Our Mission for today: River Rat Museum
The National River Rat Executive Board is thrilled to announce the the next mission for ALL River Rats. We have teamed up with Aviation Heritage Park, located in Bowling Green, Kentucky, for them to be the future "Home of the River Rats".
The River Rat Museum would be part of a larger aviation museum being built by Aviation Heritage Park. This 11,000 sq. ft. indoor museum will allow the River Rats to collect, preserve, and exhibit artifacts, documents, patches, flight suits, and other items better suited for a controlled environment. Interactive exhibits will captivate visitors with exciting in-depth insight and understanding of the what and who the River Rats are.
Latest Museum Photos
PHASE 1: COMPLETED:
THE FIRST PHASE OF CONSTRUCTION HAS BEEN FINISHED. ALL UNDERGROUND UTILITIES ARE IN PLACE AND READY FOR THE BUILDING TO BE ERECTED AS SOON AS THE GROUND THAWS.
CONSTRUCTION OF THE "OUTSIDE" OF THE BUILDING IS COMPLETE. NEXT UP IS THE INSTALLATION OF ELECTRICAL, PLUMBING, AND HVAC.
STAY TUNED FOR MORE UPDATES.
CHECK OUT THE LATEST PHOTOS FROM THE OPEN HOUSE HELD ON APRIL, 2022.
PHASE 3: PROJECTED COMPLETION: Currently ongoing interior construction is in progress and on schedule.
Grand Opening Fall 2023
NOW IS THE TIME TO MAKE A DONATION!
Updated 1 AUG 2022
Display Groups Information Links Coming
One of the museum committee's primary problems has been to determine to focus of the displays due to Rat members extensive area of operations involvement. We had to narrow the options due to having a much smaller display footprint than the National Museum of the US Air Force and the Naval Aviation Museum. This is both good and bad, good in that we hope to have more specific presentations for our subgroups, but bad in that we cannot possibly display all our collective memorabilia at one time. From a very long list of options, we narrowed the field to eleven, which are:
SAC Area of Operations - B-52/Refueling/ Linebacker I & II/Strategic Recon
F-100 Super Sabre Ops
F-4 Phantom Ops
F-105 Thunderchief Ops
FAC and related Ops
RECCE - Tactical Area of Ops
Wild Weasels Ops
ARRS – Areas included in Rescue Ops
We are working on having Individual contact links for each group listing the POC and contact info, a general overview of the display goals, and, as time goes on, what items they are looking for to help complete the display and tell the story. The links should be done by September 1, 2022. We will put out the word in the Rat Net and the Mig Sweep when the links are ready. In the meantime, start looking at stuff you have to see if you think it might be a great addition to the museum.
In addition to these displays, there will be other "eye candy" displayed around the museum that will include:
Artwork: areas of involvement, people/places we should all know about.
Unique Artifacts: for example, mission lineup cards, maps, flags, and other collectible items
Helmets and Flight suits: this should be an exciting collection!
Aircraft Models: the goal is to have one of each type flown by the Rat members
Challenge Coins: River Rat-related groups, Packs, and individual members are encouraged to display their challenge coins for all to see. More details on this coming.