Each year the Ridgewood Fourth of July Celebration begins with a flag raising ceremony. It is the one part of the celebration that has always taken place even when the parade or fireworks did not. This year the flag raising ceremony will take place at 9am at the flag pole at Wilsey Square near the westside train station.
The schedule for the flag raising is as follows:
Welcome by a Celebration Committee Member
Speech by a Village Council Member
Recognition of the Grand Marshals and Special Guests
Reading of the Declaration of Independence by a member of NJ Militia Heard's Brigade
Flag raising by American Post 53, and Boy Scouts
"To the Colors" played by Dan Literati RHS Junior
Chester, Our National Anthem before "The Star Spangled Banner" performed by Heard's Brigade
"The Star Spangled Banner" sung by Jodi DiPiazza
We are honored to have descendants of signers of the Declaration of independence as our Grand Marshals. The Bartlett Family, descendants of Josiah Bartlett (Father's side) and Benjamin Harrison (Mother's side). Thornton “Thorny” Lockhart is a descendant of Declaration signer Josiah Bartlett, and a first cousin, eight times removed, of Benjamin Franklin.
Our Special Guests are The Ridgewood College Club. They are celebrating their 100th anniversary. College Club of Ridgewood, founded in 1913, is a non-profit organization that provides educational opportunities for young women through a variety of needs-based grants and interest-free loans. Men are eligible at the graduate level.
We are thrilled to have a member of Heard’s Brigade join us to read the Declaration of Independence. Heard's Brigade is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating the public about the role of the Organized and Irregular companies of New Jersey Militia during the American Revolutionary War. They participate in battle re-enactments and living history displays to portray 18th century military and civilian life. Heard's Brigade strives to always continue their research efforts to provide the most accurate impressions they can.
This year we welcome two gentlemen who were among the three boy scouts chosen from Troop 10 to raise the first flag on Veterans' Field on July 4, 1951. They are both graduates of RHS, class of 1955.Troop 10 was a segregated troop for African-Americans.
Dan Literati is entering his Junior year at Ridgewood High School. He is heavily involved in the RHS Music Program, participating in almost every aspect of the program. Dan's participation includes performing with the RHS Concert Band, Marching Band and the Jazz Lab Band. Dan has been playing the trumpet since his 5th grade year at Ridge Elementary School and continues to study with a private instructor to further his musical abilities. In addition to all of his musical activities, Dan also participates on the RHS Swim team and was just recently named an Eagle Scout.
Jodi DiPiazza began improvising piano at age 4 and starting taking lessons at age 7. In 2010 Jodi wrote and performed a song "Heroes of Autism" for Toys R Us to be used in conjunction with a fundraiser for Autism Speaks. This campaign raised over $3,000,000. Jodi is a two time finalist in The ASCAP Foundation Morton Gould Young Composer Awards. You may remember in October 2012 when Jodi performed a duet with Katy Perry for the autism benefit "The Night of Too Many Stars" at the Beacon Theatre in NYC, it was televised on Comedy Central and over $4,000,000 were raised for autism education. Jodi is currently a 4th grade student at the Midland School in Rochelle Park and the Alpine Learning Group in Paramus NJ.