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Lansing’s stars and stripes were unfurled in 2008, and point to national pride and local history
By Carrie Steinweg
LANSING, Ill. (July 3, 2021) – In early 2008, Lansing’s current mayor Patty Eidam was a village trustee and also vice president of the Lansing Historical Society. When attending meetings and events outside the village as a trustee, she noticed how many other villages in the area had their own flag representing their community.
“I looked into why Lansing did not have a flag and learned that in 1976 a contest was held for a Lansing Flag design. A winner was chosen, but there is no record of the design and no flag was ever shown,” said Eidam. “So, I took the idea of a contest to design a Lansing Flag to Mayor [Dan] Podgorski and the Village Board, and to the Lansing Historical Society and asked them to partner on a flag design contest.”
The revitalized contest guidelines indicated there was a minimum age of 18 to submit a flag design and that an explanation of the design should accompany each entry. There were a total of 25 entries submitted to the Lansing Historical Society. The society board selected five finalists to pass on to the Village Board, which ultimately selected the design of retired Lansing Police Officer Brad Borys.
At the October 21, 2008, Village Board meeting, the board formally adopted the design as Lansing’s Flag.
Symbolism behind the Lansing Flag
“I was inspired when the village was looking for a village flag design that shows what the village is about. I looked at the Chicago flag and what it represented and I came up with the idea,” said flag designer Brad Borys. “I wanted the flag to show respect to the red, white and blue of the U.S. and I wanted to show the three original areas of Lansing — Oak Glen, Bernice, and Lansing, which were incorporated to make our village one. As for the tan color stars, I wanted to show the color of the sand that was once the shore of Lake Michigan before waters changed, giving our village more dry land.”
Borys said that he hasn’t had any formal art instruction or training and his skills are self-taught. He also created the design for the village’s 911 uniform patches, which include both the police star and a fire department helmet.
The Lansing Flag has red, white and blue stripes representing the nation’s flag and three sand-colored stars representing the three original communities coming together to be incorporated into the Village of Lansing in 1893.
A flag for Lansing
“This project was special to me because I saw it as another opportunity for our village board to work together with the historical society on a positive project for our village,” said Eidam. “Now, as mayor, I still hand out copies of our village flag, to color, to students that visit the Municipal Center, or to take to classrooms when I visit schools.”
The Lansing Flag is displayed at all municipal buildings, including the village hall, fire and police stations, public works building, and at the Lansing Firefighters Memorial on Ridge Road.
“Our Lansing Veterans Memorial Ceremonial Honor Guard carries the Lansing Flag in parades and displays it at our Veterans Memorial,” said Eidam. “It is also on display at the headquarters of South Suburban Mayors and Managers in East Hazel Crest. Many of our local schools also display the Lansing Flag.”
The Lansing Historical Society has a limited number of Lansing Flags for sale for $100 each. To purchase, call 708-474-2442, ext. 176.
- Lansing celebrates Hometown Heroes in patriotic ceremony (May 28, 2021)