20th Anniversary Celebration
Includes Living History, Exhibit Opening, and Guest Speaker Francis Gary Powers Jr.
ASHLAND, NE – (May 3, 2018) The Strategic Air Command & Aerospace Museum will hold a celebration in honor of its 20th year in Ashland, Neb. on June 9, 2018 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with a living history day and a U-2 Display exhibit opening with keynote speaker Francis Gary Powers, Jr.
The “Francis Gary Powers’ U-2 Display” exhibit will open immediately following a 10 a.m. presentation by Francis Gary Powers Jr. The public is invited to attend the keynote presentation and attend Gary Powers Jr.’s book signing after the exhibit opening. Francis Gary Powers senior was an American pilot whose Central Intelligence Agency U-2 spy plane was shot down while flying a reconnaissance mission in Soviet Union airspace, causing the 1960 U-2 incident.
The “Francis Gary Powers’ U-2 Display” is a temporary exhibit from the Cold War Museum in Warrenton, VA. which is made possible through the support of Humanities Nebraska. The exhibit will be on display from June 9, 2018 until December 9, 2018.
Interactive App Debut
After the presentation and exhibit opening the Museum will debut its first interactive app. The app includes audio and visual capabilities for artifacts within the Museum’s “Courage from Above: Strategic Bombers of WWII” exhibit. The technology is an enhancement for the visually impaired as well as for any guest with an interest of learning more about the history of each artifact. Guests will be able to access the app on their mobile devices or by checking out a tablet from Museum guest services.
Living History & Aircraft Tour
The living history event is part of bringing history to life in alignment with the Museum’s mission to preserve history for future generations. The WWII Guys will be in reenactment mode with a complete air crew at the C-47 “Skytrain” to educate guest on the Battle of Normandy or D-day, the day allied landings in Normandy began. The WWII Guys will also offer a photo booth and a class on airborne jumps.
The Museum will offer several history tours at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 3 p.m. and guests will see historic characters throughout the Museum in period appropriate uniform. Characters include General LeMay who was considered to be the father of Strategic Air Command; Rosie the Riveter known for her “We Can Do It” support of the defense industry during WWII; and the Berlin Candy Bomber who gained fame for dropping candy to German children during the Berlin airlift from 1948 to 1949.
In honor of Colonel Gail Halvorsen, the “Berlin Candy Bomber,” the Museum will open its C-54 “Skymaster” for public tours. The first C-54 flew in February 1942 and was used during the Berlin Airlift.
The event, exhibit opening, tours, and lecture are part of Museum general admission and free for members. Advanced registration is not required.
Admission costs are $12 for adults, $11 for seniors or military, $6 for youth ages 4-12, and children 3 and under are free. The museum is open 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily.