Shirt Vendors

An unidentified vendor sets up merchandise table early Friday in Valdosta prior to the Flags Over VSU motorcycle rally and demonstration.

VALDOSTA — Vendors were setting up booths early Friday to sell t-shirts and other promotional items at the Five Points Shopping Center in advance of today's motorcycle rally and demonstration said to be "in support of the American flag."

 Organizers have said as many as 4,000 people are expected for the Flags Over VSU protest, that will circle Valdosta State University today. 

School officials have said demonstrators are not being allowed on campus.

Classes at VSU have been called off for the day, and all entrances at VSU have been closed off.

The permit for the protest was filed with the Valdosta Police Department and runs from 1:30-3 p.m. Friday.

The protest must be disbanded by 3 p.m. city police have said. 

The Flags Over VSU motorcycle rally and demonstration is a response to a protest last week when a protester was seen walking on the  American flag. Michelle Manhart, a former Air Force trainer and Playboy model, grabbed the flag from protesters. VSU police officers detained her, returned the flag to the demonstrators and released Manhart. The incident has resulted in a national media firestorm.

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