Hanging the Flag in Bad Weather
In May the weather can be pretty unpredictable, so keep an eye on the forecast. The American flag shouldn’t be subject to weather damage, so be prepared to bring the flag in if rain, snow, or even a windstorm threatens—unless you have an all-weather flag.
Flying the Flag at Night
Traditionally, the flag should be flown only from sunrise to sunset. If, however, you’re planning a Memorial Day celebration that will extend well into the evening, make sure your flag is properly illuminated. Just a few garden lights should do the trick.
Related: The Best Ways to Light the Backyard
Displaying the American Flag Below Another Flag
If you have a state or a school flag that will be hung with the American flag, pay attention to their positions. When flying two flags on the same staff, the American flag should always be on top. When displaying two flags against a wall with crossed staffs, the American flag’s staff should always be in the front and to the right of the other flag's staff (which means the U.S. flag itself will be on the left).
Displaying Flags of Many Nations at Different Heights
When two or more flags of different nations are displayed, they should always be flown on separate staffs at the same height. As well, the flags should be around the same size and should never be displayed in a way that favors one over the other. This attention to the flags' relative positions symbolizes peace between nations.
Flying the Flag at Full Staff Before Noon on Memorial Day
Orienting the Flag Incorrectly When Displayed Flat
If you choose to hang your flag vertically from a wall, the eaves of a building, or over a street, you can display the stripes either horizontally or vertically, but pay careful attention to the placement of the union (the blue field with white stars). When the flag is hung against a wall, the union should be at the observer's left (the flag's own right); over a street, the union should face either north or east, depending on the direction of the street.
Hanging the Flag Upside Down
One of the most important rules to remember is to always hang the flag right side up: When the flag is flown from a staff, the union should always be on top. A flag flown with the union facing down constitutes a symbol of distress—so be careful how you hang it!
Letting the Flag Touch the Ground
As a sign of respect, you should never let the American flag touch the ground or any other surface, including the roof of your house, any merchandise, or your car. This rule protects the flag from becoming sullied or dirtied. If you wish to display it from your car, it should be firmly fixed to the right fender.
Adding Anything to the Flag
Although it may be tempting to dress it up for the holiday, the American flag should never have any additional designs, letters, or insignia added to it. It's best to let the red, white, and blue stand on its own.
Flying the Stars and Stripes
Show Old Glory off the right way.
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