Central Region

Nation’s First Veterans Memorial & Museum


Later this year, Columbus welcome the new National Veterans Memorial & Museum. The 53,000-square-foot facility will be the first and only national museum in the United States dedicated to honoring veterans.

The National Veterans Memorial & Museum began with a vision of the late Senator John Glenn, who served as founding chairman. His vision was to create an experience that includes the foundation for the four pillars of the museum: honor, connect, inspire and educate.

Once open, it will take visitors on a narrative journey telling individual stories and shared experiences of veterans throughout history and pay tribute to the sacrifices of servicemen and women and their families. The history will be presented through dynamic participatory experiences with photos, letters and personal effects, multimedia presentations and interactive exhibits. The museum and surrounding Memorial Grove will occupy a seven-acre site overlooking the Scioto River with views of the downtown skyline.

Gospel Music Shrine

Coming to Chicago • Illinois

Plans are in the works for the National Museum of Gospel Music, a $37.2 million project expected toNational Museum Gospel Music open in September 2020 in Bronzeville, an African-American neighborhood on the South Side of Chicago. The proposed site was once occupied by Pilgrim Baptist Church, known as the birthplace of gospel.

Blues musician Thomas A. Dorsey, the church’s music director beginning in the early 1930s, developed the style of music now known as gospel. Mahalia Jackson, Albertina Walker, Aretha Franklin and the Staple Singers are among the musicians who performed there. The 40,000-square-foot museum, with exhibition space, an auditorium and a research library, will be near the DuSable Museum of African American History.

Indiana Lands 6-Day National Agritourism Convention


The nation’s foremost agritourism convention is coming to Indiana in 2019. Hosted by the Indiana Office of Tourism Development, the Indiana State Department of Agriculture and Hamilton County Tourism, the North American Farmers’ Direct Marketing Association Convention will take place February 1 7, 2019. The event includes educational sessions, workshops, a business exchange and farm tours around the state. Agritourism operators like u-pick fruit and vegetable farms, wineries, farmer’s markets, destination dairies and tree farms attend NAFDMA to get critical tools, tips and information to help them better market and grow their businesses.

“Given our rich agricultural heritage and the rise in demand for experiential travel among consumers, we recognize the tremendous growth potential of agritourism and believe our state is well-positioned to deliver unique farm-based and food-based experiences,” said Mark Newman, IOTD’s Executive Director. “Activities that bring authentic local flavor experiences and working landscape experiences to consumers are important to both of us.”

Visit the Makers Trail


Every land has its makers: crafters of furniture, forgers of steel, tillers of earth. In southwest Michigan, masters are making wine, beer and spirits. More and more of these artisans are putting down stakes near the Lake Michigan shore, where they handcraft award-winning beverages.

Over 40 sites are featured along the trail, each with a distinct personality and specialties to showcase. The Makers Trail Flight Crew Passport adds to the fun. The more destinations you visit, the more different stamps you can collect and Flight Crew gear your crew can earn.