Many events planned for veterans

Thursday, November 9, 2006

Veterans Day activities to honor all veterans of U.S. Military service, living or dead, will be held Friday and Saturday, Nov. 10 and 11, across Carroll County from Green Forest to Holiday Island.

Activities will commence at 10 a.m. Friday with an assembly at Green Forest High School, according to Nancy Caillouet. In addition to patriotic music provided by the Green Forest High School Band and chorus, there will be dramatizations by the Drama Club, who created the backdrops and replica of the Statue of Liberty. The assembly will be concluded by a speech by members of the GFHS Student Council, followed by a luncheon for all veterans, their spouses and families.

At 11:30 a.m., the third annual Veterans Appreciation Assembly will be conducted at the Berryville High School gymnasium. Patriotic music will be provided by the award winning BHS band under the baton of Daniel Hodge plus selections by the BHS choral group.

The Color Guard and Honor Guard of American Legion Post 9 of Eureka Springs will present The Colors and flags of the branches of service. Vietnam veteran Desi Sanchez will be the featured speaker this year. Following Sanchez's speech, members of the student council will recognize attending veterans with the presentation of appreciation certificates.

Following the ceremonies, veterans, their spouses and families will be treated to a luncheon in the Home Economics building.

Members of American Legion Post 9 will travel back to Eureka Springs where they will visit classes at the Eureka Springs and Clear Spring elementary schools.

Saturday, the actual Veterans Day, activities will begin with an honors ceremony by American Legion Post 9's Honor Guard at the Veterans Memorial in Pioneer Park, located behind the Senior Activity Center in Berryville. The ceremony will feature the recitation of patriotic poetry and the firing of a volley at exactly 11 a.m., the 88th anniversary of the signing of the armistice which ended World War I. All veterans and the public are invited to the ceremony.

At 2 p.m. Saturday, a ceremony will be held at The Park at Holiday Island to dedicate the new Veterans Memorial Park. Members of American Legion Post 9 and Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 77 will post The Colors. The Holiday Island Singers will perform patriotic songs. Carroll County Veterans Service Officer Dr. Glen Clefish will give the opening address.

The guest speaker will be Maj. Gen. Ray Pendergrass, ANG (Ret) who will present a program remembering the fallen. Also expected to be present are some Union and Con?federate re-enactors and members of the Berryville Army National Guard unit with some of their equipment.

Organizers Tony Siciliano and Ray Pendergrass of Post 9, Gary Hanson of both Post 9 and VFW Post 77 plus other members of both veterans groups have worked for months with Holiday Island and VMP developer Tom Dees to bring the new park to its present state.

Siciliano said a table would be available to take orders for commemorative bricks similar to those at the Veterans Memorial in Bella Vista. The bricks will contain veteran's name, branch of service and theater of war in which he or she served and later be installed on walls at the park to honor veterans of all conflicts from the Revolutionary War to the present wars in Afghanistan and Iraq.

All veterans, their families and the general public are invited to the dedication. Refreshments will be served following the ceremonies.

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