Arlington National Cemetery (ANC) and Soldiers’ and Airmen’s Home National Cemetery (SAHNC) in Washington, D.C. will hold their annual removal of wreaths, known as Wreaths Out, on Saturday, January 21, beginning at 8 a.m. Thousands of visitors are expected to help remove approximately 257,000 wreaths at Arlington National Cemetery and approximately 14,000 at SAHNC. The high volume of visitors at ANC may create traffic congestion and delays on nearby streets and at the cemetery’s entrances.
“On this special day, visitors are invited to respectfully remove the holiday wreaths placed at these hallowed grounds during the holiday season in remembrance and honor of our nation’s fallen service members and their families,” said Army National Military Cemeteries Executive Director Karen Durham-Aguilera.
The safety and security of our visitors and employees during this event is our top priority. Visitors should anticipate large crowds and difficulty driving vehicles in the vicinity of Arlington National Cemetery due to road closures. Visitors are encouraged to use all four entrances to access the cemetery which include the Memorial Avenue Welcome Center, Ord and Weitzel pedestrian only gate, the Service Complex pedestrian only gate and for DoD cardholders, the Old Post Chapel gate.
There will be no vehicular access permitted on cemetery grounds until 3 p.m. The Welcome Center Parking Garage will open to the public at 8 a.m. on a first-come, first-served basis. We recommend visitors use public transportation or a ride share service for travel to and from the cemetery. The drop-off location for ride share services is adjacent to the Arlington Cemetery Metro Stop on Memorial Avenue.
All visitors will be required to pass through the cemetery’s security screening process before entering the cemetery. Prohibited items include: large bags or backpacks, firearms and weapons of any type, laser pointers, aerosol containers, soda cans, coolers, picnic baskets, tripods, lighters, screwdrivers (or similar tools), air horns, personal protection sprays and insulated beverage containers. Clear plastic water bottles are permitted.
To aid with the removal of multiple wreaths, the public is permitted to bring in PVC pipe, rope, and broomsticks. No sharp objects are permitted. Any attachments at the end of a stick, such as a gardening hoe, rake or metal attachment, must be removed and will not be permitted entry for safety concerns.
Tips for Visitors
- Give vehicles and heavy equipment the right of way.
- Place wreaths in dumpsters positioned throughout the cemetery.
- Do not jump or climb on wreaths in dumpsters to compress them.
- When dumpsters are filled, carry remaining wreaths to unfilled dumpsters. Please do not place wreaths outside of dumpsters or anywhere else in the cemetery.
- Bring work gloves, water and other appropriate gear such as boots and layered clothing.
- Remove Wreaths Across America wreaths only. Leave all other wreaths/decorations in place.
For the latest information and event details, please visit www.arlingtoncemetery.mil/waa and follow us on social media @ArlingtonNatl for real-time updates on the day of the event. Visitors are also encouraged to download the ANC Explorer mobile app available for iOS and Android.