This year, on June 20th, West Virginia turns 150 years old. It's a big deal, not just for our state, but for our country. One hundred and fifty years ago, our nation was torn apart-divided by the Civil War. As the war went on, the people of what would soon be West Virginia made a decision: to stand for freedom, equality and the United States of America. And in 1863, West Virginia became America's 35th state. Today, 150 years later, West Virginia is known for its picturesque landscape, abundant resources, diverse culture and kind, compassionate people.
I know there are some West Virginians who were not around the last time we celebrated a birthday this big-our centennial in 1963. I was, and it was something I'll never forget. You've likely heard the stories of families gathering around the television to watch from the living room or standing on the State Capitol steps in the rain waiting for President John F. Kennedy to speak. For many of us, it was more than an important moment in our state's history-it was a day that made us all proud to be West Virginians. This June, we get to do it again.
The Sesquicentennial Commission has worked hard to plan a full weekend of events at the State Capitol to celebrate this important birthday. We will kick-off the celebration on June 20th at 1:50 p.m. with a statewide bell ringing, and the events at the Capitol will run through June 23rd. It'll be a celebration you won't want to miss-so mark your calendars and join us at the State Capitol or at a celebration in your community as we make history.
To learn more about the birthday celebration at the Capitol or to find a celebration in your area, visit www.wv150.com
Amy Shuler Goodwin