A 20th century president is getting 21st century treatment with the renovation of the LBJ Presidential Library.
Visitors can see the renovated library for free at its grand reopening Dec. 22. After the grand reopening, visitors will be required to pay admission into the LBJ Presidential Library for the first time in its 41-year history.
The multimillion-dollar renovation of the library has implemented new technology that LBJ Library Director Mark Updegrove said enhances a visitor's experience. The new technology includes interactive touch screens, a downloadable app that gives visitors a choice of several tours, and new theaters and films on former President Lyndon B. Johnson.
"It allows visitors to interact more directly with this president and his administration," Updegrove said. "It helps you understand its impact on you."
The renovated museum has recordings of phone calls Johnson made during his presidency. Visitors can pick up the phone at one of 11 stations and hear Johnson talking with leaders such as Martin Luther King Jr. and former Vice President Hubert H. Humphrey.
"I think there has been a re-evaluation of LBJ's importance as the president that we have seen since the exhibit was last re-hauled," Updegrove said. "Historians appreciate LBJ more than ever and believe he was one of the more consequential presidents. His legacy has shifted a little bit."
The grand reopening Dec. 22, which would have been Lady Bird Johnson's 100th birthday, will include birthday cake, live music and book signings. Starting Dec. 23, the library will have a suggested price of admission of $8 for adults, $5 for seniors and $3 for children.
For more information, visit www.lbjlibrary.org.