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Locals join Daughters of the American Revolution members for a bell-ringing ceremony to commence Constitution Week

 - Pictured left to right: Daughters of the American Revolution member Mary Rueter, of Madras; DAR member Terry Dittman; Kay Wiles, of Madras; and Christin Peterson, of Madras, wave flags and ring bells during the Daughters of the American Revolution bell-ringing ceremony Friday, Sept. 17.

Madras folks and members of the Daughters of the American Revolution Bend Chapter gathered around the Jefferson County Library flagpole Friday afternoon to ring bells for a minute, commencing Constitution Week, Sept. 17-23.

Member Dorothy Burgess read Madras Mayor Richard Ladeby's proclamation of Constitution Week before the 15 in attendance rang the bells.

DAR Bend Chapter Regent Helena Gerard said ringing bells commemorates the signing of the Constitution on Sept. 17, 1787. The signers came out of Independence Hall in Philadelphia ringing bells at 4 p.m., which is why DAR members do it at 1 p.m. PST. It happens all across the country at the same time every year.

After the bell-ringing ceremony, Madras event attendees went inside the library to view the DAR and Constitution Week library exhibit.

The service organization has three main tenets: patriotism, education and historic preservation.

"We are patriotic, but we aren't political. We really just want to raise awareness, or re-awareness, about the Constitution," Gerard said. "It's important to remember where we came from and that the Constitution is still relevant today."

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