H.O.B. needed a crosswalk, not 16 no-parking signs

Small Biden sign near Harbeson is the opposite of large Biden sign on the highway
July 21, 2023

Story Location:
H.O. Brittingham Elementary School
400 Mulberry Street
Milton, DE 19971
United States

I’ve written in the past about how my kids are walkers at H.O. Brittingham Elementary School in Milton. For the past two school years, I’ve been engaged with school district and town officials about the need for a crosswalk at the new school’s entrance for the walkers. Currently, the crosswalk provided is the one that’s been there since the old school was still standing.

I have a whole list of reasons why there should be a crosswalk at the entrance of the new school, but topping that list is that strength in numbers is safer for students. There are close to two dozen walkers at H.O.B., and three-fourths of them need to cross Mulberry Street at some point to get home. The school has tried a number of different approaches to get students across the road over the past two years. The most successful has been walking the kids to the corner, making them wait until they’re all there and then having the kids who need to cross Mulberry walk at the same time. In every other scenario that’s been attempted, all the kids still need to cross, but it’s done in smaller groups at different points along the sidewalk. It’s simply not as safe.

When I first reached out to the district and town about this issue two years ago, the town installed crosswalks on Chestnut and Federal streets. The school district, on the other hand, installed 16 no-parking signs along the school’s two driveways last school year – eight on each, four in each direction – instead of a crosswalk, about this time last summer, when they had the sidewalk along Mulberry torn up to fill in the driveway entrances for the now-demolished former elementary school.

As far as I know, after two years of engagement, there’s no new crosswalk coming. It’s not because officials from the district or town don’t think there should be one; they just think the other group should be paying for it.

I think the district and the town should be working together on the issue – the school district pays for installing the crosswalk; the town provides traffic-calming measures (i.e. police presence), especially at the end of the school day. The school district passed a $172 million budget in January. If a crosswalk costs $30,000, that’s 0.017% of the approved budget – a rounding error on a budget that large. The police are already working and if there was a reason to leave, by all means do so. I also think the police should be at Milton Elementary School on the other side of town, too. That school already has more than one crosswalk.

From the biggest Biden sign to the smallest

A recent edition of the Cape Gazette featured a photo on the front page that I took of President Joe Biden’s motorcade passing the huge BIDEN sign painted on the side of a barn just north of Waples Pond on Route 1. It’s the biggest Biden sign I’m aware of.

Today, not counting bumper stickers, I present to you the smallest Biden sign I’m aware of. It’s located off Harbeson Road, a few miles south of the intersection with Route 9. It’s painted on a wooden toilet seat cover and hung on a tree off the side of the road. As much as I appreciate the time, effort and detail that went into getting the spacing of the big BIDEN sign just right, I also appreciate how little time and effort went into the small sign. Similar to the big boy, the creator of this sign uses capital letters for the president’s last name. However, the president’s name is spelled wrong – BYDEN – and the person didn’t leave enough space for the ‘N’ on the oval-shaped seat, so it’s been placed under the ‘D’ in the name.

Preparation may not have been part of the plan for the smallest sign, but presentation has left little doubt how that person feels about the president.

Joke of the Week:

The Delaware State Fair has begun, which means rides, animals, produce and fair food. Here’s a joke related to the fair’s food options. As always, send jokes to

Q: What do science and deep-fried food at the Delaware State Fair have in common?

A: At their core, both concepts ask if you could but not if you should.


  • Chris Flood has lived in or visited family in Delaware his whole life. He grew up in Maine, but a block of scrapple was always in the freezer of his parents’ house during his childhood. Contact him at

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