NEW ORLEANS (February 23, 2018) – The National WWII Museum presents Drafts for Crafts 2018 – an annual fundraiser organized by the Museum’s Young Benefactors Committee, which will take place on Friday, March 16 from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. Featuring live music on two stages and samplings from local restaurants, this year’s event will benefit the Museum’s newest macro-artifact restoration project: the reconstruction of an authentic 1943 Ford-LaFrance Fire Truck. The project – a multiyear restoration process – will preserve the truck as a vital piece of WWII history and help Museum visitors better understand ingenuity on the American Home Front during wartime.
Previous Drafts for Crafts events have supported the restoration of the Museum’s patrol-torpedo boat PT-305, which is now back on her home waters of Lake Pontchartrain. This year’s fundraiser, presented by IBERIABANK, will include drafts provided by NOLA Brewing Company, entertainment by King James and the Special Men and the Brass-A-Holics, a myriad of food stations and after-hours access to the Museum’s galleries. The event will generate awareness and funds for the fire truck restoration effort, as well as acknowledge those who contribute to the success of the restoration, including the Young Benefactors, donors, volunteers and supporters.
“This Ford-American LaFrance was the most common fire truck used by the military on the Home Front during War World II. These trucks were used to put out structural fires and became vital in battling Home Front emergencies,” said Tom Czekanski, the Museum’s Senior Curator and Restoration Manager. “Once our LaFrance is fully restored, we’ll display it on the Museum’s main campus and use it as an educational centerpiece to help our guests interpret the broad range of occupations and tasks on the Home Front needed to win the war.”
During the raid on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, one of the first Japanese targets were the fleets of brightly colored, red fire trucks, as Japan’s goal was to debilitate response efforts following the attack on the US Navy fleet. After that day, the military ordered all military fire trucks to be painted green to help prevent such future devastation. The Museum’s Ford-LaFrance, which was donated to the institution in April 2009 by Steve Owen of Pell City, Alabama, will be restored as an Army fire engine and repainted in its original green color.
For more information on the 2018 Drafts for Crafts or to purchase tickets, visit www.draftsforcrafts.org or call 504-258-1944 X 330.
WHAT: 2018 Drafts for Crafts
WHEN: Friday, March 16, 2018
7:00 p.m. – 10:00 p.m.
WHERE: The National WWII Museum
Andrew Higgins Drive between Camp and Magazine Streets
The National WWII Museum tells the story of the American experience in the war that changed the world—why it was fought, how it was won, and what it means today—so that future generations will know the price of freedom and be inspired by what they learn. Dedicated in 2000 as The National D-Day Museum and now designated by Congress as America’s National WWII Museum, it celebrates the American spirit, the teamwork, optimism, courage and sacrifices of the men and women who fought on the battlefront and served on the Home Front. The 2017 TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards ranks the Museum No. 2 in the world and No. 2 in the nation. For more information, call 877-813-3329 or 504-528-1944 or visit nationalww2museum.org.
Keith M. Darcey
504-528-1944 X 488