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A fundraiser that's not for the birds

If you wake up to a lawn filled with pink, plastic flamingos, don't worry. You can have the birds "migrate" to someone else's yard and help 10 local students fly to Washington, D.C. (Contributed)

Something suspicious is popping up in lawns around Osakis — plastic pink flamingos.

But don't let it ruffle your feathers. There's a way to stop them from roosting in your yard: Buy "Anti-Flocking Insurance" for $20.

And you can, for a price, arrange for the flamingos to show up on a friend's property.

This kind of shenanigans may sound like it's for the birds but it all goes toward a good cause — a fundraiser to help 10 Osakis students fly to Washington, D.C. in the spring.

Osakis Close Up students are the ones spreading the flamingo cheer.

Here's how it works:

Osakis residents donate money to have the students put flamingos on a friend's lawn.

"This is all done in good spirits, and the students usually pick the flamingos up within 24 hours," said Osakis social studies teacher Matt Hoelscher.

People who are pranked have the option to migrate the flock to other people's yards by donating a fee — $10 for a small flock of 12 flamingos, $15 for a medium flock of 18, or $20 for 24 flamingos. Note: Flamingos are not allowed to flock on public property or apartment complexes.

The fundraiser has been cleared by authorities, Hoelscher said.

"The police in Osakis are aware of what we are doing, so if someone calls, they can inform them there is no harm intended," he said.

To purchase the Anti-Flocking Insurance or to flock a friend, contact Hoelscher at

Al Edenloff

Al Edenloff is the news and opinion page editor for the Echo Press. He was born in Alexandria and lived most of his childhood in Parkers Prairie. He graduated with honors from Moorhead State University with a degree in mass communications, print journalism. He interned at the Echo Press in the summer of 1983 and was hired a year later as a sports reporter. He also worked as a news reporter/photographer. Al is a four-time winner of the Minnesota Newspaper Association's Herman Roe Award, which honors excellence in editorial writing.  

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