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For the third consecutive Flag Day, Big Y is collecting worn, torn, faded or badly soiled American flags for proper retirement. The Springfield, Mass.-based grocer is working with local Boy Scouts, American Legions, VFWs and military organizations on the effort
From May 22 to June 11, all Big Y locations, including Fresh Acres and Table & Vine, will provide special receptacles for accepting the flags, which will go to the aforementioned organizations to be retired properly in a special ceremony conforming to U.S. federal law. During the ceremony, the flags are cut into 13 strips representing the original 13 colonies and then placed on a fire, in an action symbolic of purification and rebirth. The resulting ashes are subsequently collected and buried after the Pledge of Allegiance is recited and a moment of silence observed.
Established in 1916 by President Woodrow Wilson, Flag Day occurs every June 14 in commemoration of the adoption of the first national flag in 1777. Big Y displays the American flag outside of every location.
Since 2012, Big Y has collected more than 10,000 American flags for proper retirement.
One of the largest independently owned supermarket chains in New England, family-owned Big Y operates 62 locations throughout Connecticut and Massachusetts, with more than 10,000 employees.