This family has spent countless hours visiting Disney Theme Parks.... it's what we do. We've visited in every season, in both California and Florida over the course of many, many years. We are no rookies when it comes to all things Disney. But Y'ALL... during this recent trip to the Walt Disney World, I learned something new. At the Magic Kingdom there is a flag retreat ceremony every night at 5:00 pm. Of course, in wonderful Disney fashion, they make a giant deal out of this ceremony. WHO KNEW?
To make the ceremony special and to provide a personal touch, those Disney folks pull out all the stops. As soon as the park opens each day, the cast is on the hunt for a military vet. One vet each day gets the honor of presiding over the retreat ceremony as the "Veteran of the Day". This is a super special, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity, and guess what... Army Guy was invited! It was a great privilege to see him honored for his service during this ceremony. Disney even supplied us with our own personal Disney photographer to capture the moment.
The ceremony began with a call to attention and bugle fanfare by the Disney Marching Band. Before the flag was lowered, the crowd was lead in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance by my Ducklings. They nailed it... phew! The band played the national anthem and, while the flag was lowered and Army Guy stood with a proper salute, the crowd sang "God Bless America". Once the flag was folded, it was presented to Army Guy and carried through Main Street in a parade along with the Disney Color Guard, Marching Band and our family. We all got to be in the flag retreat parade and it was amazing. Disney sure knows how to pull at the heartstrings and bring out the patriotic pride. Well done Disney!
After the ceremony and parade, we were taken to a little nook on Main Street where Army Guy was presented with a certificate and pin. This "Disney Vet of the Day" collectors' pin cannot be purchased anywhere and Disney does not trade it. It is only presented to the ONE vet every day who participates in the flag retreat ceremony. Talk about exclusive and completely special.
Thank you to the wonderful people at the Magic Kingdom who noticed Army Guy's "retired army" hat and invited him to participate in the honor of a lifetime. What an amazing memory.
|The call to attention|
|Disney Color Guard Lowers the Flag while Army Guy Salutes|
|The Parade Down Main Street|
|The Magic Kingdom Veteran of the Day Pin|
|So Proud of My Retired Vet. Well Done Army Guy!|