First Meeting Held on November 6
The United States of America will be 250 years old in 2026. Celebrations are being planned around the country, Virginia, and Arlington and can be held anytime from 2024 through 2026 (and beyond!). The Arlington Historical Society (AHS) has been designated the official coordinator of the county’s Semiquincentennial (250th) Celebrations.
AHS hosted a meeting on Monday, November 6 and invited all of Arlington to find out who was interested in commemorating our country. It was standing room only with representatives from Arlington’s civic organizations, the Arts, performing arts, service groups, Joint Base Fort Myer-Henderson Hall, the National Park Service, veterans organizations, and everyone who was wanted to learn how to become involved in this multi-event, multi-year project.
Events are intended to reflect ALL of Arlington, our people, our diversity, and our outsized role in the history of the United States. Celebrating America and Arlington history isn’t just about the Declaration of Independence in 2026. It’s about celebrating a revolution of ideas and who we want to be as a county, state, and country. Events should not just reflect where we have been as a county and nation, but also the country all our forebears hoped it would become. To that end, we want events–before, during, and after 2026–to reflect all of Arlington’s voices.
If you or your organization have not received an invitation, please email the Arlington Historical Society: info@arlingtonhistoricalsocietyorg
A press release is being prepared. AHS will be following up with all participants and reaching out to those who missed the meeting.
Links to information and resources:
- Resolution of Arlington County Board to Partner with VA250 in Commemorating America’s Semiquincentennial
- Local effort begins to ramp up for celebration of nation’s 250th – Gazette Leader
- This is America 250 (YouTube Video)
- Preliminary Chronology of Revolutionary Era Events Tied to Arlington
- For America’s 250th, Let’s Think Local (“American Heritage,” Summer 2023)
- VA250 Strategic Plan, July 6, 2022
- Americans, Our History, and the 250th
What resources are available to support local VA250 committees (Source: VA250.org)
- Interactive statewide Calendar of Events
- Amplification of events across social media, local and statewide
- Statewide VA250 grant program to provide funding to local committees
- Virginia Tourism VA250 Marketing Leverage Grants for interpretive signage
- Virginia Humanities VA250 Content Development grants
- Virginia Commission for the Arts Community Partnership Program Grants
What is the Economic Impact of VA250 Commemorations? (Source: VA250.org)
- Projected $1.5 billion in economic impact to Virginia
- Projected 22,000 jobs created across the Commonwealth
- Estimated $50 million in state and local tax revenue
- Estimated 9 million people participating in events and programs
- Extensive media, press, and social media interaction.