Memorial Day programs and services planned throughout west central Minnesota
Many area communities will host flag-raisings, cemetery services and parades in honor of those who have served in the armed forces.
The Memorial Day Program will be at Fairview Cemetery in Willmar at 11 a.m. Monday, May 29.
Willmar veterans will raise the 100 Flags of Honor at 7 a.m. on Friday, May 26. Following the flag-raising, members of the American Legion, Veterans of Foreign Wars, Disabled American Veterans, and others will place about 2,000 flags on veterans’ graves in the area.
The schedule of firing squads, buglers, and the reading of the names of deceased veterans buried in each cemetery on Monday is as follows:
Vinje, 7:45 a.m.
St. Mary’s, 8:15 a.m.
Bethel, 8 a.m.
Calvary, 8:30 a.m.
Homewood Park, 8:45 a.m.
Flags of Honor site, 9 a.m.
St. John’s, 7:30 a.m.
Salem Covenant, 7:45 a.m.
Mamreland, 8 a.m.
Lundby, 8:15 a.m.
Church of God, 8:30 a.m.
Nannestad, 8:40 a.m.
Lake Florida, 9:05 a.m.
Solomon Lake, 9:15 a.m.
Long Lake, 7:20 a.m.
Eagle Lake, 7:35 a.m.
State Hospital, 7:45 a.m.
Cloverleaf, 8:05 a.m.
Tripolis 8:30 a.m.
Oak Park, 8:40 a.m.
Oak Hill, 8:50 a.m.
Svea, 9:15 a.m.
The Veterans Central Council Honor Guard will provide the rifle salute, followed by taps
All cemetery and honor site flags will come down at 5 p.m. on Monday, weather permitting.
If you have a veteran buried in one of these cemeteries and may have been missed in placing a star marker and flag, extras are available at Fairview Cemetery in front of the Chapel. Flags and star markers will be available at the Willmar Legion and Veterans of Foreign Wars in Willmar if needed at other cemeteries.
Around the region
Other Memorial Day activities in the region are as follows:
Appleton: A program will be held at 9 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Appleton City Cemetery Memorial Hall. Keynote speaker is Danny Perseke. Music will be provided by the Swift County Concert Band. Refreshments will be served at the American Legion in Appleton following the service, and the VFW Post No. 4955 will host a noon potluck.
Belgrade: The Belgrade Saboe-Levorson Veterans of Foreign Wars Post No. 1825 will host a program at 11 a.m. Monday at the Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa High School. Keynote speakers are the BBE Voice of Democracy winners, members of the junior class. The BBE High School band and choir will perform, and a parade will follow the program. The Crow River Lutheran Church, located on U.S. Highway 71, four miles south of Belgrade, will host a Memorial Day dinner from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Adults are $10, children ages 5-12 are $5, children under 5 are free. Takeout dinners are available.
Benson: Services for the Benson area will begin at 10 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Benson City Cemetery. In the case of inclement weather, services will be moved into the Benson High School Performing Arts Center. Keynote speaker is the Rev. Gary Mills.
Bird Island: The American Legion Thomas-Devany-Collier Post No. 430 and Auxiliary will hold a Memorial Day observance at 8:45 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the St. Mary's School flagpole. Following the service, members of the Legion and Auxiliary will proceed to the St. Mary's Cemetery and Bird Island City Cemetery for official observances.
Brooten: Brooten American Legion Ranten-Sundflot Post No. 288 will host a program at 10 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Brooten Pavilion. Keynote speaker is Trinity/West Lake Johanna Lutheran Pastor Jean Megorden. The BBE High School band will perform. Cake and coffee to follow the service.
Buffalo Lake: The Buffalo Lake American Legion Post No. 469 will host an observance beginning at 9 a.m. Monday, May 29, with a procession from City Hall to the memorials and Dobberstein flagpole in the Buffalo Lake City Cemetery. Refreshments will follow in the city hall. In case of inclement weather, the ceremony will take place in the town hall.
Clarkfield: The Clarkfield American legion will host a service at 9 a.m. May, May 29, at the Clarkfield Cemetery. In case of inclement weather, the service will move to the City Hall garage.
Clontarf: Service is to take place at 8 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Clonarf Cemetery.
Cosmos: The Cosmos Legion program will take place at 11 a.m. in the city park. Keynote speaker is Tyler Degner. In case of inclement weather, the event will take place in the community center.
Dawson: The Dawson Memorial Day program will be at 11 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Dawson Cemetery on U.S. Highway 212. The keynote speaker is Staff Sgt. John Parsons of the National Guard. There will be no parade.
Forest City: A veterans service will be held Sunday, May 28, at Forest City War Memorial Park at 2 p.m. Music will be provided by the Litchfield Area Male Chorus, and the featured speaker is Meeker County Veterans Service Officer Tim Steinert. In the case of rain, the service will move to St. Matthews Church in Forest City.
Granite Falls: A program will begin at 11 a.m. Monday, May 29, at Veterans Plaza outside the Yellow Medicine County Courthouse. Speaker is retired Lt. Col. Joe Errington, of Cottonwood. The program will be followed by a meal at American Legion Post 69 for all veterans. In case of rain, the program will be moved to the Yellow Medicine East High School auditorium.
Grove Lake: A parade will take place at 1 p.m. Sunday, May 28, starting at the Grove Lake Chapel. Kids are invited to place flowers on veterans' graves in the township cemetery before a program will take place at Grove Lake Park. Freewill donation.
Hazel Run: The Anderson-Tongen Post No. 559 will host services beginning at 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Hazel Run Village Hall.
Hector: Hector’s Memorial Day observances will start with visitations to local cemeteries with legionnaires, returning guardsmen and service members. The schedule is as follows: Churchill, 7:45 a.m.; St. Paul's, 8 a.m.; Swedlanda, 8:15 a.m.; Palmyra Community Bible Church. 8:30 a.m.; Palmyra Lutheran, 8:45 a.m.; St. John's Catholic, 9 a.m.; City Cemetery, 9:15 a.m. A program is scheduled for 10:30 a.m at the Hector School old gym, featuring keynote speaker Dave Draeger. A lunch will be provided by the Hector American Legion Auxiliary. Freewill donation.
Kerkhoven: Kerkhoven American Legion Post 223 will host a Memorial Day breakfast Monday, May 29, from 7 to 9 a.m. at the Kerkhoven Civic Center. A Memorial Day ceremony will follow at 10 a.m. at Hillside Cemetery.
Lake Henry: Lake Henry Post No. 612 will hold a service Monday, May 29, with Mass at 10:30 a.m. at the Legion Post on County Road 32. A lunch will follow the service. Freewill donation.
Long Lake: The Long Lake Lutheran Church will host a Memorial Day service and meeting at the Zion Lutheran Church in Appleton at 11 a.m. Monday, May 29.
Madison: The American Legion Post No. 158 and VFW Post No. 1656 will jointly present a program at 11 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Madison Cemetery. Keynote speaker will be Bart Hill. Music will be provided by the Swift County Concert Band. A commercial dinner will be served at the Madison VFW following the program.
Maynard: Events are Monday, May 29, at the Maynard Events Center starting with coffee time at 9:30 a.m. followed by a program at 10:30 a.m. with speaker Tim Kolhei, Chippewa County Veterans Service Officer. There will be a potluck meal after the program.
Milan: The Milan American Legion Post No. 359 will present a program at 10 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Milan Community Center gymnasium. Services at the Kviteseid Lutheran/Milan Methodist Cemetery and the Big Bend Lutheran Cemetery will follow.
Montevideo: The Montevideo Memorial Day program will take place at 11 a.m. Monday, May 29, at Sunset Cemetery. In the event of rain, the program will be held at the American Legion in Montevideo. Keynote speaks is State Representative Dean Urdahl.
Nassau: The Marietta American Legion and Auxiliary will present a program at 10:30 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Nassau Community Center. Staff Sgt. James Hanson of U.S. Army National Guard California will present. An honor guard/auxiliary salute at the Marietta cemetery will be followed by a lunch at the Marietta Legion Post.
Paynesville: The Paynesville American Legion Post No. 271 and Paynesville Area Schools will jointly present a Memorial Day service at 10 a.m. Monday, May 29, at the Paynesville High School auditorium. Following the service will be a flag-raising in front of the school, and a wreath-laying ceremony will take place at the Paynesville Area Veterans Memorial. A light lunch will be available. RSVPs are requested for an accurate headcount; call 320-243-4982.
Raymond: The 117th community observance of Memorial Day will feature the traditional parade from cemetery to cemetery starting at 9 a.m. Monday, May 29. The parade will line up by 8:30 a.m. at the Raymond Christian Reformed Church. In the event of rain, the observance will be held in the Raymond Community Center. Marchers, veterans, mounted riders and other groups will march past the Cenex store, turn right on Minnesota Highway 23, where the parade will head east to the Fairview Cemetery for a program including the reading of the names of deceased veterans. The parade will regroup and proceed to St. John’s Lutheran Cemetery for another program. The Harvest Festival Committee will be grilling and serving hot dogs, along with beans, chips, potato salad and beverage at the fire hall/community center/park from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Freewill donations support this year’s Harvest Festival.
Stewart: A program will take place at 10 a.m. Monday, May 29, with a meal to follow. The keynote speaker is Sam Daly, of BELIEVET.
Editor's note: If you have a Memorial Day event not listed here, please email information including location, date, time and details to email@example.com.