Friday, June 26, 2009

Fourth of July Fun

When I was a little kid, Fourth of July was all about fireworks and sparklers. In those days, there was a local fireworks display that was staged somewhere in the vicinity of the Rochester High School campus at Walton and Livernois. My grandparents lived on the hill at Romeo and High streets, and their front yard was a good vantage point from which to view the show, so the family always gathered there to watch the fireworks.

It seemed to take forever for dusk to come, and the anticipation grew and grew while our ears strained to hear that first, experimental BOOM that told us the show was about to start. We'd turn our lawn chairs to the west and prepare to be dazzled. There was no orchestration to accompany the fireworks in those days, but we were thrilled nonetheless.

After the big show was over, we were allowed to put on our own little spectacle with the sparklers. Grandpa would haul out the garden hose and fill a couple of buckets with water, then we kids were allowed to jump around with our sparklers, after listening with one ear to the standard speech about keeping them away from our faces and not throwing them. Soon the yard would be filled with a smoky haze and the aroma of sulphur dioxide as we wound down for the evening.

This year, the Festival of the Hills fireworks will be held in Borden Park on Wednesday, July 1. Click here for details.

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