Taps at the Tower, Special Children’s Activities and Young Friends Group Gala Highlight June Events at National World War I Museum and Memorial

The fourth annual week-long series Taps at the Tower, a host of children-related activities and a spy-themed gala from the young friends organization are among the June events at the National World War I Museum and Memorial.

The National World War I Museum and Memorial presents the fourth annual Taps at the Tower each evening at sunset (8:45 p.m.) from Sunday, June 18 – Saturday, June 24. Guests are invited to enjoy an evening on the grounds and listen to Taps, a musical piece with a rich history tied to the U.S. military. Taps at the Tower links the simplicity of the Taps bugle call with the patriotic symbolism of the Liberty Memorial and features a range of special performances from buglers/trumpeters, color guards and community leaders. For more information visit here.

With children out of school during the summer, the Museum becomes an ideal location for engaging, entertaining and educational activities. On Saturday, June 11, hear real-life stories and handle real World War I-era objects as the monthly Day in the Life series featuring living historians focuses on what life was like for soldiers in trenches. At 2 p.m. on Wednesday, June 14, the Museum offers a public tour of the main gallery specifically designed for children ages 12 years and under. The popular Story Time series returns with a pair of programs in June. At 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 17, learn about the role of Spain in World War I with The Story of Ferdinand, while Pierre the Trench Rat and his animal friends lead a special evening Story Time at 7:30 p.m. on Wednesday, June 21. Additionally, the Museum offers its Hands-on History program every Saturday at 2 p.m. in which children of all ages are invited to handle Great War artifacts.

The Modernists, the young friends group supporting the Museum, hosts The Modern Gala: ESPIONAGE at 8 p.m. on Saturday, June 24. The annual summer soiree on a dazzling downtown Kansas City rooftop space features rousing music, fortifying cocktails, secret areas, dancing and dares, and a diplomatic dash of old espionage spirit. Coinciding with the 100th anniversary of heavy espionage during WWI and more than 50 years of James Bond, the event will be packed to the rafters with paranoia, secret agents, honeypots, traitors, hackers, and all that spy ring glamour spanning the last century. Tickets are $60 for members and $70 for non-members at themoderngala.org.

On Saturday, June 10 at 1 p.m., the HEAR Now Festival returns for incredible live audio theater that is part of the global commemoration of 1917 and U.S. entry into World War I and features original audio and images from the Museum archive. For more information on this program and a full schedule of events, visit hearnowfestival.org.

In conjunction with the Greater Kansas City Chapter of the Association of the United States Army, the Museum is hosting Music and Flag Day on Saturday, June 10 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. The day’s event will include: a concert with patriotic and Big Band selections from the 35thInfantry Division Band; an educational display of U.S. historical flags flown throughout U.S. history; the Veterans Affairs mobile center; and numerous organizations supporting veterans and families.

At 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, June 20, Dr. Ethan Rafuse presents the latest offering in the John J. Pershing Lecture Series: Leadership and the French Mutinies of 1917. Beginning in late May 1917, open mutiny swept through much of the French Army. Rafuse shares the remarkable feat of personal leadership of Henri Petain to restore discipline to the French Army and how this military uprising reflected deeper divisions in French society in 1917 and its enduring effect on France’s history for decades to come. The event is free to the public.

On Sunday, June 25 at 2 p.m., the Air National Guard Band of the Midwest comes to J.C. Nichols Auditorium for a free concert featuring the music of Glenn Miller and classic American marches. The band uses music to show veterans’ appreciation, patriotic support and communicate the key values of the Air Force:  integrity, service, and excellence.

Other Museum events during June include: a Memorial Architecture Walking Tour (Saturday, June 3, 1 p.m.), Mrs. Wilson’s Knitting Circle (Saturday, June 10, 10:30 a.m.), Film Friday featuring the Academy Award-winning Barbra Streisand classic Funny Girl (Friday, June 16, 6:30 p.m.) and the beginning of the monthly series Pilates in the Park (Thursday, June 29, 7:30 a.m.).

The National World War I Museum and Memorial holds the most diverse collection of World War I objects and documents in the world and is the second-oldest public museum dedicated to preserving the objects, history and personal experiences of the war.

June National World War I Museum and Memorial Events

  • Every Wednesday: World War Wednesdays (all tickets $8)
  • Every Thursday: Complimentary Tour, 2 p.m. (FREE with paid admission)
  • Every Saturday: Hands-on History, 2 p.m. (FREE)
  • Saturday, June 3: Memorial Architecture Walking Tour, 1 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • Saturday, June 10: Mrs. Wilson’s Knitting Circle, 10:30 a.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • Saturday, June 10: Music and Flag Day, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. (FREE to the public)
  • Saturday, June 10: HEAR Now Festival, 1 p.m. (FREE to the public)
  • Sunday, June 11: Day in the Life, All Day (FREE to the public)
  • Wednesday, June 14: Children’s Tour, 2 p.m. (FREE with paid admission)
  • Friday, June 16: Film Friday: Funny Girl, 6:30 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • Saturday, June 17: Story Time: The Story of Ferdinand, 11 a.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • SundaySaturday, June 18-24: Taps at the Tower, 8:45 p.m. (FREE to the public)
  • Thursday, June 20: Pershing Lecture Series, 6:30 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • Wednesday, June 21: Story Time with Pierre the Trench Rat, 7:30 p.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • Saturday, June 24: The Modern Gala: ESPIONAGE, 8 p.m.
  • Sunday, June 25: Air National Guard Band of the Midwest, 2 p.m. (FREE to the public)
  • Thursday, June 29: Pilates in the Park, 7:30 a.m. (FREE with RSVP)
  • Thursday, June 29: The Modernists Happy Hour, 5:30 p.m. (FREE to the public, drinks NOT included)

The National World War I Museum and Memorial