|Nov. 3-5: Declaration; Guinness
Record Attempt; Get out the Vote
RELEASED: Oct. 31, 2002
The College will display a rare original copy of the Declaration of Independence in conjunction with a host of civic and historical activities on the day before and the day of the upcoming election. (For Danville this election is historic in its own right: the city will vote on a moist/dry referendum that, if approved, would allow restaurants to serve alcoholic beverages for the first time since the late 1940s.)
The Declaration, which set forth ideals for human rights that have become the blueprint for democracy in America and around the world, can be viewed in Centres Norton Center for the Arts Nov. 4-5 from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. There will be a Welcoming the Declaration ceremony at 8:15 a.m. on Nov. 4th in which the U.S. Postal Service, official carrier for the Declaration of Independence Road Trip, will formally deliver and install the document in the Norton Center. The ceremony will include remarks by John Roush, president of Centre College; Tony Wilder, Danville/Boyle Co. Judge Executive; and Danville Mayor Alex Stevens. Both the city and county governments are providing financial support for the Declaration project.
The College will present an array of additional activities and presentations designed to enrich the experience of visitors who view the Declaration and to encourage voter turnout. They include:
Guinness record attempt: the College has been invited by the Guinness World Book organization to set a new record in the marathon reading category. Centre students, faculty, staff, and community residents will begin a marathon reading of the Declaration of Independence and other historical and literary documents 1 p.m. on Nov. 3rd and will attempt to break the 52-hour continuous reading record set by Louisiana middle school students in 2001. The Guinness Record attempt kickoff ceremony will begin at 12:45 p.m. In addition to members of the Centre campus community, readers will tentatively include students at Kentucky School for the Deaf (who will sign read with simultaneous reading aloud) and residents of local senior citizens homes. The attempt will be certified by two official observers and one honorary judgea Centre alumnus who died in 1953. A former Chief Justice of the United States, his name is Fred Vinson, but students refer to him (his portrait, actually, which will have a place of honor in the reading area) affectionately as Dead Fred. For more information about taking part in the Guinness Book reading, contact Sarah Scott at (859) 238-5471 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Convocation featuring Thomas Jefferson and James Madison: At 7:30 p.m. on Nov. 4 the College will present a program for Centre community members and the public featuring two professional historical recreators. The actor who will portray Thomas Jefferson performs regularly at Colonial Williamsburg. Jefferson and Madison will also kick off the reading marathon. Jefferson will, of course, read the Declaration, and Father of the Constitution Madison will follow by reading the Constitution. Jefferson and Madison will also attend classes and participate in the festivities by encouraging visitors to vote on Nov. 5 and in other ways.
An opportunity to Sign the Declaration: Every visitor will have an opportunity to sign a special 100-foot scroll reproduction of the Declaration and will receive an I Signed the Declaration at Centre College sticker along with a free copy of the Declaration.
Tours by thousands of school children: Classes from around Kentucky representing more than 2,000 elementary, middle, and high school students have made reservations to do the tour, which includes viewing two video presentations featuring Mel Gibson, Morgan Freeman, Reese Witherspoon, Michael Douglas, Kevin Spacey and many other stars; viewing the original document; and signing the Declaration. Organizers expect as many as 4,000 people to take part in the Nov. 3-5 event.
Producer Norman Lear, founder of the DOI Road Trip, acquired a Dunlap broadside of the Declaration of Independence in June 2000 with the goal of bringing the Peoples Document directly to Americansespecially young peopleto inspire them to participate in civic activism, to exercise their rights and above all, to vote. The DOI Road Trip is proudly sponsored by The Home Depot. The United States Postal Service is the Official Carrier of the DOI Road Trip, a non-profit, nonpartisan project.
For additional information or to schedule a visit for a group, please call (859) 236-4692 or toll-free at (877) 448-7469. Special student group tours will begin every 20 minutes between 9 a.m. and 3:40 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 4. Space is limited, so call and reserve your time today.
Also, visit http://www.independenceroadtrip.org/.
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Danville, KY 40422
Public Information Coordinator: Telephone 859-238-5714