Every year the United States celebrates Flag Day on June 14 to mark the anniversary of adopting “the Stars and Stripes” as the nation’s official flag, and Prince William County residents have the opportunity to observe the holiday by retiring old or tattered American flags at the Prince William County Landfill anytime during open hours.
Local Boy Scout troops from Occoquan and Bull Run Districts collect the flags and ensure that they are properly disposed of and ceremoniously retired. Flag retirement is a long-standing American tradition of respectfully and reverently burning flags that are no longer fit to be flown.
The American Flag Collection Center led by Scout Leader Dave Byrne is a joint effort between the Boy Scouts of America Occoquan and Bull Run Districts, Keep Prince William Beautiful and Prince William County Solid Waste Division.
The partners who run the American Flag Collection Center consider safety in addition to tradition. Not all flags are safe to burn, for example, American flags made of nylon can release toxic fumes when burned. These flags will be recycled in an appropriate manner.