Nearly 500 shopping centers across the U.S., including several in Iowa, are taking part in events to mark Flag Day today (Wednesday). Patrice Duker, spokeswoman for the International Council of Shopping Centers, says there are different patriotic activities planned at each mall as part of the “Old Gloryous Celebration.”

Duker says there is a host of flag raising activities across the country, some involve the local AM-VETS and V-F-W while others are raising food and supplies for local troops who are on duty overseas. Other malls are gathering Boy Scout troops to teach flag etiquette or local singers and bands to perform patriotic music.

She says this has been months in the planning with multiple goals in mind. They’re wanting to honor the troops and veterans while raising patriotism. She says some shopping centers are creating flags with hand-prints after dipping their hands in red, white or blue paint.

Duker says the shopping centers in Iowa and nationwide are providing a forum for families, friends and coworkers to come together for an important patriotic holiday that should not be overlooked. She says “We have to remember the flag and take the opportunity to raise flag awareness.”

Iowa malls taking part in the events include: Coral Ridge Mall, Coralville; Jordan Creek Town Center, West Des Moines; Lindale Mall, Cedar Rapids; Mall of the Bluffs, Council Bluffs; Quincy Place Mall, Ottumwa; Southern Hills Mall, Sioux City; Southridge Mall, Des Moines. For more information, surf to “”.