Deadline looms for ‘Yukon Salutes’ project

Still time to order Main Street banners honoring local veterans, first responders

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Here is an example of a “Yukon Salutes” military banner, this one honoring the U.S. Navy service of Robin Cunningham. The annual Yukon Main Street project recognizes the efforts of active military members, veterans and first responders. (Image provided)

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

Customized banners honoring military veterans and first responders are being offered for a unique display along Yukon’s Route 66 corridor.

The annual Yukon Salutes’ project features banners proudly displayed on street poles on Main Street and Garth Brooks Boulevard from mid-October through Nov. 11 (Veterans Day).

Each tribute banner features a local hero’s photo, name and details about their service. Family members and appreciative citizens sponsor the banners.

Sgt. Cole Kroutil of the Yukon Fire Department was among first responders honored with customized banners in the 2021 Yukon Main Street “Yukon Salutes” project. Banners featuring local veterans and first responders will be displayed on street poles from Oct. 8 through Nov. 11. (Image provided)

A reception and official opening for the third annual Yukon Salutes project will be 10 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 8 at the Yukon Veterans Museum, 10 W Main.

“Our mayor, Shelli Selby, will read the proclamation and the banners will be up,” said project chair Kay Casper, a Yukon 66 Main Street board member.

There were 40 military banners displayed in 2020, then 45 banners in 2021 when first responders were added.

“The deadline is August 1 to get orders in,” Yukon Main Street Director Vicki Davis said this week. “We’re doing really well on veteran banners, but only have two first responders – the Yukon Police Department and Yukon Fire Department, which are rehanging theirs. We had 10 first responder banners sponsored last year.”

Previous Yukon Salutes’ sponsors are being reminded if they are interested in having a banner re-hung.

Banner sponsorships are $150 each. Sponsors may choose to feature a worthy active military member, veteran or first responder.

The City of Yukon has several sets of banners displayed throughout the year to celebrate various seasons and promote community events like Rock the Route and the Oklahoma Czech Festival.

Yukon’s Main Street director considers all these colorful, beautifully designed banners to be “part of our downtown public art collection.”

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LASTING IMPACT

Yukon 66 Main Street began the Yukon Salutes’ banner project in 2020 to honor and memorialize the “far-reaching legacy of veterans in our lives and community,” according to Davis.

“We celebrate the freedoms provided through their service and sacrifices,” she noted.

First responder banners became part of the display in 2021 to show appreciation for the protection that law enforcement personnel, firefighters and health professionals provide daily.

Yukon 66 Main Street Board President Judy Austin cited the “big impact” the Yukon Salutes’ project has on families of honorees – especially grandkids who like hanging banners in their room at home after they’re taken down from street poles.

The Yukon City Council annually observes “Veterans Appreciation Month” and “National First Responders Day” each fall as part of the tribute.

Anyone interested in sponsoring a Yukon Salutes’ banner should call the Yukon Main Street office at (405) 350-5999 or visit yukon66mainsteet.com.

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ODDS ‘N ENDS

In more Yukon Main Street news:

  • A Keep Oklahoma Beautiful grant is being sought to repaint the Ross Service auto repair garage at Ninth and Main.
  • Some 70 vendor booth applications already have been submitted for the annual Yukon Czech Christmas Market set Saturday, Dec. 3 in the 10 W Main parking lot.
  • Nominations are being accepted for four openings on the Yukon 66 Main Street board. Board members serve three-year terms.

The Yukon Main Street office, 528 W Main, is open weekdays from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. For more information, call (405) 350-5999 or visit www.yukon66mainstreet.com