Marine Corps Birthday Ball set for Nov. 9 at Veterans Memorial Hall

Staff Report

Rockford Detachment 083, Marine Corps League, will host the 2013 Marine Corps Birthday Ball beginning at 6 p.m., Saturday, Nov. 9, at Veterans Memorial Hall, 211 N. Main St., Rockford.

Admission is $40 per person. Event will include hors d’oeuvres, buffet dinner, awards, music by the Tripping Tarzan band, door prizes, and complimentary beer and wine throughout the night.

Nov. 1, 1921, General John A. Lejeune issued Marine Corps Order No. 47, Series 1921. The order provided a summary of the history, mission, and traditions of the Corps. General Lejeune directed that the order be read to every command each subsequent year on Nov. 10 in honor of the founding of the Marine Corps. This tradition has continued every year since 1921 throughout the Corps.

The first official “Birthday Ball” was probably held in 1925 in Philadelphia. No official records of the event were held prior to that date. Guests at the ball in 1925 included the Secretary of the Navy, General Lejeune, well-known national leaders, and representatives from all the military services.

Oct. 28, 1952, Commandant General Lemuel C. Shepherd Jr. directed the celebration of the Marine Corps Birthday be formalized throughout the corps. The details were included in the Marine Corps Drill Manual approved in 1956. General Shepherd’s order helped bring together the inclusion of a cake ceremony and other traditions still held every year at the Marine Corps Birthday Ball.

Tickets are available from any Marine Corps League member or by calling Bruce Giersch at (815) 904-4534 or Pat Deinhammer at (815) 378-5774, or leave a message on the Detachment’s phone number at (815) 312-4521.

From the Nov. 6-12, 2013, issue

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