Troop Meeting Idea: Fold a giant flag

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Folding the American flag is an important and time-honored tradition in scouting.  To take it up a notch, have someone make a contact at your local mega-car dealership.  You’ll notice it will have a time-honored tradition of flying a gigantic US flag on a massive flag pole.  These flags wear out and have to be replaced.

Let the dealer know you’ll be interested in retiring one of the worn out flags.  Often they can be repaired by a dedicated seamstress (they are often 50 feet long and 30 feet wide.)  We repaired one and scouts carry it every year in the town’s Memorial Day parade.  It is also fun to take to summer camp for spirit competitions.

The fun part of a troop meeting is folding it.  It will take all of your scouts and adults to do it properly.  And it is even more difficult (nay, impossible) to do so without it touching the ground occasionally.  But it is great fun to see them try to do it.

Alternatively, you can retire the flag with a traditional scout retirement ceremony where it is honorably burned.  But a big word of caution here.  Those flags contact about 100 lbs of nylon.  It will take a good 2 hours to completely burn and will emit a massive amount of nasty smoke.  Probably toxic and definitely sickening if overexposed. If you are going to retire it, I recommend tearing into strips and doing a little at a time.

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