YOUR GUIDE: Festivities, fireworks, fun for the Fourth
The Fourth of July is quickly approaching and celebrations are springing up all over Grand County.
The festivities begin Saturday morning with the Fly-In Breakfast at Granby/Grand County Airport and climaxes with the famous Grand Lake Fireworks Extravaganza.
The county will fill with thousands of visitors ready to experience live music, festive food, readings of historical documents and much more. Sky-Hi News put together a preview of some of the events going on during the holiday, and a reminder about firework safety from East Grand Fire Protection District.
Granby Fourth Fest
Granby kicks off the weekend with the Fly-In Breakfast at Granby Airport starting at 7 a.m. The funds from the breakfast help to support a program which sends local children to aviation school.
Later on Saturday the Flying Heels Rodeo will begin at 7 p.m. and will be followed up by a fireworks display at the Flying Heels Arena.
The big draw is the Granby Fourth Fest, which will take place at 11 a.m. July 4.
“It’s a really cool parade, and a lot of people get really excited to participate in it,” said Kristy Aulicino, director of marketing for the Granby Chamber of Commerce. “We have a fly-over with the High Country Flyers, they do a really cool formation. There’s lots of veterans there, it’s a really cool time.”
The community parade will also feature classic cars, giveaways and a biker rally following up the parade line. This year’s parade has a wild-west theme.
A Celebration of America
On Monday St. John the Baptist Episcopal Church is holding their annual Celebration of America program at 6:30 p.m. The event serves as a tribute to historical figures and major events in American history through readings, songs and speeches.
“It’s just a bunch of like-minded people who like to celebrate patriotism by reflecting on how we got here,” said Lori Oury, one of the coordinators of the event.
The non-religious, non-partisan program takes place in the church’s sanctuary and features the reading of speeches by historical figures such as George Washington, Gen. Douglas MacArthur and Susan B. Anthony.
The celebration will also include patriotic, singalong music and performances by The Grand Chorale and Mountain Blends choruses. There will also be readings from historical documents including the Declaration of Independence and the Bill of Rights.
“There’ll be the story of the writing of the national anthem, and tributes to all kinds of patriotic historical events,” said Oury. “You can just come in and sit down, and you can sing along if you want.”
Grand Lake’s firework extravaganza
The most popular Grand County celebration is the Grand Lake Fireworks Extravaganza, which will take place after dark on July 4, beginning at 10 p.m.
“We work hard to make this happen, and we do a really awesome fireworks show,” said Samantha Bruegger, executive director of the Grand Lake Chamber of Commerce. “We have a ton of people in town, and lodging is all booked out. It’s awesome; there’s so many people here just to watch the show.”
Bruegger estimates that around 30,000 people showed up for the production last year, and says that lodging for the event in town usually books at least a year in advance.
The fireworks are taken out on a barge and fired over Grand Lake itself.
“A lot of agencies worked together to pull off what really is a giant firework show,” said Bruegger. “It’s pretty impressive to see them go off, and you can see them from different vantage points all around town.”
Live music will be playing throughout the town, including on the beach in front of the fireworks. Stores and restaurants throughout the town will also be open for shopping and dining.
This year the city will be paying tribute to Doris Braun, who served as the celebration’s fireworks fundraiser. The Grand Lake resident passed away on May 30.
“Doris Braun passed away just a few weeks ago, and we know that this will be a huge tribute to her,” said Bruegger. “She was our big fireworks fundraiser. She started all the fireworks and she’s done it for years.”
There will also be an additional show on July 20 to commemorate the life of Braun.
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