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Oakville Residents Lead National Effort to Change Columbus Day

Should Columbus Day be changed to Exploration Day? Read more and let us know what you think!

OAKVILLE, MO -- Three locals are trying to change Columbus Day to Exploration Day.

The movement started in the living room of Karl Frank Jr. after TV reports of Neil Armstrong’s death. Frank—a and —wanted to honor the astronaut's accomplishments.

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“I have never been a fan of having a Federal holiday named after Columbus's accidental conquest. Like my wife said when I mentioned this to her, ‘Why? Because saying he discovered America is like walking into a grocery store and saying you discovered milk?’” .

Frank recruited friends Tom Diehl and Dr. Rod Wright. Diehl is a former Mehlville school board president and Wright is a political scientist and public relations specialist.

The group started a petition for the White House and needs 25,000 signatures by Sept. 27 for officials to review the petition. As of Monday night, their petition has 1,176 signatures.

The movement has officially gone national.

Wired’s Jeffrey Marlow wrote a story Sept. 7 calling for support because Columbus Day's popularity has been decreasing over the years.

St. Louis Post-Dispatch columnist Bill McClellan is also gathering votes for the group saying, “Christopher Columbus is to heroes what Pluto is to planets.”

Frank said Exploration Day would allow people to celebrate Columbus, but also any other explorer that’s made innovations in the physical or technological world.

The group has a blog and Facebook page, and people can sign the online petition here

Karl Frank Jr. September 15, 2012 at 01:32 PM
Raygun, so you are the official spokesperson for "no one." :) We will be on Don Marsh's 'St. Louis on the Air' on Wednesday at 11:45am. 90.7 FM - Should be interesting fun. We love Don Marsh! - http://www.kwmu.org/programs/slota/index.php#.UFSDgLJlSao
Karl Frank Jr. September 20, 2012 at 04:13 AM
Tom Diehl and I were on St. Louis on the Air Today with Don Marsh 90.7FM You can listen to the audio here: http://www.news.stlpublicradio.org/post/city-museum-co-founder-gail-cassilly-exploration-day
Terri September 20, 2012 at 01:14 PM
I guess that's why we're called "Columbians".
waagtod September 20, 2012 at 03:43 PM
No,Vespucci stole the thunder. Typically, someone comes along after the fact and takes the credit!! But Columbus was probably a liberal, a conservative would just accept there already was a way to India, why look for another way?
d.hasch September 22, 2012 at 02:00 PM
Too much time on their hands, apparently. Come on guys. if you want to do something constructive, bring Oakville a nice upscale restaurant so we don't have to ride out to West County to have a nice evening. Glass Olive was a breathe of fresh air.

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