This week Hillsdale College, with the rest of the country, is celebrating the 225th anniversary of the writing of the Constitution.
As part of Hillsdale College’s celebration of the United State’s founding document, today the Allan J. Kirby Center for Constitutional Studies and Citizenship holds its third annual Constitution Day Celebration. Over 400 friends of the college, trustees, members of Congress, congressional staffers, and alumni will gather for a series of celebratory events today at the Downtown Renaissance Hotel in Washington, D.C.
The college’s celebration in Washington, D.C., will be more educational than political, Kirby Center Director David Bobb said.
“The planning for the event begins a year in advance.” said Emily Sarver, special assistant for research and programs in external affairs. “As soon as one ends the next is already being planned. I handle a lot of the details and preparations and it feels great to see it all come together.”
Hillsdale College President Larry Arnn will begin the day with introductory remarks, followed by a panel titled “Should Conservatives Today Accept the New Deal as a Done Deal?” Associate Professor of History Paul Moreno will chair the panel that includes Newsweek contributing editor David Frum and Professor of Politics Thomas West.
A round table discussing Arnn’s book, The Founder’s Key, will be chaired by Professor of Politics Ronald Pestritto.
A dinner tonight will be capped with a talk titled “Is America Exceptional?” delivered by former Commentary magazine editor Norman Podhoretz.
“The climax of the event is the large dinner held in the evening,” Sarver said. “I love looking out and seeing a huge room of people who are there to support the college and support what we do.”
In years past the events have been held at the downtown Marriot Hotel, the same building the Conservative Political Action Conference is held. This year the change in venue allows the celebrations to be closer to the Kirby Center itself, Sarver said. Tours of the Kirby Center will be conducted throughout the afternoon.
Prior to the establishment of Constitution Day, the college held an annual Churchill Dinner. The Constitution Day celebration is a higher profile event then the dinner and draws more attention to the college’s work.
“The heart of our work is undergraduate education,” Bobb said. “Taking what we teach at the college and making it available to the public is a major part of what we do.”