Here in Provo the 4th of July is quite the event. Most everywhere we have lived celebrating the 4th meant watching fireworks – that’s it. Here people celebrate the 2nd, 3rd, and 4th of July and more. We pick and choose our events and this year we decided to go to the Colonial Festival the morning of the 3rd.
As a native Virginian I wasn’t expecting much from a colonial festival in Utah but it was better than I expected. They had all the makings of a colonial village, the reenactors, the stocks, etc. They were just missing the actual colonial buildings and used tents instead but underneath the shady trees it was still good. Someday I will get my kids to Williamsburg but this was good for a few hours and they really enjoyed it.
Kaitlyn really liked this Colonial dress it was too bad we couldn’t take it home. We explored the different “shops” including the candle maker, the Tinsmith, the printing press, the apothecary, and Kaityln and Sam enjoyed the school. Abby had no interest in colonial school. She said at at almost 12, if she lived back then, she probably wouldn’t have been in school anymore anyway- and she might be right.
For some reason Kaitlyn was obsessed with the printing press. She wouldn’t leave this guy alone and kept wanting to press everything. Sam also tried carrying buckets of water. A chore he struggled with. Maybe this will give him a greater appreciation of indoor plumbing.
And of course there is the stocks.
When it started getting really hot and we had seen enough of the Colonial Festival, we left for home and a break. That evening we went out again to the Rooftop Concert downtown. Abby really wanted a #ProvoRocks t-shirt. Provo t-shirts are all the rage around here lately and they are available at the concerts.
Downtown we found more than just the Rooftop Concerts. The whole city was in party mode and the streets were shut down. Besides the Rooftop Concert, there was a carnival, tons and tons of booths, food vendors, another band playing, and thousands of people wandering around, then there were all the people camped out on University Avenue for the parade the next morning. Our kids begged to camp out too but we said no.
We wandered around for awhile but didn’t find the t-shirts. They had long been handed out long before we got there. Next month we learned we have to get there really early for the shirts. We did listen to a little of The Moth and the Flame. We would have stayed longer but we were already planning to get up at 5:30 a.m. just to get a good spot on the parade route. I know- 5:30 in the morning for a parade? But there are all these people already camped out. These Provoans are crazy and I guess we are one of them now.
I didn’t take many pictures that night but here is Kaitlyn in front of a mural downtown. I think this mural is random and I wonder why it is there in the first place.
Then there was the Grand Parade the morning of the 4th. We did get there by 6:30 and found a good spot. People were still asleep that had been camping out around us. Getting there early we also managed to get lots of Provo swag and #ProvoForPresident t-shirts which also were fun.
Yes that is Harriet Tubman on a skateboard. We also got George Washington on a bicycle. I learned last year that the parade party starts really early. There is a hot air balloon festival (that didn’t go up this year because of wind), a 5k running down University Ave., music and people dancing in the streets, giveaways, and a pre-parade. All before the actual parade begins.
We got Provo water guns too which Mike kept loaded and ready.
Scott and Elizabeth joined us too.
And we saw storm troopers, a very patriotic Darth Vador (I never thought Darth Vador was patriotic), and Boba or Jengo Fett (I can’t tell the difference but Sam can).
After the parade we went home for a NAP because otherwise I knew I wouldn’t have enough energy to keep going and we still had the “Cul-De-Sac of Fire!” All of our neighbors get together for fireworks and food in the street. It was a bit (a lot) chaotic (and dangerous) at times. All I had was my camera so my photos didn’t turn our too well but you get the idea.
The kids just lined up for sparklers. Here were just some of the discarded boxes. Our neighbor had a blowtorch out and just kept the sparklers coming. I’m somewhat amazed no one went to the hospital.
The big aerial fireworks came out later that evening and they were launched until about 11 pm when we wandered into a neighbors backyard and watched the real Stadium of Fire fireworks which were being launched a few blocks away.
And then we were totally exhausted. I think it took me and Mike at least a day to recover from the late nights, early mornings, and all the partying.
Here’s to Independence Day and Provo sure knows how to celebrate.
Also- if you are noticing that Abby is in less and less photos it’s because she has decided she doesn’t like being photographed and runs away when I have out a camera. That’s fine. Sometimes I catch her sometimes I don’t. She was there and she had a great time running around with the other kids her age.