With GOP coming, public can take in three separate ‘civics lessons’

The upcoming Republican National Convention in St. Paul — 20 days and counting — is spawning a slew of civics-related activities around town. Civicfest in Minneapolis, which runs Aug. 29 to Sept. 4, is the biggest, with exhibits on the presidency and democracy and state and national history.

Also coming to St. Paul’s City Hall Sept. 2-4 is a printing of the original Declaration of Independence.

And to get us in the mood, the Mall of America will host C-SPAN’s traveling exhibit, “American Presidents: Life Portraits.” The exhibit opens Monday and runs through Aug. 25.

It features oil portraits by painter Chas Fagan of all 43 American presidents, plus photos, newspaper pages and other information about the men who hold the office that Sens. McCain and Obama are hoping to win.

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