In the short time that it's been up it has become a Tonawanda landmark.  The large American flag flying in front of the Gander Outdoors store on Young Street is clearly visible from a mile away when you travel along the I-290 near the Colvin exit.

The Gander Outdoors flag is 80 feet wide, 40 feet high and is on a flag pole 130 feet tall.  The flag's stripes are 3-feet wide and each of the 50 stars are 2-feet across.  The giant flags are part of a tradition that the store chain began five years ago at each of its stores across the country.

Can you imagine the outrage if the store was ordered to remove that flag?  The Tonawanda store doesn't have that problem but one in North Carolina does.  Statesville, NC has ordered Gander Outdoors to remove its flag because it violates a city code that limits the size of a flag to no more than 40 by 25 feet.

The city ordinance says flags that big are a distraction to drivers.

When the store refused to comply the city sued and fined them $50.00 a day dating back to October until they remove the flag.  The owner of the store chain says he doesn't care if the fine goes to $500.00 a day or they take him to jail.  The flag is not coming down.

As you can imagine the outrage has been enormous from all over the country.  In the meantime the city says they're considering an amendment to the city code that would allow the flag to fly.


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