This year’s Stripes and Stars Festival commemorates the U.S. Army’s 243rd anniversary and the American flag’s 241st birthday. The festival will take place on Thursday, June 14, 2018, at locations throughout Independence National Historical Park and Historic Philadelphia, including Independence Hall, Betsy Ross House, Christ Church Burial Ground, and the National Constitution Center. Events include an official Change of Command ceremony, flag raising ceremonies, a patriotic parade, a swearing-in of army recruits, a dramatic skydiving performance, displays and demonstrations of U.S. Army equipment, giant flag folding activities, and a moving naturalization ceremony.
Change of Command Ceremony
Keith D. Bryant, the Mid-Atlantic Recruiting Battalion Commander will host a change of command ceremony for the Philadelphia Recruiting Company. Captain Lamont E. Brooks will relinquish command to Captain Adrian D. Roth, who hails from Harrisburg, PA.
13-Star Flag Raising
Events continue with the 13-star flag raising in the Betsy Ross House courtyard will also include a reading of a mayoral proclamation recognizing the Betsy Ross House as the site of the city of Philadelphia’s official Flag Day celebration.
50-Star Flag Raising and Grand Parade
Following a moving 50-star flag raising ceremony, troops — past and present — will join a patriotic parade to Independence Hall.
Stripes and Stars Festival Opening Ceremony
Independence National Historical Park’s Deputy Superintendent Patrick Suddath will provide remarks followed by the raising of the Philadelphia Flag Day Association’s specially-commissioned 13-star flag. After a reading of the Continental Congress resolution establishing the U.S. Army, Major General Troy Kok, U.S. Army, will deliver a keynote address to mark the Army’s birthday and Major General Thomas Matthews, U.S. Army (Retired) will administer the enlistment oath to assembled army recruits. Observing a long-standing tradition, the youngest and oldest soldiers present will cut the Army birthday cake provided by Mission BBQ. David Spunt from CBS3 will emcee the ceremony. Musical accompaniment will be provided by the U.S. Army Field Band Brass Quintet.
Team Fastrax Professional Skydiving Team
Visitors on Independence Mall will have the opportunity to witness a spectacular skydive demonstration by the Team Fastrax Professional Skydiving Team.
Performances by the U.S. Army Drill Team
The U.S. Army Drill Team will showcase their breathtaking routines with bayonet-tipped 1903 Springfield rifles.
As part of its 76th annual Flag Day festivities, the Philadelphia Flag Day Association (founded 1934) will welcome 13 new citizens who will take the Oath of Allegiance in a ceremony at the Betsy Ross House. All are welcome to join them in their first Pledge of Allegiance as new American citizens. Musical accompaniment will be provided by the U.S. Army Field Band Brass Quintet.
Flag Retirement Ceremony
Visitors can watch as Scouts from the Boy Scouts of America, Roosevelt District, Cradle of Liberty Council officially retire worn American flags.
Giant Flag Folding
The day concludes as festival visitors help fold a giant American flag.
For more information/Source: Stripes and Stars