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ASHLAND - Exactly 50 years ago Tuesday, Ashland became the meeting point for President John F. Kennedy and thousands of Northlanders.
Hundreds gathered at the JFK Memorial Airport to hear a recording of his speech made on September 24, 1963.
The podium on the stage during Tuesday’s ceremonies is the actual podium President John F. Kennedy used when he visited Ashland.
Lifelong Ashland resident Jim Thompson remembers the day the president flew into town via helicopter. He was 23 years old at the time, and became friends with the secret service who stayed in Ashland for two weeks before the president’s arrival.
President Kennedy traveled to Ashland during a national conservation tour.
“Lake Superior, The Apostle Islands, the Bad River area are all unique,” President Kennedy expressed in his speech.
Thanks to his work, the Apostle Islands are now a national park and will be preserved forever.