Walk of Honor coming to Huff Park

Published 10:44 am Friday, May 12, 2023

The city of Harlan is planning to honor our nation’s military veterans with the Harlan County Walk of Honor, a tribute to veterans which will take place throughout July at Huff Park.

During a recent interview, Laura Adkisson, Harlan Tourism Downtown Development Coordinator, explained the Walk of Honor.

“We are developing a new event this year to honor our veterans,” Adkisson said. “We will be printing banners that feature that a veteran’s picture and information about their service.”

The banners will then be displayed around Huff Park.

“We call it a Walk of Honor,” Adkisson said. “They (banners) will remain up for the entire month of July.”

Adkisson says having a veteran included in the Walk of Honor is a simple process.

“Anyone interested in honoring a veteran that has served the veteran can be living or deceased, may come by the Harlan Center and fill out an information sheet,” Adkisson said. “Bring the veteran’s photo with you, and we’ll scan that picture in while you wait so you can take the photo with you when you go home.”

There is a $30 fee to order a banner.

Adkisson also talked about the inspiration for the Walk of Honor.

“We just wanted to look for a way we could feature all of the people who have served, especially those from Harlan County,” Adkisson said. “We also wanted to give people a reason to come downtown and pay respect to all of our veterans.”

Adkisson mentioned July seemed the most appropriate time for such an event.

“We feel like the Fourth of July is the best time to honor our country and the people who have defended it,” Adkisson said.

To order a banner to honor a veteran, go to the Harlan Center in downtown Harlan.

“You’ll need to know the veteran’s name, branch of service, highest rank achieved, total years of service, and bring a photo,” Adkisson said. “The photo can be whatever the family would like. A lot of people are using a service photo. It can be a photo portrait. It can be a snapshot, it can be a current photo, whatever you want.”

Adkisson noted digital photos may also be submitted.

“If you would like to send it digitally, you can do that,” Adkisson said. “You can get our email address when you come in and email it to us.”

The banners are available to all veterans, not just those from Harlan County.

“Of course, we expect Harlan County veterans to be prominently featured,” Adkisson said. “But it’s open to anyone who has a veteran they would like to honor.”

Once the banners are printed, they will be displayed for all to see.

“They will be up for the entire month of July,” Adkisson said. “We invite people to come during July, enjoy the park, take the walk and really recognize and appreciate the sacrifices people have made.”

The banners will be made of vinyl and feature a patriotic background along with the veteran’s photo and information, Adkisson explained.

“Anyone who has any questions or would like more information can contact the Harlan Center,” Adkisson said. “We are asking that people bring exact change to pay the $30 fee or bring a check made out to Friends of Harlan.”

For more information, call Laura at the Harlan Center at 606-573-4156. The Harlan Center is open Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Banners must be ordered by Friday, May 26.