Historic rainbow flag comes to Brattleboro

Section 93, a portion of the world’s longest eight-color flag, will hang from bank building downtown through Aug. 10

BRATTLEBORO — A 25-foot section of the world's largest eight-color rainbow flag will hang on the M&T Bank building on the corner of Main and Elliot streets, beginning with its unfurling on Wednesday, Aug. 2, at 3 p.m.

The Sacred Cloth Project of Key West, Florida, whose director, Mark Ebenhoch, is a part-time resident and property owner near Brattleboro, manages Section 93, the best known segment of the historic banner, which will remain on the building at 100 Main St. through Aug. 10.

Created in 2003, the Key West Sea to Sea Rainbow Flag was the world's largest of its sort, at 1.25 miles long and 14 feet wide, and was sewn in 1978 by the late Gilbert Baker, creator of the first rainbow pride flag.

As described by Ebenhoch, Section 93 - which has come to be known as the Sacred Cloth - travels around the world to promote the Key West motto ("One Human Family") and to visually support the LGBTQ+ and allied communities in their quest for unity, inclusion, and equality.

Section 93 has traveled to New England from its annual display in Orlando Florida for the Pulse Nightclub commemoration week in June. It was recently displayed at Warner Brothers Discovery/CNN headquarters in Atlanta for the company's first June Pride observance.

It was seen worldwide in April 2015 on the steps of the United States Supreme Court building in Washington, DC. during the marriage equality hearings.

Section 93 has traveled around the world from the White House, to the world's largest LGBTQ+ parade in Sydney, Australia, and to small rural areas in the United States such as Starksville, Mississippi and Morehead, Kentucky. Section 93 has been acknowledged by U.S. President Barack Obama and carried by ambassadors from the U.S., France, and Holland.

The flag has also represented and traveled to areas affected by tragic events affecting the LGBTQ+ community, such as Orlando, Florida, the site of the Pulse Nightclub shooting in 2016, and Colorado Springs, where the Club Q shooting took place in 2022.

Section 93 has recently been recognized by the U.S. Department of Justice as an important part of the department's community response protocols.

As Mayor Andre Dickens of Atlanta, Georgia noted, "This flag is a symbol of unity, compassion and the shared sense of humanity. This flag is a visual reminder for our need to expand our circles."

All are invited to gather at Thomas B. Lynch Park, 200 Elliot St., at 2:30 p.m., and the group will walk to the unfurling at 3 p.m.

Section 93's display is sponsored by the Brattleboro Museum and Arts Center, M&T Bank, and The Kopkind Colony, based in Guilford.

A story about Ebenhoch's stewardship of Section 93 in the aftermath of the Club Q tragedy appeared in the Nov. 30, 2022 issue of The Commons.

For further information on Section 93's history, visit

This piece was submitted to The Commons.

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