What Are Ceremony Programs
First Day Ceremony Programs are produced by the USPS for most stamps issued, or by the group or organization sponsoring the first day event. They contain a wealth of information about the ceremony itself, along with a stamp and the first day of issue cancellation.
While distributed to attendees for free, these programs have become both collectible and desirable. They are collected in many ways: as-distributed, autographed by the ceremony participants, and sometimes with additional cancellations (show cancels) when available at philatelic exhibitions.
The first program was distributed for the Booker T. Washington issue of April 7, 1940. The format has changed multiple times over the years since that issue.
Ceremony Programs are also available by subscription from the USPS.