Douglas County area veterans will celebrate the Marine Corps' 231st birthday beginning at 10:30 a.m. Friday at Kansas University's Dole Institute of Politics.
Birthday cake will be served and Capt. Tom Arnold, commander of the Naval ROTC program at KU, will be the guest speaker. Arnold, former deputy commander and chief of staff for the commander of U.S. Naval Forces, Japan, took over the ROTC program in September.
A taped message from Marine Commandant Gen. Michael W. Hagee also will be played.
The Marine Corps birthday celebration in Lawrence has been an annual event since the early 1970s, said Erv Hodges, a retired Marine lieutenant colonel who helps organize the event. Historically, more than 100 Marines or retired Marines attend the celebration, Hodges said.
"What's nice is Marines can come from wherever they happen to be," Hodges said. "We're very informal."
The Lawrence High School choral group will sing songs, including the "Star-Spangled Banner" and the "Marine's Hymn."
The first piece of cake will be served to the oldest Marine in attendance, Hodges said.
The first local birthday celebration was organized by several Marines who held it in Lawrence City Hall's Commission chambers, Hodges said.