The Coast Guard is holding a keel-laying ceremony to preview and celebrate the construction of the new National Coast Guard Museum in New London, Connecticut.
Coast Guard Commandant Adm. Linda L. Fagan is scheduled to officiate the ceremony Aug. 19, to celebrate the long-awaited museum followed by a reception aboard Coast Guard Cutter Eagle. Coast Guard service members (active and retired), civilians, members of Congress, state officials, museum directors, and other special guests are expected to attend. Though keel-laying ceremonies traditionally celebrate the construction of a cutter, the museum is borrowing the term for this historic occasion.
Museum construction is expected to conclude in 2024 and the museum will then be open to the public.
“Beginning construction is a huge accomplishment, and we want to set this time aside to celebrate that,” said Drew Forster, National Coast Guard Museum Association’s director of communication and public relations. “This is an exciting time for the service to have a national museum to educate, engage, and inspire people about the Coast Guard.”
The museum will have three key themes: safety, security, and stewardship. Exhibits will revolve around five storylines: defenders of our nation, enforcers on the seas, lifesavers around the globe, champions of commerce, and protectors of the environment.
Immersive and interactive stories are at the heart of the future museum. Visitors will step into the world of the Coast Guard at every stage of its history. Museum designers are exploring qualification and active duty simulations that will allow visitors to dive into the Coast Guard experience.
“This museum will share the Coast Guard’s missions and history with the public like never before,” said Elizabeth Varner, director of the National Coast Guard Museum. “We’re proud and excited to display the service’s many accomplishments to the American people.”
The ceremony will be on Aug. 19, at 2:00 pm EDT. If you’re in the New London, area, you’re welcome to attend in person or watch the ceremony here. To learn more about the future National Coast Guard Museum, please visit their website.
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Coast Guard to join sister service branches by getting its own national museum