Wreaths Across America is usually looking for volunteers to help lay holiday wreaths at military headstones around this time ... but things are different for 2020.

This year, thousands of wreaths will be set out by members of the military and families of the deceased. Given the current state of things, with strict COVID-19 prevention regulations in place, the decision was made by leadership at Arlington National Cemetery.

December 13 will be the start of the big event this year, open only to family pass holders who can lay wreaths at their family headstones. After that, staff from Wreaths Across America will work on one section while service members, including the Army's Old Guard, will do the rest. Arlington National Cemetery will remain closed to the public for the week of December 14 while the work is done.

On December 19, you'll be able to view a virtual broadcast of the 2020 wreath-laying project online. Check the Arlington Cemetery website for the link when it published closer to that date. 

Before then, there is so much work to do in preparation: donations are required for wreath-making supplies, volunteers craft the wreaths out of greenery, and the hard work of getting them from place to place will take major coordination. Time is running out, and the organization can use all the help it can get.

Volunteers can still help out in a number of ways:

  • Make a financial donation to sponsor a wreath—every little bit counts!
  • Hold a fundraiser to provide even more wreaths for the cause.
  • Donate your trucking or transportation services to help move the wreaths to participating sites.
  • Spread the word about the wreath-laying project on social media.

About the Organization

From 1992 to 2005, the Worcester Wreath Company quietly brought their surplus holiday wreaths to Arlington National Cemetery to honor fallen servicemen. Over the years, the effort has grown to become a national initiative, organizing volunteers and donations to lay hundreds of thousands of wreaths on military gravestones all over the country. Each year, they coordinate wreaths for over 1,600 sites, in the U.S., abroad, and at sea.

Arlington National Cemetery
Courtesy of Wreaths Across America on Facebook

Have you participated in the Wreaths Across America Program? Is this a family tradition for you? Share your memories with us in the comments.