Basic Flag Opening Ceremony
Leader: "Color Guard, Attention!"
Leader: "Audience, Please Rise!"
Leader: "Scout Salute! Those not in uniform, please place your right hand over your heart."
Leader: "Color Guard, Forward March!"
Wait for color guard to reach the front.
Leader: "Color Guard, Halt!"
Leader: "Color Guard, Cross the Colors!"
State and Troop flags stop. US Flag crosses in front of other flags to left-most flag stand (as viewed from the audience), then State flag advances, then Troop flag. Wait for flag bearers to move to the flag pole stands.
Leader: "Please recite the Pledge of Allegiance!"
Everyone drops salute.
Leader: "Scout Sign!"
Everyone raises right hand making the Scout sign.
Leader: "Please join us in reciting the [Scout Law, Scout Oath, Outdoor Code, ...]!"
This is where the ceremony can be customized by the scout in charge. Choose what to recite. Could sing a song such as 'America the Beautiful'...
Everyone drops Scout sign.
Leader: "Color Guard, Post the Flag of the United States of America! "
Leader: "Color Guard, Post the Flag of the Great State of [your state name]! "
Leader: "Color Guard, Post the Flag of [Pack/Troop] 123! "
Leader: "Color Guard, Honor your Colors!"
Flag bearers salute the US flag.
Leader: "Color Guard, return to ranks!"
Wait for flag bearers return to formation.
Leader: "Audience, Please be seated!"
Click one to vote:
Feb 23, 2014 - Cubmaster Chrispy
Mar 26, 2014 - Neal Swartzmiller
Apr 09, 2014 - Patricia Johnson
Apr 09, 2014 - Scouter Paul
May 20, 2014 - Ranger Rick
May 22, 2014 - Scouter Paul
May 26, 2014 - Hunter Deal
May 26, 2014 - Ranger Rick
May 26, 2014 - Scouter Paul
Jul 01, 2014 - @Ranger Rick
Jul 14, 2014 - Scouter John
Aug 01, 2014 - Scouter Dale
Aug 01, 2014 - Scouter Paul
Sep 23, 2014 - Cubmaster Steve
Sep 23, 2014 - Anthony
Sep 23, 2014 - Scouter Paul
Oct 01, 2014 - Dale
Oct 09, 2014 - Matthew
Oct 20, 2014 - Ken Harris
Oct 30, 2014 - Troy Schwable
Nov 01, 2014 - Dale
Nov 09, 2014 - Adam
Jan 19, 2015 - Feliscia
Jan 19, 2015 - Scouter Paul
@Feliscia - Uniforms are not mandatory to be in the Boy Scouts of America. This is in the Guide to Awards and Insignia on page 5.
Jan 21, 2015 - Feliscia
Jan 21, 2015 - Scouter Paul
Jan 21, 2015 - Beverly Cook
Jan 27, 2015 - Mark Barfield
Mar 13, 2015 - KWEST
Mar 14, 2015 - Scouter Paul
@kwest - There is no specific, absolute manner in which to perform a flag ceremony. Scouts can create their own respectful ceremony or use scripts that others have created. There is a BSA pamphlet discussing flag etiquette at the official BSA online store - ScoutStuff.org
May 13, 2015 - Rick
Jun 01, 2015 - Gloria
Sep 07, 2015 - RickK
Sep 08, 2015 - april
Sep 08, 2015 - Scouter Paul
Nov 15, 2015 - Bob
Nov 15, 2015 - Scouter Paul
@Bob - There is a definitive BSA pamphlet for flag etiquette at
the official BSA online store - ScoutStuff.org.
The U.S. Flag is posted on the audience's left.
I have an online review at this Flag Test page.
Feb 17, 2016 - Gary
Mar 31, 2016 - Lincoln
Apr 25, 2016 - Luci Benavides
Jun 14, 2016 - Chris Meredith
Jun 15, 2016 - Scouter Paul
As a parent, you should be attending the troop's committee meetings to stay abreast of what the adult leaders are discussing. ALL parents should be welcome at any unit meeting, not as participants but as silent observers. And, minutes from committee meetings should be distributed to all families in the troop.
If you'd like to affect the direction of the troop, then you can volunteer for an adult position in the troop and increase your influence.
I would agree that spending meetings marching is a waste of time unless the troop is practicing for some presentation, such as a parade.
Jul 02, 2016 - Chris Meredith
Jul 21, 2016 - Lars L Bilyeu
Jul 21, 2016 - Scouter Paul
People have asked about saluting, carrying rifles, marching, and flag posting order - all looking for clarification on what is ok or correct within the framework of the BSA. That is the sort of discussion I hope continues to happen on Boy Scout Trail.
Sep 18, 2016 - Heather
Sep 19, 2016 - Brian B
Sep 22, 2016 - Chris
Oct 04, 2016 - Scouterman Don
Oct 07, 2016 - Heather
Now, does anyone know definitively, for the BSA at least, whether the US flag is posted/retrieved before or after the State and Pack flags?
Also, our pack has one flag holder/base with three spots, the center being vertical and the side arms slightly angled outwards so there we don't "cross the flags," is there a proper procedure for bearing the flags from the center aisle to stage left (where the flag base stands)?
Oct 07, 2016 - Scouter Paul
If your 3- flag stand causes the center flag to be higher than the 2 on the sides, then the US Flag should be posted in the center position. If they are all the same height, the US Flag should be posted in the left-most position, from the audience's view.
I think the simplest way to bear the flags to the stand would be to have the US Flag go first, followed by State, and then Pack.
Oct 09, 2016 - Heather
Jan 27, 2017 - Jim
Jan 29, 2017 - Scouter Paul
@Jim - The closest reference you'll probably find is Here. If you find anything else, please share.
Oct 03, 2017 - James Duerr
Basically the US flag should always be higher (or as high) as every other flag, so depending on method of posting depends on whether it's first, or last.
Oct 11, 2017 - Scouter Paul
Mar 05, 2018 - LopatoG
Mar 05, 2018 - Scouter Paul
Apr 29, 2018 - T Allen
Apr 30, 2018 - Garth Ripley
Good morning. In the eighth step and the eleventh step of your flag ceremony protocol the word should be "to" not "two". In this protocol the word "to" is an adverb showing the desired position as in the example "- - - the door was blown to", indicating the action was closed or ended.
I have read several books about Lord Robert Stephenson Baden-Powell and I have portrayed him on many occasions, viz. Courts of Honor and Camps-O-Ree, etc. I have never read, nor heard, of him having two parts of the flag ceremony.
Aug 02, 2018 - Jonathan Platt
Aug 02, 2018 - Clark
Oct 13, 2018 - David Mathews
Jan 12, 2019 - Rhonda Cancelli
Whoever is carrying the American flag should not have a flag to his/her right.
May 14, 2020 - Susan Grunenwald
Feb 17, 2021 - Cubmaster Jeff
Feb 17, 2021 - Cubmaster Jeff
Mar 17, 2021 - Anonymous Boy Scout
Sep 14, 2022 - Duarte Bobone
Sep 16, 2022 - Scouter Paul
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