (Interactive Webinars)

Have a Healthier Summer

Summer is almost here! This can mean lots of BBQs, vacations, and plenty of sun. Join us for a webinar presentation to learn tips to stay healthy and safe during the summer months.

June 14th 8:00 pm – 9:00 pm | June 20th 2:00 – 3:00 pm

Link: https://connect.militaryonesourceconnect.org/iwebs/ (link for both event dates)

Presenter: Liz Gray and Alyson Lilley


PTSD Care and Support: Real Warriors Campaign Resources

Post-traumatic stress disorder can develop after experiencing, witnessing or learning the details of a traumatic event. Join this webinar to learn about the care and support available to those suffering with PTSD.

June 21st 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm

Link: https://register.gotowebinar.com/register/5172326288832376323

Presenter: Air Force TSgt Bradley Blair


Michael J. Meier | Minnesota Military OneSource State Consultant
michael.meier@militaryonesource.com | Office: 612-751-4290
Visit www.militaryonesource.mil or call: 800-342-9647

Military OneSource: Dynamic Group Discussion


It is that time again! Another fantastic Dynamic Group Discussion, please pass on to our service/family members.

Topic: Love Can Last

Join us to talk about what helps couples stay together. Learn tips for a healthy, lasting relationship that brings you both contentment and helps you weather any storm. Details and registration is on the attached flier!  Thank you!

Dates: Thursday, May 10, 2018, 8-9 p.m. ET & Wednesday, May 16 2018, 2-3 p.m. ET

NOTE that times are in ET

May 2018 DGD_Love_Can_Last.pdf


Michael J. Meier | Minnesota Military OneSource State Consultant
michael.meier@militaryonesource.com | Office: 612-751-4290
Visit www.militaryonesource.mil or call: 800-342-9647

Military Tax Information and Scam Warning

With the 2017 tax return season upon us, a surge in potential tax scams is likely to come with it. These scams come in many forms including fraudulent returns, phony calls, fake Internal Revenue Service (IRS) emails, as well as phishing schemes. These can lead to the theft of taxpayer money and/or personal data.


  • Do not carry your Social Security card or any documents that include your SSN or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)
  • Do not give businesses your SSN or ITIN just because they ask
  • Protect your financial information
  • Check your credit score every 12 months
  • Secure PII in your home
  • Protect you personal computers by using firewalls, anti-virus software, updating security patches, changing passwords for internet accounts on a regular basis
  • Do not give your personal information over the phone, through the mail, or on the internet unless you have initiated the contact and are sure of the recipient
  • File your taxes as soon as possible

Contact Military OneSource with any tax questions and assistance with tax prep and filing.  http://www.militaryonesource.mil/taxprep

Beyond the Yellow Ribbon Events & Deals

Military OneSource & Armed Forces Tax Council present MilTax Facebook Live Event!

Who:  Service Members and their families
What:  MilTax Facebook Live event to answer questions about tax services offered through Military OneSource and the Military Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.
When:  Wednesday, Feb 28 2018, at 1400 CST (2:00 pm)
Where:  https://www.facebook.com/events/153165695349805/?active_tab=discussion


Minnesota Home Expo – FREE TICKETS!

Who:  Service Members and their friends/families
What:  Complementary tickets to the Minnesota Home Expo
When:  March 9-11, 2018 (see website for times)
Where:  Target Field, Delta Sky360 Legends Club, Minneapolis, MN
How:  Pick up tickets in person at the Cottage Grove armory Public Affairs Office

For more information, go to: www.MNHomeExpo.com


NCHC Frozen Face-Off College Hockey Tournament

Who:  Military members and their families
What:  Discounted tickets ($17) for the Frozen Face-Off NCHC College Hockey Tournament
When:  16-17 March
Where:  Xcel Energy Center, St. Paul, MN

Buy tickets online at :

Use code: NCHCHERO to receive the discount


Youth and Family Turkey Hunt

Who:  Youth ages 12-17 (18 year old’s can hunt as an adult) Must have a Firearms Safety Certificate and a parent or guardian during the youth hunt
What:  Learn to Turkey Hunts are sanctioned and managed between the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources and the National Wild Turkey Federation (NWTF)
When:  21-22 April
Where:  17 locations Statewide
POC:  Mike “Cold Front” Kurre, Minnesota Department of Natural Resources at 651-259-5193  or michaelkurre@state.mn.us
Register:  By Feb 12 http://www.dnr.state.mn.us/turkeyhunt/index.html 


Sea Life Aquarium Family Overnight – Mall of America


REGISTER NOW!  Slots fill quickly!

Who:  MN Army National Guard members with children ages 5-18 yrs.
What:  Overnight with sea life
When:  April 27-28, 2018
Where:  Mall of America Sea Life Aquarium, Bloomington, MN
Cost:  $65 for Adults, children are free
Register:  By April 9th at https://johnsme218.wufoo.com/forms/zm11i5300d4f33/


Before bedding down for the night, families will enjoy an evening of learning about the resilient and adaptable animals that call the Sea Life Aquarium home.  Space is limited.  Priority is given to MN National Guard families; other branches will be put on a wait list.  You are not confirmed for this event until you receive an email from Mel Johnson, Child and Youth Program Coordinator.

Activities include:
– Night hike through the aquarium
– Behind-the-scenes tour
– Pizza party
– Light breakfast in the morning
– Souvenir craft


2018 Women Veterans Conference

Who:  All female Veterans
What:  Woman Veterans Conference
When:  Saturday, May 26, 2018  7:45am-5:00pm
Where:  Ramada Inn, 2705 Annapolis Lane N. Plymouth, MN 55441
Register:  Contact info below
P.O.C:  Kimberly Dobler, 612-283-5863

**The mission of the Minnesota Women Veterans Program is to ensure women Veterans have equitable access to federal and state benefits  and services.  We respond to the gender specific needs of women Veterans and ensure that women Veterans are treated with dignity and respect.  Our outreach events are geared to improve the awareness of available benefits, services and eligibility criteria for the women who served in the United States Armed Forces.


Troops To Teachers Program

WHO:  Current military members, retired, and honorably separated military personnel
WHAT:  Troops To Teachers Program
WHEN:  Ongoing
WHERE:  Nationwide
WHY:  To assist transitioning service members and veterans in beginning new careers in public, charter, and Bureau of Indian Affairs schools.
HOW:  Troops to Teachers is a DOD program which facilitates Service members’ successful transition to a teaching career by providing counseling and financial and placement assistance for eligible Service members and veterans.
POC:  Dr. Charles Rick at 218-780-0343 or for online information go to www.proudtoserveagain.com


ZMC Hotel Discounts and Promotions

WHO:  Military and Public Service Personnel (valid ID required)
WHAT:  Hotel discounts and promotions
WHEN:  Various year-round
WHERE:  Duluth, MN
WHY:  To show support for military, law enforcement, and public service personnel
HOW:  go to  www.zmchotels.com/military for details and rates


Personal Financial Counselor

WHO: Military and their families
WHAT: Making Financial Decision
WHEN: Based on Appointment
WHERE: Multiple Locations
WHY: No cost Services
HOW: Contact one of the PFCs on the attached list
POC: 612.397.0295, 612.297.2826; 612.352.8504


Parenting Skills

WHO: Families with kids ages 5-18 (All Branches of Service)
WHAT: Learn how to be the best parent you can be and gain new parenting skills
WHEN: sign up today and you will be assigned a group
WHERE: on-line and in person
WHY: Opportunity to gain new parenting skills
HOW: sign up Click and scroll down to “Join ADAPT4U in MN or MI Now”
POC: Laura Groeneweg
Lead Child and Youth Program Manager
MN National Guard Child and Youth Program
O: 651.268.8695
M: 651.242.6938


Sam’s Club Free $15 Gift Card “It’s Our Salute to You!”

WHO: Active and Retired Military and their Spouses
WHAT: Free $15.00 Sam’s Club Gift card
WHEN: Open
WHERE: All Sam’s Club locations in Minnesota and Wisconsin
WHY: Sam’s Club Salute to You for Your service
HOW: Present your Military ID to the Store Associates when signing up or renewing your membership with Sam’s Club and you will get your $15.00 Gift Card


Lake Trails Camp

Who: Military Teens ages 13-18 (All Branches)
What: Lake Trails Camp: Experience a 9 day Outdoor Adventure at Lake of the Woods. Campers will have an experience of a lifetime and will canoe, cook their own food, portage and set-up camp.
When: This summer! Check the website for open sessions.
Where: Lake of the Woods, Oak Island, MN (Transportation is available)
Register: Click Here
POC: Sue Lemm


School for Performing Acts

WHO: Military Families
WHAT: Opportunity to participate in School for the Performing Arts
WHEN: Open
WHY: Private Lessons for Voice, Acting, Beginning Piano, and Flute via videoconferencing tools Group Music and Theatre Classes on a Global Scale, Consistency and Flexibility
HOW: More information on the programs Play.Sing.Act, LLC offers please Check out
POC: April Vargo Founder, Owner, Educator Play.Sing.Act www.playsingact.com


Minnesota Military Museum Veterans Registry


WHO: Interested Military, Veterans and Individuals
WHAT: Camp Ripley, MN – The Minnesota Military Museum wants your story for their “Veterans Registry”.
WHEN: The Minnesota Military Museum is open seven days a week from May through September and Thursdays and Fridays from October through April, with special tours coordinated at any time.
WHERE: Camp Ripley, MN – The Minnesota Military Museum
WHY: The Registry is easy to use and anyone can submit a Veterans story and pictures of the veteran. This service is also FREE and a great way to preserve a record of your service for your family.
HOW: Interested veterans and individuals should Click Here  and also click on Veterans Registry.
POC: Executive Director, Jeff Thielen Email jthielen@mnmilitarymuseum.org


Free Tax Services from Military OneSource

Now that tax season is in full swing…please pass along the information below about our tax services to service/family members. Veterans are eligible to use Military OneSource services as long as they are within the 180 day window of their service date (example: A service member separated or retired 5 Oct 16 and file before 3 Apr 17, it is within the 180 day window thus are eligible).

Free Tax Services from Military OneSource


Service members and military families — here’s a benefit that helps you master your taxes. Free, easy-to-use MilTax software and support services can make quick work of tax time. No need to pay for outside tax assistance or risk missing specific military tax breaks. MilTax is made for military life, so you get more, including:

Tax preparation and filing software

Use our MilTax software to prepare and file your taxes online. This free software is tailored to military life — addressing scenarios including multiple moves, deployments and more. You can work anytime, anywhere, at your own pace. Plus, calculations have a 100 percent accuracy guarantee.

Specialized phone support

Get Free Tax Software

Get started using free MilTax software to prepare and file your taxes online.

You can talk with a trained MilTax consultant free during tax season (January through April 18) seven days a week from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m. EST or EDT at 800-342-9647. After April 18, trained tax consultants are available Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. EDT. Call anytime to schedule an appointment.

In-person tax assistance

Talk to a Tax Consultant

Call 800-342-9647 to speak with a Military OneSource tax consultant — remember these consultations are free.

The Volunteer Income Tax Assistance program offers free in-person tax preparation and assistance at locations on and off base worldwide. Self-file using MilTax software at a kiosk where available. Work with a trained tax professional on site. Or, arrange to drop off your paperwork and come back to e-file when your return is ready.

Helpful articles and online resources

In our Taxes section, you’ll find articles with valuable information on how to file your tax return, such as “Tax Filing Made Simple” and “Filing Taxes When a Service Member is Deployed.” You can learn how new tax laws might affect you. And you can connect with Military OneSource financial counselors to make the most of your money.

MilTax serves those who serve. As a military member, you and your family are eligible for these exclusive resources. Make quick work of tax time with all the MilTax tools and services you’ve earned.

  • Michael J. Meier
  • Minnesota Military OneSource Consultant
  • Contractor
  • (612) 751-4290 (cell)
  • michael.meier@militaryonesource.com

Military OneSource Tax Services are Free


A reminder to all eligible service members that Military OneSource’s tax link for free tax services will be available starting: January 16th 2017. At this time service members can login if they already have a login, call our tax consultants and start the filing process (ensure they have all there W2’s). If service members do not ave a login it is very easy to do (takes about 5 mins) to create one. This is a great resource for service members to take advantage of!

****Remember service members can file 1 federal and up to 3 state returns.

For more information visit http://www.militaryonesource.mil .


Military OneSource offers Financial Educational Opportunities on MyTraining Hub

Military1SourceKnow any service members that are looking for a financial educational opportunity…look no further then Military OneSource’s (MyTraining Hub).

These financial courses are offered on MyTraining Hub absolutely free! Go to http://www.militaryonesource.mil , login/create a login and go to the Looking for this carousel and click on MyTraining Hub.


Finance – 01 Consumer Credit

pbyr-number4This course is designed to help you understand the good, bad and ugly of credit. You will learn how to build and maintain good credit, and the ins and outs of credit reports.

  • Length: 45 minutes
  • Audience: Family members, Service providers, Military service members



Finance – 02 Developing Your Spending Plan

pbyr-number-5This course is designed to help you develop a spending plan to help ensure your financial success. You will learn how to identify your needs and wants, and create financial goals.

  • Length: 45 minutes
  • Audience: Family members, Service providers, Military service members



Finance – 03 Investing for Your Future

pbyr-number-6This course will help you understand how to set financial goals. You will learn how to evaluate investment products and the features of military and non-military retirement programs.

  • Length: 45 minutes
  • Audience: Family members, Service providers, Military service members



Finance – 04 Car Buying Strategies

pbyr-number-7This course is designed to provide you with tools and tips for a good car buying experience, and how to avoid the pitfalls buyers make. You will learn about the three deals of car buying, the common “car buying game”, and your legal rights.

  • Length: 45 minutes
  • Audience: Family members, Service providers, Military service members



Finance – 05 Money and the Move

pbyr-number-8This course is designed to help you understand the costs associated with moving in the military. You will learn what to expect and how to prepare.

  • Length: 45 minutes
  • Audience: Family members, Service providers, Military service members


Questions please let me know.

  • Michael J. Meier
  • Minnesota Military OneSource Consultant
  • Contractor
  • (612) 751-4290 (cell)
  • michael.meier@militaryonesource.com
  • http://www.militaryonesource.mil
  • 1-800-342-9647

Military OneSource FREE Tax Services

Military1SourceFree Tax Services Available Through Military OneSource

Why pay for tax software when you don’t have to? Managing your finances or getting help filing your taxes doesn’t cost you a dime through Military OneSource. Military OneSource provides free tax preparation and filing services and tax consultations.

Military OneSource tax preparation and filing services

Through the Military OneSource tax preparation and filing service, a provider will walk you through a series of questions to help you complete your tax return. This service allows you to:
Complete and electronically file your federal and up to three state tax forms Check your electronic filing status Rest easy knowing the vendor is by your side if you get audited Get 100 percent accurate calculations or the vendor will reimburse you up to $10,000

This online software product is easy to use, and technical assistance is available if you need it. For technical assistance, such as login issues, using the software, printing returns, etc. or for any personal tax-related questions, call 855-897-8639 and follow the prompts.

FYI: Military One Source also offers FREE financial and budget counseling with a certified Financial counselor!