Flag Day, A Legacy of Valor: 236 years of the Stars and Stripes

Flag Day, A Legacy of Valor: 236 years of the Stars and Stripes

Posted on June 13, 2013 by The Patterson Foundation

Flag Day commemorates the adoption of the Stars and Stripes as the official United States flag. Given our commitment to honor veterans, inspire patriotism and embrace freedom during the Legacy of Valor campaign, we're sharing some interesting facts about the day and ways you can get involved to honor our nation's flag.

On June 141777 the Second Continental Congress adopted the Stars and Stripes as the official flag of the United States of America. The first Flag Act stated “Resolved, the flag of the thirteen United States shall be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the Union be thirteen stars, white on a blue field, representing a new constellation."

Since its inception 236 years ago, the flag itself has gone through 27 different variations, with the most recent being adopted on July 4, 1960 as Hawaii gained statehood. To see how the flag has evolved over the years please click here.

Flag Day was officially established in 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson:

I, therefore, suggest and request that throughout the nation, and if possible in every community, the 14th day of June be observed as Flag Day with special patriotic exercises, at which means shall be taken to give significant expression to our thoughtful love of America…” The full speech can be read here.

Flag Day in Our Region

While it is still not a federal holiday, celebrations in its honor have spread nationwide. Here's a snapshot of Flag Day events happening in our region.

Sarasota Chalk Festival - To commemorate Flag Day 2013,  Sarasota Chalk Festival will be host its 2nd Annual Flag Day Celebration this Friday from 8 am until 8 pm Five Points Park.

Here's a run-down of the activities for the day, including all-day strolling street performers and fun:

8 am - Chalking starts in early morning. Artists and students can help complete an interactive 3D piece and everyone is welcome to participate or create their own chalk flag - prizes for all participating.

9 am - Student Opera Performance10 am - Student Opera Performance

11 am - Reveille, Star Spangled Banner, Police Dept. Honor Guard, Opening statements/welcome, City Commissioner reads Proclamation, Student Opera Performance

5:30 PM - 2nd ceremony -- Vietnam Honor Guard Flag Planting, County Proclamations read by official. Introductions/MC, brief talks, Tom Paine, music, clowns, bubbles, and magic fun continues

(The Chalk Festival is also a Legacy of Valor partner -- the festival this November will take on a "Legacy of Valor" theme!)

Charlotte County Habitat for Humanity (also a Legacy of Valor partner) will be hosting on Flag Day a Veteran Home Repair and Build Campaign Kick-off Event. The event begins at 10 am at Fisherman's Village in Punta Gorda with a reception to follow at the Military Heritage Museum.

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