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La Grande Observer 11/28/14

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Home arrow Opinion arrow Our View arrow SMITHSONIAN EXHIBIT: a local, must-see

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SMITHSONIAN EXHIBIT: a local, must-see

The Smithsonian Institution, long a favorite tourist attraction in Washington, D.C., is coming to the Union County Museum in Union.

THE ENTIRE institution, of course, is way too large to come to a community the size of Union. The Smithsonian consists of several buildings with history, science, aviation and other exhibit themes. Visitors claim they can spend a day or two visiting the Smithsonian and only scratch the surface of what's there.

Only a small portion of the Smithsonian — an exhibit called Yesterday's Tomorrows: Past Visions of the American Future — is coming to Union County. It will be housed at the Union County Museum for six weeks.

The theme of the traveling exhibit, which begins its stay in Union next week, is how past generations have visualized the future of America. For example, what did Americans living in the 1950s think life would be like in the 21st century?

AREA RESIDENTS should plan to visit the Smithsonian exhibit sometime during its run. If they like what they see, they should tell their friends, family and co-workers or visitors to the area about it.

People coming to Union could discover that while the Smithsonian's Yesterday's Tomorrows exhibit was the drawing card, there's plenty of other worthwhile things to see at the museum. Many of them will want to return again and again to stay in touch with the history that has made our area what it is today.

OFFER FREE PHOTOS

How much is it worth to have your picture taken with George W. Bush? The answer is $25,000, according to the people who are bringing the president to Portland next week to raise funds for U.S. Sen. Gordon Smith's campaign for reelection.

THOSE PLUNKING down $25,000 will walk away with a picture of themselves and the president. That amount is almost criminal, considering that the presidency is just as much of an American institution as the Capitol Building or Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. Hundreds of people pose in front of the Capitol or along side the giant statue of Lincoln every day to have their pictures taken. There's no cost to them, except for the film.

The $25,000 is alarming. Smith's campaign war chest already is overflowing with cash. A picture with Bush is not worth anything close to that. Other political leaders also have been using photos of themselves to political advantage.

Suggestion: For every photo taken with Bush costing $25,000, the president should offer a "free photo" to John Q. Average Citizen. An impromptu lottery could be held in every town that Bush visits to see who gets to have his or her picture taken with the president — at no charge.

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