Volunteers Will Place over 14,000 Flags
In the span of a few hours, entire neighborhoods become extra patriotic just in time for Independence Day thanks to the annual efforts of Phil and Jill Hiller of Hiller’s True Value and hundreds of volunteers.
This year, 14,400 flags will decorate the front lawns of area homes including Marshfield, Stratford, Spencer, Auburndale, Hewitt, Pittsville, Rozellville, and Loyal. Since 2003 the Hillers have spearheaded the program, which started out with 3,000 flags and has grown to the size it is today.
For Phil Hiller, the program is all about saying thanks. “We’re thanking God for the freedom we have, and also thanking those who have fought for our freedom,” he said. Every year, the program receives a lot of feedback from veterans who appreciate the gesture. A few residents even have their own flag collection from over the years.
Volunteers, whether it’s couples, young families, Boy Scout troops, or groups of family and friends, pick up the flags on July 1 and place them in their assigned neighborhoods. Last year, there were 300 volunteers.
The Hillers provide a meal for the volunteers and hand out maps along with instructions on how to place the flag so that each one is presented the same. Volunteers who finish with their territory early can return to get assigned another section if they wish.
Those who live outside city limits are welcome to contact Hiller’s True Value at 715-384-9101 to arrange flags for their own neighborhoods, or to spearhead the effort in their community. Those interested in volunteering can call the store to sign up on the day, which begins at 10 a.m. and runs until 4 p.m.
Funding for the program comes from generous sponsors. A 4-person scramble golf outing fundraiser for the flag program will take place Saturday, July 21 at RiverEdge Golf Course. This event will include drawings, raffles, door prizes, games, and a meal. Email Ryan at firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up.