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58th Annual March to Washington’s Tomb and Wreath Laying at Mt. Vernon – 04 July 2019
4 July @ 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Timeline. We shall assemble at the Ann Pamela Cunningham Administration Building (Building 3 on the attached map of Mount Vernon) between 9:00 am and 9:20 am. At 9:30 am we will come to order outside the Administration Building and make our way to the head of the Bowling Green. When ready, we shall march down the Bowling Green, passing in review between ranks of the 1st Virginia Regiment, and proceed to the Tomb Grove.
There, the George Washington Chapter will conduct a brief ceremony featuring remarks from Chapter President Dave Thomas. Ms. Lauren Bradshaw, the 2019 VASSAR Rumbaugh Oration Contest winner, will also present her speech. Following the ceremony, the Color Guard will lead us to the Tombs for the wreath laying ceremony. All attendees will then have an opportunity to lay a carnation (provided by the Chapter) at General Washington’s – and Martha Washington’s – Tombs. The ceremony will conclude no later than 11:00 am, at which time we will return to the Tomb Grove for photographs.
(For your information, please note that a Naturalization Ceremony will be conducted beginning at 11:00 am on the East Lawn. While not a Chapter event, we encourage you to stay on a little longer if possible and attend. It is inspiring to witness the swearing-in of new citizens at Mount Vernon on Independence Day!)
Parking. Unlike some previous years, we are extremely limited in the number of car passes that we will be able to issue. For most attendees, that means that you will need to park in the Public Parking Areas (e.g., P1 and P2 – click HERE for a map) unless directed by a guard to park elsewhere. It is highly advisable to arrive early to secure parking; on July 4th the grounds will open at 8:00 am – an hour earlier than usual.
After parking, please proceed to the pedestrian Purple Heart Gate (G2), press the Security Guard button, and announce yourself as a participant in the SAR event; you will be buzzed in. If you wish to drop passengers off before parking, you may do so in a section of the roundabout that will be closer to the Purple Heart Gate than would your eventual parking space. No admission fee will be required unless you plan to tour the Mansion following our ceremony.
If you absolutely need to drive through the Hearst Gate (G1) and park adjacent to the Administration Building, please contact Chapter Vice President Jay Henn at firstname.lastname@example.org. He will attempt to coordinate the parking requests.
Please be assured that – if necessary – assistance in getting to the Tomb Grove from the Administration Building (and back!) will be available via golf cart as requested (although a short wait may be required).
Dress Code. As always, we request that all Compatriots either be in Color Guard uniform or blue blazers and khaki pants. Hats are permitted.
Chapter Medal. First-time SAR participants will receive the George Washington Chapter’s coveted Baldwin-Jones-Tabb medal, which depicts the Washington Tomb. Individuals who wish to purchase the miniature version of the Medal may do so for $10.00 (exact change will be much appreciated!).
A Safety Note. We highly encourage all participants to bring water and wear a hat, as these days in early July are often hot with high humidity. The Mount Vernon staff is working on finding the shadiest spot they can within the Tomb Grove for the ceremony, but we may be in full sunlight at some points.
If you have any other questions about the Mount Vernon event, please do not hesitate to contact Jay at the email address listed above. While registration is not required, if you get the chance we would appreciate it if you would let him know that you will be in attendance; again, not mandatory.
Finally, guests are welcome. In particular, we hope to have a large turnout of DAR and C.A.R. members, so please do not come alone!
Again, this is one of the “not-to-miss” highlights of the year, and we hope to see you there!