Alaska Flag Day
Effective Date: Monday, July 9th, 2012
WHEREAS, the Alaska flag is a symbol of the spirit, strength, and promise of our great state; and
WHEREAS, Territorial Governor George Parks, appointed by President Coolidge in 1925, arranged for the Alaska Department of the American Legion to conduct an Alaska flag design contest for all territorial schoolchildren in grades seven through twelve; and
WHEREAS, orphan John Ben “Benny” Benson, Jr., then a seventh grade student at the Jesse Lee Home in Seward, designed a flag with the constellation Ursa Major (Big Dipper) set against a field of blue. The blue field symbolized the Alaska sky and the forget-me-not flower, the North Star represented the bright future of Alaska, the most northern state in the union, and the Big Dipper signified the great bear, embodying Alaska’s strength; and
WHEREAS, in March, Benny was notified that his flag design was unanimously chosen as Alaska’s official flag from 142 final entries submitted by schoolchildren across the state. On July 9, 1927, a flag raising ceremony was held in Seward to recognize Alaska’s new flag; and
WHEREAS, Alaska’s rich history and bright future are captured in the flag, and it reminds Alaskans of the greatness of the state we call home, and compels us to work to achieve the promise of Alaska as the brightest, most northern state in the United States.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, Sean Parnell, Governor of the State of Alaska, do hereby proclaim July 9, 2012 as:
Alaska Flag Day
in Alaska, and encourage all Alaskans to proudly fly our flag and celebrate the unique history, beauty, and promise of our great state.
Dated: June 27, 2012