Flight 93 National Memorial Visitor Center Opens to the Public

Yellow wildflowers in the foreground with the 50-foot concrete walls of Visitor Center in the background.
View of the back of the Visitor Center and the Flight Path Overlook

NPS Photo

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News Release Date: September 10, 2015

Contact: Mike Litterst, 202-245-4676

Shanksville, Pa. - National Park Service officials opened the Flight 93 National Memorial Visitor Center following a dedication ceremony. One of the final steps to complete the park, the visitor center uses photographs, artifacts, tactile models, audio, and video pieces to convey the Flight 93 story in the context of the other terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001. Because of the quick and determined actions of the passengers and crew, Flight 93 was the only one of the four hijacked aircraft that failed to reach terrorists' intended target that day. The passengers and crew showed unity, courage, and defiance in the face of adversity.

With the opening of the visitor center, architect Paul Murdoch's vision for the memorial is nearly complete. The facilities add an intellectual experience to the emotional experience of walking along the Wall of Names and viewing the crash site itself. They also mark a significant change to the visitor experience at the site, completing the architect's vision for how visitors move through the landscape and are introduced to the crash site. 

The dedication ceremony featured remarks by Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell;National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis;Governor of Pennsylvania Tom Wolf;FBI Assistant Agent in charge of the Flight 93 investigation (retired) Roland Corvington;former Architect of the Capitol (1997-2007) Alan Hantman;architect of the Flight 93 memorial Paul Murdoch;president and CEO of the National Park Foundation Will Shafroth;and music by the Bach Choir of Pittsburgh. 

"We dedicate this visitor center and permanent exhibit today to ensure the story of the passengers and crew will never be forgotten," said National Park Service Director Jonathan B. Jarvis during today's ceremony. "The images, objects, and stories here will also help the next generation understand and appreciate what happened here on September 11, 2001." 

Also opening for the first time at Flight 93 National Memorial on September 10 were the Learning Center, a multi-purpose gathering space for education programming and special events;a 2.4 mile system of pedestrian trails connecting the visitor center with the Memorial Plaza;and the dramatic flight path walkway and overlook. 

Several partners have collaborated on the planning, design, and construction of the memorial, including the Flight 93 Federal Advisory Commission, Families of Flight 93, National Park Foundation, Friends of Flight 93, and the National Park Service. The fundraising campaign was led by the National Park Foundation, who raised $40 million in private support from more than 120,000 individuals, foundations, and corporations. Their work made possible the construction of the park's Memorial Plaza, Wall of Names, 40 Memorial Groves, the Field of Honor (all of which opened in 2011) and the Visitor Center Complex dedicated today. 

Due to the expected heavy visitation and limited space in the visitor center, entry for all visitors will be via a timed ticket with a specific date and time for the visit. Tickets are free of charge and may be obtained two ways. 

1. Same-day Tickets will be available daily at the visitor center on a first-come, first-served basis, starting today; quantities are limited and there is a limit of six tickets per individual. 
2. Advanced Reservation Tickets are available online at recreation.gov (1-877-444-6777);a non-refundable service charge of $1.50 per person applies. Quantities are limited and there is a limit of six tickets per transaction.

Educational institutions qualify for special group tour pricing; however, reservations cannot be made online and must be made through the National Recreation Reservation Service Group Sales Department by calling 1-877-559-6777. Educational institution group reservations made through recreation.gov do not qualify for the special pricing.

On September 24, 2002, Congress passed the Flight 93 National Memorial Act. The Act created a new national park unit to commemorate the passengers and crew of Flight 93 who, on September 11, 2001, courageously gave their lives thereby thwarting a planned attack on our nation's capital. The memorial is outside Shanksville, Pennsylvania, where Flight 93 crashed with the loss of its 40 passengers and crew. For more information about the Flight 93 National Memorial, please visit www.nps.gov/flni. 


Last updated: September 12, 2015

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