It was a joyous event, Thursday, June 14 – Flag Day – when hundreds of area residents came to Halifax to be part of history. People gathered at the Pope’s Tavern Senior Center in Halifax to unfurl a huge 45 by 90-foot American flag owned by Marc Valentine of Halifax
Express photographer Stephanie Spyropoulos towered 78 feet over the crowd in the bucket of the new Halifax Tower fire engine to officially document this historic moment.
Valentine, curator of the American Flag Project, emceed the event telling of some of the history of this flag and the places it has been throughout the world. He said this giant flag has been “touched by more Americans than any other flag in history” and that he hopes it will renew appreciation for our flag.
Valentine introduced the Halifax town officials, and invited Selectman Troy Garron to lead the audience in the Pledge of Allegiance.
Among the throng needed to hold the hem of Old Glory, the sixth grade class of Halifax Elementary School also helped by walking under the flag to be sure it didn’t touch the ground. After the flag was rolled back up, the sixth grade class was surprised with their very own official photograph with the Giant Flag.
Holding the flag was not an easy job! Gusts of wind took the flag, threatening to whip it off into the wild blue yonder! It took a lot of combined strength to hold it steady.
The event, which lasted only about 15 minutes total, consisted of unfurling the flag as “You’re a Grand Old Flag” resonated through the green in front of the Senior Center. People of all ages, including town officials, were dressed in red, white, and blue, and smiled wide as they held the edges of the massive flag.
Valentine has been traveling the globe for the past 30 years with his giant flag-painted truck, to bring his giant American flag to more than 1,000 official ceremonies. One of the Flag’s greatest appearances was when it flew next to Lincoln at Mount Rushmore’s 50th rededication celebration. An award-winning photograph of this moment was captured, and went on to be featured in Life Magazine.
. The flag has been in all 50 states, as well as 34 countries.