By: Jacob Kessler
Fayette students in grades seven through nine had the opportunity to go and tour the United States Capital. The tour took place on May 11th and lasted until the 15th.
Students have been enjoying tours of the Capital since 2017 with another one taking place every two years. This is the third year for the tours, with one not taking place in 2021 due to Covid-19.
Due to students missing out on the trip last year, this year’s trip included the 9th graders so that they had a chance to experience the trip.
The skipping of last year’s tour actually helped according to Sarah Altstaetter who is a teacher at the Fayette Schools and the Student Council Advisor.
This allowed the classes, which are smaller than average right now, to achieve the numbers needed to get a good rate for students.
During the trip, students have a set agenda that is followed. On Wednesday night, students boarded a coach bus and left for D.C. They arrived sometime around 8:00 a.m. the next morning and hit the ground running.
They first started their trip with a meeting at the Capital Building. There they met Congressman Bob Latta who spoke about the history of the building and the surrounding grounds.
Afterwards, everyone was able to tour the Library of Congress, the Supreme Court Building and the Dwight D. Eisenhower Memorial. The afternoon hours were dedicated to the Arlington Cemetery.
There, students were awarded the honor of being able to lay a wreath at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. Students who were able to lay the wreath are as follows. CJ Szabo, Lilly Eberly, Erika Fetterman, and Willow Mitchell.
Students then visited the Pentagon Memorial as the last item on the agenda for Thursday night. On Friday, students toured Ford’s Theater where President Lincoln was assassinated.
Later, students also toured the White House Museum, the White House, the new WWI Memorial, the WWII Memorial, the Washington Monument and the Museum of Natural History where the Hope Diamond was viewed.
On Saturday, students toured the Korean War Memorial where they had the opportunity to speak with numerous special veterans who were also touring the Nation’s Capital on their Honor Flight.
Next, students went to see the Lincoln Memorial, Vietnam Memorial, the Iwo Jima Marines Memorial and numerous museums.
These included the National Archives to see the Declaration of Independence and Constitution, the Museum of African American History, and the Museum of American History where the Flag that was flying when Francis Scott Key wrote the “Star Spangled Banner” is displayed.
Students and chaperones then returned home on Sunday morning. Everyone was very tired and ready for a break explained Sarah Altstaetter.
“We returned home early Sunday Morning with VERY tired kiddos, but overall full of lots of new knowledge and great memories.”
“It is always a great experience and is well worth the backache and lack of sleep.” Overall, the trip was a great learning experience for students who were able to make many good memories at the same time.
Jacob can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org