Flocks of flamingos land on area lawns

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FARMINGTON — Flocks of pink flamingos have graced the lawns of area homes and businesses in the Mt. Blue Regional School District for more than a week.

The lawn ornaments show up after dark and disappear 24 hours later.

While their location is a secret until they appear, the reason for the bird sightings is divulged with a colorful sign wishing the property owner, “Happy Spring from Mt. Blue Music Boosters.”

The fundraiser has volunteers quietly setting up the displays of 10 flamingos on local lawns for $12, organizer Holly Rice said. The group started May 1 and intends to finish their nightly escapades on May 14. There are still some open slots for Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.

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There are five flocks of 10 that have traveled over the district from Weld to New Sharon to New Vineyard. Friends have paid to have the flamingos land on the lawns of other friends, she said. One person wanted to do it for someone’s birthday, another was the result of an old joke between families.

Rice, formerly of Texas, said several groups there held the flamingo fundraisers only they would charge to take the pink, plastic birds off the property. That didn’t seem quite right, she said.

So the parents and friends of Mt. Blue’s music program devised the all-in-fun local event to replace their concession sales at Mt. Blue football games. With construction under way for the renovation and expansion at Mt. Blue High School, the group lost the concession funds for this year at least.

After purchasing 50 flamingos from Home Depot and accepting requests to have lawns “flamingoed,” the Music Boosters hope to earn more than $800 to help with scholarships and the repair and purchase of musical instruments. The Boosters support the school’s specialty groups such as the Franklin County Fiddlers, the Syncopations and Mt. Blue Voices. They support students who go to regional contests by providing help with fees and lodging, she said.

As far as they know, they haven’t been spotted “flamingoing” a lawn but some residents have seen volunteers pick them up the next night.

“I think they’re waiting for us,” she said.

Most recipients have taken being “flamingoed” in stride, enjoying the light hearted adorning of  their lawns.

Those interested in filling one of the vacant slots over the last three nights may call Rice at 778- 4271 to reserve a flock.

abryant@sunjournal.com

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