KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- As 2014 marks the Centennial of World War I, there's no place more fitting to celebrate Memorial Day Weekend in Kansas City than the National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial.
The Museum hosted a series of events to honor the men and women who sacrificed their lives serving in the U.S. Armed Forces, including a display of more than 30 vintage military vehicles on Saturday and Sunday (video below), and a public Memorial Day Ceremony at 10 a.m. on Monday, May 26, with Congressman Emanuel Cleaver II and Mayor Sly James.
Memorial Day Ceremony
When: 10 a.m.to 11 a.m., Monday, May 26
Where: Memorial Courtyard (in front of Memory Hall) at the National World War I Museum.
What: A formal public program to include:
- Remarks from dignitaries including U.S. Missouri Fifth District Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II and Kansas City, Missouri Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James (a former U.S. Marine)
- Placing the POW/MIA Chair Cover by retired Col. David Napoli (the POW/MIA chair cover is a physical symbol of the thousands of American POW/MIAs still unaccounted for from all foreign conflicts)
- Placement of the Gold Star Wreath by the American Legion Auxiliary Unit 21
- National Anthem performance from mezzo--‐soprano Tara Cooper
- Musical performances from the American Legion Band of Greater Kansas City
- While the ceremony is free to the public, regular admission prices apply to tour the Museum from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Memorial Day.
Walk of Honor Dedication Ceremony
When: 1 p.m. to 2 p.m., Monday, May 26
Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium in the National World War I Museum
What: Nearly 100 new Walk of Honor granite bricks will be dedicated during a special ceremony. Entertainment will include patriotic songs by former U.S. Army Chorale member and Iraq veteran Ron Guiterrez. The Walk of Honor, now more than 9,000 bricks strong, is divided into three sections: bricks dedicated solely to those who served in World War I; bricks dedicated to veterans of any military service; and bricks that honor civilian friends, family or organizations. Walk of Honor bricks are dedicated twice each year during Memorial Day and Veterans Day ceremonies.
National WWI Museum: Memorial Day Hours and Parking
The National World War I Museum will be open on Monday, May 26, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. with discounted admission for active duty military and career retired military. To accommodate expected high Memorial Day attendance, free parking and a shuttle service will be available on May 26 from parking lots in Crown Center at Grand & 27th Streets from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
About the National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial
The National World War I Museum at Liberty Memorial is the only American museum solely dedicated to examining the personal experiences of a war whose impact still echoes in the world today. The National World War I Museum holds the most diverse collection of World War I objects and documents in the world and is the second--‐oldest public museum dedicated to preserving the objects, history and experiences of the war. The Museum takes visitors of all ages on an epic journey through a transformative period and shares deeply personal stories of courage, honor, patriotism and sacrifice. Designated by Congress as America’s official World War I Museum and located in downtown Kansas City, Mo., the National World War I Museum inspires thought, dialogue and learning to make the experiences of the Great War era meaningful and relevant for present and future generations. To learn more, visit www.theworldwar.org.