SAN MARINO (CBSLA) — The city of San Marino is hosting a home decorating contest ahead of the Fourth of July holiday.
Typically, the city holds a ceremony with traditional fireworks and a community gathering, but that’s not possible this year because of the coronavirus pandemic.
Instead, the recreation department is offering residents their own free home decorating starter kit to encourage them to display their patriotism for neighbors to see.
One home, in particular, has gotten a lot of attention for including a mannequin of President Donald Trump holding an American flag.
Leslie Antosy-Flores said she was excited about the friendly competition and put out flags, banners and a depiction of Trump to show her enthusiasm.
“Of course we have our President Trump. He needs to be recognized since he is our president,” Antosy-Flores said.
The San Marino resident said she has been criticized for the decorations and that she doesn’t believe she did anything wrong.
“I did have somebody yell at me and call me a racist. All I’m doing is displaying him with an American flag. I didn’t do anything with any political agenda,” she said.
Antosy-Flores said she removed the display of Trump several times because of people yelling.
Another San Marino resident, who put up a six-foot eagle outside his home, supported her display.
“I think anyone who wants to show their patriotic spirit, God bless them for showing that for this administration, for our country, no matter their opinion,” Scott Solan said.
Opponents of President Trump have characterized using his likeness as a symbol of racial division in this country.
San Marino City Councilmember Susan Jakubowski said in response to the backlash over the display that people are able to decorate in any way they wish as long as it’s not offensive.
“I think now more so than ever we are all agreeing to be different to get along and this community like every other community has all different beliefs,” Jakubowski said.
The city gave out 300 starter kits to residents filled with sidewalk chalk, American flags, a pennant banner, one roll of patriotic crepe paper, and a participating home lawn sign.
San Marino city leaders say they hope to continue this competition in the years to come.
Winners for the home decorating contest — in the categories of Most Creative, Most Patriotic, Judge’s Choice, and Honorable Mention — will be announced on July 2.
The top four finalists in each category will receive a gift card from a local business and a recognition lawn sign.