We’ve just entered spring, but it feels as though summer is fast approaching, along with many opportunities for local youth to work, play and volunteer. One of the best events for youth is held during the summer break: Boys and Girls State Leadership Academy.

Boys and Girls State Leadership Academy is an annual event held in each of the 50 states, offering high school juniors an opportunity to learn governance and civics in a non-partisan atmosphere. This year, the academy will be held June 17-23 at Western Oregon University. To attend, students must fill out an application and be sponsored by a local American Legion Post. Information and applications are available at http://www.orlegion.org/boys-state.html.

If you know of a local high school junior in or near Roseburg who is up for the challenge, encourage them to contact American Legion Post 16 at 541-672-4392, or American Legion Post 123 at 541-863-7575 if in or near Myrtle Creek.

A Pancake Breakfast fundraiser will be held Saturday from 8 to 10 a.m. at American Legion Post 16, 406 SE Oak Ave., Roseburg. Money raised will be used to send local high school juniors to the Boys and Girls State Leadership Academy. There will be a charge for breakfast, and donations will be graciously accepted.

A Family History Fair and Civil War Headstone Ceremony will be held May 5. Sponsored by the LDS Roseburg Stake Center, the event offers people an opportunity to learn how to research and preserve their family history.

The Family History Fair will be held from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the LDS Roseburg Stake Center, 2001 W. Bertha Ave., Roseburg. The fair will include the following genealogy classes: How to Research DNA and Elusive Records, How to Write and Share Family History, and How to Preserve Old Photos. From 1 to 3 p.m., there will be a family and children’s program with many fun events. Registration for the Family History Fair is required and may be done by visiting www.roseburgstake.com.

The Civil War Headstone Ceremony will start at 3:30 p.m. at the IOOF Cemetery on Douglas Avenue in Roseburg. The ceremony honors Civil War veteran Daniel P. Bartrum, buried in 1908, but without a grave marker. Bartrum’s son was a local ranger, Steven Bartrum. Bartrum’s descendants from Oregon, Washington and Idaho will be traveling to attend the event. There will be a firearm discharge during the event.

In my last column I wrote about the Memorial Day Tribute and Picnic to be held on May 28. The tribute will begin at 11 a.m. at the flagpole at the south end of the Roseburg National Cemetery on the Roseburg VA campus. The picnic will be held after the tribute at the pavilion at Stewart Park in Roseburg.

But I forgot to mention another outstanding event that day. A Memorial Day Breakfast will be held May 28 from 8 to 10 a.m. at the Veterans Memorial Building, 252 S. Pacific Hwy, Tri City. Hosted by American Legion Post 123, the annual breakfast is free to veterans, with donations accepted from others.

American Legion Post 123 will also be posting 190 flags throughout the Myrtle Creek/Tri-City area three times in May: Victory in Europe Day on May 8, Armed Forces Day on May 19, and Memorial Day on May 28. So be sure to take a drive on one or all of those days and enjoy the beauty of Old Glory as she proudly waves.

God bless our veterans and God bless America.

Do you have information of interest to Douglas County veterans? Contact John McDonald at jd.mcdonald.jd@gmail.com or 541-580-6178. He is a combat veteran with more than 18 years of military service and serves in the Oregon National Guard. He is also a member of the Douglas County Veterans Forum, the Douglas County Veterans Advisory Committee, the Patrick W. Kelley VFW Post 2468 and the Earle B. Stewart American Legion Post 16.

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