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Museum rings in royal wedding with celebration

Contributed photo: (Left) Debbie LaRue, Jody Paschal and Mary Harrison, all members of the Mid-Missouri Friends of the National Churchill Museum, sport hats in front of the museum. The group encourages guests to the Royal Wedding Celebration on April 29 to wear hats and wedding attire.

Contributed photo: (Left) Debbie LaRue, Jody Paschal and Mary Harrison, all members of the Mid-Missouri Friends of the National Churchill Museum, sport hats in front of the museum. The group encourages guests to the Royal Wedding Celebration on April 29 to wear hats and wedding attire.

Some members of the Callaway County community will join their neighbors “across the pond” in celebrating Prince William and Catherine Middleton’s big day.

The Mid-Missouri Friends of the National Churchill Museum are throwing a Royal Wedding Celebration beginning at 4:30 p.m. Friday, April 29, at the museum.

“This is once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in a royal wedding,” said Jody Paschal, president of the friends of the museum board.

Paschal explained that the celebration is also a way to raise money to replace the exterior lighting around the memorial. Although the event is free, Paschal said guests are encouraged to donate to the museum “in lieu of gifts to the bride and groom.” He said the group needs to raise $10,500 to repair the lights.

Carriage rides by Elaine Linnenbringer Walker will be offered around the museum for $5 from 4:30-7:30 p.m. The celebration will begin with a short service in the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury. Rev. Brad Sheppard, Westminster College chaplain, will give the invocation, followed by an address by Dr. Rob Havers, executive director of the museum. The North Callaway High School choir, soloist Marlene Railton of Fulton and organist Julia Matthews of Fulton will all be providing musical entertainment.

The event will then move to the undercroft of the church. As guests sip champagne and munch on hors d’oeuvres and wedding cake, they can watch Prince William and Catherine Middleton’s wedding on big screen televisions.

“We are encouraging people to dress up and wear hats as if they are going to a royal wedding,” Paschal said. “There’s not a lot of events in Fulton where you can get real dressed up.”

Debbie LaRue, friend of the museum, said that the museum’s tie to England makes it a logical location to celebrate the royal wedding.

“How often does the opportunity to celebrate a royal wedding come about?” LaRue said. “It’s going to be a very fun event.”

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