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PROVO — Provo City is asking its residents to pick the new city flag in an online poll.
The flagpole at city hall in Provo hasn't flown a flag in a long time and, over the past two years, Mayor John Curtis has tried to find a new design.
"Part of the process for us has been learning what makes a good flag,” Curtis said.
Provo knows a good design is important. Ten years ago, Provo's flag was voted one of the ugliest in the United States. The city had been trying to find a new design that will stand the test of time.
Curtis said the city has consulted vexillologists — a term for an expert on flags — from as far as away as England, and it's down to two similar designs.
Both designs are reflective of Utah Lake, the mountains and the blue sky. One design includes three stars, symbolic of life in Provo. Curtis said three elements that represent Utah are also in each design.
"One is our beautiful scenery and recreational opportunities, another is the quality of the people and friendliness you find here, and the third is our innovative spirit,” Curtis said. “So those three elements are tied in with the lake, the mountains and the sky.”
Curtis said everyone has an opinion about the new flag, including the city council, which keeps sending the proposals back to the drawing board.
The designs are getting mixed reaction from Provo residents.
One is our beautiful scenery and recreational opportunities, another is the quality of the people and friendliness you find here, and the third is our innovative spirit. So those three elements are tied in with the lake, the mountains and the sky.
–Provo mayor John Curtis
"I like the star one better. It adds a little bit morem” said Provo resident Cambria Gunnell.
"I liked the one without the stars until you gave me the meaning of the stars, and then I appreciated the stars more," said resident Erica Messerly.
Some don't believe Provo needs a new flag.
"I liked the old one. The new ones look like they are from a different country," said resident Rob Hamblin.
One thing people appear to agree on is that there should be no red in the flag, which may suggest a tie to Brigham Young University rival University of Utah.
Curtis said he doesn’t have a favorite. Rather, he just wants a flag.
"I’ve seen dozens of designs that are all fabulous. The problem is that when you get down to the fine details, you get all these different opinions. And the reality is any of the designs I've seen would have been great. We just need to make a decision,” Curtis said.
Residents can vote on which design they like more in an online poll on the mayor's blog. The mayor will submit the winner to the city council for a final vote in a few weeks.