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Both the 4th of July and Memorial Day are recognized for displaying American pride with pool parties, barbecues, and festive patriotic decor. While we enjoy these events, it’s also vital to remember another American summer holiday: Flag Day. 

Read on for everything you need to know about Flag Day, including when it is, why we celebrate it, and exactly how you can honor the day. 

Flag Day is a commemoration of the stars and stripes on the American flag. While you may not get a day off from work or school on June 14, people observe Flag Day to commemorate the day in 1777 when the United States officially recognized the flag.

What is the flag etiquette for Flag Day?

When it comes to the American flag, there are different sets of rules and forms of etiquette depending on the occasion. And on Flag Day, there are specific dos and don’ts that people must follow, according to Knox News.

Do: Raise the flag briskly and lower it ceremoniously.

Don’t: Allow the flag to touch the ground or floor.

Do: Fly the flag only from sunrise to sunset. (Nighttime exposure is okay if it is well-lit.)

Don’t: Transport the flag horizontally.

Do: Always allow the flag to fall free.

A full set of rules can be found over at Knox News.

Why do we celebrate Flag Day on June 14th?

We can date Flag Day’s importance all the way back to 1777, when the Continental Congress passed a resolution that stated America must have an official flag to represent the nation and its’ people. On June 14, they approved a design for the flag.

But it wouldn’t be until years later that Flag Day became a holiday. And though there’s no word on who officially made the call, we do have a couple of names to thank. Bernard Cigrand, a Wisconsin native and popular school teacher, was known to consistently pitch the idea of federally observing the birth of the flag.

Other notable names who followed the same belief at the time were George Morris, George Bolch, and Elizabeth Duane Gillespie—relative of Benjamin Franklin. Everyone pushed the idea for Flag Day in newspapers and held their own ceremonies around their communities.

Pennsylvania became the first state to declare Flag Day (June 14) a holiday on May 7, 1937. And then on August 3, 1949, Congress approved the national observance of Flag Day, putting it all into fruition.

What are you supposed to do on Flag Day?

There are many ways to show your American pride on Flag Day. A great way to start is by displaying an American flag (or multiple) around your home on June 14. You could also use any patriotic decorations to add some extra flare. There are plenty of parades and official ceremonies, that you can participate in, too.

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