Although the "lake folks" had gone a number of times before, this was our first experience with the Peabody Fourth. As we arrived, we realized it is a much bigger deal than we had expected. First, we had to find a parking spot, which was not an easy thing to do. Every side street was packed to the gills, but we did find a spot within a mile of the baseball stadium.
At the gate, we should have purchased a button to get in . . . But although they had printed 3900 buttons, they were out. That was a good sign that the event was to be well attended. A ferris wheel and other carnival rides were in the park, and people were already reserving their spot for the big show.
We had no idea where to sit, but the Gaskills did. Spectators were to sit inside the Peabody baseball stadium and in the infield; the fireworks were discharged in the outfield and behind the outfield fence. Yikes! Much closer than I have ever been to.a large-scale fireworks show.
The local air became quite apparent with the commentary. The announcer had a definite Wildcat bias, which came through several times. He announced deaths within the community, as well as other important occurrences. Various picture fireworks were placed in the outfield - a Jayhawk, a Wildcat, a WuShock, a windmill, and even a proposal! I got the feeling that the proposal idea had never happened in the 92 years before, but I could be wrong. Then between pictures, large fireworks graced the skies.
The finale was to the tune of the Battle of New Orleans. Two cannons shot Roman Candles at each other, with hundreds of Lady Fingers going off between them. Additional fireworks were going off above . . .
And we were in the danger zone. We were pelted with numerous pieces of cardboard, sand, and embers. Several of us got "stuff" in our eyes, but it gradually came out. I had to plug my ears and even close my eyes because it was so bright and loud.
At the end, the over 5000 people were delighted with the show. An hour's worth of pyrotechnics . . . Not bad for small-town 'Merica!