New box on Main Street ready to accept old American flags
By Shiloh Appel
Redfield residents may have noticed a new forrest green metal box sitting in front of the American Legion on Main Street in the past couple weeks. What is it? It is the first flag disposal box Redfield has ever had, according to American Legion members Bob Schutte and Perry Schmidt. The box, which was originally a recycling box for pop cans and bottles, was purchased from Federal Surplus by Redfield’s American Legion for $175.00 after the idea to have one in Redfield took root, and a search was conducted.
“We had been exploring the idea and trying to find them online. I have seen the one up in Aberdeen out in front of Runnings. Some service organization has a huge box there,” said Schutte. “…[Also], people always ask what they can do with their flags. People always give us flags.”
To give people a central spot to deposit their old and tattered American flags, the Legion members placed the heavy metal box, (which was built “bear-proof” in order to withstand curious bears in whatever federal park it was originally in), in front of the Legion.
To make it obvious that it was for flag disposal, Schutte said they bought the legion decals and American flags and flag disposal box signs (made in Redfield by Lynn Brace) and attached them to the outside of the box.
The box will remain open at all times for flag disposal. Even recently, the Legion has received quite a few flags, so they hope the flag disposal box will become well-known in the community.
“I was at the post office here a couple weeks ago and Dean Terry works over there and he said, ‘Hey, I’ve got some used flags, do you take them?’ And I said ‘yeah, we take them. We will do a ceremony with them.’ And he had a whole cardboard box full of used flags. They had them there in the basement,” said Schmidt. “We had a flag disposal ceremony about three years ago at the school’s Memorial Day thing. We hope to do another [flag disposal ceremony] in the future once the world calms down and we can get back on track.”
In the meantime, the Legion also sells American flags for $22 each. The flags are available whenever the Legion is open, which includes Mondays and Thursdays from 5p.m. to 8p.m. and the first Wednesday of the month during Legion meeting nights.
“They are good, outside, all-weather, made in America flags. They are durable,” said Schutte. “Those who would like to purchase a flag can talk to the bartender or one of the waitresses.”