Monday, July 07, 2014
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City of Lincoln enjoys a perfect 4th of July

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[July 07, 2014]  LINCOLN - Friday morning the temperatures were cool, but the sky was a bright blue with light fluffy clouds scattered round about.

It was the perfect beginning of what would prove to be a perfect day for celebrating the 4th of July.

The Holiday’s activities in Lincoln began at approximately 9:30 a.m. as kids gathered on the south side of Scully Park for the ninth annual old-fashioned Children’s Walking Parade. The parade that is hosted by the Lincoln Park District has become a very popular 4th of July attraction.

Children gathered with their bicycles, parents brought little ones in strollers and wagons, and pet parents proudly brought out their dogs to join in the march from Scully Park to the Lincoln Park District Recreation Center.

Every entry, including the pets, were wildly and beautifully decorated to commemorate the day. Kids had spent time decorating their bikes with flags, flowers, streamers and more, all in the patriotic colors of red, white and blue.

Before the parade began, the judges had a tough job to do; going around to each age group and picking which was the best of best in decoration.

When the parade stepped off, this year there was a new addition to the escort vehicles, an Army Jeep driven by Lincoln Fire Chief Mark Miller, with Roy Logan of the park district as his passenger.

The parade left Scully Park headed south to Wyatt Avenue and then on to the recreation center. Along the way, there were several small clusters of parade watchers, cheering and waving at parade participants.

Chuck and Judy Conzo walked along the route and rewarded parade watchers with gifts of candy.

When the group arrived at the park district they were treated to bottled water and sweet snacks. Mayor Keith Snyder awarded the winners of the various categories their prizes.

When that part of the day ended, the kids were invited to join in the annual park district versus city of Lincoln Fire Department water fight.

Each year, there is a definite disagreement on who won the battle, and this year was no different, but it was pretty obvious who stole the show.

With the city of Lincoln Police Chief Ken Greenslate and Mayor Snyder taking the side of the park district kids, they seemed to be working diligently on getting the best of fire chief Miller, and at times they did.

Then in an odd turn of events, it appeared that the police chief turned on his team mate, dousing the mayor with a trash can full of water. Not to be outdone, the mayor with the assistance of Roy Logan attempted to dump a black trash bag full of water on the police chief! What no one can figure out, even looking at the numerous photos of the melee, is how on earth did Mayor Snyder end up with the trash bag stuck on his head?

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While, in years past, the goal of the battle appeared to be the storming of the fire truck, this year, Chief Miller was the obvious target for many of the kids. They even managed to steal away a hand pump weapon the chief had brought, and turned it on him, as well as each other.

When the water was shut off, there was still fun to have as the gallons of liquid had left large puddles in the park district lawn, and a river of water along the street gutter. Many of the kids took advantage of this, to do a little more splashing before calling it a day.

In the evening, folks flocked back to the park district to enjoy a night of good music and, of course, fireworks. The activities began at approximately 7:30 p.m. with a DJ on hand playing some great music.

Families came out with their lawn chairs and blankets. Kids played on the lawn while parents and grandparents watched from the comfort of their chairs.

The food stand stayed busy most of the evening with cold drinks, corn dogs and fries seen in the hands of many.

Kids also enjoyed spending time at the park district’s playground. There were also plenty of sparklers and smoke bombs being set off before the real show began.

As the nine o’clock hour passed, the color guard stepped out onto the lawn and proudly displayed our nation’s colors and the Star Spangled Banner played over the sound system.

Then the rest of the night was all about the fireworks. With multiple loud and colorful launches to kick off the night, guests cheered and clapped. The fireworks this year were excellent, and it appeared that everyone enjoyed them.

At the end of the evening, with the last cascade of explosives saluting the end of the day, crowds clapped, cheered and honked their car horns in appreciation.

When the last light of the last explosive faded into the night, guests returned to their cars, and headed out. It was another great 4th, a perfect 4th in fact. Now all that remains is to look forward to another one next year!


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