Etcetera - 10/11/10

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American flags that appear downtown for holidays, special events and recognition days by AMVETS Jonathan Wainwright Post 1111 of Walla Walla now have a snazzy new conveyance.

The group's October newsletter reported that it replaced a 10-foot trailer with a previously owned 16-foot tandem axle trailer. The white trailer will include the group's name and an American flag on the side.

With the larger model, they can store more flags and equipment and won't need a storage unit any more.

Watch for flags to fly on Columbus Day, Tuesday; Veteran's Day, Nov. 11; Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 25; and Pearl Harbor Day, Dec. 7.

The flag was also out on Saturday for the Italian Heritage Association's annual ceremony at the Walla Walla County Courthouse; and for Daniel Phillip Taggart's Eagle Scout Court of Honor at First Congregational Church, 73 S. Palouse St.

There will be a flagpole raising and dedication at 4 p.m. Tuesday at 21 S.W. First St., College Place, for the Veterans Association of Walla Walla University.

Seven years ago, AMVETS added a 70-foot flagpole dedicated to veterans that flies a 15-foot by 25-foot flag at Land Title Plaza at First Avenue and Main Street. They keep it cleaned, repaired and replaced as needed.

AMVETS offers an Americanism Essay contest, part of a patriotic program the organization offers schools and youth groups as a resource for teaching children in kindergarten through 12th grade about their American heritage, civics and citizenship. The program includes flag drawing, poster and essay contests that are grade specific and age appropriate.

The local AMVETS post honored ninth-grade winner Reilly Roach with a $75 savings bond for his winning entry in the contest. Reilly's essay of 500 words or less, which addressed the significance of the Fouth of July, was forwarded to the AMVETS Department of Washington state and won that award.

Reilly wrote that " ... the real meaning of the Fourth of July is a remembrance of what our founding fathers set up for us. We are a free nation because of many brave men and women who spoke out against the British."

As one of the first-place ninth-grade winners at the state level, Reilly received an all-expenses paid trip to the Freedoms Foundation at Valley Forge, Pa., for a long weekend of youth oriented activities. Inspiring speakers and sightseeing are highlights, according to the state AMVETS organization.

Reilly, who attends DeSales Catholic High School, and Connor Ferguson, a sixth-grader at Pioneer Middle School who also submitted an essay, are members of Boy Scout Troop 305. Conner also received a $75 treasury bond at the local level for his entry.

For more details about AMVETS Post 1111, contact Steve Bird, commander, 541-938-4780.

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