Remember the reasons for the holiday

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As we head into the first three-day weekend of the upcoming summer season, it’s good to remember why Memorial Day is observed. In 1868, it was known as Decoration Day, a day to decorate the graves of Civil War soldiers. Now it commemorates American war dead across the generations.

This weekend veterans, scouts and citizens will show their respect for those who’ve served and given their last full measure of devotion with seemingly simple but meaningful acts. They will clean cemeteries and headstones, they will place wreaths along with hundreds of flags on headstones. They will attend and participate in color, honor and rifle guards. They will salute and sing the anthem of America and offer quiet prayers of gratitude and silent tears. But most importantly, they will remember the sacrifice.

Take some time from the picnics and attend with your family one of many ceremonies being held in our communities on Monday, see the list below in Things to Do.

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Things to Do: Tonight Coeur d’Alene Charter Academy presents its season finale concert, “From Bach to ROCK!” at 6 p.m. at the NIC Schuler Performing Arts Center. Admission is free and open to the public.

Also tonight, Broadway on a Boat with Coeur d’Alene Summer Theatre, boarding 5:30 p.m. on east side of Coeur d’Alene Resort. www.cdasummertheatre.com

Friday, Saturday and Sunday, May 25-27, at 7 p.m., Immaculate Conception Academy presents “Oh Brother Where Art Thou” at The Jacklin Arts Center in Post Falls. Tickets are available at the door or at the school, just $7. 773-2312.

On Saturday at 2 p.m. the public is invited to assist with placing over 600 large flags on veterans’ graves at Evergreen Cemetery in Post Falls. American Legion Post 143 is coordinating the effort and providing the flags. Bring gloves and long screwdrivers to clean debris from the pvc flag holder holes. 773-9054.

Memorial Day, Monday, May 28:

Monday and Tuesday Coeur d’Alene Dog Fanciers Dog Show from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. both days at the Kootenai County Fairgrounds. Public welcome with free admission, $5 parking.

At 9 a.m. Coeur d’Alene Veterans of Foreign Wars 889 will hold the bell ringing ceremony in the veterans plaza at McEuen Park.

Post Falls American Legion Post 143, in cooperation with the city of Post Falls, will conduct ceremonies at Evergreen Cemetery at 10 a.m.

9:30 a.m., wreath laying ceremony at Honeysuckle Beach in Hayden Lake.

At 11 a.m. VFW Post 889 will preside over a ceremony at Forest Cemetery near the Civil War statue.

The city of Hayden Veterans Council hosts its annual Memorial Day ceremony at City Hall at 11 a.m.

The city of Rathdrum and American Legion Post 154 host ceremonies at the Pinegrove Cemetery at noon.

At 2 p.m. Pappy Boyington Detachment 966 of the Marine Corps League’s ceremony will take place at Coeur d’Alene Memorial Gardens on north Government Way.

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... “that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain — that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom — and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.” — Lincoln’s Gettysberg Address

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Happy birthday today to John Webb, Marlo Faulkner, Denise Durflinger, Margie McGaughey, Theresa Williams, Tom Morgan, Susan Ballinger, Joel Riner, April Needham, Steve Vick and Elaine Pandolfi. Tomorrow Richard Wilson, Shirley Galloway, Adam DeLuca, Amy Moffat, Ruth Ware and Michelle Pfennigs share a birthday. On Friday Jessie Morrow, Lori Moreland, Paul Finman, Toni Schelske, Dick Haugen, Joyce Harwood, Kasey Short, Debbi Long, Brad Cederblom, Sara Houser, Justin Jaworski and Char Carstensen take another trip around the sun. Putting on their party hats on Saturday are Matt Roetter, Fairel Wideen, Jessica Lenz, Dorothy Montgomery, Kim Grout and Rob Brickett. On Sunday Kenny Gabriel, Nancy Herold, Corey Wideen and Greg Gilliland will celebrate. Shirlee Wandrocke, Tyson Bell, Scott Shellman, Dane Dugan, Donnie Shuck, Melissa Feusier, Vance Ackley and Judy Padilla have red, white and blue Memorial Day birthdays. Louisa St John Durkin, Star Shewey, Tiffany Williams, Jeff Pryse, Butch Andrews, Donnie Shuck and Pehr Black blow out the birthday candles on Tuesday.

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Kerri Rankin Thoreson is a member of the National Society of Newspaper Columnists and the former publisher of the Post Falls Tribune. Main Street appears every Wednesday in The Press and Kerri can be contacted on Facebook or via email mainstreet@cdapress.com. Follow her on Twitter @kerrithoreson.

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