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Medina approves second group of banners for soldiers

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 11 June 2019 at 5:23 pm

Photo by Tom Rivers: This banner on Main Street features the late Vernon Toussaint, one of 38 put up last month in time for Memorial Day.

MEDINA – The Medina Village Board approved a second round of Hometown Hero banners, although the number and locations are still to be determined.

The board, however, authorized Mary Woodruff to start work on the next group of banners. Woodruff, a Ridgeway town councilwoman, took the lead on the banners late last year.

The first group of 38 banners was installed by the Village Department of Public Works just before Memorial Day last month. Those banners will stay up until right after Veterans’ Day in November.

Most of the banners are on Main Street with a few on East Center Street.

Woodruff has already heard from about 15 people who want to purchase a banner for $200 with the image and name of a loved one who served in the military. The banners highlight veterans from World War II to current soldiers.

The first group of banners went on village-owned poles. As the banners expand to other locations, permission will be needed from National Grid to put the pole’s hardware on the Grid poles.

The Village Board approved the additional banners on Tuesday, with an understanding that National Grid permission will be needed. The board also wants Joe Perry, the DPW superintendent, to have input in where the banners will be going.

Woodruff would next like to focus on Park Avenue, which is on the Memorial Day parade route. She would like more banners on East and West Center streets, and some on Pearl Street, where the former Armory is located. That building is now the Orleans County YMCA.

The vinyl banners are double-sided and 5 feet tall by 2 ½ feet wide. Woodruff, a retired social studies and math teacher at Roy-Hart, pushed to start the Hometown Heroes effort in Medina after seeing a similar one in Alfred.

The Medina Village Clerk’s Office, and Shelby and Ridgeway town clerks helped take applications and funds for the banners for the first round. Woodruff wants to work with them again for the project but isn’t ready to take in applications until she gets the permission for the poles from National Grid, as well as feedback from Perry, the DPW superintendent.

Woodruff wants the new group of banners to go on Main Street and downtown for the first year, before then going to a secondary street the following year. This year’s banners that are currently on display will move to the secondary locations next year.

She expects the banners will last three years. After that, they will be given to the family of each highlighted veteran.

The Village Board suggested there be a cap of 100 banners, but that number wasn’t voted on. The board wants to first hear from National Grid and the DPW superintendent about the number of sites.

For more information about the banners, email Woodruff at curlqt@aol.com.

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