Honoring Old Glory
How to Handle Our Flag With
the Care and Respect It Deserves
Proper Folding Technique
Follow this folding technique once the United States fl ag is lowered from its mast or mount:
1 Begin by holding the fl ag
at waist height between
two people parallel to the
2 Fold the lower
striped section of the fl ag
lengthwise, up and over the
blue fi eld of stars.
5 Turn the outer point
of the triangle inward
to align with the
open top edge.
6 Continue this triangular
folding pattern along the
entire length of the fl ag.
• The fl ag should be displayed in public only from sunrise to sunset,
unless it is illuminated during darkness.
• The fl ag should not be displayed during rain, snow and wind
storms, unless it is an all-weather fl ag not prone to weather
• On Memorial Day, the fl ag should be displayed at half-staff until
noon. The fl ag may also be fl own at half-staff to honor a newly
deceased federal or state government offi cial by order of the
president or governor.
• When displayed either horizontally or vertically against a wall, the
blue fi eld should be uppermost and to the fl ag’s own right (the
observer’s left). The same guidelines apply to a window display:
the blue fi eld should appear on the left to observers viewing it
from the street.
• The fl ag should never be displayed upside down, unless to convey
distress or great danger.
• Dirty, ripped, wrinkled or frayed fl ags should not be used. An
American fl ag that is worn or damaged beyond repair should be
retired in a respectful manner.
3 Fold again, bringing the
folded edge up to meet the
open top edge. The blue
fi eld of stars should now be
visible facing outward.
4 Bring the striped corner
of the bottom folded edge
up and over to meet the top
edge in a triangular fold.
7 If a tail remains, fold it
neatly into the remaining
8 Folding is complete when
the fl ag is in a triangular
shape with only the blue fi eld
Flag Retirement Ceremonies
The U.S. Flag Code states that “The fl ag, when it is in such condition
that it is no longer a fi tting emblem for display, should be destroyed
in a dignifi ed way, preferably by burning.” The American fl ag is an
important and sacred symbol, and fl ag ceremonies are carried out to
dispose of retired fl ags in a respectful manner. Burning a fl ag in an
undignifi ed manner constitutes desecration.
• Many state and county government offi ces and Veterans of Foreign
Wars (VFW) posts have fl ag disposal boxes outside of their buildings.
Police stations also often collect fl ags for disposal. American Legions,
Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts and other organizations may collect fl ags as
well. Flag disposal ceremonies are most often conducted on June 14,
• If a fl ag ceremony drop-off location is not available, anyone can hold a
fl ag retirement ceremony, provided it is conducted in a respectful and
dignifi ed manner. Flags may be ceremoniously folded and burned in
compliance with local and state fi re codes and ordinances, or folded
and buried in a wooden box. Flags made of synthetic materials that
could be potentially hazardous if burned may be recycled through
fl ag companies or various organizations. For more information, visit
Sources: U.S. Department of Veterans Aff airs, U.S. Department of Defense, National Flag Foundation
Pg 4 - 119 Shoreham-WadingRiver-Calverton To Advertise call: 631-698-8400 Pennysaver - May 25, 2023