Monday, July 4, 2011

Independence Day in Independence

Waiting for the parade to begin
I know that Independence Day is actually tomorrow, but our town celebrates the Saturday closest to the 4th. Yesterday our town, which is Independence, held a parade, with a festival yesterday evening and fireworks display last night. Jonathan loves the parades!  And truthfully, so do I. I love the sense of community that comes along with them. Local bands, businesses and beauty queens create a bond among all the residents standing on the sidewalk in the July heat, cheering for the veterans and the minor league baseball teams, all represented in the parade.

After the parade, we went home to prepare for our annual 4th of July gathering of friends. We are able to see the fireworks very well from the vantage point of our backyard. For a small town, we get a very nice 1/2 hour or so of spectacular fireworks! Prior to "show time", we share a cook-out with friends. Some people are here every year, some attend when they can, and I usually have 15 or so people.
This year we were a group of 10. I had two grills going with hot dogs and burgers and also had a number of side dishes. I have a small collection of red, white and blue quilts that come out for the party. We always spread on them in the grass to watch the fireworks.
Quilts on the deck railing 'til fireworks time

Jonathan takes a rest on a quilt in the yard, pre-parade

Red, white and blue ribbons adorn everything

The table was covered with a quilt and held the desserts and some side dishes, the rest were on the counter for a casual, self-serve buffet. With the burgers and dogs (and all the fixin's for them) I served deviled eggs, macaroni & cheese (a kid favorite), watermelon, potato chips and baked beans from a recipe found on this blog, Pleasant View Schoolhouse. Dessert was a fun cheeseburger cake and chocolate cupcakes.

Sunflowers just say "Summer!"

This is a great way to serve watermelon
Cheeseburger cake--from Fantasy in Frosting
Cupcakes with red & blue pinwheels
The table

A little before 10:00, we all made our way to the quilts in the backyard to enjoy the fireworks.

After the fireworks, the kids had some supervised fun with sparklers, which I purchased on clearance after last year's holiday .

It was a very casual, relaxing evening, a tradition we all enjoy. Jonathan was very, very tired when all the guests left, he was up WAY past his bedtime!
Tomorrow I will pack away all of the patriotic decorations and serving pieces until next year, and start searching the clearance aisles for one new thing to add to the collection for next year's party.

1 comment:

Michelle said...

Beautiful!!! I love the quilts & cake :)