Memorial Day events planned at National WWI Museum

Numerous events are played for the Memorial Day weekend at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City.

KANSAS CITY — As the commemoration of the Centennial of World War I (2014-19) continues, the National WWI Museum and Memorial serves as a fitting place to honor and recognize the men and women who sacrificed their lives while serving their country during Memorial Day weekend.

Admission to the Museum and Memorial is free for veterans and active duty military personnel, while general admission for the public is half-price all weekend (Friday through Monday, May 24 through 27).

The Museum and Memorial offers a wide variety of events during the weekend for people of all ages, including a free public ceremony at 10 a.m. on Memorial Day featuring musical performances from Kansas City native Casi Joy (recording artist from NBC’s “The Voice”) and a keynote address from U.S. World War I Centennial Commissioner Dr. Monique Seefried.

Support for Memorial Day is provided by the Neighborhood Tourist Development Fund of Kansas City, Mo. and 810 WHB.

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND ACTIVITIES

FLAGS OF FORGOTTEN SOLDIERS DISPLAY

This will take place all day throughout the weekend, May 24 through 27. It will take place in the Walkway Terrace near the Main Entrance at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The Department of Veterans Affairs reports that every 72 minutes, a service member takes his or her own life. This moving display of 140 U.S. flags calls attention to the fact that 140 veterans are lost to suicide every week. This is free to the public.

WORLD WAR I RESEARCH STATIONS

This will take place all day throughout the weekend. It will take place outside J.C. Nichols Auditorium Lobby inside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Find your connection to World War I during Memorial Day weekend through research stations at the Museum. With access to multiple databases including, Fold3.com, Ancestry.com, the Museum and Memorial’s online collections database, the American Battlefield Monuments Commission and the National Archives, discover how the Great War affected your family through records, photographs and much more. This is free to the public.

LETTER WRITING

This will take place all day throughout the weekend, May 24 through 27. It will take place outside Wylie Gallery inside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Just as in World War I, letters help remind those who serve of home. In support of Operation Gratitude, write a letter to our veterans, deployed troops, new recruits and first responders. This is free to the public.

FOOD TRUCKS

Food trucks will be open at various time from May 25 through May 27. They will be located in the southeast lawn outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Kansas City food trucks CoffeeCakeKC (9 to 11:30 a.m. May 25 and May 27) and Detroit Coney (Noon to 3 p.m. May 25 through May 27). will offer food during Memorial Day Weekend. Availability subject to weather.

VIETNAM ERA BELL UH-1 IROQUOIS “HUEY” HELICOPTER DISPLAY

This will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 25 through May 27. It will take place in the rectangular drive outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter No. 243 will provide an iconic Bell UH-1 Iroquois “Huey” helicopter for display. This is free to the public.

VINTAGE MILITARY VEHICLE DISPLAY

This will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 25 and 26. It will take place on the southeast lawn outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The Military Vehicle Preservation Association will display more than 20 vintage military vehicles from World War I, World War II, Korean War and Operation Desert Storm. MVPA members will be available to answer questions about their collection. Availability subject to weather. This is free to the public.

HANDS-ON HISTORY

This will take place at 11 a.m. May 25. It will take place near Paul Sunderland Bridge inside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. History is brought to life during this family-friendly program, where kids of all ages are invited to handle Great War artifacts. This is free to the public.

WOUNDED WARRIORS FAMILY SUPPORT HIGH FIVE TOUR VEHICLE DISPLAY

This will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 26 and 27. It will take place in the south walkway entrance, Walk of Honor Section at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. During an eight-month tour, a mobility-equipped 2019 Ford F-150 Raptor truck adorned with a patriotic theme and a Purple Heart on its hood will travel thousands of miles across the United States before being donated to a combat wounded veteran. People of all walks of life are invited and encouraged to show their support for our combat wounded veterans and their families by making a donation and signing the tour vehicle with a message of support. This is free to the public.

CRAFT YOUR OWN POPPY

This will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. May 26. It will take place in the J.C. Nichols Auditorium lobby inside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Commemorate Memorial Day by creating your own felt poppy pin or ornament in this family-friendly craft experience. This is free to the Public.

BANK OF AMERICA CELEBRATION AT THE STATION

This will begin at 3 p.m. May 26 with a concert at 8 p.m. It will take place on the north lawn outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The Kansas City Symphony, led by Music Director Michael Stern, will perform patriotic favorites against the backdrop of Kansas City’s historic Union Station. Celebration at the Station concludes with a fireworks display over the Liberty Memorial at the National WWI Museum and Memorial. This is free to the public.

NATIONAL WWI MUSEUM AND MEMORIAL BENEFIT PANCAKE BREAKFAST

This is from 9 to 11 a.m. May 27. It will take place at the Over There Café inside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. The meals are $11 for adults and $6 for children (12 and under) and include a beverage.

MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONY

This will take place from 10 to 11 a.m. May 27. It will take place at the Memorial Courtyard outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. A formal public program to include remarks from dignitaries, including U.S. Missouri Fifth District Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II, Kansas City and Missouri Mayor Sly James (a former U.S. Marine), a keynote address from U.S. World War I Centennial Commissioner Dr. Monique Seefried, musical performances from Joy and USAF Staff Sgt. Paula Hunt and the USAF of Mid-America Hot Brass Band. ASL interpretation will be provided for the ceremony. This is free to the public.

MEMORIAL DAY BELL TOLLING CEREMONY

This is scheduled for noon May 27. It will take place at the Memorial Courtyard outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. We commemorate those who made the ultimate sacrifice with a bell tolling ceremony featuring a presentation of colors, a wreath laying and a moving reading. The bell used for this ceremony was originally located at a federal building in downtown Kansas City and was rung daily by the Daughters of the American Revolution during U.S. involvement in WWI (1917-1918). It was also tolled 11 times at 11 a.m. on Nov. 11, 1926, during the dedication ceremony of the Liberty Memorial and again on Nov. 11, 2018, to commemorate the centennial of the WWI armistice. This is free to the public.

CASI JOY MEET & GREET

This will take place from 12:30 to 1 p.m. May 27. It will take place in the Memorial Courtyard outside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. Renowned entertainer and Kansas City native Joy (from NBC’s “The Voice”) returns to her hometown for a meet and greet/fan signing event between moving performances at the Memorial Day Ceremony (10 a.m.) and the Walk of Honor Ceremony (2 p.m.). Items will be available for purchase or fans are welcome to bring their own items. This is free to the public.

WALK OF HONOR DEDICATION CEREMONY

This will take place at 2 p.m. May 27. It will take place in the J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National WWI Museum and Memorial. More than 100 new Walk of Honor granite bricks will be dedicated during a special ceremony featuring musical performances from Kansas City native Casi Joy. The Walk of Honor 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. This is free to the public.

MEMORIAL DAY WEEKEND HOURS AND PARKING

The National WWI Museum and Memorial will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. May 24 through 26 and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 27. To accommodate expected high Memorial Day weekend attendance, additional parking will be available on the Southeast lawn of the complex (weather permitting).

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