Since the earliest days of the Order, patriotism has been among the hallmarks that make the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks stand out from other fraternal organizations. With a membership, comprised entirely of U.S. citizens, the Elks are committed to promoting the principles of individual freedom, opportunity and dignity.

The Stars and Stripes

The Elks have always been moved by the flag of the United States of America, which is why, in 1907, Elks members adopted a resolution, designating June 14 as Flag Day. The Grand Lodge of the Order adopted mandatory observance of the occasion by every Lodge in 1911, and the requirement continues.

But observing Flag Day isn’t the only way the Order demonstrates its deep reverence for the banner that symbolically embodies the values of the nation. Many Lodges give or sell flags to worthy groups and provide training in proper flag etiquette. Some Lodges provide flags for newly sworn citizens, while other Lodges give flags to their local schools for display in their classrooms and provide them with educational materials to help grade school students learn the Pledge of Allegiance. Each year, Elks across the country sponsor and essay contests that encourage elementary and high school students to explore why the flag is important in their lives.

Lady Liberty

In 1983, at the national convention, the Order of Elks passed a resolution endorsing the Liberty Centennial Campaign’s work to restore the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island. The Order pledged its full support to the campaign and by 1986, had exceeded it original goal, contributing more that $1.38 million to restore this treasured symbol of the nation’s promise of freedom and opportunity.

Civic Pride

In nearly 2,200 communities, local Elks lodges work to promote civic pride by assisting the efforts of local charitable organizations through volunteer work and financial contributions.

In Defense of the Nation

In times of war and international conflict, the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks has made considerable contributions to the nation’s armed forces. The Order considers its work done to aid defense of the nation as one of its proudest and most lasting achievements.