Countdown to America turns 250


By Mike Ullery

For Miami Valley Today

TROY — The countdown has commenced as America approaches its 250th birthday celebration in 2026.

To mark the kick-off, Ohio-based America 250-Ohio has launched a campaign to raise awareness toward the upcoming milestone in American history.

In a press release provided at the kickoff event, America 250-Ohio, the official state commission responsible for spearheading Ohio’s commemorations around America’s semiquincentennial in 2026, announced Thursday, May 9, the Ohio Air and Space Trail, the first of six planned experiential trails linking historic sites across the state.

The Ohio Air and Space Trail is a thematic collection of more than 30 sites in Ohio that celebrate the Ohio people and places that have become synonymous with air and space exploration over the past century. Participating locations align with one or more trail themes, including Innovation, Birthplace of Aviation, Service to Country, Space Exploration, Training, Preservation & Flying Experiences, and Aviation Feats & Spectacles.

The trail will honor a number of famous Ohio flyers, including Neil Armstrong, John Glenn, Orville and Wilbur Wright and the Ohio’s Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) during World War II. Locations for the trail include well-known sites and hidden gems across the state such as the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, the International Women’s Air & Space Museum, the Armstrong Air & Space Museum, the Great Lakes Science Center/NASA Glenn Visitor Center, WACO Air Museum, the John & Annie Glenn Museum, The Works: Ohio Center for History, Art & Technology; and the Ernie Hall Aviation Museum, among others. A full list of participants, interactive maps, and other interactive materials can be found on the newly launched Ohio Air and Space Trail website,

“From the Wright Brothers flying over Dayton to Wapakoneta’s Neil Armstrong walking the surface of the moon, it is impossible to tell the nationally significant story of air and space travel without Ohio,” said Mackensie Wittmer, Executive Director of the National Aviation Heritage Area and America 250-Ohio Commission Member. “The Ohio Air and Space Trail offers a fun and informative exploration of aviation and space landmarks, museums, and historic sites celebrating the Ohioans who made world-changing contributions.”

The Ohio Air and Space Trail is the first of America 250-Ohio’s planned Trails & Tales program, which aims to establish five additional thematic experiential trails similar to the Air and Space Trail over the next two years. Additional details on these trails will be announced in the coming months.

Photos of the sites along the trail as well as video footage of the launch event can be accessed at this link:

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