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Lions holding contest to create a Charles City flag

Lions holding contest to create a Charles City flag
The Charles City Lions Club and several other civic organizations have invited any individual or group to design a flag that will officially represent the City of Charles City. The flag contest runs from April 1 through Sept. 30, and the winning design entry will receive a $250 cash prize. (Press photo James Grob.)
By James Grob, jgrob@charlescitypress.com

Call it the Yankee Rose, the Stars and Stripes, the Star-Spangled Banner — or just plain Old Glory — the United States flag, waving high above, can create a lump in the throat and a momentary feeling of unity and pride from sea to shining sea.

Charles City historian Jeff Sisson doesn’t see why that same sense of unity and pride can’t be emulated at the local level — were Charles City to have a flag of its own.

“A lot of communities have their own flag, but for some reason Charles City never did,” Sisson said. “We want a flag design that will officially represent the city of Charles City.”

Led by Sisson, the Charles City Lions Club and several other civic organizations have invited any individual or group of individuals to design a flag that will officially represent the City of Charles City. The flag contest will run from April 1 through Sept. 30, and the winning design entry will receive a $250 cash prize.

“This will give people something to do while we’ve got all this mess (COVID-19) going on,” Sisson said.

The flag contest coincides with the Charles City Lions Club’s 100th anniversary in the community in 2021. The organization is currently redoing the flag display in Central Park as a part of that commemoration, and the idea is to have a display that includes the American flag, the state of Iowa flag and “if we can come up with one” a Charles City flag, Sisson said.

Sisson said the Lions Club has “become the club of flags” in town, with the flags in the rose garden and their annual flags over Charles City project. Creating a city flag fits right into that aesthetic.

Any individual or group can take part in the contest. Each flag design entry into the contest must be accompanied by a $5 entry fee made payable to Charles City Community Revitalization. There is no limit to the number of design entries an individual or group of individuals may submit.

Flag design entries with entry fees may be submitted in person at the Charles City Community Revitalization office, mailed to the Charles City Community Revitalization office at 401 N. Main Street, Charles City, IA 50616, or emailed as a pdf attachment to info@charlescitychamber.com.

All flag design entries must be received or postmarked by Sept. 30, 2020. A flag design entry without an entry fee will not be considered. Flags should be designed and submitted on a standard 8.5 inch by 11 inch letter-size piece of paper.

All flag design entries must include a name, address and contact phone number; an email address if available and a description of flag colors and explanation of the flag entry. “What does the flag signify?”

A committee of 15 individuals will judge the entries and select five finalists for community-wide voting. This committee will meet on Thursday, Oct. 8, 2020.

The committee will consist of the Charles City mayor and representatives of the Charles City Lions Club, the Charles City Arts Council, Charles City Community Schools, the Charles City Historic Preservation Commission, the Charles City Council, Charles City Community Revitalization and the Charles City Area Chamber of Commerce.

Others on the committee will include the city administrator, the executive director of Charles City Community Revitalization and the Charles City Area Chamber of Commerce, a CCHS art teacher, a representative of Charles City Parks and Recreation, a representative of the Women’s City Improvement Association, one middle school student and one high school student.

Community-wide voting will be conducted at the Community Revitalization Office at 401 N. Main St., on Monday, Oct. 19, through Friday, Oct. 23, during normal office hours. Voters must be residents of the Charles City Community School District. There is no age limit to vote.

The winning flag will be announced on Wednesday, Oct. 28, 2020.

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