FOLEY – A new giant American flag flying over Foley provides a more noticeable patriotic display along Alabama 59 in downtown.
The nylon flag replaces a heavier cotton banner. The new flag flying from a 90-foot pole requires less wind to stand out in a breeze, Brenda Shambo, city administrative assistant, told members of the Foley Beautification and Revitalization Board.
“We got a new lighter weight flag and it really flies so much better now,” Shambo said. “When this one gets wet, it doesn’t take long before it dries out and it’s back up in the air. That other one would just hang there.”
Mayor Ralph Hellmich said the new flag was also less expensive than its predecessor.
“This one is lighter. It’s easier to handle,” Hellmich said. “It’s not quite as costly, and we’ll see how long it lasts. But we’ve all noticed that it flies better. That doesn’t take as much of a breeze to get it standing and that’s what you really like to see.”
Shambo said the old flag will be retained as a spare.
Another new flag display should also soon be flying at the city Veterans Memorial on South Alston Street at Max Griffin Park. Shambo said a 40-foot pole is on order and will soon be installed to replace the 20-foot model now at the site.
“The 40-foot Veterans Memorial pole is ordered and should be coming in here within the next couple of weeks,” she said. “WeI’ve got the lights and the flags are here for it.”
Hellmich said the city is also making arrangements with the U.S. Army to move two old anti-tank guns that had been on display at the former Alabama National Guard Armory to the Veterans Memorial.
“The Army has all been signed off on the two guns to move to the Veterans Memorial at Griffin and then we’re going to put a concrete pad and do a couple of other things. But we hope to get that too and move that over there,” Hellmich said.
The company that will install the Veterans Memorial pole will also check another pole on Alabama 59 no longer being used by the city.
That old pole was replaced by the new pole being used to fly the large nylon flag. The old pole is also on South McKenzie Street about one block north of the new flag. Officials have not determined what to do with the old pole.
Hellmich said Riviera Utilities has offered to cut down the pole at no cost and move the piece to a city storage yard. He said the pulley used to raise and lower the flag was damaged when crews tried to remove the pole after it was replaced.
Shambo said the U.S. Flag company will determine if the pulley on the original pole can be repaired and the price of the work.
Hellmich said that if the internal pulley cannot be repaired the original pole could still be cut and reused. He said, an external system could be installed and the pole shortened to about 70 feet and used in another location.