Happy birthday, USA: Fort Jackson celebrates Independence Day
July 7, 2011
FORT JACKSON, S.C. -- Thousands of Soldiers and families came together to celebrate America’s birthday at Fort Jackson’s annual Torchlight Tattoo event Friday at Hilton Field hosted by the Soldier Support Institute.
The 282nd Army Band was the main attraction throughout the evening as the band members entertained the crowd with rock and classical favorites. The Columbia Hoop Hounds encouraged exercise while entertaining crowds with their hula hooping skills. The volunteer organization brought hula hoops for youngsters to play with during their demonstrations.
There were also various children's activities for hosted by the Fort Jackson’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation, such as games, bounce house and crafts.
When the sun set, the Torchlight Tattoo ceremony began. This 16th century ceremony incorporated the flags of the 50 states, five territories and the District of Columbia with torches to symbolize torch-lit walks of Soldiers returning to their barracks at the end of a day. Current Basic Combat Training Soldiers were at the festivities to experience the old tradition as they begin their Army service.
The ceremony was completed with the 282nd Army Band’s performance of “1812 Overture” and “Star-Spangled Banner” accompanied by a cannon salute.
A 30-minute fireworks display lit up the sky and served as the colorful ending to the Independence Day celebration.