Officials with Denison are joining individuals from Abilene, Kansas and Gettysburg, Pennsylvania on an Eisenhower legacy trip this May that will culminate at the unveiling of a new memorial in the former presidents honor in Washington, D.C. Denison Main Street Director Donna Dow said the city has worked with the other cities as well as Congressman John Ratcliff's office to organize the event.
The trip will take place May 4-9.
“The trip is open to the public,” Dow said. “The way we are structuring it is people can design their own trip based on their needs. We put the framework of the trip together on EisenhowerLegacyTrip.com. We're working with Abilene, they are taking some of the responsibilities and we are taking some of the responsibilities.”
Dow said the cities are reserving a block of hotel rooms at a Holiday Inn in Washington, D.C. those interested in the trip can get a special rate. The cities are chipping in to help keep things at-cost with minimal markup.
“We are also working with Mary Jean Eisenhower who is is granddaughter,” Dow said. “She has moved to Abilene and is active in that community n ow. She has visited Denison and is very supportive of our community. We asked her to take part in this. She was excited to guide us through the President's farm, the trip where she has many great memories from a child. She was very excited about sharing her experiences with us.”
Dow said each of the cities will be sending a delegation in remembrance to the way Denison sent a delegation to the president's inauguration when he went to Washington, D.C. 75 years ago.
Eisenhower was born in Denison. His birthplace is a staple of the city. The trip will include dinners and special guests, all of which will have accompanying costs Dow said. She said once in D.C. there will be a White House tour as well as opportunities during the trip to visit other sites such as the Arlington National Cemetery and the Smithsonian Museum. She said the hotel will serve as the delegations home base where people can meet up and coordinate the trip.
Students from Scott Middle School will also be joining for a field trip.
“We are looking to do some cross promotion,” Dow said. “We feel like with the memorial coming on board there will be travellers, even international travellers interested in knowing the whole story of Eisenhower. We feel like they need to visit all three cities to get that whole story.”
Dow said those interested in participating in the White House Tour need to get in touch with the city ahead of time to let them know how many wish to attend. She said even if the don't make it anyone considering going should add their name to the list.