In fact, each letter is 6 feet high and made of plywood. Lining them up on the uneven surface of the hill is quite a chore for Coast Guard personnel from Sector Field Office Grand Haven.
“The terrain of the hill makes it hard,” said Brad Wise, who along with Lee Willett and Bob Borowski, sat in the stands at Waterfront Stadium and directed those on the hill. “It’ll usually take the entire morning to get them put up.”
Wise explained that the letters are attached to the hill using long sections of rebar driven deep into the sand. The letters have sections of PVC pipe attached, which slides over the metal bars.
“That does the least damage to the hill,” Wise said.
Wise said the sign goes up the Wednesday prior to the start of the each year’s festival. The letters are actually owned by the Coast Guard Festival. Coast Guard personnel volunteer their time to erect the sign.