First Lady Melania Trump in Jackson

First lady Melania Trump visits the Jackson Town Square on Thursday during a visit to Jackson Hole. Mrs. Trump later floated the Snake River in Grand Teton National Park. The first lady will tour sights in Grand Teton again Friday morning, then visit Yellowstone in the afternoon.

Ten black SUVs filed into the Town Square on Thursday, surrounded by row upon row of onlookers lining the boardwalks. Boy Scout troops stood in wait under the antler arches, while here and there Secret Service agents paced, scanning the premises.

It looked like the arrival of the president. When asked, mounted police officers divulged only that Jackson was expecting a visiting dignitary. But then, out of one of the cars climbed another Trump — Melania, the first lady of the United States of America, who this week made her first official voyage to Jackson Hole.

Soon after landing at the airport around 11 a.m. — in Executive One Foxtrot, the FLOTUS equivalent of Air Force One — she and her motorcade sped south down the highway, leaving dozens of pulled-over cars in their wake.

As they rolled into Jackson, parking along closed-off Center Street and Deloney Avenue, Mrs. Trump was met with curiosity and fanfare from locals and tourists. Shouts of “We love you, Melania!” filled the square, along with chants of “U.S.A.” and an impromptu rendition of The Star-Spangled Banner. Red “Make America Great Again” hats dotted the crowd.

Mary Bergeron, who works at Astoria Fine Art on the north side of the square, went the extra mile and came bearing a poster of support for Mrs. Trump’s “Be Best” initiative. That — and perhaps her besparkled red cap, with white and blue stars — endeared her to White House staff, who invited her and two other women to carry their sign into the square and become part of the spectacle.

“We didn’t expect this,” Bergeron said, smiling and more than a little incredulous. “We didn’t even put on makeup. We thought we would blend into the crowd.”

Mrs. Trump made her rounds, chatting with each of the Scouts in turn, before heading to the Snake River for a quick float. On Friday she’ll tour Grand Teton and Yellowstone national parks and meet with fourth-grade students from the Teton County School District to promote the “Be Best” initiative and encourage children to spend more time outdoors.

Check next week’s News&Guide for more coverage of the first lady’s visit.

Contact Cody Cottier at 732-5911 or

Cody Cottier covers town and state government. He grew up with a view of the Olympic Mountains, and after graduating Washington State University he traded it for a view of the Tetons. Odds are the mountains are where you’ll find him when not on deadline.

(3) comments


I heard (maybe started) a rumor that she is planning for a victory lap around the town square next November to hear the elks bugling mixed with the wailing and nashing teeth of the liberal fold. Should be quite the caliapy.

Lanny Lammers

So happy the real people finally got to see a political figure they like as opposed to the treasonous leftists & the candy boy from Casper they Hugely Can't stand. That may surprise some of you local politicians but driving START BUS I found out what people really think & say long ago, just not around elitist globalist crooks

Steven Kardas

Great to see our  beautiful and kind First Lady visiting the Tetons and receiving the  warm reception she deserves.  She has a lot of work to do with her Be Best initiative and we should all help her  encourage our youth to get out doors. The reality is that the vast majority of American youth do not enjoy nature at all. They spend their time immersed in video games and social media loosing contact with the real world and could care less about the environment.  

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