By C. Todd Lopez
WASHINGTON (May 02, 2022) -- The Defense Department has reopened its doors to military-style hospitality. Beginning May 10, and on a limited basis, visitors will again be able to take a guided tour of the Pentagon and see where the world's greatest military minds plan the defense of the nation.
In years past, school groups, scouts and others could sign up to take a guided tour of one of the largest office buildings in the world and visit the multiple displays in the building which, among other things, pay tribute to military services, commemorate military conflicts and veterans, highlight U.S. military relationships with partner nations, recognize the contributions of outstanding individuals and provide information about topics important to the defense of the nation
Tours were stopped in March 2020 due to concerns over the spread of COVID-19. But the doors are opening again, Pentagon Press Secretary John F. Kirby told reporters today during an afternoon briefing.
"I'm pleased to announce that on the 10th of May, the Pentagon will reopen tours on a limited basis," Kirby told reporters, flanked by a group of Pentagon tour guides from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps and Coast Guard.
"They've been ... preparing for quite some time here to showcase the more than 30 exhibits that provide the history and the accomplishments of the U.S. armed forces and the Department of Defense," Kirby said of the tour guides. "These are our finest young men and women. ... They represent the very best of the best of each service. It takes a lot to become a member of the Ceremonial Guard and then to go from that to becoming a Pentagon tour guide. I know how excited they are about getting back to work and getting back at it. And I know how proud they're all going to continue to make us."
Kirby said tours in the Pentagon will take place at 10am and 1pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays -- a limited schedule from what was the pre-COVID-19 norm -- and that those interested can schedule a Pentagon tour by visiting the Defense Department website.
The detail-rich Pentagon tours involve approximately 1.5 miles of walking and last about an hour.