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‘American Idol’ To Help Reopen Washington Monument

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Washington Monument Damage

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WASHINGTON (AP) — “American Idol” winner Candice Glover will help reopen the Washington Monument, which has been closed since a 2011 earthquake.

Organizers say the R&B singer will join the Old Guard Fife and Drum Corps, U.S. Navy Band and boy and girl choristers of the Washington National Cathedral Choir for the May 12 re-opening ceremony. Glover will sing “America, the Beautiful.” The “Today” show’s Al Roker will host the event.

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, National Park Service Director Jonathan Jarvis and philanthropist David Rubenstein will help celebrate.

Rubenstein donated $7.5 million to cover half the restoration cost.

The 130-year-old memorial has been closed since a 5.8-magnitude earthquake caused damage in August 2011. Workers have repaired more than 150 cracks in the 555-foot obelisk.

Normally the monument draws about 700,000 visitors a year.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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