Fourth of July a day to celebrate |

Fourth of July a day to celebrate

Independence Day is Thursday. The national holiday carries added meaning for us this year.

We’ve experienced the traumatic attacks of last Sept. 11, horrific in scope, followed by the anthrax scare. Our nation went to war, demolishing Al Qaeda and Taliban forces, and our troops continue to fight the war on terrorism.

We have been flying the flag in far greater numbers since September. Patriotism, and its meaning for each of us, has been a continuing theme over the past 10 months.

On top of that, we’ve experienced a frightening wildfire, an unsolved murder and a fatal car accident that killed five firefighters.

We need a day to laugh and play, to celebrate our freedom and our togetherness, and to mark our resilience.

Normally, we would be celebrating this holiday with outdoor barbeques, campfires and most importantly, fireworks. But this year, in the midst of a drought and a frightening fire season, there’s not a chance of that.

Fireworks, and open fires, have been banned statewide.

We’ll have to celebrate the liberty we enjoy here in the United States in different ways.

Luckily, our towns are full of creative people. Tomorrow, there will be pancake breakfasts, parades, games, tournaments, dancing, potluck dinners and barbeques up and down the valley.

We’ll miss the fireworks, yes. But this year, it would be crazy to send sparks flying into the air.

Let’s spend the day enjoying our families, our neighbors and friends, our communities, our parks and the glorious freedom that “the land of the free, and the home of the brave” is built on.

– Heather McGregor, Managing Editor

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