by Harley Nefe
Observed annually on the last Monday of May, Memorial Day is a holiday established to honor the lives lost while serving in the U.S. military. During this time, a lot of people pay tribute to those who have fought for the country by visiting cemeteries and memorials. It is also common to spend time with families or loved ones and even participate in community events. Many Memorial Day events had to be cancelled last year due to the COVID-19 pandemic; however, this year, some are beginning to make a return.
Here is a compilation of 2021 Memorial Day Weekend events happening across the High Country:
American Legion’s Annual Memorial Day Program at Blowing Rock’s Memorial Park
The community is invited to attend the American Legion’s annual Memorial Day Program in Blowing Rock’s Memorial Park on Saturday, May 29 at 11 a.m. The guest speaker of the program will be Dr. Anthony (Tony) Zeiss, who is one of the nation’s most outstanding educators and was the President of Charlotte’s Central Piedmont Community College for 23 years until his retirement in 2016.
Avery County’s Memorial Day Ceremony
On Monday, May 31, Avery County will hold its annual Memorial Day celebration between its veteran’s monument and gardens and the Fallen Officers, Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) and Ten Commandments monuments on the County of Avery Square in downtown Newland. The ceremony will begin at 2 p.m. and honors Avery County natives or residents who perished while fighting for our great nation in a military battle. It is organized and conducted by the Newland Veterans of Foreign Wars and Auxiliary-Pat Ray Post 4286, Disabled American Veterans and the County of Avery.
Boone VFW Post 7031 Memorial Day Ceremony
The veterans and auxiliary of VFW Post 7031 will conduct their annual Memorial Day Ceremony at the original Watauga County Veterans Memorial in front of the post, on May 31st at 1 p.m. In case of rain, the ceremony will be conducted in the meeting hall. The canteen will open at noon.
Memorial Day Weekend Celebration at Blowing Rock’s Tanger Outlets
From Friday, May 28 through Monday, May 31 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., join Tanger Outlets in Blowing Rock as they kick off the summer during their Memorial Day Weekend Block Party.
Celebrate with four days of sidewalk sales, live entertainment and games. Plus, there will be a Flag Raising by local veterans and a chance to meet and greet local heroes from the Blowing Rock Fire and Police Department.
Ashe County’s 54th Annual Memorial Day Service and Decoration at Ashelawn Memorial Gardens
Josh Roten and the staff of Ashelawn Memorial Chapel & Gardens and Badger Funeral Home invite everyone to the 54th Annual Memorial Day Service and decoration on Sunday, May 30 2021. The service will begin at 2:30 p.m. in Ashelawn Memorial Gardens on Hwy 221 North in Jefferson. This annual event gives citizens a time and place to remember and honor those men and women who have served the country. Attending will be: members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars, American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, Marine Corps League and 1450th Transportation Unit of the National Guard. For more information contact Ashelawn Memorial Chapel & Gardens at 336-982-2121 or Badger Funeral Home at 336-246-7114.
High Country Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America Memorial Day Event at Boone Mall
In many previous years, the High Country Community has honored fallen heroes on Memorial Day at the Boone Mall. This event has been co-sponsored by the High Country Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America, the Watauga Community Band and the Boone Mall. While the ceremony was cancelled this year out of respect for the health and safety of the community, everyone is invited to offer a personal moment of silence to commemorate the lives of those who gave all in service to the country this Memorial Day, Monday, May 31, 2021.