Contest open to design city’s first flag

By Argen Duncan: PNT Senior Writer

Portales will soon have its own flag flying over the community, city officials say.

The City of Portales is inviting artists of all ages and occupations to enter a contest to design the first city flag. The winner will be announced in a press release May 11, and the new flag will be raised for the first time June 16 as part of the city’s incorporation centennial celebration, according to a city news release.

“We thought it would be a really good representation and a community pride activity,” said city Community Affairs Coordinator Nicole Wilkening. “It’ll hopefully be something that will last for many years to come.”

Wilkening said she didn’t yet know if the design would go on anything but the flag, but the release form contestants had to sign would allow the city to use the image as desired. The city will own the design, but the winner will receive credit for it, she said.

According to the release, the flag should embody specific attributes of Portales.

“Ideally, the artwork should represent the culture, history and fabric of the community as well as its bright future,” the release reads.

For the contest, each individual or group may submit only one entry. The design must be rectangular and contain no more than five colors.

Artists must submit their designs to Wilkening at City Hall by May 1. They must also turn in a narrative explaining the symbolism.

A nine-member panel will judge the entries on appropriateness of design, artistic quality and narrative, according to the release.

Wilkening said artists have “free reign” as long as they can explain their design.

“We don’t want to stifle creativity, but on the other hand, you have to be able to explain how it represents the community,” she said.

People have already inquired about the contest.

“I’m glad people are excited about it before it even hits the Web site,” Wilkening said.

Submission requirements and the art release form are available on the city Web site at