Tag Archives: Kate Middleton

Diana, A Celebration, Union Station Kansas City: Do Kate and William mark a fresh new era for a troubled monarchy?

There is talk around the media that the marriage of Kate Middleton and Prince William means that the “tarnished crown” has been restored to its sparkle. Not that the crown has not had its rough patches in the distant past. There was Henry VIII, after all, and few other scalawags along the way. Still, there might be something to the most recent recovery.

John Hughes, writing in The Christian Science Monitor, tells the story of King George VI and an incident in South Africa when the monarch was traveling with his family.  Even then the media were along for the ride:

“The royal railway carriage, with its widescreen windows for better viewing, was parked for the night. By accident, the accompanying railway car carrying the press drew alongside it. To the amazement and delight of reporters, they beheld the king reenacting for his wife and daughters, Princesses Elizabeth and Margaret, the Zulu war dance he had witnessed earlier in the day.

“It was a rare and delicious lapse of regal decorum, the images of which served only to enhance the popularity of the king with his public. He had already endeared himself to the British people by steadfastly refusing to leave Buckingham Palace during World War II, remaining in London and sharing the dangers of the German bombing.”

What for King George was the source of a “bump” in popularity, was for later members of the royal family cause for embarrassment. There was, for example, Prince Charles and Camilla, Prince Andrew’s questionable financial dealings and a number of other peccadilloes and problematic relationships.

And then, of course, there was the very public and lengthy spat between Princess Diana and Prince Charles. The fallout did not end with their divorce, either.

However, Hughes argues that things are changing. He believes the recent royal wedding “brought uplifting color and spectacular pageantry to the fore at a time when the world is beset by problems and strife.” At the same time, England continues to benefit from the presence of Queen Elizabeth, for whom decorum and stateliness are the natural order of things.

Nevertheless, as Hughes points out, monarchy in general is on the decline. It is being challenged right now in country after country in North Africa and the Middle East. So will kings and queens be a thing of the past in England?

Not likely. The evidence from the past few months indicates that people love royalty, even if they live in a representative democracy. The outpouring of affection and admiration for Prince William and his wife, as well as for Princess Diana in the United States where a bit of cynicism should be expected, makes it clear that putting people up on pedestals is still a popular pastime.

There will be a new monarch one day. There will be more royal weddings. In the meantime, it might be a good idea to learn more about one royal in particular: Princess Diana. Diana, A Celebration, continues at Union Station Kansas City through June 12. Tickets are available through all Ticketmaster outlets, the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office and www.unionstation.org.


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Diana, A Celebration, Union Station Kansas City: Only 5 weeks left

It is difficult to believe that Diana, A Celebration, has been at Union Station Kansas City for 10 weeks. Only five weeks remain before the exhibition, which is in its last North American appearance, will be on it way back to England. Jun 12 came quickly.

But there is still plenty of time to purchase tickets and see this award-winning presentation before its last day, June 12. From all indications, the trip is well worth it. Outstanding reviews continue to come in from people who have seen Diana, A Celebration.

Here are a few examples (edited for spelling, grammar, etc.):

“I honor of Prince William’s wedding we went to the display. I enjoyed learning about her childhood. The collection of her clothes with the pictures of her wearing them was beautiful. The wedding dress was good to see.”

“The exhibit was thought-provoking, interesting, beautifully laid out, and educational. I was impressed and did not expect to be.”

“The exhibit was just what a fan of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, would love. Her elegant dresses were as stunning in person as in photographs. The exceptional styling and craftsmanship of those outfits, including her wedding dress, were obvious. To have seen her in person must have been a life-altering event. The environment was very good, so kudos to Kansas City’s Union Station.”

“The exhibit left you feeling how lucky we were to have had her in our world and feeling inspired to do good works.”

“Well worth the time to view priceless jewels, childhood articles, gowns/dressed and the fabulous wedding.”

“Wonderful exhibit of Diana’s dress and other personal items. It was very moving to be so close to things that were part of her life.”

“We loved the tracking of Diana’s life from childhood on including her wonderful charity work. And the clothes were just great. I believe I enjoyed them more than the spectacular wedding dress. We came away from the exhibit with a good feeling and would recommend it to anyone interested in such things.”

“It was  great forum for the three generations of women in our family (who just celebrated a wedding, a 25-year wedding anniversary and a 50th wedding anniversary!) to reminisce, admire, compare and discuss design, weddings, families, jewels and history.”

“I went to see the Diana Exhibit because I was in awe of her and what she stood for. After leaving the exhibit, I love her even more. I was surprised to see the large selection of items to view. I loved every minute of it and would highly recommend stopping in. I left with bittersweet feelings. So glad I could experience it, but sad because it brought  back to the forefront how I felt when she died. This is one you don’t want to miss!”

So little time left for an event that has moved thousands of people from all over the Midwest. Tickets for Diana, A Celebration, are available through all Ticketmaster outlets, the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office and www. unionstation.org.

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Diana, A Celebration, Union Station Kansas City: The royal wedding programme and some Diana stats

For people who just cannot get enough of the royal wedding of Kate Middleton and Prince William, there is a new souvenir available on the Internet: the Royal Wedding Programme, a blow-by-blow account of the big day. It is online at cerosmedia.com, and it does not cost a penny.

In other royalty news, Diana, A Celebration, at Union Station Kansas City had a record-breaking weekend in terms of attendance. Here are the particulars from a press release issued by Union Station:

“As Kate Middleton and Prince William exchanged vows, 3,500 people were watching at Union Station’s Royal Wedding Watch Party. During the party, nearly 2,000 visitors experienced Diana, A Celebration, which chronicles the life and charitable work of Diana, Princess of Wales. By day’s end, more than 3,000 people had walked through the exhibition at Union Station, surpassing the previous North American single-day attendance record for the exhibition. Total attendance for Diana, A Celebration, at Union Station now stands at more than 50,000.

“By 9 p.m. Thursday, April 28, guests were lining up outside Union Station for a Royal Wedding Watch Party that would not begin until 3 a.m., April 29. They were there to claim the best seats to watch the royal wedding on a giant screen and to be first in line for a free viewing of Diana, A Celebration.

“An estimated 3,500 people watched from the seats in Sprint Festival Plaza as the wedding guests arrived and the bride took her four-minute walk down the aisle of Westminster Abbey in London, England.

“Local and national media took note of the Union Station Royal Wedding Watch party and have been covering Diana, A Celebration since it arrived in Kansas  City. The watch party alone garnered coverage on NBC’s Today Show and E! as well as ABC’s Good Morning America and 20/20.”

The royal wedding might be over, but Diana, A Celebration, goes on through June 12, 2011. This tribute to Prince William’s mother is not to be missed. Many people are coming back again and again, bringing friends and family to share the experience.

Tickets for Diana, A Celebration, are available through all Ticketmaster outlets, the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office and www.unionstation.org.

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Diana, A Celebration, Union Station Kansas City: Royal Wedding Giveaway celebrates the royal nuptials

Here’s a great opportunity for anyone who is getting married, planning to get married, thinking about planning to get married or just thinks marriage is a possibility sometime in the reasonably near future. Union Station Kansas City, in honor of the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, now the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, presents a Royal Wedding Giveaway.

First, the prize:

• Wedding reception for 250 people in Sprint Festival Plaza at the station, including tables, chairs, linens, food and non-alcoholic beverages

• $500 gift certificate for purchase of a wedding dress

• Flowers

• One hotel room for two consecutive nights at the Kansas City Downtown Marriott hotel

This is a $25,000 value. So, if you are traditional, it could save the father and mother of the bride a bundle. And who would not want to have a wedding reception in the magnificent Sprint Festival Plaza at Union Station?

How to enter? The simplest way is to go to mix93.com and sign up.

To enter by mail, send your name, address (including hometown) telephone numbers (daytime and evening), email address and birth date, along with an original essay and a self-addressed, stamped envelope, to Wilkes Broadcasting, Royal Wedding Giveaway, 508 Westport Rd., Kansas City, MO 64111. Your entry must be postmarked by May 12, 2011 and received by May 17, 2011.

Now about that essay: It has to be original. And it has to answer the question: Why do you deserve a Royal Wedding?

If you attended the Union Station Royal Wedding Watch Party — and a lot of people did, some 3,500 at last estimate — you probably already know about this contest. You might also have visited Diana, A Celebration, the exhibition that chronicles the life and work of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, who was also Prince William’s mother.

If you visited the exhibition, be sure to tell your family and friends about it. The reviews have been nothing short of spectacular. No one should miss it.

Tickets for Diana, A Celebration, are available through all Ticketmaster outlets, the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office and www.unionstation.org.

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Diana, A Celebration, Union Station, Kansas City: Really obscure royal wedding trivia

How is this for love? Kate Middleton is allergic to horses, yet she almost always shows up for Prince William’s polo matches. Aaachoo! Scratch, scratch.

That is one of the sillier bits of information about the Kate and William floating around the Web. There are also little-known facts about other royals and their nuptials (and the consequences). Sites such as royal-weddings.org and zoomermag.com, among many others, are treasure troves of detail, most of which is useless but fun. None of it seems to be especially mean-spirited. It is the kind of thing most people would not mind the world knowing.

For example, Kate and William attended the University of St. Andrews. One in 10 former students from that institution wound up marrying an alumnus. Royal-weddings.com calls St. Andrews “the unofficial matchmaking agency of the rich and famous.”

And there’s more. . .

Prince Edward married a public relations executive back in 1999. Sophie, Countess of Wessex, finally quit her job in 2002 so she could help her husband with his work. The couple now has two children: Lady Louise Windsor and Viscount Severn. The family has some rather important roles to play in soon-to-happen royal wedding. Sophie is helping Kate learn how to manage her new role. Lady Louise, at seven, will be a bridesmaid. It is also rumored that Sophie is the Queen’s favorite daughter-in-law.

The Church of England frowns on divorce. So, when Princess Anne married her second husband, Tim Laurence, the ceremony was performed at a church in Scotland. Anne was the first divorced royal to remarry since 1905. The two were married on December 12, 1992.

One member of the royal family — 13th in line to the throne — owns a furniture-making company. David Linley met Serena Stanhope in 1992 when he was commissioned by Serena’s father, Lord Petersham, to design furniture. Their children are Charles and Margarita Armstrong-Jones. Serena has a clothing budget of around $155,000 and, according to People magazine, is seldom seen in the same outfit more than once.

And that is that. The royal wedding is tomorrow. No more time for trivia. Busy, busy, busy.

The big event honoring the Big Event in Kansas City will be the Royal Wedding Watch Party at Union Station. The festivities begin at 3:00 a.m. tomorrow, April 29, and it is free and open to the public.

The party presents an excellent opportunity to see the Diana, A Celebration exhibition. It is a fine way to honor the grooms late mother and learn much more about her life and work. Admission is free from 3:00 to 6:00 a.m. and just $5.00 from 6:00 to 10:00 a.m. It seems a fitting tribute to the People’s Princess on this special day at Union Station, the People’s Palace.

Regular tickets to Diana, A Celebration, are available through all Ticketmaster outlets, the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office and www.unionstation.org.

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Diana, A Celebration, Union Station Kansas City: News about the Royal Wedding Watch Party

The big day is nearly here, and Union Station Kansas City is ready for it. The Royal Wedding Watch Party — which is free and open to the public — promises to be a major event, and no one is complaining about showing up at 3:00 a.m. to start the festivities. Local and even national media will be on hand to take part in and cover the big party.

Of course, most people who attend just want to share the experience with others, but there are also some great incentives to be on hand from the start. For example, admission to the Diana, A Celebration, exhibition will be free from 3:00 a.m. to 6:00 a.m. Admission will then be just $5.00 until 10:00 a.m.

The first 10 people to arrive at the party will win a Mother’s Day brunch at Harvey’s Union Station and a free ticket to Diana, A Celebration. The first 50 people get a complimentary exhibition ticket, and the first 100 receive a Union Jack and a tiara.

Guests can enter to win tickets to a Jimmy Buffet concert. One lucky bride and groom will win a rehearsal dinner for 20 people. Guests an also enter to win a Mother’s Day gift package that includes brunch at Harvey’s Union Station, a complimentary ticket to Diana, A Celebration, and a catalog of the exhibition.

Two VIP tickets to Celebration at the Station, featuring the Kansas City Symphony Orchestra on Memorial Day will be given away, along with many other prizes, including a night at the Westin Crown Center Hotel, Union Station Kansas City membership, QT gas card, NBC gift baskets, $25 gift certificate to Jack Stack BBQ, and Diana memorabilia.

To top it all off, a grand giveaway will be announced. All that can be said right now is that the giveaway has a value of $25,000.

Indications are that the Royal Wedding Watch Party crowd will be large, so it would be wise to arrive early and find a comfortable spot near the video monitors that will carry live coverage of the wedding.

The day does not end when the wedding is over. The ceremony will be replayed all day. From 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., a Royal Wedding Reception will feature champagne and the official chocolate biscuit wedding cake. Union Station members can enjoy this event at no charge. Nonmembers pay just $8.50.

Updates on the royal wedding and the Union Station Royal Wedding Watch Party are available at facebook.com/unionstationkcmo. Twitter followers can find the information @unionstationkc.

Regular tickets for Diana, A Celebration, are available through all Ticketmaster locations, the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office and www.unionstation.org.


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Diana, A Celebration, Union Station Kansas City: Royal wedding trivia continued

Here are a few more trivia tidbits picked from aolnews.com and royal-weddings.org.

Westminster Abbey, where Prince William and his bride are to be married is the favorite site for coronations. In fact, kings and queens of England have been crowned there since William the Conqueror in 1066. Seventeen monarchs have their final resting place there. The building that stands now was started in 1245. For Queen Elizabeth’s coronation, tiers and galleries were put in so that 8,200 people could fit in instead of only 2,000.

Many people are surprised when they find out that a royal can marry a commoner like Kate. But that is not a problem. The difficulty arises if the intended is a Catholic. The Act of Settlement, passed in 1701, states that royals cannot marry a Catholic. Kate is not Catholic, but Autumn Kelly, who married Peter Phillips, Prince William’s cousin, had to convert to Anglicanism. Otherwise, Peter would have had to give up his succession rights to the crown.

Kate Middleton rivals Princess Diana in the style department. She is viewed as one of the best-dressed women in England and regularly shows up on the lists that keep track of such things. She also appears in magazines such as Vanity Fair and People.

Curtsying might not seem like such a big deal. But there is a strict protocol that goes with the gesture. There is even an order to the curtsying that depends on the distance of the royal ladies and the consorts from the throne. When Kate marries William, the curtsy order will be the following:

Queen Elizabeth, Kate, Princess Anne, Princess Beatrice, Princess Eugenie, Princess Alexandra, the Duchess of Cornwall, the Countess of Wessex, Lady Louise Windsor, Zara Phillips, Lade Sarah Chatto, Lady Davina Lewis of Gloucester, Lady Rose Gilman of Gloucester, Lady Helen Windsor.

As it turns out, Kate’s step-mother-in-law Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall and second wife of Prince Charles should curtsy to Kate. But this only holds if Prince Charles is not in the room. Then there is no curtsying.

May 6, 1960 marked the first televised royal wedding. On that day, Princess Margaret, the younger sister of Queen Elizabeth, married Antony Armstrong-Jones. There were about 20 million viewers. The couple divorced in 1978, and Margaret died in 2002.

It has been a while since a foreign princess married a British royal. The last on was Princess Marina of Greece, who married Prince George, Duke of Kent, in 1934. Prince George was the fourth son of King George V. Prince George was killed in a plane crash during World War II.

It is facts like these that can make an event like the Royal Wedding Watch Party at Union Station even more fun. Showing off one’s knowledge can help pass the time as the guests file in to wait for the ceremony to begin.

The Watch Party begins at 3:00 a.m., so there will be plenty of time to trade trivia. Of course, many people will want to take advantage of the free admission to Diana, A Celebration, until 6:00 a.m. and the $5.00 admission from 6:00 to 10:00 a.m. Union Station will show the wedding live and repeat the broadcast all day. A reception in the evening, beginning at 5:00, will feature the official royal wedding cake and champagne. The reception is free to Union Station members and $8.50 for non-members.

Diana, A Celebration, continues through June 12. Tickets are available through the Union Station ticket office, the Sprint Center box office, www.unionstation.org and all Ticketmaster locations.


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