A community celebration of President Abraham Lincoln’s 200th birthday kicked off in downtown Spokane on Friday with a rally at the Lincoln Monument at West Main Avenue and Monroe Street.
The West Valley High School marching band performed.
Art exhibits, musical events, a film festival, teach-in and a wreath-laying ceremony are planned through March 1. The events coincide with a national celebration organized by the Abraham Lincoln Bicentennial Commission under the title “Lincoln’s Ideals in a New Century.”
Lincoln, the country’s 16th president, was born Feb. 12, 1809.
“There are so many events going on I don’t think anyone would be lacking something fun to do to celebrate this occasion,” said Mayor Mary Verner.
The Esther Reed Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution is planning the wreath-laying for noon Feb. 12 at the city’s Lincoln statue, which was unveiled Nov. 11, 1930, following years of fundraising, including a penny and nickel drive from schoolchildren, to honor Civil War veterans of the Grand Army of the Republic.
Art and musical events will be held in collaboration between City Hall, the Spokane Symphony, the Fox Theater, Spokane International Film Festival and other organizations.
The symphony commissioned one of America’s leading contemporary classical composers, Michael Daugherty, for a piece titled “Letters from Lincoln,” which will premier with acclaimed baritone Thomas Hampson on Feb. 28 and March 1 at the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox.
Other events include a family concert at the Fox at 2 p.m. today; a series of symphony chamber soirees Feb. 3 and 4 at the Davenport Hotel and Feb. 5 at the Old Church in Post Falls; a First Friday event at the Fox on Feb. 6; a national Lincoln teach-in Feb. 12 at 10:30 a.m. at the Fox; an international film festival special event at River Park Square’s AMC Theater on Feb. 14 at noon; a dance theater event Feb. 22 at the Fox at 3 p.m.; and a Lincoln symposium at the Fox on Feb. 26 at 10 a.m.
Also, the Chase Gallery at City Hall has a Lincoln art exhibit showing through Feb. 27. The gallery is open during City Hall hours.
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