The Trooping the Color parade traditionally celebrates the Queen’s official – but not actual – birthday, marking the start of her Platinum Jubilee celebrations in 2022.
But what is it exactly and why does the Queen have two birthdays?
What is Trooping the Color?
Trooping the Color is an annual event dating back to Charles II in the 17th century when regimental colors were marched in front of soldiers so they could identify their unit in battle.
The Queen has taken the salute almost every year since her coronation in 1953.
The only exception was in 1955 when it was canceled because of a national railroad strike.
To begin, the Queen is greeted with a royal salute and the national anthem.
The parade begins and ends with a second royal salute.
Her Majesty and other members of the Royal Family gather on the balcony of Buckingham Palace to watch a Royal Air Force flyby.
Why is the royal family taking part in the Trooping of the Color?
The appearance of the royal family on the palace balcony has become an anticipated event in the royal calendar.
The first recorded royal balcony appearance was made by Queen Victoria in 1851 during the opening ceremonies of the Great Exhibition.
And seeing the royal family together in one place has since become an established tradition and a rare opportunity.
In recent years, invitees have included descendants of the monarch, her sisters and cousins, and their spouses.
Over 40 family members attended the Queen’s 90th birthday party.
In 2022, however, the number will be significantly reduced.
In May it was confirmed that the Queen had decided to break with royal tradition and that only working royals would appear on the balcony for the Platinum Jubilee celebrations.
The change means, among other things, that Prince Harry, Meghan Markle and Prince Andrew will not be there.
Why does the Queen have two birthdays?
The Queen traditionally has two birthdays, her actual birthday on April 21st and an official birthday celebrated by the Trooping the Color ceremony each summer.
Her real birthday is in April, although the “official” celebration is in June.
She originally celebrated her birthday on the second Thursday in June, but the date was changed to the second Saturday in June in 1959.
The reason this odd tradition started is quintessentially British: namely the temperamental weather in Britain.
It was founded by George II in 1748 – because the weather was too bad to hold his birthday parade on the actual date in November.
Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
Everything you need to know about the Queen’s platinum anniversary
https://www.the-sun.com/news/976791/trooping-the-colour-queen-birthday/ What is Trooping the Color and why is the Royal Family participating? – The US sun