Top of the Morning, July 27, 2014
She told me she learned the Pledge of Allegiance more than 50 years ago as a grade-schooler in Atwood.
So I asked Sue Falk if she still remembered the words.
It took her all of eight seconds to prove it, getting from "I pledge" to "justice for all" lickety-split.
"I'm very patriotic," she said. "I grew up in the '60s, when we were deciding to burn the flag or fly it. I was always an advocate of patriotism."
July being National Ice Cream Month and Arthur being the kind of town it is, Falk is hoping a red, white and blue crowd gathers from 1-5 p.m. Thursday outside Dicks Pharmacy on Vine Street. There, Falk and others from the Arthur American Legion Auxiliary will serve as "listeners" as children eighth grade or younger recite the Pledge of Allegiance from memory.
The reward? A free scoop of Prairie Farms ice cream served from behind the famous soda fountain at Dicks.
The judges will be lenient. "As long as they make a good attempt," Falk said, "they'll get ice cream."
The scoops will be chocolate or vanilla. "We'll dip 'em up," said Dicks employee Susan Custer, who learned the pledge in first grade. "It'll be great to see the little ones doing this."
The idea will be contagious. That's the hope of Falk, who encourages neighboring towns to give it a try.
"It's a small thing, but I think it's important for kids to learn," Falk said. "If we don't encourage kids to continue it, it will be gone."
I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.