Astoria Regatta 'deeply regrets' display of Confederate battle flag in parade

Still frame from video posted to Youtube from the Astoria Regatta Grand Land parade

ASTORIA, Ore. – The Astoria Regatta Association issued an apology after a pickup truck flying a Confederate flag appeared in the group’s annual Grand Land Parade.

The parade took place on Saturday, with several floats and entries rolling through downtown Astoria.

Organizers describe the displays from Sons of Beaches, an off-road enthusiast group, as an unfortunate incident and say it was an oversight that the symbols were not caught at the start of the parade, The Daily Astorian reported.

Sons of Beaches constructed the float for the parade. Group leader Jay Pitman says the float featured several bumper sticker-sized decals with Confederate logos as it had for the past several years. A red truck also followed behind with a Confederate flag.

Pitman says the float included several battle flags from throughout American history and that they were intended to honor war veterans.

Several people took to social media to voice their concerns about the flag's appearance in the parade.

In a Facebook message posted Monday, Astoria Regatta Association officials said they “deeply regret” that the flag was on display, that it offended attendees, and that some in the crowd got the impression they condone its display.

“We share the community's deep concern that the truck displaying the flag participated in the parade as part of the group recognized as the winning parade entry,” organizers said.

The post goes on to say that regatta officials will consult legal counsel about what limits they can put in place for future events.

Below is the full apology posted to the group's page.

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