This year, our usual Memorial Day outings may have been replaced with more somber stay-at-home observances, but we’re still paying tribute to the troops today with a fond flashback to the flag retreats, veterans parades, and other patriotic ceremonies found at Disney and Universal theme parks.
Currently, all theme parks, cruise lines, and other attractions are closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We at The Unofficial Guides hope all our readers and their loved ones, as well as all attraction employees, remain healthy and safe. Without intending to trivialize the current crisis, we will continue to post positive stories about the parks, in hopes of bringing their magic into your home as a welcome distraction during these trying times. For the latest updates, read our guide to cornoavirus and the theme parks.
The flag retreat ceremonies at both Walt Disney World’s Magic Kingdom and the original Disneyland Park are daily traditions that date back decades. The park’s security team, assisted by guest veteran volunteers and accompanied by marching musicians, performs this respectful ritual every afternoon.
Although it isn’t an E-Ticket attraction, we consider Disney’s daily flag retreat a “not to be missed” experience for anyone who appreciates unheralded hidden treasures.
Here’s a video of a super-size flag retreat at Walt Disney World from Veterans Day 2017:
The best news of all is that, despite the current coronavirus closure, the flag is still being raised over the Disney parks every morning. Here’s a video direct from Disney, documenting the ongoing flag ceremonies in an empty Magic Kingdom:
Universal’s theme parks don’t offer a daily flag retreat, but Universal Studios Florida has been marking Veterans Day with a parade and flag raising ceremony every year since 2007.
The annual Veterans Day parade features Universal Orlando team members who have served, surrounded by costumed characters, stilt-walkers, and local marching bands.
Enjoy a front-row view of last November’s 13th annual Universal Orlando Veterans Day ceremony with this video:
For all there is to see and do at Walt Disney World and Disneyland, check out The Unofficial Guide to Walt Disney World and The Unofficial Guide to Disneyland. For all there is to see and do at Universal Orlando, check out The Unofficial Guide to Universal Orlando. If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe to our YouTube channel and sign up for our newsletter here. Be sure to follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube.