PHOTOS: Georgetown's Field of Honor sees success despite pandemic-related changes

Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)

Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)

Image description
Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Image description
Field of Honor took place Nov. 7-15 at San Gabriel Park in Georgetown. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Field of Honor in Georgetown adapted to pandemic challenges for its fourth annual event to honor veterans, first responders and other community heroes.

This year's event included 1,460 full-size American flags and special sections for K9 service dogs, historical U.S. and Texas flags, service branch flags, the Space Force flag and a flag for COVID-19 heroes.

Field of Honor, hosted by the Rotary Club of Georgetown, brought about 4,500 visitors throughout the week this year. Jeanne Cox, the Rotary Club’s Field of Honor chair, said this was about the same number of daily visitors as previous years with the exception of the visitors from annual opening ceremonies and other large gatherings at the field. The field was open 24 hours a day from Nov. 7-15, and visitors were able to socially distance at the outdoor venue.

The event benefits FOCK Ride On Center for Kids, Samaritan Counseling Center and Veteran Outdoors. Proceed totals are still being calculated.

Cox said she loves listening to stories from veterans and their family members at Field of Honor. The event is a way to bring unity and peace to the community, she said.


“There are so many amazing stories told and shared at that field. And it keeps reminding us why we do this,” Cox said. “It’s our gift to the community and our way to express gratitude and patriotism for this county at a time when it is so important because we’ve got so much division and anger out there.”

After the Red Poppy Festival was canceled, there was a risk that the annual event would not go on, Cox said. But the decision to include COVID-19 heroes in the event was one of the committee members' first changes in their pandemic response.

“They are on the front lines of this pandemic, and this is huge. They deserve to be recognized and honored with a flag as well,” Cox said.

The event also modified its Veterans Day event to be smaller and socially distanced on the football-sized field. Speeches, two flyovers and the 11 bell rings were kept in the adapted ceremony.

Georgetown ISD field trips are also a typical part of the Field of Honor, Cox said, but field trips were moved to a virtual format this year with a week of virtual events. Cox said they were a “huge success,” and deployed military members were able to speak to students on panels.

As a Navy mother, Cox said visiting her first Field of Honor years ago in California was touching. She said she stood in the middle of flags and cried and prayed for her daughter who was deployed. After joining the Rotary Club of Georgetown, she suggested the Field of Honor as the club’s signature event because of the large veteran population in Georgetown and Williamson County.

The Georgetown event began in 2017.
By Taylor Girtman
After interning with Community Impact Newspaper in 2019, Taylor Girtman became a reporter for the Cedar Park and Leander edition in Feb. 2020. She covers Leander ISD and the Cedar Park and Leander city councils.


MOST RECENT

Of the total cases reported to date, 11,304 are estimated to have recovered, and there are an estimated 806 active cases in Williamson County as of Nov. 24. (Community Impact Staff)
Williamson County reports 337 new cases of coronavirus Nov. 24

Of the total cases reported to date, 11,304 are estimated to have recovered, and there are an estimated 806 active cases in Williamson County as of Nov. 24.

The Commissioners Court approved funding for the program Nov. 24. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Williamson County funds COVID-19 convalescent plasma program

Some 252 Williamson County patients have received the therapy of the 1,300 total patients.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan for the state Nov. 23 for a vaccine he said could be available as soon as December. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announces COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan

The vaccine could start being distributed "as early as next month," according to a Nov. 23 news release.

As of Nov. 23, there are 63 patients hospitalized, 23 in intensive care units and 12 on a ventilator. (Community Impact staff)
376 new cases, 2 additional deaths reported in Williamson County from Nov. 20-23

As of Nov. 23, there are 63 patients hospitalized, 23 in intensive care units and 12 on a ventilator.

P. Terry’s Burger Stand is expected to open its long-awaited Pflugerville location this January. (Courtesy P. Terry's Burger Stand)
P. Terry's to open in Pflugerville in January and more Central Texas news

Read the latest Central Texas business and community news.

covid
Williamson County reports 203 new COVID-19 cases, 1 death Nov. 20

Williamson County reported 203 new cases of the coronavirus and one death Nov. 20.

Laura Colangelo
Q&A: Laura Colangelo discusses challenges facing private schools during pandemic

Colangelo said private schools have adapted to remote learning and other obstacles in 2020 despite less revenue and a 9% decline in enrollment statewide.

Festival attendees will have access to augmented reality artworks throughout the galleria. (Courtesy Bee Cave Arts Foundation)
Inaugural interactive light festival coming soon to Bee Cave and more Central Texas updates

Read the latest business and community news from the Austin area.

The Round Rock Express play at the Dell Diamond in Round Rock. (Courtesy city of Round Rock)
Round Rock Express will have a new affiliate after Astros announce departure

A new affiliate is expected to be announced soon for the 2021 season at the Dell Diamond.

Schools now have the power to temporarily suspend on-campus instruction if “a significant number of the instructional staff at the campus is impacted due to a confirmed COVID-19 outbreak." (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Texas Education Agency authorizes schools to close doors for 14 days due to coronavirus-related staffing concerns

Campuses can now instate a hybrid or fully remote instruction model for up to 14 days if adequate instructional staffing is not possible due to high numbers of COVID-19 cases among employees.

Kalahari Resorts & Conventions ended its grand opening event with a fireworks display Nov. 14. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)
Kalahari Resorts & Conventions celebrates grand opening in Round Rock and more top Central Texas news

Read the most popular stories from the past week from the Austin area.

There are 15 graves in the cemetery, including that of Mary Ann Manlove Fisk, Greenleaf Fisk’s first wife. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
Residents protect graves of first Williamson County judge and his family

Mariann Laughlin has worked the last 16 years to preserve her family’s cemetery, the nearby Fisk family cabin and the stories of her ancestors.