For the third year, Wreaths Across Redwood County will take place at locations across the area. The event is held each December in an effort to remember those who have served this county.
What began in 1992 in Maine when the Worcester Wreath Company placing extra wreaths on the graces of soldiers buried in Arlington National Cemetery has grown over the past two decades so that thousands of wreaths are placed each year in honor of those who have served.
The program takes place at 800 participanting locations in all 50 states, with an additional 30 locations overseas. This year marks the laying of the one millionth wreath as part of the Wreaths Across America program.
“The event started with just a few wreaths but it has snowballed since then,” said Brian Sams, who coordinates the annual event held in Redwood County.
Sams said wreaths are purchased with local donations from a variety of organizations, businesses and individuals, including the VFW which is a major sponsor for the event, and those wreaths are purchased locally in an effort to support the local economy.
The event is scheduled to take place this coming Saturday at noon, and a brief program is being held at each location,m with wreaths placed in honor of each branch of the military.
The locations in the area where the programs are taking place include:
• In Belview at the American Legion Hall
• In Clements in the park near the American Legion Hall
• In Lamberton at Memorial Park
• At the Bishop Whipple Mission in the Lower Sioux Community
• In Lucan at the city park
• In Milroy at the memorial in the city park
• In Morgan at the public library
• In Morton in the northwest corner of the city park
• At the Brent Koch Memorial at the National Guard Armory in Redwood Falls
• At Memorial Field in Redwood Falls
• At the park in Revere
• At the bell tower in Sanborn
• At the American Legion Hall in Seaforth
• At the community center flag pole in Vesta
• At the community center in Wabasso
• At the American Legion Hall in Walnut Grove
Sams said volunteers deliver the wreaths to he various location, with members of the Patriot Guard Marshall sector and local American Legion and VFW posts taking part in the programs.
There are a total of 78 wreaths being placed across the area this Saturday, and Sams wanted to encourage everyone to attend one of the programs.
Page 2 of 2 - “We want people to be at the ceremonies,” said Sams, adding the event is brief and would only take a few moments out of one’s day.
Yet, he added, it is an impressive event that is going to have an impact on those who attend.
Sams said now in its third year Wreaths Across Redwood County is gaining momentum as more and more people learn about the program and see how valuable it really is as a way to remember, to honor those who have served and to teach the next generation about those who helped to provide the freedoms they enjoy every day.
Donations are still being accepted for the program, said Sams, adding each wreath costs $8.25.
Sams said people have been very supportive and generous in the past few years, and it is hope this is a program that continues long into the future.
“This is a good project and I hope we can continue doing it each year,” said Sams, who expressed his appreciation to those who have helped to make this event possible again this year. “It would be great to see a lot of people come out and witness this touching event.”
Find more information about this event online at www.wreathsacrossamerica.org.