At the direction of First Lady Melania Trump, visitors to the East Wing are now being treated to a new piece of history along the tour route. Beginning today, the self-guided tours in the East Wing include the White House movie theater.
“The White House belongs to the people of this country,” stated First Lady Melania Trump. “I believe everyone who takes the time to visit and tour the White House should have as much access to its rich history and wonderful traditions as possible. It is my hope that our visitors truly enjoy the newest piece of the tour.”
In July 1942, the East Terrace cloakroom was converted into a movie theater under the direction of President Franklin D. Roosevelt. In 1982-1983, during the Reagan administration, a major remodeling introduced 51 seats in tiered rows. The most recent refurbishment in 2004-2005 was inspired by theater interiors of the early 20th century.
To commemorate today’s opening, the White House Visitors Office passed out White House candy to children, and spoke with some of the visitors. Ginna Felts from Nashville, Tennessee said, “The history of this is all so exciting. To think that so many Presidents and their families have watched movies or entertained guests in this room, and to be one of the first to see it is just amazing.”
Dan White, visiting from Denver, Colorado, was especially excited by the movie theater, exclaiming, “We’re witnessing history!”
The White House Visitors Office oversees all public tours, and requests must be submitted through one’s Member of Congress. These self-guided tours are available from 7:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays (excluding federal holidays or unless otherwise noted).