Opening Celebration for “Warrior Dogs”

Saturday, February 24 from 3 to 6 pm
Purchase your tickets early for this highly anticipated exhibit.

Message to Attendees at this Saturday’s Opening Celebration!

Thank you for ordering your ticket for the Opening Celebration of “Warrior Dogs: Honoring the Service & Sacrifice of America’s Four-Legged Fighters” to benefit the Museum and The Tug McGraw Foundation‘s Warrior Dogs Project. The event is nearly sold-out so please reserve your ticket if you haven’t done so. Museum members can purchase Opening tickets at a discount or can see the exhibition for free starting on Sunday.

If you would like to see the Helicopter landing and Torque disembarking (get it?), please come down to Borman Baseball Field by 3:20 pm. You will find Borman Field by continuing to drive past the Museum and the swimming pool. Then you should return to the Museum and park in the Museum lot or the north lot, and proceed to the celebration!

Due to weather concerns, this may be a “touch and go” landing, rather than a completed landing, and in any event the helicopter is scheduled to do a flyover at the Museum. The landing and flyover should happen around 3:30 pm Saturday; Torque will be at the Museum for her statue unveiling at 4 pm, and the celebration continues with wonderful wines from Regusci and Truchard, plus a charcuterie and cheese display by Sunshine Foods. A reminder that no dogs are allowed in the gallery (except Torque during the unveiling).

Don’t forget to mint your free POAP digital collectible when you’re at the Museum!

We look forward to seeing you on Saturday!

Celebrate the opening of the exhibition “Warrior Dogs: Honoring the Service & Sacrifice of America’s Four-Legged Fighters” presented by Napa Valley Museum Yountville in partnership with The Tug McGraw Foundation. Be among the first to see this historic exhibition before it opens to the public. Tickets include museum admission, wine, beverages and light bites, plus the chance to meet Torque, the Huey Helicopter Dog, whose statue will be unveiled!


Opening Celebration Ticket Prices:
$25 General
$20 Active Military, Law Enforcement, First Responders, Veterans and Museum Members*
$10 Kids 5-12
$0 Kids 5 and under
Space is limited for drop-ins, we encourage the public to purchase tickets in advance.
*Ticket prices to this benefit celebration are reduced for Museum Members, who have free admission to the exhibition starting Sunday

Opening Celebration Tickets Benefit the Napa Valley Museum and The Tug McGraw Foundation, 501c3 nonprofit tax-exempt organizations

Event Schedule:

Doors Open to the Public: 3 pm with Ribbon Cutting; Doors Close to the Public: 6

Opening Celebration Check in: 3 pm
Helo lands with Torque onboard at 3:30 pm (weather permitting)
Torque statue dedication 4 pm
Drinks and Light Bites until 6:00 PM

During the celebration, the Spotlight and Main Galleries will be open; History closed all day for private event.

Don’t forget to MINT YOUR FREE POAP!

Arrival of EMU 309 Huey (Weather permitting) and Torque the “Helicopter Dog”

About EMU 309 and Torque: Torque, a Belgian Malinois, is a highly trained dog that detects electronic storage devices and assists investigators in apprehending criminals. She is also an official crew member for EMU 309, a Huey helicopter, where she provides solace to veterans with PTSD during exposure therapy flights. Torque holds the World Record for The Dog with the Most Flights in a Huey Helicopter. Additionally, Torque represents the thousands of loyal U.S. War Dogs who served in the Vietnam War and saved countless lives, despite their contribution being largely forgotten. Torque and EMU, Inc. help veterans come to terms with their experiences through their work together. To learn more about EMU 309 and Torque visit their sites: and

About the “Warrior Dogs” Exhibition

Courage – Honor – Faithfulness – Sacrifice

In the Napa Valley Museum Main Gallery from February 24 through August 25, 2024

Honoring the service and sacrifice of American military and working dogs, this emotional, inspiring exhibition takes a deep dive into the heroic partnership between military dogs, their trainers and handlers and veterinarians, and other soldiers with whom they serve. The exhibition includes 17 lifesize wooden sculptures by acclaimed artist James Mellick from his “Wounded Warrior Dog” project. On display are Cairo, who deployed to Afghanistan with the U.S. Navy SEAL Team, and the debut of Mellick’s sculpture of Torque, the Huey Helicopter dog who represents the 4,000 canines who did not return from Vietnam after the war. A kid-friendly “petting dog” sculpture by James Mellick is also included.

Visitors of all ages will learn about the history of dogs in combat, about puppies “born to be brave,” their selection, training and specialized combat gear, and the handlers and trainers who make them battle-ready. Discover, through rare photos and stories, the extraordinary bonds warrior dogs share with the armed forces they serve and protect. A portion of the exhibition is dedicated to working dogs serving with Veterans suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress, First Responders, Law Enforcement Firefighters, and other civilian forces.  

Support the Museum and the Tug McGraw Foundation by shopping our exclusive Warrior Dog merchandise in our Museum Store and online, and adorn your own canine warrior!

Important Exhibition Note: Some exhibition sculptures depict images that could be sensitive for children and Veterans. Visitor discretion is advised.

Warrior Dogs
is a family-friendly exhibition for humans. For the safety of visitors and preservation of objects on loan, only Service Animals* are allowed in the galleries. There will be special events, however, where animal companions and pets will be welcomed on the outdoor patio and Museum Terrace. Visit our website and sign up for our newsletter to be notified of these events!

*a service animal is defined by the ADA as a Dog that has been individually trained to do work or perform tasks for an individual with a disability. Certain dogs from K-9 and other law enforcement units will be welcomed in the galleries by prior arrangement with the museum. Please contact 


photo credits: America’s Forgotten Heroes