Lincoln Elementary Performing Arts School (Jefferson County) is, unofficially, the new world record holder for the most Abraham Lincoln impersonators in one place at the same time.
The final count for the day was 556 student and staff members who dressed up in black shirts and pants, stovepipe hats and beards. If Guinness World Records recognizes the number, Lincoln Elementary will have beat the previous record of 250 Abraham Lincoln impersonators by a large margin.
It almost didn’t happen because the planned event, originally scheduled for Abraham Lincoln’s birthday on Feb. 12, had to be called off because of a snow day.
“A lot of people moved their schedules around to help us make this happen,” said Michael Ice, the assistant principal of the school. “We got very lucky in that regard.”
So, why attempt to break the world record for the most people dressed as Abraham Lincoln? According to Ice, the answer comes down to this: why not?
“We do something every year and I thought this would be a good memory-making type event for the kids,” said Ice, who organized the event, along with Principal Susan French-Epps. “We’ve made sure that we made something educational out of it as well.”
Along with striving for the world record, students learned about Lincoln’s role in American history. Dressed in their beards and hats, students discussed the Emancipation Proclamation and how it changed America.
“This really is something,” said Larry Elliott, an Abraham Lincoln living history actor. He appeared at the event as Lincoln and gave a performance after the record-setting attempt.
“I visit about 175 schools a year and this one is my favorite,” said Elliott. “This took a lot of planning and a lot of dedication and I just think it’s so neat. These kids are going to remember this for the rest of their lives.”
“It’s a crazy experience,” said Principal Susan French-Epps. “Michael really went above and beyond getting this organized.”
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