SIOUX CITY -- In a few hours, Jenna Bush Hager will speak in a Sioux City event, which raises the memory of when she was on stage for what remains the largest presidential campaign rally in the city in the 21st century.
Bush Hager will be the keynote speaker at the 2019 Women Lead Change Siouxland Conference at 1 p.m. Wednesday at the Sioux City Convention Center. She is a contributing correspondent on NBC's "Today" show, an editor-at-large for "Southern Living" magazine and a daughter of former President George W. Bush.
Back before she was married, Jenna Bush was on stage when her father campaigned at the Tyson Events Center in Sioux City one day before the 2004 election. A Journal photo from that Nov. 1, 2004, event shows President George W. Bush on stage with his family, twin daughters Barbara and Jenna, and first lady Laura Bush.
The stage was set with a rural fall theme, showing lots of pumpkins, corn husks and a red barn painted in several places with "Victory In Iowa."
Supporters of Bush filled up the Tyson Events Center , and he won re-election, over Democrat John Kerry, a day later. He also became just the fifth sitting president to make a stop in Sioux City. Barack Obama became the sixth with a September 2012 event.
Bush also essentially duplicated the size of his rally in the same venue in August 2004, when he spoke before a crowd estimated by his campaign at 11,000. The Tyson can seat 4,000 or so for hockey games, and a several thousand more for basketball contests, but by placing people on the floor, a crowd at 10,000 or above can be reached.
While other presidential campaigns have played out three more times, resulting in the elections of Barack Obama and Donald Trump, with lots of rallies in the city, none has been set with such a large crowd as played out in the Tyson Events Center.