Parades, Picnics & Pyrotechnics: July 4th the Bay Way
Snakes and sparklers. Remember when you were a kid? You’d spend 50 cents or a buck to be ready for the big night.
The bigger kids would be scaring you with real firecrackers. The real wild ones would have cherry bombs and M80s, and everybody knew of somebody’s cousin who had one go off in his hand.
Finally, with the sun going down, you could lie back safe on a blanket with your parents beneath the most spectacular aerial show your young eyes ever had witnessed. Even when you crawled in bed much too late wearing a sugar buzz, the shimmering and twinkling would remain in the mind’s eye, shaping your dreams.
The Fourth of July hasn’t changed much.
We’re pretty sure that whether you’re nine or 93 (give or take a few years) you still marvel at fireworks displays. It has something to with how you feel, as well as what you see, on Independence Day.
It’s been a few decades since we messed up sidewalks with snakes. But we think we’re pretty safe in saying that the Fourth of July is better than ever, especially along Chesapeake Bay. What’s more, you rarely have to worry about bullies with illegal fireworks.
In this issue of Bay Weekly, it’s our pleasure to bring you a special guide for making your July 4 even more special. Time was, you’d have one set of fireworks to enjoy. This year, with the Fourth falling on a Monday, you can catch fireworks showers on three evenings: Saturday, Sunday and, biggest of all, Monday.
Before the main event, you can get your family in a patriotic mood with parades in Severna Park, Annapolis, Galesville and Shady Side. Maybe your neighborhood has one, too. Ours does.
There’s music, too. On Saturday, try the Anne Arundel Community College Vocal Jazz Ensemble, followed by Latin music and the Annapolis Symphony Orchestra’s annual full-length Fourth of July Spectacular concert featuring the U.S. Army Soldiers Chorus.
There’s patriotic time travel, too, as William Paca House in Annapolis recalls Revolutionary times with song, reenactments of life at war and in peace and readings of our great document, the Declaration of Independence.
There’s lots on the lighter side, too, with moon bounces, Baysox baseball and delights for every member of the family.
We’re hoping that along the way, your family takes a moment to talk about the reason for the party. July 4 is a celebration of our nation. But there’s plenty in the world these days that threatens who we are and what we stand for, and we’re not just speaking here of terrorism.
Whether we like it or not, we’re making war these days in the name of our nation’s security. Amid our fun and games this weekend, we suggest raising a toast to brothers and sisters who are dying every day on our behalf.
Sadly, some things don’t change.