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National Wreaths Across America Day is a special event that brings people together to honor those who served in the military.

Every year, on the third Saturday of December, Americans place wreaths on the graves of fallen soldiers. This tradition shows respect and remembers the sacrifices made for freedom.

The day is celebrated widely across the United States. On December 16, 2023, volunteers will gather at over 4,200 locations.

They lay wreaths to remember, honor, and teach others about the value of freedom. This act of laying wreaths is a simple yet powerful way to say thank you to those who gave everything.

Why do we celebrate this day? It’s to remember the bravery of fallen heroes, honor their service, and teach younger generations about the sacrifices made for their freedoms.

This day is about more than just laying wreaths; it’s a reflection of America’s heart and gratitude towards its veterans.

History of National Wreaths Across America Day

The story of National Wreaths Across America Day begins with a simple act of gratitude and respect. In 1992, Morrill Worcester, owner of the Worcester Wreath Company in Maine, found himself with a surplus of wreaths towards the end of the holiday season.

Remembering a visit to Arlington National Cemetery as a young boy, he felt a strong urge to use these wreaths to honor the veterans laid to rest there. With the help of volunteers, including veterans and a local trucking company, Worcester donated 5,000 wreaths to Arlington Cemetery.

This gesture of respect and remembrance sparked a tradition that would grow far beyond its humble beginnings​

For several years, this tribute continued quietly without much attention. However, in 2005, a photo of the wreaths laid on the snowy graves at Arlington went viral, leading to a nationwide interest in participating in the wreath-laying ceremony.

This turning point galvanized Worcester and his community to expand their efforts, eventually establishing Wreaths Across America as a non-profit organization in 2007.

The organization’s mission expanded to “Remember, Honor, Teach,” aiming to pay tribute to veterans at Arlington and beyond.

By 2014, the movement had grown so large that volunteers placed wreaths at over 1,000 locations in the United States and abroad, including significant sites like the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor and the National September 11 Memorial​.

The evolution of this tradition into a national event underscores the power of a simple act of kindness and the collective desire to honor those who have served.

Today, Wreaths Across America Day is celebrated on the third Saturday in December, with volunteers laying millions of wreaths at veterans’ graves across America and beyond.

This day serves as a poignant reminder of the sacrifices made for freedom and the shared values of honor and remembrance​​.

How to Celebrate National Wreaths Across America Day

1. Adopt a Wreath

Dive into the holiday spirit by sponsoring a wreath. It’s like adopting a little bundle of greenery joy that also honors a hero. Find a local cemetery playing host to a ceremony and see if you can lend a hand or a wreath​.

2. Become a Digital Greeter

In today’s digital age, even ceremonies have a virtual side. Why not volunteer online? You could be a cemetery greeter from the comfort of your own home. It’s quirky, it’s meaningful, and it’s the perfect way to participate if you can’t be there in person​.

3. Pen Your Thoughts

Got a knack for words? Pour your heart out on social media. Share stories or memories of loved ones who served. It’s a digital toast to their bravery and your way of touching hearts across the globe​​.

4. Tag, You’re It!

Not the playground game, but almost as fun. Sponsor a dog tag in honor of a fallen hero. This symbolic act adds a personal touch to the day’s remembrances and keeps the spirit of the honored alive​​.

5. Join a Parade

If there’s a local veterans parade, hop in! Marching not your style? That’s okay. Cheering from the sidelines is just as supportive. It’s about community and coming together, after all​.

6. Create a Memory Lane

For those with a creative flair, how about making an honorary craft or decoration for your home? It could be as simple as a handmade wreath or a display of photos of veterans from your family or community. It’s a personal touch to the day​​.

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