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Club Chronicles: Let’s celebrate Flag Day June 14

People across the United States celebrate Flag Day June 14 each year to honor the United States flag and to commemorate the flag’s adoption.

Flag Day falls within National Flag Week, a time when Americans reflect on the foundations of the nation’s freedom. The flag has been an enduring symbol of the country’s ideals since its early days.

Americans also remember their loyalty to the nation, reaffirm their belief in liberty and justice and observe the nation’s unity.

Bernard Cigrand first organized a group of Wisconsin school children to observe June 14 – the 108th anniversary of the official adoption of The Stars and Stripes – as the Flag’s birthday.

Cigrand, known as the “Father of Flag Day,” continued to publicly advocate for the observance of June 14 as Flag Day for years. His effort to ensure national observance of Flag Day finally came when President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation calling for a nationwide observance of the event June 14, 1916.

Flag Day did not become official until August 1949, when President Harry Truman signed the legislation and proclaimed June 14 as Flag Day.

In 1966, Congress also requested that the president issue annually a proclamation designating the week in which June 14 occurs as National Flag Week.

Although Flag Day is a nationwide observance, it is not a public holiday. However, many people in the United States honor this day by displaying the American flag at homes, public buildings, flag-raising ceremonies, musical salutes and parades.

The oldest continuing Flag Day parade is in Fairfield, Washington; it began in 1909 and has been held every year since.

The original Old Glory or Star-Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired Francis Scott Key to write the song that would become our national anthem, is among the most treasured artifacts in the collections of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History in Washington, D.C.

Following Flag Day is Honor America Days, a 21-day period through July 4 Independence Day to honor America.

As Americans, we should not need a reason or a holiday to fly Old Glory, but this Sunday is Flag Day, so show your patriotism by flying your flag with pride!

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