Organizers of both events hinted that a more coordinated approach may happen in coming years.
The Elks held a longer, more orchestrated flag ceremony featuring a color guard, a history lesson on flags, songs and sandwiches afterward. The Elks have been commemorating Flag Day for more than 50 years and are required to observe it, Elks organizers reported.
The library’s simpler ceremony featured a flag presentation, a reading of President Woodrow Wilson’s 1916 proclamation establishing the holiday, with patriotic music by St. Innocent’s Academy.
“We are presenting a flag that was presented to the library by one of the Coast Guard families. So it seemed appropriate to use Flag Day to present it,” Katie Baxter, the library’s director, told the Mirror.
“We’ve been speaking about ideas for growing the tradition over the years and instilling a sense of flag etiquette around the community and celebrating what that day means,” said Baxter.
Flag etiquette, Baxter explained, consists of “a certain set of codes -- uniform codes, saluting the flag, honoring the flag during a color presentation, the standards for the way we fly the flag,” she added.
Also, flag bearers must hold ‘the flag a certain way so that the blue border was to the north, to the right and flying at half-mast in memory of significant people’s passing and days of commemoration,” Baxter also said.
The library received ample support from groups such as the American Legion, Veteran’s Memorial Administration and the Veterans of Foreign Wars.
Baxter reports that growing the event might mean harmonization with the Elks’ event.
“We’re already starting to think about next year,” Baxter added.
Across town, the Elks talked about helping coordinate the two events in coming years.
Luis Mendez, past exalted ruler of the Kodiak Elks and organizer of the Flag Day event, said he has already had conversations with the flag bearer Ray Stobinski, the flag-bearer at the library and participant in the Elks event, about a combined or synchronized event next year.
“What we’d like to do is invite her over with our group and make it a bigger event and add to the group. That’s what I’d like to see, but I’d like to talk to her in person and see what she’d think about it. And if we have another ceremony besides this I would be OK with it too,” said Mendez.
Contact Peter J. Mladineo at email@example.com.