New Exhibition “Entertaining the Troops,” benefit for Ukraine aid and more at the National WWI Museum and Memorial
Opening Feb. 23, 2023, the National WWI Museum and Memorial is pleased to announce the newest exhibition, Entertaining the Troops. The saying “war is months of boredom punctuated by moments of sheer terror” likely came about due to the endless trench warfare of WWI.
Soldiers of all nations and militaries turned to a wide variety of entertainment to manage the boredom and distract from the terror: from sports, gambling and card games, to music, food and drink, to organized performances and dances.
Entertaining the Troops gives a peek into the life of a WWI soldier beyond the battlefield, whether waiting for the enemies’ next move or partying in Paris. Fans and spectators of April’s 2023 NFL Draft, taking place in large part at the National WWI Museum and Memorial, will have the chance to learn about football and other sports played to pass time. The National Football League was formed in its earliest version just after the end of the Great War in 1920. Opening in Exhibit Hall, Entertaining the Troops is included in a general admission ticket.
March 2022 saw the viral rise of an icon symbolizing Ukrainian resistance to Russian invasion, Saint Javelin. One year later, on March 24 at 6 p.m., the Museum and Memorial will host Saint Javelin: Art, Faith and Mobilization. Two key figures in the icon's popularity – Christian Borys, former journalist and founder of the Saint Javelin corporation, and California-based artist Chris Shaw, who created the original painting that Saint Javelin is based on – will join in conversation with Museum and Memorial Specialist Curator Patricia Cecil and President and CEO Matthew Naylor. The Saint Javelin painting has been on display at the National WWI Museum and Memorial since August 2022 and will remain until Feb. 28, 2023.
Guests can begin the discussion with a ticketed reception on the Paul Sunderland Glass Bridge before the program, in partnership with Stand With Ukraine KC. All proceeds will directly benefit Ukrainian aid. Tickets to the reception are $30.
Also in February, Lawrence Lecture Series: Lawrence as a Writer on Sunday, Feb. 5 at 2 p.m., will feature scholar Philip Neale as he navigates the checkered history of Lawrence of Arabia’s famous autobiography and other compositions. On Saturday, Feb. 11 from 10 a.m.-3 p.m., Day in the Life: Technology will take place. Living History volunteers will focus on the technology developed before and during WWI on the battlefield, hospital ward and home front. On Tuesday, Feb. 21, guests can join for The Unfinished Business of Democracy: Lincoln, Wilson and the Issue of Race. Abraham Lincoln and Woodrow Wilson both fought for American democratic ideals but the way they each chose to address race had serious consequences and left unfinished business. The conversation will take place at 7 p.m., with a free reception prior to the event at 6 p.m.
To learn more, visit theworldwar.org.