UNK-The Office of United States President William Jefferson Clinton announced today that the President has accepted the invitation of the University of Nebraska at Kearney and the Great Platte River Road Memorial Foundation to visit Kearney, Nebr.

President Clinton will speak at a special convocation in the UNK Health and Sports Center Friday, Dec. 8, time to be announced. UNK Chancellor Gladys Styles Johnston said, “We are very pleased that President Clinton has accepted our invitation to visit Nebraska’s premier undergraduate residential university.” She added, “The President and Secretary of Education Richard Riley are strong supporters of higher education and have a great interest in our historic mission in the preparation of educators.”

Also during his Kearney visit, the President will tour the Archway Monument. President Clinton will be hosted by former Governor Frank Morrison, chairman of the Great Platte River Road Memorial Foundation, former Senator J. James Exon, and other members of the board. Following the tour, he will dedicate a commemorative plaque honoring the Great Platte River Road pioneers and their role in our nation’s history.

“The Archway uniquely presents history so that visitors are immersed rather than simply casual observers which is precisely what former Governor Frank Morrison, chairman of the foundation, intended to occur. President Clinton’s visit and special dedication honors pioneers of yesterday, today and tomorrow,” said Bob Baydale, project manager for the Great Platte River Road Archway Monument.

Governor Morrison has praised President Clinton for the “calming hand with which he has handled the tensions of the new world community.” In a letter to the President, Governor Morrison wrote, “I can think of no finer tribute to the President’s vision of the future than rededicating the Great Platte River Road Memorial Archway to the future of the new world community and American leadership therein.”

“We’re excited to have the 42nd President visit the Archway Monument. Mr. Clinton will be able to experience first hand the same things that faced pioneers on the great trails that joined our country together as a continental nation,” Bob Baydale went on to say.

Former Senator J. James Exon also played a key role in arranging for the President’s trip to Nebraska. In the senator’s letter of invitation, he reminded him that he had “Saved the Best for Last in fulfilling his administration’s pledge to visit the state.”

Mayor Pete Kotsiopulos remarked, “The City of Kearney is a shining star in our state. We are flattered and honored that the Office of the President has chosen to visit Nebraska’s most progressive community.” More details will be released to the public as arrangements for President Clinton’s historic visit to Kearney are finalized.