For 20 years, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, located in Washington, D.C., has worked to memorialize Holocaust victims, honor survivors and urge Americans to confront hatred and prevent genocide.
The Museum is celebrating its 20th anniversary with a tour entitled "Never Again," which allows citizens across the country to take advantage of myriad museum resources. South Florida is home to the largest community of Holocaust survivors in the United States, and is a stop on the Museum's schedule. This Sunday, December 9, the Never Again Tour will visit the Marriott in Boca Raton.
This daylong event is packed with lectures, films and events aimed to honor local Holocaust survivors and WWII veterans alike. Visitors are welcome to both explore the Museum's archives and bring along personal artifacts for review by Museum curators. A tribute to survivors and vets closes the day.
Main stage events mounted by the Museum explore a number of topics surrounding the Holocaust. These programs feature historians, journalists, scholars and Museum experts discussing real and theoretical questions. The most intriguing: How would the presence of the Internet and social media have affected the outcome of WWII and the Holocaust?
Despite the serious nature of the content, the tour is family friendly. Kids six and older can participate in an art project entitled "building blocks of hope." At the end of the tour, the project will be displayed at the 20th Anniversary National Tribute in Washington, D.C. This is a great opportunity to introduce your children to a difficult-to-understand moment in history, as well as make them feel part of a global community.
For film and theater fans, there's five video presentations and a one-man show. Time Capsule in a Milk Can: Emanuel Ringelblum and the Secret Archives of the Warsaw Ghetto, recommended for those 10 years and older, tells the tale of several dozen writers, rabbis and teachers who documented life in the Warsaw ghetto. Led by Dr. Emanuel Ringelblum and operating under the code-name Oneg Shabbat (Hebrew for Sabbath delight), this group kept diaries, collected documents and preserved posters inside three milk cans. Starring Marc Spiegel, Time Capsule will be presented twice on the 9th.
Three interactive workshops, ranging in topics from law enforcement to photography, are also available. Our best bet is "Photo Reveals: Does a Picture Tell the Whole Story?" Guests will think like a museum curator and question how we look at and what we can surmise from historical photos.
All of these events reflect goals the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum strives to achieve every day of the year. A national treasure, the Museum keeps a global injustice alive in our collective consciousness. Join in celebration of 20 years of a job well done, as well as remembrance of those who suffered at the hands of terror.
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum 20th Anniversary Tour events are free, but advanced registration is recommended. To learn more, visit neveragain.ushmm.org.
Photo: Museum Curator Kyra Schuster reviews a Holocaust artifact.