Legion develops historic downtown spot

WAYLAND — The Point Project has been on the hearts of many for years, and now an American flag stands 50-feet-tall to honor the memory of this historic spot.


The Wayland American Legion leased the land that for decades held the famous Shorty Bortle Gas and Grocery. For the past decade the land stood vacant with several ideas of what to do about the corner that welcomes people coming into Wayland.


On June 19 the Legion, Wayland Fire Department and Fred’s Flags raised a 50-foot-pole into the air. Along the point are giant rocks that will keep people from damaging the property with their vehicles. The American flag was gently lifted to the top of the pole as a sign of great honor.


Kevin Mark, Wayland American Legion post commander, said he plans on planting trees in the back of The Point and a sign will be placed around there as well.


The flagpole project cost $5,300 to purchase for The Point Project. It is just the start of what the Legion has planned for this property.


Tom Weeks, Fred’s Flags owner, said his father-in-law, WWII veteran Fred Brown, created this business after being involved with many patriotic organizations. Brown was a member of several when he came back from the war in 1946.


Weeks said he has worked with Mark for years on flags for the Legion. He has worked with the other local legions as well such as Dansville, Springwater, and Cohocton.


It is unusual to put up a 50-foot-pole in an area like The Point. David Warren, Fred’s Flags flagpole specialist, said normally an area like this gets a 30-foot-pole. However, the company works hand and hand with the clients to make sure they get the best products for what they want. Warren worked diligently with the fire department to get this pole raised for the community.


Mark said there is still a lot of work to be done, but they are proud of what has been accomplished so far.


"We are not done yet, but there is a lot more to come. We will have Emerald Green Trees in the back. We will be putting up a sign soon too. We have the rocks put in place along the edge of The Point to keep people from driving their cars through the property," he said. "We are happy with the flagpole and the American flag."


Warren said this kind of cable used for the flag will absorb the shock, so the flag will not yank in the wind. This kind of technique makes the flags last a lot longer.


"Be careful with the flags you fly. If you have 50 mile-per-hour gusty winds or more you need to take this flag down to keep it from wearing out. The flags will last longer if you take good care of them. The winds will not damage the pole, since these poles are built to take on 100 mile-per-hour gusty winds. These flagpoles are big money, but they will last forever. They don’t bend in the wind," he said.


Warren has been with the company for over 30 years and works for the Rochester Fire Department.


Weeks has been part of the business with his father-in-law since 1979. He said their services have been used all over the world.


"This kind of business keeps you busy. Fred got involved in several flag companies after the war, and he wanted to do something different when he retired. He made his own company. We have had our flags all over the world. We have been all over the nation. We were in Washington D.C. Dave (Warren) helped fix the flagpole where Ronald Reagan was shot down there. He got the local fire department down there to help him out. These guys know how to solve any problem," he said. "We provide any kind of custom flags. We do regular repairs. We install flagpoles. We are carrying on the traditions my father-in-law started with the company."


For more information about Fred’s Flags visit https://www.fredsflags.net