Cherokee neighborhood moves to remove tattered flags

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ST. LOUIS (KPLR) – What started as a well intended beautification project for the Cherokee neighborhood in south St. Louis has turned into an eyesore and money pit.

Back in 2006, the Chippewa-Broadway Business Association initiated its “Streetscape” program; with the help of a grant from the St. Alexius Hospital Auxiliary. The association put up decorative planters, colorful banners and dozens of American flags.

But several years of harsh weather and a lack of funds to maintain the flags have turned this seemingly good idea into an eyesore.  A KPLR viewer alerted us to the condition of the flags Tuesday morning and our reporter investigated, finding several blocks of torn and tattered flags in what a viewer called the worst display of American flags he’s ever seen.

I spoke with CBBA president Sarah Rye Bliss and she says they have been working to clean things up, but that they must rely on volunteers and donations.  The equipment used to pull down the flags had been broken she explained, which is why several dozen flags remained.  However, after we contacted the CBBA early Tuesday afternoon they were able to get volunteers to complete the clean-up and now all the tattered flags have been removed.

Bliss says despite this one set-back there are many good things going on in this historic neighborhood with new restaurants and businesses popping up.

If you would like to volunteer your time, talents or resources to help continue to revitalize the Cherokee neighborhood, you are encouraged to check out their website.