News & Press: Public

The Guild Gives Back At ANC Wreaths Across America

Wednesday, January 10, 2018   (1 Comments)
Posted by: Jackie Frend

    The Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington, DC

    PO Box 242, Washington, DC 20044-0242              


Press Release                                                                            Communications Committee

Tuesday, January 9, 2018                                                         Russ Norfleet, Chair


The Guild Gives Back at “Wreaths Across America”

“The love and dedication shined through quite obviously from this dad…” Lisa Deason wrote about a father she met from Georgia who comes to ANC every year for “Wreaths Across America”. He does this to honor his fallen son who rests in Section 60. Scott Kahn wrote, “It was impressive to see such a large group of people come out and lay a wreath at a grave site of someone they didn’t know. Their actions truly showed honor and respect.” Susan Nestleroth met a Gold Star mother whose 20-year old son was killed this year in a training accident. This mother was very moved by the number of volunteers who came to honor those who served our country. And, leave it to Julie Adkins to meet four handsome Marines from North Carolina’s Camp Lejeune as she walked to her gate! She immediately took them under her wing and gave them a “private tour” to the section they were seeking. These opportunities to “give back” are what make volunteering at the ANC “Wreaths Across America” such an honor and privilege.

The waves of volunteers streaming through the Visitor Center exceeded its capacity multiple times that morning. ANC bound Metro trains were overwhelmed. A traffic jam on the roads to ANC started before 7 AM. But, every time I asked a visitor how long the wait had been to pass through the metal detectors, I was greeted with a smile and the cheery response “Not long!”.  If you divide this event into “Tour Bus Math” it would have been more 2200 buses!! All arriving within a 3-hour window! Yeah, it is HUGE!

A gigantic “Thank You” to the 22 Guild Guides and their family members who volunteered their time, knowledge and voluminous patience at the December 2017 “Wreaths Across America” held at Arlington National Cemetery. It was a brisk, sunny Saturday morning which encouraged the largest number of attendees ever to arrive at ANC for this annual event. Over 100,000 people arrived to honor our veterans. More than 250,000 wreaths were laid at gravesites. And for the first time ever, there were enough additional wreath donations to lay them in the Columbarium.                                                                                                         

When I read the stories from the Guides who volunteered, it becomes so clear… As we give back…We receive. That is the true beauty of the holiday season.  

By Clara Sachs,

Guild Volunteer Coordinator

The Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington, DC












Clara F. Sachs says...
Posted Wednesday, January 10, 2018
ANC and WAA have asked the Guild Guides for help as Greeters at the "Wreath Clean Up Day" on Saturday, Jan 20th. If you are able to volunteer, please sign up via the Guild Calendar. Hours are 8 AM to 10 or 11 AM. Only 5000 to 10,000 visitors attend this day. Each volunteer will receive 1 pt. Any questions, contact Clara Sachs at or 301.717.1168.