Monday, February 2, 2009


Gov. Ritter celebrated the kick off of the Colorado's Lincoln Bicentennial Celebration today by introducing the Commission's plans for commemorating the 200th birthday of Abraham Lincoln. 
"The goal of this Commission is to heighten awareness of how the West shaped Lincoln and how Lincoln shaped the destiny of Colorado and the West," said Gov. Ritter.  "I'm looking forward to these events that encourage dialogue about the 'unfinished work' of democracy and equal opportunity in our own place and time."
In November, Gov. Ritter appointed the 20-member Commission to lead Colorado's efforts to mark the significance of Abraham Lincoln and his presidency on our history. 
"The Commission is excited to offer these statewide events to commemorate the vision of Abraham Lincoln to spread democracy and freedom," said Commission Co-Chair Syd Nathans. "All Coloradans can participate in these activities and learn more at the website," 
With support from Colorado Humanities and the Colorado History Museum, the Commission is coordinating and publicizing Lincoln activities throughout the state, starting in February and continuing throughout 2009:
  • "Looking For Lincoln":  This PBS documentary will be the first event of Colorado's commemoration. Advance screenings and discussions of the PBS program will be shown in twenty-seven sites statewide.  The program explores the Lincoln legends, controversies, and legacies, and premiers on Rocky Mountain PBS on Wednesday, Feb.11.  In the ten days before the national broadcast, twenty-seven libraries, museums, schools, and colleges are hosting previews and discussions, from Granby to Sterling, Pueblo to Durango, and Telluride to Colorado Springs.
  • Scholastic Contest:  The Commission is inviting Colorado students of all ages to imagine Lincoln as their model through essays, creative writing, or visual art.  Competitions and awards will be made in the state's seven congressional districts.
Other Commission activities include: 
  • Lincoln-centered teacher-enrichment programs at Metropolitan State College of Denver.
  • In February, the Colorado Christian University of Lakewood will host a national exhibit on "Abraham Lincoln:  A Man of His Time, A Man for All Times," and sponsor performances of Lincoln re-enactor John Voehl and Aaron Copland's symphonic "A Lincoln Portrait."
  • Colorado's Judicial Advisory Council, the Our Courts program, and the Colorado Bar Association are developing Lincoln-centered activities for young people on Law Day and programs for adult audiences throughout the year.