Harry Truman’s birthday is this Thursday, and events related to that are coming up during the next few days:
• Wreath-laying at 9 a.m. Thursday at the Truman Library, where Harry and Bess Truman are buried. The event is open to the public, and no admission is charged. The library is on U.S. 24 in Independence.
• A celebration in the main lobby of the Truman Library on Thursday. There’s cake and punch. It starts at 1:30 p.m. and lasts until the last piece of cake is gone. Truman, as portrayed by re-enactor Niel Johnson, an Independence resident and former Truman Library archivist, will receive birthday wishes and greet visitors from 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m.
• Jackson County will seal an 80-year time capsule on Saturday. Last September, the county rededicated the Truman Courthouse after extensive renovations. The ceremony was 80 years to the hour from a 1933 rededication of the same building after a renovation effort overseen by Presiding Judge Harry Truman.
• The Harry S. Truman Public Service Award, presented by the city of Independence, is given to Congressman Emanuel Cleaver II, whose district includes most of Eastern Jackson County. The ceremony is at 2:30 p.m. Saturday at the Truman Library, and a reception follows. It’s free and open to the public.
• The “Talkin’ Truman” series at the Truman Library features David Jackson, of the Jackson County Historical Society, whose new book is “Winding the Clock on the Independence Square: Jackson County’s Historic Truman Courthouse.” It’s from 11 a.m. to noon Saturday in the Whistlestop Room at the museum.
• The annual Harry S. Truman Good Neighbor Award is presented to Leon Panetta, a former congressman, director of the CIA and secretary of defense. The ceremony is at a luncheon in the Imperial Ballroom at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown on May 14. The Harry S. Truman Good Neighbor Award Foundation grew out an annual birthday banquet for Truman put on by friends and supporters. It was held each year in Kansas City after he left office, and since 1973 – just after Truman died – the foundation has given the award to a well-known public figure.