Monti’s Fourth of July was a hit

Posted July 10, 2013 at 11:03 am

BABBLING BROOKS column–Express Editor Kim Brooks

I’d say the Fourth of July holiday was a huge success for the Monticello Community!

With perfect weather (Last year’s sweltering heat felt like we were melting in 100-degree temperatures.) for the parade, the streets along the parade route were lined with spectators! As I was cruisin’ the route the evening before after work, I saw quite a few lawn chairs, blankets and tarps already on the ground to reserve a spot in the shade. It’s great the parade gets so many people excited! Usually you see tarps and blankets lining the hillside at the Jones County Fair. Just goes to show you that our Fourth of July parade has so many people excited for the candy, cheese sticks and goodies galore!

I was stuck behind my camera during the duration of the parade, so any candy that fell at my feet went to my little 3-year-old cousin, Westin. His family came to watch the parade from Dyersville. Among Westin’s favorite parade moments were the tractors, RVs (He told his mom he wanted the big one.), horses and, of course, the bag full of candy!

Above & Beyond handed out hoola hoops to kids all along the parade route. I thought this was a very unique idea; something you don’t see at parades. You could see the excitement on the faces of girls and boys as they were handed a bright red or blue hoola hoop. Someone handed me a hoola hoop as well. I guess I looked like a kid enjoying the parade with the rest of the crowd. I handed it to Westin to take home, and believe me, he never let that thing out of his sight!

Like most, I love a great fireworks show on the Fourth of July. I went “home” to Earlville that evening for fireworks, courtesy of the Earlville Fire Department. Those guys put on show! It’s always fun to see old high school classmates and neighbors on the Fourth as we all flood into the town for the fireworks.

The festivities on July 5 at the fairgrounds were a hit with everyone! I sold beer most of the night, while also taking pictures for the Express. The biggest attraction for kids of all ages was the rock climbing wall. I would have shown off my climbing expertise, but the line was way too long to stand in. At one point a 3-year-old and a 12-year-old were both climbing the wall at the same time.

Thanks to so many businesses and organizations sponsoring the bounce houses and climbing wall, the Chamber was able to help make this event fun for the whole family.

The music by the band The Breakfast Club was amazing! I ran down to the track at one point to see how the other beer tent was going and they were performing a Michael Jackson hit. They were spot on! The Monticello Fire Department picked a great music act to entertain the crowd!

With free admission, plenty of food options courtesy of the Monticello Cubs and activities for everyone, plus great weather, this was a successful night for all. It was great seeing people come from out of town (Cedar Rapids and Dubuque) with their families to partake in the festivities. It only added to the excitement of the night.

The fireworks show was also spectacular! My view from the beer tent was perfect.

All in all, I don’t think Monticello could have asked for a better Independence Day/weekend. For all those who help organize and pull off these events, I’m sure they were counting their blessings when it came to the weather.

Next year’s can only get better!