When International Psper Co. hoisted the Soviet flag above Pine Bluff plant in honor of a visiting Soviet delegation recently, it turned to its own in-house inventory. “we have flags from 24 countries,” Bill O’Keefe, manager of operational services at the paper mill, said.
International Paper gets most of the flags from Kerry Thompson-McCoy, who operates Arkansas Flag and Banner at 1619 N. Main St., North Little Rock. Thompson-McCoy said her company is probably the major source of flags in a three or four-state area and the only manufacturer of the flags in state. Her stock includes such flags as the Soviet, Canadian and Japanese flags and those of the states in which she operates. anything else can be ordered overnight from her New Jersey warehouse through a catalog.
International Paper – which caused a stir among some employees unhappy with seeing the Soviet standard of the plant – regularly flies foreign flags in honor of foreign visitors.
O’Keefe noted that most of the other International Paper plants don’t have a lot of foreign flags in their inventory, but his does because “we are unique on account of being on the Arkansas River. We barge all over the world and have customers come in from all over the world.”