Monday, June 15, 2015

This was a great weekend to be a Chicagoan. Festivals could be found in almost every neighborhood, the city was alive with Blues Fest and the Black Hawks... enough said. But this weekend was also a great time to be a flag flyer. Yesterday was Flag Day... probably one of the more forgotten holidays in the calendar year.

Idaho Veterans
Typically we are not as enthusiastic about Flag Day as you might think. The American Flag for us, is a symbol for honoring, remembering, and celebrating something larger. We use the American Flag to represent our what we want to say.

We celebrate the flag every day it is flown out front. We celebrate the flag every Memorial Day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway when veterans unfurl it over the race track. We celebrate the flag as it stands around the Washington Monument. For us, every day is Flag Day. It is a 365 day commitment and we are proud to do it.
Ozinga shows team pride across the lot from a huge American Flag!

One thing Flag Day does do, is tell us the 4th of July is on the horizon! It's time to get your grill, patio, pole, and flag in perfect condition to celebrate the independence of USA. So here are 5 ways to recover from Flag Day for a phenominal 4th of July.

1. Check your flag, check the closet.
Flags will show signs of wear before they fray badly. Same is true for parts. The rope on a flagpole tell its own story. The display can look amazing but the rope is on its last strand. This is why we like to remind flyers to check their parts when they replace flags. Having a few spare flags or parts in the closet can be handy when the flag holidays roll around. If you are like us, these things can sneak up on you pretty fast.

Washington Monument
2. Think outside the flag.
Stick flags, fans and banners are not just for political campaigns. Like your Christmas lights, you can reuse them every year, unlike your Christmas lights, they wont tangle up on you. This year, don't settle for red, white, and blue plastic cups. Historic American Flags are also a great idea for making a statement.

3. Find a friend who's been putting it off.
We get calls all the time that start off something like this. Hello, my name is ________ and I'd like to get a flagpole. I've been meaning to do this for ___ years. Chances are you know someone who's ready to join the flag flying community. A good way to get over Flag Day is encourage that friend to finally make the leap. Flying the flag is a big commitment. There are those who understand that commitment and accept the charge. Our job is to make flag flying a great experience. But first you have to want to fly a flag.

Rough Ryders
4. Share in the reminder.
Help your neighbor out, if the flags look frayed, remind him (nicely!) the 4th is coming up. In our experience, people don't mean to fly a warn flag, they just need to be reminded to look up every once in a while. One of our fellow flag flyers likes to pass out stick flags to his local community and says, "on the 4th, let's all fly the flag."

5. Don't fear, think ahead for next year.
If you stick up a few spare parts, spread the true meaning of the American flag, and help others spread the word, you should recover from Flag Day quite nicely. However, Flag Day comes along every year. Stay prepared. Don't let Flag Day bring down your 4th of July.

This is all is good fun, but in all seriousness, we just like people who fly flags because flag flyers are the back bone of the community. We are lucky to have our place in this story. The flag unites us and is the most enduring fabric in the history of our nation.