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Valley Home News for July 4, 2012
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Tammie Smith sent us this wonderful news item concerning the exciting trip enjoyed by the Valley Home School Washington DC Travel Club. The group returned home on June 29 from their Washington DC and Virginia trip after a rocky start resulting from a flight cancellation leaving the group stranded in Los Angeles until a flight for 10 persons to Miami could be booked. The group had a very turbulent and scary flight through tropical storm Debby. Tammie tells us that “due to weather and airline changes, in order to get to our destinations we used 6 different airports in 3 states, a coach bus, tram, metro rail, limousine, taxi and trolley.” The group joked that they were on their own “Amazing Race.” The group was treated very well by their tour company, World Strides, who made certain that they were safe and well taken care of by their staff who attended to them around the clock. It was like having personal assistants. On the trip were Justin and Tiffany Trunnel, Tammie Smith, Halley Smith, Taylor Poot, Stephanie Lee, Patrick Rocha, Emery Sipes, Amanda Kearns and Hailey Langston. Everyone had a great time with most saying that they would like to join this trip again. Sites visited in Virginia were President George Washington’s estate, Mount Vernon, Arlington National Cemetery and the changing of the guard, and Old Town Alexandria and a ghost tour of the Civil War characters and places.

Some of the sites visited in the District were the White House, Capitol Hill, Library of Congress, Smithsonian Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Museum of American History, Smithsonian Air and Space Museum, Smithsonian Art Museum, and the Smithsonian Sculpture Garden. The group also visited the Senate Office Buildings and the Senate floor, the National Archives where they viewed the original Magna Carta and Declaration of Independence was seen. They also viewed the Vietnam, Jefferson, Washington, Lincoln, Air Force, WWII Memorials, the Holocaust Museum, National Zoo and the National pandas. They also visited the Pentagon Memorial to the victims of the September 11th terrorist attack. The students were also on the steps of the Supreme Court when the response of the Supreme Court Justices on the President Obama healthcare plan was read and responded to. The group tells us that all of the talk in DC that day wherever they went was the Supreme Court decision. According to the group’s tour guide and other locals, this was the most media seen in the area in 10 years.

Our travelers would like to offer a big THANK YOU to all of the family and Valley Home community members who participated in all of the fundraisers to make this wonderful trip and experience possible for the students! Just reading of this wonderful experience that the students were able to participate in, makes one appreciate our Valley Home School and our community even more!
It may not have come on the traditional day, but the annual fireworks display at Woodward Reservoir held on Sunday, July 1 instead of the traditional Fourth of July, which fell on Wednesday this year, was a beautiful sight to see! The colorful pyrotechnics really filled the night sky with glorious bursts of color over the water of the reservoir and also offered a spectacular show for those of us who like to sit out in our fields and enjoy the show. What a joyous celebration of our country’s birthday!