Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum draws visitors after 15 years

It's been 15 years and still visitors shed tears daily at the site of the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building. Those tears are their tribute. It's their way of saying we remember.
By Bryan Painter Published: August 22, 2010

"It really is true that even today anybody that thinks this country is mostly mean and selfish would do themselves a big favor by coming to Oklahoma City."

The budget to build the three-component memorial and seed the endowment was $29.1 million. This money raised included more than $17 million in private funds, $5 million federal dollars and more than $7 million in state funds.

The national memorial has drawn visitors from all 50 U.S. states and more than 30 countries. It is an affiliate of the National Park System, but it is owned, operated and maintained by the Oklahoma City National Memorial Foundation.

The national memorial does not receive any annual operating funds from the federal, state or local government. Museum admissions, store sales, the OKC Memorial Marathon, earnings from an endowment and private fundraising allow the Memorial and Museum to be self-sustaining.

The top two priorities are remembrance and education.

Kari Watkins, executive director of the national memorial, said the legacy is not the bombing, but rather how "we came out of it."

"The city my kids enjoy is different, and that's because the simple, kind, positive actions of people can make a difference," she said.

Museum Hours

-10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays

-10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Thursdays (May through October)

-Noon to 5 p.m. Sundays

-Closed Mondays and major holidays

Upcoming Exhibits

-"La Serenissima — Eighteenth-century Venetian Art," from North American collections; Sept. 9-Jan. 2

-University of Oklahoma professor Jonathan Hils' "Intersection" exhibit; Sept. 9-Jan. 2

-George Nelson modern furniture exhibit; Feb. 3-May 1

Jill Downen's "Counterparts" exhibit; Feb. 3-May 1

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