Let’s show our visitors what makes Bainbridge so great

Published 7:21pm Friday, February 14, 2014

As I drove Friday afternoon down Shotwell Street heading east, I came upon the awesome sight of the giant American flag flying in front of Action GM. There was a stiff wind blowing and the flag, at that time, was almost perfectly horizontal.
Now, you can drive around Bainbridge and see many flags in front of businesses and residences, but when you see a 30 foot by 50 foot flag atop a flag pole that is ten stories tall, well, it was enough to send chills down my back. From all accounts, the highest flagpole in the state of Georgia resides right here in Bainbridge, in front of Action GM.
The image of that huge flag flying reinforces the idea some of you might have heard discussed on local radio station Live 101.9 this week. The station’s operator, my friend Kevin Dowdy, has been encouraging residents and business owners to begin displaying the American flag in advance of the big weekend coming in March, when thousands of visitors will be in our community.
During the BASS Elite Series fishing tournament and River Town Days on March 13-16, many people will travel to Bainbridge and, for many, it will be their first time here. I applaud Kevin for his idea and I would like to help him in asking that every business and every resident display the American flag during that time.
And, heck, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to simply leave the flag flying even after our visitors have left our community.
Although I have only been a resident of Bainbridge for five years, there has never been an event since I have lived here that will have attendance numbers like this fishing tournament and River Town Days will be able to attract. In fact, I have asked many long-time residents, and they all say that same thing — that is, this will be the biggest event Bainbridge and Decatur County has ever seen.
With national print media and ESPN coverage, we have the opportunity to show the rest of the nation that we are, as Kevin puts it, a very patriotic town and our residents love the United States.
How great would it be for the professional anglers to see flags on boat docks all along the Flint River into Lake Seminole?
BASS, the company, is bringing hundreds of support staff to work the tournament and my hope is when they leave, they remember their days spent in Bainbridge.
So, to echo what Kevin has been discussing this week, fly your American flag, welcome our visitors, and show them all why Bainbridge and Decatur County is such a special place.

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