Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Our Small Town Fourth of July

Sedro Woolley is a small town that embraces the Fourth of July with gusto. Every town in the area has a celebration with street fair and parade at the same time each year, and somehow my little town snared July 4th as its day.

Combining the agriculture and timber elements of our economy, Sedro Woolley hosts the Loggerodeo each year. There's a chainsaw carving contest, fun run, a rodeo, a carnival and craft fair. But first, there's a parade.

Though school is out, there are usually a couple of alumni bands and a bagpipe band to mingle with the floats that businesses and neighboring towns enter. Add the logging trucks and tractors spewing candy for the kids and a backhoe that does tricks, and you've got two hours of Norman Rockwell overload.

The chainsaw carving contest is right in the middle of town.

Our family tradition has become manning the Pattie Wagon, flipping burgers for our favorite charity. Last year we were able to fund 8 microcredits (small loans to poor Bolivian women) by feeding people who had come to town for the festivities.

This year they moved all the vendors and the carnival down to Riverfront Park, two miles from downtown where the parade and wood carving were. The grass and nearby river made it pleasant, but we lost about half the microcredits because the crowds stayed in town.

This year I manned the booth to explain about SWAN.

Here we are set up and ready to sell ice cream, cotton candy, hot dogs and hamburgers. Bring on the people!

It was a great way to spend the Fourth. The dads of my small grandchildren took them to the parade and then joined us at Riverfront Park. The older grandchildren and friends joined as we all worked together for a good cause.

And, I met some local authors who had a table set up next door. I bought some of their books and I'll be blogging about them later on.

The one good thing about this year being less busy was that I was able to stay up for the fireworks. Last year, I was so beat I went to bed at seven. The fireworks were great, but if I had a choice, I'd choose the microcredits.


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Chas Hathaway said...

Gotta love good ol' fourth of July. We spent the day in St. George. But lest you think it a fun vacation spot, I remind you that we were there in JULY!

If it weren't for the swimming pool I'm sure we would have all melted into the streets. I suppose St. George is a good winter vacation place, but I don't recommend summer! But we did have fun.

- Chas

Anonymous said...

Wow! How neat - that woodcarving contest looked especially amazing!