You all have a week and two days to get things under control for the July Fourth Celebration taking place in our community. It is time to tidy up the old home place, mow one last time, and hang the bunting from the front porch. Cast an eye around your neighborhood and see who is doing the best job — then do a better one.
It is time for the 93rd annual Peabody July Fourth Extravaganza. The Fourth Fest Committee anticipates a crowd of about five thousand people this year since the holiday falls on a Friday. Mercy me! That is a big jump from past years and in my most humble opinion, we should be ready to show off our best. So decorate, fly the flag, have a party in the yard, take part in the parade, and be sure to show up at the park to watch the best homemade celebration in the state.
I have it on good authority that there will be five new set pieces this year and that once again there will be 1 million explosions of fireworks between the first mortar and the final bang in the always popular finale, “The Battle of New Orleans.” Go ahead, argue with me. You already are wrong!
A parade with lots of entries is always a great part of the holiday. This year there is a prize of $100 in Peabody Bucks for the best float in the parade and a prize of $50 in Peabody Bucks for the child with the best-decorated bicycle in the parade. The parade begins at 5 p.m. with lineup at the high school starting at 4 p.m. You can be a part of this. Have your kids ever ridden on a float? What a thrill to help them decorate a hay rack, a mower, a golf cart, or a bike and be a part of something they probably could not do in a bigger town.
This year’s admission buttons were created by Sarah Robinson Hebert of Wichita. Sarah is Ross Baker’s granddaughter and her design was inspired by his love of the July Fourth celebration, his family’s participation, and the decorating he did at his home on Walnut St. It is fitting that the button designed by a young woman whose parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents (on both sides) were life-long residents of our city, was selected to represent the community celebration. If you see Sarah, be sure to thank her for her on-going interest in Peabody and its traditions.
We usually have a party of sorts after the parade here in the yard and we welcome former residents, students, friends of Peabody, and their offspring. Please stop by and say hello. There is not another day in this community that resonates with the desire to nurture a tradition like this and see it continue. Thank you in advance to all who make the day fun and who contribute to the expense of the fireworks show. Thank you for all you do and for all you contribute.
If, in fact, we have five thousand visitors to the 93rd annual fireworks extravaganza, I hope they have a rocking good time in Peabody!
— SUSAN MARSHALL