The Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum is a somber and powerful tribute to the lives lost during the devastating bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building on April 19, 1995. The memorial and museum complex spans over three acres and serve as a beautiful and poignant reminder of the tragic events that occurred that day. Here’s what you need to know before visiting this attraction in OKC, OK.
The memorial is a breathtaking outdoor space that consistently draws visitors from all over the world. The focal point is the Reflecting Pool. Located in the footprint of where the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building once stood, the pool is outlined by a series of bronze plaques bearing the names of the 168 people who were killed in the bombing. The gates of time bookend the Reflecting Pool, with 9:01 on the western gate, symbolizing the innocence and potential of life before the attack, and 9:03 on the eastern gate, symbolizing the moment our world changed forever.
There are also two small chairs, one child-sized and one adult-sized, atop a portion of the original wall that still stands. These chairs serve as a poignant reminder of the lives lost, particularly the 19 children who perished in the bombing.
On the other hand, the museum serves as a powerful and emotional tribute to the lives lost in the Oklahoma City bombing, as well as a means of sharing the stories of those affected by the attack. The museum spans across two floors and features a range of exhibits, artifacts, and multimedia presentations.
One of the most striking features of the museum is the Survivor Tree, a beautiful American elm tree that survived the bombing and now stands tall in the memorial garden. The tree has been preserved and serves as a symbol of strength and resilience in the face of adversity.
The Voices Room is another powerful aspect of the museum. It’s a quiet space where visitors can listen to first-person accounts of the bombing, recorded by family members, survivors, and rescue workers.
Here are some tips to follow to fully enjoy your visit at this place:
1. Allow yourself plenty of time to explore the memorial and museum. The experience can be both emotionally and physically draining.
2. Dress appropriately to honor those affected by the bombing. This is highly recommended since many of the memorial’s features are outdoors. More places to visit
3. Donate to support the museum and memorial, as admission fees only cover a fraction of the cost of maintaining these important sites.
3. One of the rules when visiting this place is to avoid bringing food or drinks inside. This is because the memorial serves as a place of reflection, remembrance, and respect for the lives lost during the bombing. Eating and drinking are seen as inappropriate and disrespectful to the peaceful environment that honors the victims and their families.
Furthermore, the memorial is designed to be a somber and emotional experience, and the presence of food and drinks may distract visitors from fully immersing themselves in the solemn atmosphere. The outdoor areas of the memorial, such as the Reflecting Pool and the Survivor Tree, are intended to promote contemplation and reflection, and bringing food and drinks can be seen as a distraction or interruption to these moments of introspection.
In addition, the memorial & museum is a non-profit organization, and the admission fees only cover a fraction of the cost of maintaining and operating the memorial and museum. Therefore, visitors are encouraged to support the memorial through donations, and refraining from bringing food and drinks is seen as a way to help preserve the sites for future generations.
4. Purchase tickets in advance to avoid long lines at the ticket counter. This will allow you to make the most of your visit and maximize your experience.
5. Bring a tissue or two, as visitors often leave the memorial in tears.
6. Be respectful and mindful of other visitors. It is a place of remembrance, so it’s important to be quiet and reflective while there.
7. And finally, take the time to appreciate your surroundings and the importance of this place. The memorial is a powerful reminder of the fragility of life and the need for peace and understanding in our world today.
In conclusion, The Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum in OKC, OK is an incredibly moving and powerful tribute to the lives lost during the Oklahoma bombing. It’s a must-visit for anyone traveling to the area or for those wishing to gain a greater understanding of the impact of domestic terrorism. The space is carefully curated to be informative and respectful, and it serves to honor the memory of the victims while providing a message of hope and resilience in the face of tragedy. Additional info