Thursday, July 5, 2012

Portraits of America

My husband says that we live in Mayberry and sometimes that seems to be true.  On the 4th of July, in particular, you see that small town spirit. One of the highlights of the day is the 4th of July parade.  This is no high tech spectacle with tarted up floats.  Instead, it's a true celebration of community.  Anyone can participate and most do!  

The "floats" mostly consist of open cars and pickup trucks with signs and bunting attached to them. Every group in the city wants to be represented, including the church, the various teams, and every local politician.  Even the retirement home with its air-conditioned van creeps along the parade route, full of smiling seniors.  Adding to the noise level, all the firetrucks and police cars in the parade blare their sirens. 
This antique fire truck is promoting the local feed store.

Those who aren't actually in the parade, line up along the parade route with blankets, chairs and coolers.  The children bring plastic bags to collect the candy that will be thrown from each of the floats.  Restaurants and other businesses hand out coupons and politicians hand out fliers as they walk the parade route.    
Families grab a piece of shade to watch the parade.
Streets lined with chatting neighbors.

My favorite float!  Go Teaparty!
The local cub scout pack.

Kids love to ride in the parade. 

The end of the parade heads up the street.
When dusk falls everyone comes out to see the fireworks.  I knew my new camera had a special fireworks button and I spent most of my time during the fireworks display looking for it.  Finally, I just took a video and looked it up when I got home.
Brandi, if you read this, many thanks to you, your husband, and your family for the sacrifices you made to keep our little corner of Americana just this way.