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Grand Haven's 'Coast Guard USA' letters become another 'thank-you' to Coast Guard

Coast Guard City USA.png
Posted at 4:49 PM, Aug 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-05 17:50:35-04

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. — Grand Haven's version of the "Hollywood" sign reads: Coast Guard City USA.

Each year for Coast Guard Festival, members of the Coast Guard carry the letters up Dewey Hill.

“They did it; they never complained. But you know when it’s taking two people to walk up a sand dune for each letter, it takes quite the toll,” Coast Guard Festival Finale Event Chair Brad Boyink said.

This year, their jobs got 40 lbs lighter.

“Now these letters are only 15–20 pounds to bring up the hill,” Boyink said.

RELATED: Harbor Transit offering park-and-ride service on Coast Guard Saturday

You see, the old letters were plywood. Each one weighed about 60 lbs. Every year, they needed to be repainted.

This year, the guy in charge of the finale event decided it was time for an upgrade.

“With the Coast Guard Festival just coming back this year, it was a nice touch to say, 'Not only are we back but we’re making improvements on things also,'” Boyink said.

The new letters are not only easier on members of the Coast Guard but they can also light up to 16 million different colors. They are also surprisingly massive, standing eight feet tall.

RELATED: Coast Guard Festival returns, state association predicting large crowds at similar events this year

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