May 30, 1868 was the first observation of Decoration Day.
The following year, Public Law 90-363 called for a united annual observance of Memorial Day on the last Monday in May, according to the Phoenix Veterans Administration.
Many of those traditions, established 100 years ago, are still in observance today.
A list of local Memorial Day events:
• Fourth annual Flags for Our Fallen, 6:30 a.m. Monday, Cave Creek and Pinnacle Peak roads, Phoenix. Riders USA will line Cave Creek Road from Pinnacle Peak Road south with motorcycles and flags and salute the families going into the service at the National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona.
• Memorial Day Ceremony, 8 a.m. Monday, Veterans Administration National Memorial Cemetery of Arizona, 23029 N. Cave Creek Road, Phoenix. The ceremony includes a flyover, patriotic songs, a parade of colors, placing of wreaths and rifle volleys. Gov. Jan Brewer will speak at the ceremony, which will end with the release of white doves. Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops will decorate the cemetery’s 48,000 grave sites and columbarium Saturday morning with small American flags.
Information: (480) 513-3600.
• Gilbert Historical Society and American Legion Memorial Day Celebration, 9 a.m. Monday, Gilbert Historical Museum, 10 S. Gilbert Road. Mayor John Lewis and two councilmen will speak near the monument honoring the town’s military members, followed by a flag raising, laying of wreaths and recognition of attending veterans. The Ahwatukee Foothills Concert Band will perform. After the ceremony, the museum is open for free until noon, where people can see the new exhibit honoring late Gilbert police Lt. Eric Shuhandler.
Information: (480) 926-1577.
• 27th annual Pioneers’ Cemetery Association Memorial Day Observance, 9 a.m. Monday, Pioneer and Military Memorial Park, 1317 W. Jefferson Street, Phoenix. Arizona historian Marshall Trimble will give the keynote address. There will be representatives of many of the historical Valley organizations, tours of the 1897 Smurthwaite House, self-guided tours of the cemeteries and light refreshments. Both the Smurthwaite House and Pioneer and Military Memorial Park are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.
Information: (602) 534-1262 or www.azhistcemeteries.org.
• Memorial Day Ceremony, noon Monday, American Legion Post 105, 3534 W. Calavar Road, Phoenix. Flag raising and unveiling of a recovered painting of the 1934 World War I Mojave Desert War Memorial. The painting was stolen on May 9. There will also be a raffle.
Information: (602) 505-8760.
• Academy Drum and Bugle Corps Memorial Day Celebration, 4 p.m. Monday, Pera Pavilion, 1 E. Continental Drive, Tempe. This eighth-annual event features the 150-member Academy Drum and Bugle Corps performing a color guard with percussion and brass music in preparation for their summer tour. Hamburgers, hot dogs and drinks for purchase will be served in the shaded pavilion. Silent auctions and raffles will be held. Proceeds benefit the Academy Drum and Bugle Corps. Tickets are $5 pre-sale and $8 day of.
Information: (480) 730-5594 or www.arizonaacademy.org.