KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The National World War I Museum and Memorial has a full Veterans Day schedule of ceremonies and observances to commemorate the 103rd anniversary of the signing of the Armistice ending the war, as well as the 100th anniversary of the site dedication making Kansas City the country's home for learning about the conflict.
"World War I was more than 100 years ago, but the impact continues today," said Matthew Naylor, the museum and memorial's president and CEO. "Every day, we’re dealing with the consequences of the war. So the lens through which we look is to ask the question, how is it that World War I is impacting us, and what are the stories we can tell? And so in our exhibitions, in our public programming, and in art installations like this, we’re keen to be able to help people draw the threads between what was happening then, and what we’re experiencing now."
Veterans Day observances begin at 8 a.m. with a site dedication ceremony at the General's Wall on Pershing Avenue, across from Union Station.
The formal holiday ceremony begins at 10 a.m. in the memorial courtyard, followed by a Walk of Honor ceremony at 2 p.m. to dedicate new memorial bricks for the walkway leading to the museum's entrance.
All of the ceremonies are free and open to the public.
If you do visit this weekend, general public admission is half-price, with former and current service members receiving free admission. There are some new exhibits at the museum, as well as a new art installation known as "November Salute," funded by America250.
"This wonderful installation of Henry Johnson, a highly decorated African American veteran from World War I. And the beauty of this is it’s made up of hundreds and hundreds of faces and images of those who served, including landmarks like the National WWI Museum and Memorial, a really moving tribute to the service of Henry Johnson," Naylor said.
The photo mosaic's subject fought in a segregated unit during WWI, known as the Harlem Hellfighters. Johnson was awarded the Purple Heart and Medal of Honor.