ONONDAGA COUNTY, N.Y. -- Preparations for a Memorial Day tradition are underway at the state fairgrounds where the annual Watchfire will light up the eyes of spectators Sunday night.
Each year, thousands of people gather in front of the fire to honor the soldiers who have died while in service. It is also a great opportunity to respectfully and properly dispose of retired American flags.
So far, thousands of flags have been collected over the course of the year and have been draped across the Watchfire. But organizers say the main point of the fire is to honor and remember.
"It's a tribute. And so, this is a yearly thing we've been doing for the last 20 years and it's a great gather for all people and all veterans, both living and passed," said Dan Diflorio, Vice President of the Vietnam Veterans of America CNY Chapter.
The Watchfire comes from an old tradition of lighting a large fire after a battle to guide missing soldiers home.
And if you have an old flag that you would like to dispose of, you can still drop it off at the Veterans Memorial Watchfire Park. That's in the lot between I-690, 695 and State Fair Boulevard.