Memorial Day Weekend 2017

Find Your Connection to World War I, May 26-29

Watch the 2017 Memorial Day Ceremony:


As the commemoration of the Centennial of World War I (2014-19) continues, the National World War I 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 is free for veterans and active duty military personnel, while admission for the general public is half-price all weekend (Friday-Monday, May 26-29). The Museum offers several events during the course of the weekend for people of all ages and interests, including a free public ceremony at 10 a.m. on Memorial Day featuring renowned photographer Michael St Maur Sheil, whose exhibitions of contemporary photographs of World War I battlefields have been seen by millions of people across the world.

Free admission for veterans and active duty military personnel is made possible by U.S. Bank. Half-price admission on Friday is courtesy of Sports Radio 810 WHB. Additional support for Memorial Day Weekend activities was provided by Armed Forces Insurance and the Neighborhood Tourist Development Fund of Kansas City, Mo.



Memorial Day Weekend Events


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

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday, May 26 – Monday, May 29
Where: Rectangular Drive at the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: The Vietnam Veterans of America Chapter #243 will provide an iconic Bell UH-1 Iroquois “Huey” helicopter for display. FREE to the public.


VINTAGE MILITARY VEHICLE DISPLAY

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, May 27
Where: Southeast Lawn outside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: The Military Vehicle Preservation Association (MVPA) will display nearly 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. FREE to the public.


KCPT VIETNAM WAR STORYBOOTH

When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday, May 26 – Monday, June 12
Where: Outside J.C. Nichols Auditorium Lobby
What: In preparation for the release of The Vietnam War, the new documentary series by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick, KCPT is collecting and sharing stories exploring local perspectives on the war. Contribute your stories, experiences and thoughts by visiting the "Vietnam Voices" KCPT Storybooth during the Museum's regular hours. Video selections from the KCPT Storybooth will be made available on KCPT Veterans website: https://veterans.kcpt.org.


2017 BATTLEFIELD TOUR: THE TRIP OF A LIFETIME

When: Noon, Saturday, May 27
Where: R.A. Long Education Center
What: What’s it like to experience the battlefields of World War I in person? Find out details of the upcoming commemorative journey to breathtaking places in Europe with the National World War I Museum and Memorial and Battlefield Tour guide/photojournalist Michael St Maur Sheil. Museum staff will be on hand to answer questions. FREE with RSVP.


HANDS-ON HISTORY

When: 2 p.m., Saturday, May 27
Where: Near Paul Sunderland Glass Bridge inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: History is brought to life during this family-friendly program, where kids of all ages are invited to handle Great War artifacts.


35th INFANTRY DIVISION BAND CONCERT

When: 2 p.m., Saturday, May 27
Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: As part of our Memorial Day Weekend programming, the Museum proudly welcomes the 35th Infantry Division Band for a rousing concert to commemorate those who have served and perished in our country’s armed forces. Comprised of professional musicians, educators, and college students, the 35th ID Band performs for more than 100,000 citizens annually, sharing the Army’s story with the public through music. FREE to the public.


FIELDS OF BATTLE, LANDS OF PEACE TOURS

When: 10:30 a.m. & 3:30 p.m., Saturday-Sunday, May 27-28; 3:30 p.m. Monday, May 29
Where: Tours begin at Guest Services inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: Join award-winning photojournalist and curator Michael St Maur Sheil on a brief walking tour of the special centennial outdoor exhibition Fields of Battle, Lands of Peace: The Doughboys 1917-1918. Hear the stories behind the incredible contemporary photographs. Book purchase suggested and reservation required. Limited space available. FREE with RSVP.


BANK OF AMERICA CELEBRATION AT THE STATION

When: 3 p.m., Sunday, May 28
Where: North Lawn outside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: Kick off your summer with the largest free Memorial Day weekend event in the Midwest. The Kansas City Symphony, led by Music Director Michael Stern, performs patriotic favorites against the backdrop of Kansas City's historic Union Station. The concert begins at 8 p.m. Celebration at the Station concludes with a fireworks display over the Liberty Memorial at the National World War I Museum and Memorial. FREE to the public.


FINDING YOUR WWI CONNECTION

When: 2 p.m., Sunday, May 28
Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: Many Americans had family members who served overseas during the Great War. Others had family members who were German or Austrian immigrants affected by U.S. immigration policies during wartime. In this introductory session to WWI research, Dr. Mitch Yockelson will offer some hints and tips on how to go about researching relatives that may have served or been affected during the war. Information on how to request copies of military service files via the National Archives will also be available. Presented in partnership with The National Archives at Kansas City. FREE with RSVP.


NATIONAL WORLD WAR I MUSEUM AND MEMORIAL BENEFIT PANCAKE BREAKFAST

When: 9-11 a.m., Monday, May 29
Where: Over There Café inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: Enjoy some flapjacks (with hashbrowns and sausage/bacon) in a unique setting during a pancake feed with proceeds benefiting the National World War I Museum and Memorial. The meals are $9 for adults and $5 for children (12 and under) and include a beverage.


MEMORIAL DAY CEREMONY

When: 10-11 a.m., Monday, May 29
Where: Memorial Courtyard outside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: A formal public program to include remarks from dignitaries, including U.S. Missouri Fifth District Representative Emanuel Cleaver, II, Kansas City and Missouri Mayor Sylvester “Sly” James (a former U.S. Marine), a keynote address Michael St Maur Sheil, musical performances from the Heartland Men’s Chorus and the 1st Infantry Division Wood Wind Quintet and an Honor Guard presentation from Ft. Leavenworth. FREE to the public.


WALK OF HONOR DEDICATION CEREMONY

When: 2 p.m., Monday, May 29
Where: J.C. Nichols Auditorium inside the National World War I Museum and Memorial
What: More than 100 new Walk of Honor granite bricks will be dedicated during a special ceremony. Entertainment includes a performance from the Heartland Men’s Chorus, remarks from archivist, military historian and author Dr. Mitch Yockelson and an Honor Guard presentation from Ft. Leavenworth. The Walk of Honor, now more than 10,000 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. FREE to the public.


World War I Research Stations

When: All Day, Friday-Monday, May 26-29
Where: Outside J.C. Nichols Auditorium Lobby
What: Find your connection to World War I during Memorial Day weekend through research stations at the Museum. With access to Fold3.com, Ancestry.com, the Museum’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. FREE to the public.



Memorial Day Weekend Hours and Parking

The National World War I Museum and Memorial will be open from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Friday-Sunday and from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Monday. To accommodate expected high Memorial Day weekend attendance, a parking shuttle service will be available Saturday, May 27 and Sunday, May 28 from 9:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. from the West Yards Garage at Union Station and on Monday, May 29 from 8:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.