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Spanning I-80 at Exit 275, the Archway offers a unique historical exhibit that brings American history to life and so much more.

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ABOUT US

Since it opened in the year 2000, the Archway has stood as an enduring tribute to the adventurers who traveled the Great Platte River Road though Nebraska and helped to build America. Over the years, we have welcomed and inspired over 1.5 million visitors with our story.

The Archway celebrates the American spirit of adventure.

Our Mission

The Archway preserves our history, shares our story, and inspires our visitors to participate in the American adventure of discovery, innovation, and leadership.

Staff Members

Kellie Risk
Guest Services/Volunteer Coordinator
krisk@archway.org
Amber Clement
Event Coordinator
aclement@archway.org
Sharmond R. Loeffler
Assistant Director
sloeffler@archway.org
Mark Foradori
Marketing Coordinator
mforadori@archway.org

What’s Happening

Need the latest on The Archway? With our newsletter, guests and supporters can read about the latest events The Archway hosted as well as upcoming events, recent press releases and announcements. Please contact Marketing Coordinator Mark Foradori (308.237.1000 | mforadori@archway.org) with any questions.

19 hours ago

Kearney Archway
Our new exhibit is now open at the Archway at I-80 Exit 275 in Kearney, NE. Artist David Biehl created a group of five life-sized sculptures that visitors can now see in front of the Archway. The group is called "We Stayed" and is a tribute to the homesteaders who traveled west and decided to make a new life in Nebraska. Many thanks to Dr. Biehl, Nebraska State Historical Society Foundation, and Rhonda Seacrest for making this lovely new exhibit possible. ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Kearney Archway
Help The Archway spread Halloween cheer this fall. Join our Community Scarecrow Contest. Businesses and organizations are invited to construct scarecrows for display at The Archway's HalloweenFest to be held on Sunday, October 24. If HalloweenFest visitors vote your scarecrow the best, your business wins a cool prize! Get more information and register for the contest by calling The Archway at (308) 237-1000. And, may the best scarecrow win! ... See MoreSee Less
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2 weeks ago

Kearney Archway
When Ponca Chief Standing Bear left Indian Territory to honor his son's dying wish, to be buried near his Nebraska home, he set in motion a series of events that led to a landmark judicial ruling. See a brief story of Standing Bear here. Then, visit our YouTube channel at Kearney Archway to see more videos like this one. ... See MoreSee Less
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UPCOMING EVENTS

Archie’s Adventure Camp

Date: September 22, 2021

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

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Archie’s Adventure Camp at the Archway is back! In September, it’s all about bugs! Students in grades K-5 will learn to identify common bugs they may find in their gardens and parks. Then, they will hit the trail to identify and observe bugs on the Archway campus.  They’ll play some “buggy” games and construct their own bug “hotel” to take home.  Lunch and snacks are included in this day-long Archway adventure. Register online, now, at the link to the left. We look forward to seeing you there!

Blast Off! with Archie’s Space Camp Adventure

Date: October 15, 2021

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

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This camp is filled with S.T.E.A.M. based, hands-on activities, and games that teach participants in grades K-5 about space and space travel.  Campers will explore the solar system, discover rockets and space travel, and build their own “seltzer-powered” rockets.  Snacks and lunch are provided in the all-day Space Camp Adventure.  Join us for an Archie’s Adventure Camp that is “out of this world!”

Diane’s Art Studio at The Archway

Date: October 20, 2021

Time: 2:30 pm - 4:30 pm

Fall Cowboy Boots

Get creative with art instructor Diane Sciachitano in this workshop for budding artists, aged 10 – adult.  Diane will lead the group in a project that will help you develop your art skills while you create a lovely painting that you’ll enjoy for years to come.  No experience is needed.  Both beginners and experienced painters are welcome.  And, all the supplies you will need are included.  The cost is $35/student.  The workshop is limited to 20 participants.  Registration is required.

Register by emailing Diane at dianesartstudiokearney@gmail.com.

HalloweenFest

Date: October 24, 2021

Time: 2:00 pm - 5:00 pm

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Join us for a Halloween event that’s kind of scary, but mostly fun!  At the Archway’s HalloweenFest, we’ll play creepy carnival games, conquer the haunted obstacle course, and go on an i-spy hayrack rack, and that’s only the beginning.  We’ll enjoy live music with Kearney’s own Shockitanos, play bogeyman bingo, and pumpkin bowling.  Guess the number of candy corns in the witches cauldron or the weight of our great pumpkin and win a cool prize.  Costumes are encouraged and the cost is just $5/person.  No registration is required.  Just show up and have fun!

Archie’s Adventure Camp: We Dig Dinosaurs!

Date: November 12, 2021

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

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Join us as we turn back the clock to walk with the dinosaurs. This camp is filled with S.T.E.A.M. based, hands-on activities and games that teach participants all about dinosaurs. Learn about the different kinds of dinosaurs who once roamed the Earth. Discover fossils. Then, mold one of your own. Join an archeological dig. Build a volcano! Snacks and lunch are provided in this day-long camp. Don’t miss this Archie’s Adventure in the “land before time.”  To register, click the link on the left.

Soda Fountain Sundae: Cowboy Poetry & Nighthawk Tunes

Date: November 14, 2021

Time: 2:30 pm

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Join us for an entertaining and informative afternoon with Humanities Nebraska performer Michael McDonald.  He’ll perform some traditional cowboy poetry and introduce us to “Nighthawk Tunes,” the songs that cowboys sang to help settle their cattle at night.  The performance is free.

As always, the presentation will be followed by an ice cream social featuring rootbeer floats served from the Archway’s vintage soda fountain. Donations for refreshments are welcome.

Soda Fountain Sundaes are presented with the support of Humanities Nebraska and sponsored locally by Mike and Diane Schnieders.

Archie’s Science Camp Adventure

Date: December 10, 2021

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00pm

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Everyone knows that science is fun if you do it right! Join us as we explore the wide world of science. During this day-long camp, we’ll learn about rainbows and make one of our own. Then, we’ll use a cabbage leaf to observe the way that plants absorb water. Our “lava lamp” project shows that oil and water don’t mix. And, we’ll all have a blast making a “rainbow lemon volcano.” Lunch and snacks are provided during this day-long camp. Register now and join the fun.

Click the Link to the left to register.

Archie’s Construction Camp Adventure

Date: January 17, 2022

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

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Let’s work together as we explore the world of building and construction. During this day-long, hands-on experience, we’ll design and build our own simple marble maze, and a model bulldozer. Then, we’ll test our engineering skills by building a balsa wood bridge. Will the bridge hold up under a heavy load? We’ll put it to the test and see! Snacks and lunch are provided during this day-long camp. Come and build with us!

Click the link to the left to register.

Archie’s Music Camp Adventure

Date: February 16, 2022

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

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Join us as we discover the magic of music. During this day-long, hands-on camp, we’ll learn all about sounds and the ways that they come together to make music. We’ll play a dance game and musical chairs. And, we’ll make our own instruments, like flutes made from straws and popsicle stick xylophones. Lunch and snacks are provided during this day-long camp. Don’t let this parade pass you by. Register online, today!

 

Click the link on the left to register.

Archie’s Deep Sea Adventure Camp

Date: March 11, 2022

Time: 8:00 am - 3:00 pm

2019-9- Archie Camp

Join us as we explore the mysteries of the undersea world. We’ll learn all about sea creature identification and about life on a coral reef. We’ll make our own model of a jellyfish. Join in the ocean scavenger hunt and make a rainbow paper plate fish. It’s a day full of hands-on activities, games, and fun while we learn. Lunch and snacks are provided during this day-long camp. Remember, don’t rock the boat. Register for Archie’s Deep Sea Adventure Camp, today!

Click the link on the left to register.

MOST RECENT NEWSLETTER

Experience the American Spirit of Adventure

Since prehistoric times, the path along the Platte River through Nebraska, once known as the Great Platte River Road, has served as a migratory route across the continent. From the Oregon Trail era to today, the Archway brings the story of the Great Platte River Road to life.

The heart of the Archway experience is our historical exhibit that pays tribute to the American spirit of adventure. Using life size figures and personal audio guides, the Archway tells the story of the building of America. At the Archway, you’ll walk with the pioneers over the Oregon Trail. Watch a rider switch horses at a Pony Express Station. Hear Mark Twain’s account of a cross country stage coach trip. Relive the driving of the “Golden Spike” that united the nation’s railroads. Visit a traveler’s campground to hear stories of life on “America’s Main Street,” the Lincoln Highway.

Spanning I-80, today’s coast-to-coast travel corridor, at Exit 275, the Archway celebrates the lives of all of the adventurers who follow the river’s path, those of the past, who helped to build our nation, and those of today, who will shape our future.

Archway Origins

The Archway was originally conceived by Frank Morrison, the 31st Governor of Nebraska, who served from 1961-1967. It was his dream to create an enduring monument to the adventurers who followed the Great Platte River Road and helped to build America.

Imagine the daring and determination of the people who first traveled the Oregon Trail, the high-spirited adventure of racing to California during the Gold Rush of 1849, the devotion of the Mormons who moved west in search of religious freedom, the entrepreneurial spirit that lead to the creation of the Pony Express, the industry that built the Transcontinental Railroad and the cooperative effort that lead to the creation of “America’s Main Street,” the Lincoln Highway and the Interstate Highway System. Individuals of vision and courage found ways to work together to turn their dreams into reality and to contribute to an enterprise that was much bigger than themselves. The Archway tells this evocative story and seeks to inspire current day adventurers to face today’s challenges with courage and tenacity in order to continue to build a nation in which we can all take justifiable pride.

The Archway’s Innovative Structure

The Archway’s historical exhibit, shop, theater and event room are housed in a dramatic structure that spans I-80 at Exit 275. The building’s exterior was designed to emulate a covered bridge. The colors on the arch’s surface represent those of a Midwest sunrise.

Talk about American ingenuity! The engineers in charge of building the Archway were faced with the challenge of erecting a 1,500 ton structure that would eventually be suspended above one of the most heavily traveled highways in the Midwest without impeding the regular flow of traffic.

They decided that the best way to accomplish their task would be to build the two supporting towers on either side of the highway and build the arch portion of the structure separately, at ground level, near the highway. When all of the elements were ready, the most complex segment of the project was implemented. First, using hydraulic jacks, the arch section of the building was lifted 22.5 feet in the air. Then, it was jacked horizontally on to heavy duty, self-propelled modular transporters that would carry the structure across the highway. The process of lifting the structure on to the transporters took eight days.

On August 16, 1999, a section of the interstate was closed and at 10:00pm, the transporters began their work of slowly moving the structure across the highway. By 6:00am on August 17, the arch segment was in place over concrete abutment walls that are 60 feet long, 25 feet tall and 2 feet thick.   The arch segment was welded into place and finishing work began. The Archway opened for visitors on June 9, 2000. Since that time, over 1.5 million visitors have toured the historic exhibit and have been inspired by the Archway spirit of adventure.

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