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Preview of Saturday's Grand Opening of the Virginia War Memorial Expansion

Virginia War Memorial landscape at dusk
Virginia War Memorial at dusk. (Photo courtesy Virginia War Memorial)

The Virginia War Memorial’s $25 million expansion opens to the public this weekend.  

There is a new pavilion, lobby and parking deck. There is a new 350-seat auditorium, a 3-D military photography exhibit, a Veterans’ Art Gallery and a long-distance learning studio. Director Clay Mountcastle said they used that studio for its very first broadcast this week.  “ We had a live broadcast of the Tuskegee Airmen, that was linked to classrooms throughout the country, giving some historical perspective on that remarkable program.”

There’s also a new Shrine of Memory honoring veterans killed in the Global War on Terrorism and he says, “You know, putting a name on the wall is not the end of anything, it’s just the beginning of people getting to know who they were and how they served.  We’re just starting to tell their stories.”

There are 175 new names, added to the almost 12 thousand other Virginians who died serving their country.  Saturday’s grand opening takes place on the 64th anniversary of the Virginia War Memorial’s original dedication.

Opening Ceremonies begin at 10 a.m. at the Virginia War Memorial at 621 S. Belvidere Street in  Richmond. It is a free event.

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