The colors red, white, blue, and green, a bear, star, and City Hall will make up Sonoma's new city flag created by Sonoman Joseph Staub, 33, who won Sonoma's recent flag contest.

The following are excerpts from an article in the Sonoma Index-Tribune, April 9, 1996:

"The star and bear refer to Sonoma's distinction of being the birthplace of California. The blue sky and green hills represent our beautiful geographic setting. Sonoma's City Hall stands for community, and the blessings and responsibilities of municipal life. Red, white and blue honor our heritage as Americans; red, green and white pay homage to Mexican culture and its great contributions," Staub wrote on his flag entry.

While many may think of the Bear Flag as Sonoma's city flag, in fact, it is not. The city could have adopted the Bear Flag as its own, but chose not to, according to local flag expert Jim Ferrigan.

Different versions of the Bear Flag are widely used throughout California to represent the California Republic which lasted less than a month, according to Ferrigan.

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