The last time the US had a new flag was 1959, when President Eisenhower ordered the creation of a 50-star flag following Hawaii’s statehood. But Mayor Muriel Bowser‘s rally for DC statehood Monday envisioned a new 51-star flag, and the parade route was lined with them.
— Mark Segraves (@SegravesNBC4) September 16, 2019
It’s all part of a weeklong series of activism in preparation for a Congressional hearing on DC statehood scheduled for Thursday—the first time in 26 years that DC will have had a hearing on this issue. In addition to the parade, the city unveiled a mural Tuesday on Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue, the 51 for 51 Coalition is holding a press conference Wednesday, and statehood supporters plan a march on the Mall Thursday after the hearing.
But, what’s a good political movement without some sort of merch? Parade attendees also had the chance to nab a mini flag handed out by mayoral staff at the event, but for those that missed out the search hasn’t been so easy. If you’re looking to attend one or all the events, or just looking for some new home décor, here are some spots where you can find a 51-star flag.
1. There’s always the internet
While any statehood advocate would prefer to buy local, sometimes convenience wins. Fifty-one-star flags are available from Amazon and the United States Flag Store, and if you pop for one-day-shipping your flag should come just in time for the hearing. Plus, with HQ2 landing in Arlington, Amazon is local-adjacent.
2. Support voting rights and get a flag
For the next 51 days, the voting rights group DC Vote will send a three-by-five-foot 51-star flag to anyone who donates at least $51. Director of DC Vote Bo Shuff says the organization got the idea after seeing the excitement around Bowser’s flags. So far, DC Vote has received roughly 51 orders, but it’s keeping the source of its flags a secret in case that company runs out.
3. Roll your own
FastSigns on V Street, Northeast, can custom-make any 51-star flag design you’ve got laying around or, if you’re not artistically inclined, design one for you in any size you like—even handheld ones.