Mars Hill is a mountain located in Mars Hill, Maine, and gave the town its name. The mountain plays an important role in the Mars Hill community. It not only provides a dramatic backdrop for photographs, but also magnificent views from atop its peak. It overlooks the Saint John Valley, in which Mars Hill is located. Mount Katahdin is visible from the top of Mars Hill over 85 miles (135 km) away. Mars Hill also has a ski area, called Big Rock Ski Area. By virtue of its height and Northeast location, the summit of Mars Hill is the first place in the United States to see the sun rise for nearly half the year, from March 25 to September 18. The first 50-star flag to see the sun in the U.S. was raised on July 4, 1960 at 4:33 AM. Fifty national guardsmen gave it a 50-gun salute.