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Fourth of July Johnson County Style

Johnson County may be small in population, industry and shopping malls when compared to, well, almost anywhere. But when it comes to patriotic pride, Johnson Countians stand tall. This past weekend’s Fourth of July celebration proved that once again as hundreds packed into Mountain City and Ralph Stout Park to wish the good old USA another happy birthday.
Downtown was a shifting sea of red, white and blue as parade-goers waved at the passing beauty queens. Children, perched high on their dads’ shoulders, covered their ears at the wail of the brightly polished fire engines. Politicians kissed babies and made speeches. And for a few hours, everyone pushed aside thoughts of recession, taxes and unemployment, and just enjoyed a warm summer afternoon in Hometown, USA. Old Glory flapped proudly as she gazed down at the scene while young and old alike drank in the nearly tangible patriotism that floated on the mountain air.
As the last golden rays of sunshine slipped away, the skies darkened into a perfect black velvet backdrop for the explosions of color overhead. The first booming flash gave way to another and another, and soon the heavens were ablaze with the simultaneous bursts of raining light. When the last of the thundering echoes died into the night, whistles, applause and shouts of approval took their place.
The celebration had ended. The spell was broken, and it was time to go home. Thoughts of recession, taxes and unemployment would again creep into the minds of many. But perhaps reflecting on the history of this great nation for a little while rekindled hopes and dreams for her future and for those of us fortunate enough to call America home.