Clipper Staff Writer
BOUNTIFUL — Under one tree in Bountiful City Park, families were learning about the trials of the early Jamestown settlers.
Under another, they were taking the oath of citizenship.
In one spot, students were told about what it was like to try to get into America through Ellis Island.
Nearby, a Thomas Jefferson’s look-alike was teaching about the Declaration of Independence.
It was all part of Constitution Days, an annual educational event held at the park to celebrate the ratification of the United States Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787.
Brothers Josh and Dallin Christensen studied the experiences of the sons of Abraham Clark, one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence whose sons were captured by the British.
Josh Christensen said his study of one of the country’s founders taught him how extremely hard the battle for independence was.
“It is impressive to me,” he said. “I was inspired.”
The Padilla family wandered through a sea of U.S. flags, reading and committing to responsibilities of citizenship.
Col. Jack Tueller held a young crowd’s attention as he told about flying missions in several wars, being the sole survivor of 12 planes that flew to battle in World War II.
“Love your country,” he told the listeners. “Be willing to die for it.”
He advised them not to get angry, to start every day thinking the glass is half full and to not be afraid to cry.
George “Lanny” Landrith taught the difference between saying something and declaring it.
“To declare is to say something strongly,” he said. “When we’re talking about freedom ... it’s not a statement, it’s a declaration. When we do fireworks on the Fourth of July, we’re not saying we’re free, we’re declaring we’re free.”