Our Presidents play an important role in society, as they represent us abroad and lead our nation through the good times and bad. Throughout our country, there’s a variety of great museums, monuments and other places of interest that pay tribute to their contributions to our nation.
In honor of Presidents Day, I’ve pulled together a list of a few of my favorite Presidential experiences.
1. The White House
There’s something so breathtaking about the White House. It’s palatial appearance, importance in our country and the fact that our President and all those before him have lived there makes this one of the most fascinating and recognizable buildings on the planet. I was fortunate to get the opportunity to partake in a public tour in 2011, which was absolutely amazing. I highly recommend working with your local congress person to get a public tour when you visit D.C.
2. Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum
Growing up, I remember seeing Reagan on TV representing our country, meeting with Mikhail Gorbachev and a host of other key events. Visiting his Presidential Library was like reliving my early childhood with a new perspective on the world affairs of the 1980’s. While there were a lot of interesting exhibits, there are two exhibits that really stand out—Air Force One and the replica of the Oval Office—complete with the Waterford canister of Jelly Belly jelly beans! It’s an exquisite museum and the views of the surrounding area are spectacular.
3. John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum
This is a fascinating museum. The exhibits follow the story of JFK’s life from a young boy to his untimely death in 1963. There are artifacts from the campaign trail, gowns and suits worn by Jackie, a replica of the Attorney General’s Office as it was during Robert F. Kennedy’s time, Space Race features, a Bay of Pigs movie and a host of other items of historical significance. Reachable via public transportation from downtown Boston, you’ll want to allow at least four hours to fully explore this well-done museum.
4. The Sixth Floor Museum
JFK’s assassination changed the world and this museum marks the very spot where it happened. Featuring video footage, photos and a variety of exhibits about Kennedy’s visit to Texas, visitors learn about the times and issues happening in the region and the country. You’ll see where Lee Harvey Oswald fired the shots, then you can go down to Dealey Plaza and see the”Grassy Knoll” and the “x” marks on Elm Street noting where each shot hit the President. It’s well done and thought provoking, and a true must-see in Dallas.
5. Mount Vernon
Standing in the very room where George Washington learned he’d won the Presidency? Now that was pretty surreal. Walking through the rooms in his home, wandering amongst the grounds and exploring what life was like for our country’s first president was quite an experience. Just a short drive from Washington D.C., whether you’re into history or not, this is a must-see destination.