Saturday, July 5, 2008

Holiday Happenings

Our neighboring town is celebrating it's 150th Anniversary. In 1958 they celebrated "Hay Days" with a parade and parties to commemorate their Centennial. Hay Days was the precursor of the current 4th of July Parade and was a four day event. This year they decided to celebrate 50 years since the first Hay Days but instead of a four day event they did it in 4 hours on the 3rd with Children's Carnival Games, a Family Picnic, Hay Rides, Train Rides, an Old Fashioned Bathing Suit Show, and more.

Skyler tried her hand at a fishing game, a "Knock 'Em Down" game, and the good ole sledgehammer!
Then bright and early the next day, on the 4th, we left the house, having already set our chairs out the night before for our annual Parade. The hardest part about the morning of the parade is waiting for the parade to actually start!

Here's what our little town's main street looks like, waiting for the parade to start:

Then the parade itself. I've been going to this parade for 17 years now and it never gets old. It's very small town, a little hokey, but VERY American. Here are some highlights...

Top Left: The Lawnmower Brigade. It just wouldn't be a parade without them! They are out there doing drills, running around being very silly, with their lawnmowers. Very fun!

Top Right: Pearl Harbor Survivors. Really all the service men and women that are in the parade get me emotional. Every year there is at least one in the parade that has just returned from Iraq or somewhere else just as scary. It's so awesome to see them home and safe. The Pearl Harbor Survivors are just precious though. Look how happy they are to be honored in such a way.

Bottom Left: The Blue Star Moms. I'm sure you all have a chapter in your town. These are moms that have children deployed. They walk in the parade carrying pictures of their children. They are so proud but understandably sad at the same time. Look at the woman in the back carrying a picture of 3 of her kids, all in fatigues. It's so inspirational!

Bottom Right: The Clackers. I'm not even sure if this is what they're really called but it's what we've always called them. They're some sort of gun club or rifle club or something. Everyone there looks like they just stepped out of the wild west. These guys signal the end of the parade every year. You can hear them coming a mile away. They walk for a minute, then stop, the guy in the front blows his whistle, and then they shoot off their rifles (or whatever they're called), either one by one or all at once. If you click on the picture you can see EVERYONE covering their ears. It is the loudest thing I've ever heard. And when you hear them coming, anyone with babies or dogs high-tails it outta there because it's a doozie. It wouldn't be the parade without them though.

We ended the day with Smores and fireworks from our backyard. It was a good couple of days and we're pooped. Off to bed for us all! Happy 4th!


Kelsey said...

What a fun fun day!

vana chupp said...

the music in your blog scared the heck out of me...I didn't expect it! Cook pics and post. I found you at Kim's blog..and i love your blog. Nice!

TetVet said...

America's oldest living Medal of Honor recipient, living his 99th year is former enlisted Aviation Chief Ordnanceman (ACOM), later wartime commissioned Lieutenant John W. Finn, USN (Ret.). He is also the last surviving Medal of Honor, "The Day of Infamy", Japanese Attack on the Hawaiian Islands, Naval Air Station, Kaneohe Bay, Oahu, Territory of Hawaii, 7 December 1941.

'Navy Centenarian Sailor', 103 year old, former enlisted Aviation Chief Radioman (ACRM, Combat Aircrewman), later wartime commissioned Chief Warrant Officer Julio 'Jay' Ereneta, U. S. Navy (Ret.) is a thirty year career veteran of World War One and World War Two. He first flew aircrewman in August 1922; flew rearseat radioman/gunner in the 1920s/1930s air squadrons of the Navy's first aircraft carriers, USS LANGLEY (CV-1) and USS LEXINGTON (CV-2).

View my photo album tribute to these veteran shipmates and other Pearl Harbor Survivors: