The red, white and blue was on full display outside American Legion Post 68 last week as residents took part in a patriotic celebration marking Flag Day.
Held June 14 each year, Flag Day is a way to commemorate the American flag, a symbol of “freedom, liberty, justice, and human rights,” Berlin Mayor Mark Kaczynski said during the ceremony.
“Our flag serves as a symbol for every American,” the mayor said. “It does not represent any specific category or group of people; the flag represents each and every citizen in the United States.”
During the ceremony, Berlin Veterans Commission members Charles Colaresi and Peter Galgano thanked local Boy Scout Troops 41 and 44 for helping the commission place more than 550 flags at Maple Ceremony on Armed Forces Day.
“Instead of Peter and I taking four hours to do it, we did it in 35 minutes,” said Colaresi.
Over the past two years, Berlin Boy Scouts have assisted the commission in placing some 1,100 flags at 11 cemeteries in town.
During the June 14 ceremony, Scouts replaced and retired the weathered flag at American Legion Post 68. Worn flags residents dropped off at the Post throughout the year were retired as well.
Flag Day was first celebrated in the late 1880s. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation calling for a nationwide observance of the event on June 14. However, Flag Day did not become official until 1949, when President Harry Truman signed legislation proclaiming June 14 as Flag Day.