Neighborhood Tourist Development Fund

Donor Spotlight
Selfie photograph taken by a middle-aged Black couple. The woman wears glasses and a brown trilby hat. The man wears a veterans baseball cap.

Questions answered by Denise Dillard of the Neighborhood Tourist Development Fund.

How would you describe the importance of the National World War I Museum and Memorial to Kansas City?

The importance of the National World War I Museum and Memorial was never made clearer to me than when I attended Celebration at the Station last year. It was the first time that I attended with my husband John, who is a veteran of two branches of the armed services: the U. S. Air Force and the U.S. Navy. He served from 1988 to 1997. He stood so proudly with his fellow veterans when each of the branches of the armed services was called, with the beautiful Museum and Memorial grounds behind us. The Museum and Memorial stand as reminders of the valor of many, like my husband, who put their lives in peril for this country. That night it was also a symbol of unity, as so many gathered to celebrate and honor veterans.

What are the most compelling aspects of the National World War I Museum and Memorial for tourists visiting Kansas City?

It represents sacrifice and unity. When you take in the beauty of the grounds, you can’t help but appreciate the pride that our City has for its fallen soldiers. It becomes evident to visitors; the importance placed on commemorating and memorializing the men and women who throughout history have heroically left families behind to ensure the preservation of our freedom.

What common reactions to you hear from tourists who have visited the National World War I Museum and Memorial?

They are in awe of the facilities, the historic items exhibited in the Museum, and the recognition given to our fallen veterans.

How does the National World War I Museum and Memorial fit into the overall strategy for attracting tourists to Kansas City?

Kansas City is the heart of our great nation. The National World War I Museum and Memorial tells the story of how our City and how our soldiers have selflessly answered the call of duty in great numbers to protect, serve and preserve our way of life. Those beacons not only speak to the past, they also remind us and welcome us to live in peace, and to laugh and enjoy life on the very grounds they're built upon.