Happy belated Fourth of July! I have always loved celebrating the Independence of our nation. My earliest recollections of proper celebrations came during my youthful years. Greendale, Wisconsin knew how to make July 4th special! Every year I would spend the month of June dreaming and then designing the perfect float to be towed by yours truly on the back of her trusty blue Schwinn. I don't remember ever winning a grand prize, but you'd have thought so the way the buttons burst as I proudly wore my contestant ribbon ever year.
The parade route always started at the local high school and after meandering down Main Street, finished on the steps of the town hall with a flag ceremony and inspirational message. We then made our way to the Junior High School parking lot where all the carnival rides and food tents had been set up. Oh my, the smell of German Brats and sauerkraut on the grill defy description!
Fast forward thirty (plus) years! How lucky are we to have found a community that continues the tradition of creating family memories?! Our little town actually starts the holiday party a day early with a July 3rd celebration. Our July 3rd started with a 6:30 am wake up call to get the kids moving and down to the local golf course in time to participate in our first annual Neighborhood Golf Scramble. Our family team didn't fair too well, but that's the beauty of a scramble... it doesn't matter!
For ten years, our neighborhood has proudly held a parade, though I use the term loosely. Come with a big wheel, skateboard or motorized bike...just don't come late. The sirens blare at 6:00 pm sharp and by 6:15 the race, er, parade is over.
The party then moves to our neighbor's, the Edwards. Can you imagine hosting 300+ EVERY year, but that's just what happens. And every year, it somehow gets better!
There is enough delectable food to rival any 5-star cruise ship buffet! Then there's the snow cones, ice cream cones, popcorn and cotton candy; sure to create your own mini explosion!
Of course, this isn't the only party in the neighborhood. We spent the next hour or two, hopping from party to party, all the while checking in on our oldest who had invited a couple dozen friends over for a party of their own.
No Independence celebration is complete without a stunning display of colorful fireworks. This picture doesn't do justice to the amazing show that we enjoyed from our front porch (that's the BEST part - no long lines of traffic to work through to get home!).
Typically, it's then off to bed, but since we were in charge of the July 4th neighborhood breakfast, it was off to the kitchen to scramble 15 dozen eggs and prepare 15 pounds of pancake batter.
2009 was a memorable July (3rd &) 4th. We hope that you had your own memorable traditions that will keep the family talking for years to come!