Quincy News

Exchange Club's 1000 flag Field of Honor to be displayed at JWCC

Doug Reed unfurls an American flag after 1,000 flags were set in the club’s Field of Honor on the grounds of the Illinois Veterans Home. This year, the display with be set up at John Wood Community College in Quincy. | H-W File Photo/Phil Carlson
Phil Carlson
By Herald-Whig
Posted: Nov. 6, 2016 12:05 am

QUINCY -- Quincy Exchange Club will soon resurrect its annual 1,000 flag Field of Honor.

The tradition will be transplanted at John Wood Community College this year, due to construction at its traditional site, the Illinois Veterans Home. The display will be up from Friday through Nov. 14.

"It literally makes the hair stand on the back of my neck. It is pretty cool, when you get 1,000 flags whipping in the wind," said Flags of Honor Chairman Art Awerkamp. "It's about getting back to the reason for it all, honoring veterans."

The flags displayed in the Field of Honor are rented out to citizens and displayed on their lawns four different times over the course of a year through the Exchange Club's Flags of Honor program. The program serves as a fundraiser for Quincy Exchange Club, allowing the organization to continue promoting and supporting various veterans programs in the community.

"Everybody is very receptive to it and seems very appreciative," Awerkamp said. "There were guys who had been members of the Exchange Club for 30 years that came up to me that first year we did it and said this is the coolest thing we've ever done."

The display's power far exceeds the hours of labor required to erect it.

"Veterans seem very appreciative of it, all of them. They are all pretty humble. That's what I've noticed. " Awerkamp said. "They will come up and talk to you, and they don't want a lot of fanfare, but they appreciate the effort to recognize what they did."

All are welcome to witness the spectacle first-hand. Awerkamp suggests attending at night, as the spotlights on the field amplify the effect of the display.

"People will pull up on a motorcycle and get that perfect shot," Awerkamp said. "People can stop by Friday afternoon after work if they want to."

For more information visit q-flags.com or Quincy Flags of Honor on Facebook.

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