Organizing a Massing of the Colors Event

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Massed Colors

Massed colors, but not the type outlined in the Army and Marine drill and ceremonies manuals. These manuals specifically state to not have multiple color guards at a ceremony. One is enough. But, that’s for strictly military formations. Click here for information on a massed colors formation.

Massing of the Colors is an event where multiple color guards from multiple organizations, come together to honor the  flag of the United States of America. Color guards from the US military, first responders, cadet organizations and schools, and scouting programs could represent their unit with a color guard. Click here and read information on the order or precedence for the US military and click here for the order of precedence for first responders.

The Ceremony

Each color guard enters and posts in their designated spot on their own command. These commands are only be loud enough for the team to hear, no one wants a one-man or one-color guard show at a massing of the colors.

The “Color Guard Commander” (CGC), who is not the master of ceremonies, posts at an appropriate place so that all of the color guards hear his commands.

The color guards enter with the CGC and remain at Carry/Right Shoulder. Once everyone is posted, the CGC loudly calls, Present (team commanders echo, Present), ARMS! and all teams render the salute for the Anthem.

CGC gives, Order (team commanders echo, Order), ARMS.

CGC then gives, Parade (team commanders echo either, Parade or Stand at), REST! and all go to Parade Rest or Stand at Ease (whichever the team chooses is fine- stick with your training).

For all commands, the CGC faces the color guards, turns around and salutes, or assumes Parade Rest/Ceremonial at Ease. The CGC could be unarmed, but armed with a sword/saber would be appropriate.

At a certain time during the ceremony, everyone could be called to Attention and Present or just Attention and then back to Order.

At the end of the ceremony, the CGC gives Attention, Carry/Right Shoulder, and each color guard leaves independently.

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