On the week of June, 1st, eleven Fillmore Central students and eight adult sponsors made the journey to our nation’s capital, Washington D.C. The trip was the result of approximately two years of fund-raising and preparation. Close-Up organizers for this years trip were Aaron and Shelia Lauby.
Students who made the trip were Bailey Yates, Erin Ourada, Emilie Krienert, Rachel Hoarty, Conrad Schelkopf, Jacob Bespalec, Melissa Rosenquist, Abbie Parde, Shelby Schelkopf, Brianna Hafer, and Lindsey Stoldorf.
Participants arrived in the D.C. area in late afternoon and were shuttled to our hotel accommodations and checked into the Key Bridge Marriot in Rosslyn across the Potomac River from Georgetown University. Due to the late arrival students were able to spend a limited time in the Georgetown area before beginning getting acclimated for the week long activities.
Much of the early week of the program includes on site learning opportunities at the many memorials and monuments that are scattered throughout the city. Highlights would include: all the monuments throughout the Capitol Mall area as well as a visit to the White House.
Wednesday is the most important day of the trip, Capitol Hill Day. Students get to spend the day visiting with Representatives and Senators of our respective states. Students also have the opportunity to sit in on and watch Congressional Hearings. Both Senators Deb Fisher and Mike Johanns met with the students and answered their various questions. Whatever free time allowed during this day was spent taking a guided tour of the U.S. Capitol building, visiting the Supreme Court and Library of Congress. That evening students and sponsors were entertained with a popular viewing at the Kennedy Center of “Sheer Madness.”
Thursday is usually an independent day in which students and sponsors get the chance to see what they have been unable to up to this day. Many sites were visited including: the many Smithsonian museums, National Archives, The Holocaust Museum, Ford’s Theater, and the Newseum. Each of these places could fill an entire day in itself.
Thursday night was the farewell banquet and celebration.
A big thanks to all who helped make this Close Up trip a success for another year. Parents, donors, school administration, you have all been very supportive of allowing students this wonderful opportunity to see our government up close and in action.
The next Close Up trip is schedule for the year of 2016 and current Sophomores and Juniors of the upcoming school year interested in attending be listening for upcoming announcements after the school year has started.