By Ayden Castillo @ayeitsayden_
Apr 23, 2023 Updated Apr 23, 2023
The George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum welcomed visitors to celebrate it 25th anniversary. Visitors were allowed free admission into the museum all day, with the evening celebration kicking off at 5 p.m.
On April 22 at 5 p.m., the grounds in front of the museum hosted food trucks, bouncy castles and a stage for the evening's entertainment. The Texas A&M Women’s Chorus opened the event, the Aggieland Mariachi went on after, then the Killer Dueling Pianos. Before the final event started, three community leaders gave speeches reflecting on the museum's history with College Station. Following the speech a performance was delivered by the Singing Cadets along with a firework display at the end of “God Bless America.”
Holzweiss said the event was for the community.
“We’ve been here for 25 years, and we want to give back to the community who has given so much to us,” Holzweiss said. “College Station and the Texas A&M community have been unbelievable partners with us for 25 years, and this is our way of saying thank you.”
President Bush put his museum here for a reason, Holzweiss said.
“President Bush put his library here because he loved Texas A&M and he loved the students,” Holzweiss said. “His main driving force in life was ‘public service is a noble calling,’ A&M and the Bush School [of Government and Public Service] embodies that, which is why he wanted his library to be here.”
Holzweiss said the Bush Museum is also getting ready for bigger events to celebrate Bush’s 100th birthday.
“Leading into next year, we will be celebrating President Bush’s 100th birthday,” Holzweiss said. “We have a new building that is under construction and that will be open in 2024, we are planning a series of events that will lead up to the grand opening of that building .”
Students unfamiliar with the Bush Museum and its legacy shouldn’t be afraid to visit, Holzweiss said.
“We’re here for you,” Holzweiss said. “The students are most welcome at the museum, so please come and check it out, we have new exhibits coming up, we have a Marine Corps art exhibit opening in early June and we will also have an Aggie football exhibit opening in late August.”
Chief Executive Officer of the George and Barbara Bush Foundation Max Angerholzer said the presidential center and foundation wanted to give back and say thank you.
“Tonight is all about the community,” Angerholzer said. “We wouldn’t be here if it wasn't for Texas A&M University and the city of College Station. The president and Mrs. Bush embraced this community and they felt like family here, and we want everyone in this community to feel like they have ownership of what we’re doing here at the Bush Presidential Center.”
Angerholzer said he wants the community to know the Bush presidential center is part of the Aggie experience.
“We are proud to be at the Bush Presidential Center,” Angerholzer said. “You have the presidential library and museum, the Bush School and the George and Barbara Bush Foundation. We all work together to spread the legacy of the president and Mrs. Bush. I want every student here at Texas A&M to feel like this is part of their experience.”
Angerholzer said what new items will be included in the new exhibit opening next year.
“We are really excited to be here tonight to bring attention to what we are doing,” Angerholzer said. “Next year is going to be President Bush’s 100th birthday and we are going to have a big celebration over the course of 12 to 18 months where we try to remind people of the values and legacy of President Bush. We will be expanding the library to include Union Pacific locomotive 4141 and a Marine One helicopter.”
What students and the community should know about the Bush legacy is that it represents A&M, Angerholzer said.
“The Core Values of Texas A&M are synonymous with how President Bush lived his life; putting others before yourself, selfless service,” Angerholzer said. “I think with all the challenges we are facing domestically and around the world, all of us should be looking at the life and career of president Bush to see how do we build coalitions, how do we work together and rise above our differences.”