Thursday, June 30, 2011

Reagan Library, July 4 Celebration, Southern California Tourism

Some guests of AVI went last weekend to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and ended up having an amazing experience! They were placed in a private tour with President Reagan's son, Michael, his wife and some of her family members.  Of course, the guests could not believe their luck in being paired with Michael Reagan on his third visit to the presidential museum.  The guests reported Michael was kind, jovial and inclusive of them when he told stories abut his father.  

As the AVI guests approached the museum room which shows a film of the shooting of President Reagan, Michael noted his father smiling, expressed distressed about being shot in a brand new, beautiful blue pin striped suit.  The President greatly lamented being shot in his new (and then favorite) suit.  President Reagan told Michael, "If you have to get shot, at least wear an old suit."

Michael told two other tales on his father, all in a kindly and warm manner.  When the group toured the mock Oval Office, Michael reported it looked identical to  the original.  He also reported that the President had jelly beans on his desk because the jelly beans helped the President in his effort to stop smoking.  Michael reported that the President wanted red, white and blue jelly beans on the Oval Office desk.  At the start of Reagan's presidential term, the candy manufacturer did not make blue jelly beans.  The manufacturer changed that for the President and began making blue beans.

Finally, Michael told an inside story while the group toured President Reagan's version of Air Force One.  Michael revealed that President Reagan was always reluctant about flying.  Ronald Reagan  stated on many occasions to his son that flying was pushing one's luck and that luck could only last so long.  Michael revealed that during all the years of Ron Reagan's advertising for GE and others, President Reagan traveled to his business locations by train or bus, never by plane, due to his fear of flying.  

At some point after Reagan was Governor of California and before he started his campaign for President, Ronald Reagan's brother called the soon-to-be-presidential-candidate and told the former Governor that his "kitchen cabinet" was formulating a plan to make him President.  The first meeting of the 'kitchen cabinet" would be the next morning at 9:00 a.m. in Los Angeles.  Since President Reagan was in Northern California when he received the call, he responded to his brother by saying, "Well, I'm in Northern California.  How can I be there by 9:00 am?  You know I don't fly."  President Reagan's brother responded, "I guess if you want to be President some day, you'll be here."  With that, Reagan's brother hung up.  Needless to say, Ronald Reagan got over his fear of flying and made the flight. Thus began the road to the Presidency.

The Reagan Library is open  seven days  a week.  It is located at 40 Presidential Drive in Simi Valley, about a one hour drive from Arroyo Vista Inn.  For Visitor Information go to: http://www.reaganfoundation.org/visitor-information.aspx

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