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Minneola Artist Repaints Fire Station Flag

Judd Weil
Dodge City Daily Globe
Galen Rankin, was commissioned by Minneola leadership, to repaint the picture of the American Flag that has been on the front door of the fire station for 20 years SUBMITTED PHOTO

MINNEOLA — Local artist Galen Rankin, recently finished repainting a picture of the American flag, emblazoned on the door of the Minneola fire station.

Considered an unofficial landmark, the original rendition of the flag was painted 20 years ago, by the local 4-H Club led by Margo Rakes and was enjoyed by local citizens and travelers driving on Highway 54.

Over the years though, the weather and the passage of time had taken its’ toll on the flag, constituting its’ faded state.

In response the Minneola city leadership, approached Galen Rankin, and commissioned him to repaint the flag, which he accepted.

“Carol Sibley told me to go down and check it out, and see what I think,” said Rankin.

Upon noticing that the paint in front of the fire station was faded as well, Rankin advised Minneola commission, that it would be more cosmetically pleasing in the long run to repaint the building, before having him paint the new flag.

The fire station was promptly repainted and shortly after, on June 23, Rankin finished painting the fire station’s new flag, complete with a new face, that gives it an appearance, that Mayor Carol Sibley describes as, “whipping in the Kansas wind.”

Self-taught, Galen Rankin has been an accomplished and reputable artist for many years, practicing several different art styles including watercolor and calligraphy.

He has won several competitions, including the Dodge City Days Art Show that First National Bank had held for many years.

His original works have been purchased by people not just in Southwestern Kansas but other states as well.

Minneola has enjoyed the artistic and creative talents of other citizens.

The "Sunflower" signs, often seen when entering Minneola, from all four highway directions were designed by two former residents.

One of these residents, Susan Dunn designed the signage and materials, and the other, Jim Vrtiska, recreated the designs in sheet metal.

These entry signs have been featured on the front cover of the Kansas Municipal Magazine.