World War I Memorial Celebrates 100 Years Since Dedication and Veterans Day

Kansas City has always held a special place in military history—it was the site of the first memorial to the Great War. Kansas Citians banded together to raise more than $2.5 million to create a monument to the men and women that fought in World War I. This November, the National World War I Museum and Memorial celebrates 100 years since its dedication. The dedication was also the first time that supreme Allied commanders had gathered in one place. 

The Museum is marking the anniversary with a look back. Visitors can explore the grounds and look for QR codes that will show a photo or video taken at that exact location 100 years ago. The codes are scattered around the North Lawn, with two at Union Station. They will also stage a recreation of the dedication at 8 a.m. on the North Lawn on November 11. 

The Museum’s centennial is well-timed with Veterans Day, and it has a full weekend of activities planned. A public program will include a keynote address from Command Sergeant Major (Ret.) David Clark, and music by singers Ben Gulley and Vanessa Thomas. 

At noon, they will hand over the keys to 13 cars to deserving veterans and first responders in need in honor of the 13 service members that perished in Afghanistan this year. The Cars 4 Heroes organization celebrates 25 years of service in 2021. 

WWI research stations will be available throughout the museum, allowing guests to find the links in their family tree to the Great War throughout the weekend. A Vietnam-era Bell UH-1 Iroquois “Huey” helicopter will be available for touring, as well as a vintage military vehicle display on Saturday, November 13.

Explore all the events available for Veterans weekend at Admission to the museum is free for veterans and active-duty military and half price for the general public November 11-14.