Remembering the Fallen: Top Memorial Day Events In and Around Sarasota

Memorial Day 2013, American Soldiers, SarasotaFalling on the last Monday of May, Memorial Day honors the men and women who lost their lives while serving in the American military. A day observed by visiting cemeteries or memorials, holding family gatherings and participating in parades, this holiday weekend also unofficially marks the beginning of summer.

While the extended weekend and beautiful weather create an easy distraction, it’s important to remember that Memorial Day is more than just a time for picnics, barbecues, family gatherings and sporting events. The true meaning behind this holiday weekend rests in the sacrifices made by millions of American Service men and women, and the sincere observance those sacrifices deserve. This Memorial Day, be sure you take a moment of quiet reflection to commemorate those who gave so much to ensure our freedom. Express your humble thanks by honoring your loved ones, ancestors and friends who exemplify the strength of our great country.

With your long weekend to enjoy, here are the top Sarasota-Area Memorial Day events to help you make the most of this special day of remembrance:

Memorial Day Ceremony at the Sarasota National Cemetery – Pay your respects to fallen heroes on Sunday, May 26, 2013 at 1 p.m. The ceremony takes place at 9810, State Road 72, Sarasota.

Sarasota Memorial Day Parade Watch the parade along Main Street, beginning at Osprey Avenue in downtown Sarasota, on Monday, May 27, 2013 at 10 a.m. Following the parade there will be a remembrance ceremony at J.D. Hamel Park on Gulf Stream Avenue, beginning at 10:45 a.m.

Venice Memorial Day Ceremony – Takes place on Monday, May 27, 2013 from 10 a.m. at Patriots Park, located at US 41, just north of the intersection of US 41 Bypass North and US 41 Business.

Youth in Service – A Memorial Day Outdoor Concert – The Sarasota Concert Band will honor the fallen with a grand outdoor concert, from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on Monday, May 27, 2013 at Phillipi Estate Park, Sarasota. Tickets can be purchased for $5 per person.

Tribute to Heroes Parade, Lakewood Ranch – On Sunday, May 26, 2013 from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Main Street Lakewood Ranch hosts a special Memorial Day Parade. Over two dozen floats, bands, clubs and organizations are featured in the procession.

To help re-educate and remind Americans of the true meaning of Memorial Day, the “National Moment of Remembrance” resolution was passed by congress in 2000, which asks that at 3 p.m. local time, all Americans “voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a moment of remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence”.

How will you be spending your Memorial Day weekend?

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