PHILADELPHIA, March 24, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- From star-spangled banners to five-star generals, Philadelphia celebrates the shared birthday of two of our country's greatest institutions—the American flag and the U.S. Army! This year's newly renamed Stripes and Stars Festival will take place on Saturday, June 14, 2014 at locations throughout Independence National Historical Park and Historic Philadelphia, including Independence Hall, Betsy Ross House, and the National Constitution Center.
The day's events begin with a moving flag raising ceremony on the Constitution Center's front lawn followed by a patriotic parade of troops—past and present— to Independence Hall, where proclamations will be read for both the American flag and the U.S. Army.
The Army will be represented in grand style with musical performances by military bands, demonstrations, tactical vehicle displays, and more. Organizations including Fort Mifflin on the Delaware and the Pennsylvania National Guard will have special activities at tables across Independence Mall for children and families to enjoy and to learn more about Philadelphia's and the Army's patriotic past.
At the Betsy Ross House, guests can pose for photos with Betsy Ross, participate in a flag folding demonstration, and watch as 13 new citizens become naturalized during a special ceremony.
At Macy's Center City, children and their families will enjoy patriotic musical selections performed on the historic Wanamaker Grand Court Organ. A special evening concert on Independence Mall is currently being planned, and more events and details are forthcoming.
Most Stripes and Stars Festival programs are free to attend. The National Constitution Center is offering discounted $5 museum admission on June 14, courtesy of The Macy's Foundation, as part of a series of Macy's Family Days. Admission to Betsy Ross House also is $5 and includes family-friendly activities including performances by the Give & Take Jugglers, the Funicular Aerial Circus, and the Mummers.
Featured Stripes and Stars partner organizations include: Philadelphia Flag Day Association, William Penn Chapter of the Association of the United States Army (AUSA), City of Philadelphia, Historic Philadelphia, Inc., National Constitution Center, Independence National Historical Park, Fort Mifflin, Independence Visitor Center, Pennsylvania National Guard, Daughters of the American Revolution, Sons of the American Revolution (Philadelphia Continental Chapter), Thank-A-Vet, and Veterans Multi-Service Center.
In the week leading up to the festival, the Betsy Ross House will celebrate National Flag Week with ceremonies, events, and other family-friendly activities. Events begin on Sunday, June 8 and run through Saturday, June 14, 2014. For more information, visit http://historicphiladelphia.org/betsy-ross-house/what-to-see/.
Origins of U.S. Flag and U.S. Army Commemorations
Flag Day commemorates the adoption of the flag of the United States, which happened on June 14, 1777 by resolution of the Second Continental Congress. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson issued a proclamation calling for an official national Flag Day observance. Then in 1949, President Harry S. Truman signed an Act of Congress designating the 14th day of June every year as National Flag Day. The United States Army also celebrates its birthday on this date; Congress adopted "the American continental army" on June 14, 1775.
SOURCE National Constitution Center