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Program Teaches Youngsters How To Dispose Of Flags

US Flag

Photo: Patty Vicknair / Flickr

The groups will teach kids the proper way to dispose of aging flags.

The Girl Scouts of Central Indiana and the Indiana War Memorial commission have set up a service project to retire old U.S. Flags.

They are asking the community to bring flags that are no longer useable, so they can honor them with a proper goodbye.

Commission Executive Director, Stewart Goodwin says the idea for the project started at the Indiana War Memorial. Goodwin’s group had been tasked with taking care of some extra flags housed there.

“There is a protocol about retiring the flags and there is words that are said, and then what happens is they actually drape the flags over these metal rods and then they set them on fire,” he says. “And this is totally different than being at a protest or someone that is burning a flag, we don’t think of this as burning flags as much as we do as retiring them.”

Girl Scouts of Central Indiana Director of Communications, Deanna Potterf, says her group operates many day and resident camps during the summer. She plans to take some of the tattered flags and hold ceremonies.

“I have participated actually in a retirement ceremony for a flag and so I believe the girls will find it very moving,” Potterf says.

Potterf says the girls will learn when it’s okay to burn the flag – it’s not in relation to protest, but it is done out of respect and is considered the proper method of retiring flags.

The collection event runs through March 12.


U.S. flag collection locations:

  • Indiana War Memorial, 431 N. Meridian St. (entrance off Michigan St.), Indianapolis
  • Suite H, 1000 North Walnut, Bloomington
  • 1300 Hutchins Avenue, Columbus
  • 13555 W CR 550 S, Daleville
  • Suite 100, 2611 Waterfront Pkwy East Drive, Indianapolis
  • 815 W. Superior Street, Kokomo
  • Suite 203, 615 North 18th Street, Lafayette
  • 3765 National Road East, Richmond

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