The Rotary Club of McKinney Sunrise started the flag lease program more than thirty years ago. Club members Col. (Retired & deceased) Paul Yeager and Fred Bahrenburg (deceased) had no idea leasing US flags would take off and become a significant fundraiser for the club. 
The Rotary Club of McKinney Sunrise started the flag lease program more than thirty years ago. Club members Col. (Retired & deceased) Paul Yeager and Fred Bahrenburg (deceased) had no idea leasing US flags would take off and become a significant fundraiser for the club. Previously, the club semi-unsuccessfully sold candy, coupon books, and Texas grapefruits as fundraisers. 
From its humble beginnings of leasing a small number of flags (300) to homes in Stonebridge Ranch in 1993, the club leased more than 3,400 flags in 2023. Patriotism has boosted the program tremendously over the years to display the flag at homes and businesses in McKinney. "People want to show our colors by flying our flag" is often heard. The flag lease program also has spread to over fifty other Rotary clubs in the Dallas area and outside the state with the help of the Sunrise Rotary Club. Sunrise created a flag program manual as the flag lease program began to spread to other Rotary Clubs. The blueprint manual details how to start and run the program. (purchase at In addition, Sunrise club members Steve Mitas and Tim Kocsis developed a software program that manages the flag lease program as a business and a software program for defining the flag routes of the flag customers for delivery and retrieval. (purchase at Sunrise has sold the manual and software packages to over thirty other Rotary Clubs.
In the past thirty years, the 'flag pole' leaders have been Col. Paul Yeager (deceased) and Fred Bahrenburg (deceased), the founders, and then club members Sandi Froese, Chuck Koehler, Steve Mitas, Bill Smith, and Jeff Caserotti. These leaders have continued to develop a "turn-key" fundraising experience that has become the principal source of the club's project (s) funding. This involvement in raising funds to provide humanitarian services throughout our community of McKinney and our world fits our Rotary motto – "Service Above Self" for our club members and customers.
Several years ago, the McKinney Rotary Club (the Noon Club) began its flag lease program under the guidance of the Sunrise Club (the Breakfast Club). Now, the two clubs split the city and have spread nearly 5,000 flags throughout McKinney on the six flag holidays. The Rotary Club Of Collin County (the Happy Hour Club) is also a valuable partner in the maintenance, distribution, and retrieval of several flag routes in McKinney. 
As the number of leased flags increased each year, the Sunrise Club realized it could not handle the flag distribution and retrieving activity alone. So, they enlisted the assistance of several McKinney Boy & Girl Scout troops and a family representing the McKinney Area Home School Association to deliver and retrieve the flags for each six-flag holiday.
New Generations, an avenue of service of the club,  celebrated the success of the flag lease program in 2023 with our annual Partner Appreciation breakfast. This year, eleven Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops and the Home School group were recognized at the club breakfast meeting with certificates of Appreciation and bonus checks for exemplary delivery and retrieval service during the 2023 flag season. Their delivery error rate was 0.4% during the year. Extremely honorable! In addition, this group of flag partners with the Sunrise Rotary Club earned more than $34,000 for their flag service using forty-four flag routes totaling 16,250 flags delivered over the six flag holidays. That included flag deliveries to sixty-six HOAs.
Furthermore, recognized at the Partner Appreciation Club breakfast meeting was Deputy Ella Even from the Sheriff's Office – Collin County Texas, SCORE group, who assisted in assembling new flags and cleaned and repaired current flags during the flag season. Also, Bryan Cyranowicz, the Flag Program Administrator (, administers and manages the club's flag lease program during the flag season for the club.
For $55 for the year - 2024, McKinney residents and businesses can pay to have the flag raised and taken down for six holidays, beginning with Memorial Day and ending with Veterans Day. The Sunrise Rotary Club has raised over $2 million for local charities and international needs from the flag lease program during the past thirty years. The most prominent local situations have included building an all-abilities playground in McKinney – an addition to Bonnie Wenk Park that included equipment accessible to kids with developmental delays, special sensory requirements, and other physical challenges. Sunrise teamed with the Rotary Club of McKinney to raise funds for the project of $500,000 with flag lease payments and donations. Bonnie Wenk Park was the most substantial monetary project ever initiated and implemented in the Rotary District 5810.
The other prominent local need was a donation of $50,000 from flag lease payments for scholarships at Collin College. These scholarships were made available through the Collin College Tech Campus for students who have been employment-displaced because of the COVID-19 virus.
As a project to help schools, our Community Service avenue of service director, Bill Smith, guided us to our bicycle involvement with Scott Johnson Middle School in McKinney. Bill's inquiries included a need for textbooks, computers, clothes, and shoes. But, one thing that kept coming up again was the need for transportation. Bill says, "Some students walked up to 2-4 miles, sometimes leaving their house in the dark before sunrise and getting home in the darkness of evenings" because no school buses were assigned to their resident area. In addition, some of the places where the students walked were too unsafe to walk alone. So, the Sunrise Rotary Club purchased 15 bicycles ($100 ea.) for students, plus a bike light and lock. More to come.
Furthermore, an additional donation has been authorized: $4,000 for the school administrators to use as they wish for these needy students. Several of the outcomes from this contribution have been less absenteeism and tardiness. All of this has occurred because of the flag lease payments.
Those were just three of the more than twenty-plus other donations made in the past couple of years, i.e.,
  • Local - Make A Wish Foundation, Santa's Rotary Helpers, A Four-Way Speech contest for McKinney ISD students, YMCA, Samaritan Inn, McKinney ISD – Junior ROTC, SCORE, McKinney Area Pantry, McKinney Crape Myrtle Trail, McKinney Boys & Girls Club, All-Abilities Playground, Scott Johnson Elementary School, Hugs Café, and International - Polio Plus Foundation, Group Study Exchange, Clean Water – Wells, Shelter Box, Wheelchair Foundation, India Education Project, India Dialysis Project, Guatemala Literacy Project, African Literacy Project, Nightingale Nursing School (Non-Profit Nursing School in Central Honduras), Heifer International,
The Sunrise Club is taking flag lease orders for 2024, which include Memorial Day, Flag Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Patriot Day, and Veterans Day. In addition, the flags are flown in recognition of 9-11 (Patriot Day) from Labor Day until September 12.
The annual cost is $55. However, subscribers who pay at with a credit card will receive a $5 discount if paid before April 30.
We are People of Action!    
McKinney is a City of Flags, Built by the McKinney Sunrise Rotary Club.   
Visit Us Anytime or Join Us. Breakfast is on Us!   
Meeting Time and Location: 7:30 AM each Wednesday, E.J. Wills Gastropub,   
1910 North Stonebridge Dr., McKinney, TX 75071