My visit to the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library & Museum was also thanks to an association event hosted in conjunction with another larger convention. In this case, the cities of Milwaukee, Portland (Oregon) and Pittsburgh invited a number of association executives to a lovely evening in the Boston suburb of Columbia Point. Before dinner, folks were encouraged to explore the legacy of John F. Kennedy, our 35th President of the United States.
As with most other presidential libraries and museums that I've visited, Kennedy's chronicles his life leading up to being elected president. Quite a bit of the exhibit area was focused on the Kennedy family and their place in American history. There was also a very nice campaign exhibit featuring a lot of old Kennedy memorabilia. In one such exhibit, they had a video of the Kennedy-Nixon television debate which many said was the key to the Kennedy win in 1960.
Since it was Kennedy's vision to see a man on the moon by the end of the decade, it was expected that there would be an exhibit dedicated to the space race, NASA and Kennedy's commitment to space exploration. I enjoyed it probably the most of all that I did get to see during my abbreviated self-tour.
Along the way, I stopped and took pause at a framed letter from then US Ambassador to India, John Kenneth Galbraith. I knew Galbraith's name as a leading Harvard economist, one after which the association I was working for at the time gave an annual award honoring his namesake. There was also a photo of Galbraith with First Lady Jackie Kennedy in the exhibit.
During the time of our visit, there was a special exhibit telling the story of President Kennedy's trip "home" to Ireland to explore his family roots. It was interesting to see the many photos of his trip which included a visit to a park area near Cork that was later dedicated in his honor. The Irish love John F. Kennedy and have since named a number of attractions after him including the John F. Kennedy Arboretum in County Wexford.
I must admit, I would have enjoyed having more time to see all of the Kennedy exhibits, especially the one featuring First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy and their family as they raised young children in the White House when I was a child of their same age range.
They are open seven days a week, 9a to 5p, with the last orientation film starting at 3:55p. The admission fees to the museum are: Adults $12.00, Seniors (62 and over) and Students (with valid college ID) $10.00, Ages 13-17 $9.00, Children 12 and under are free.
For more information, take a look at their website: http://www.jfklibrary.org/ .