Animal Clinic of Kalispell - July 2020

Pet Press KALISPELL JULY 2020

406.755.6886 WWW.KALISPELLVET.COM

M any years ago, my family accidentally found themselves in the Ennis Fourth of July parade. We lived in Butte at the time, and we left home super early on the morning of July 4 for a family trip to Yellowstone. We reached Ennis at around 10 a.m. and were stopped a mile outside of town. They were just about to start their Fourth of July parade! My brother and his family were with us, so we parked the car and went out to watch the parade. Ennis put on a good show, and when it was over, we all loaded back into the car to continue down to Yellowstone. For an hour or so, we drove about 1 mph. Ennis is on a main highway, so after the parade, all these cars were backed up and trying to get through the town. This should have been annoying, but it was actually pretty great. Folks stayed in the stands to watch the cars go by and we got to wave at them. It was kind of like the parade, part two. We had such a good time that we made it a family tradition, when my kids were young, to drive down to Ennis and be part of their Fourth of July parade. There are a lot of great things about Independence Day, from the food to the fireworks. To me, one of the best and most underrated traditions are the Fourth of July parades. This piece of Americana feels so special. There’s something uniquely “small town” about Fourth of July parades. Sure, New York has the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, but how often do you hear about big cities putting on a parade for Independence Day. These are celebrations that only seem to manifest on small-town Main Streets — or, occasionally, the only street. GOOD OLD-FASHIONED AMERICANA A Salute to the Small Town Parade

One of the most interesting parades I’ve ever seen takes place in Johnson, Washington. This is a very small town. Honestly, it’s not even a town, it’s a street with a store on it. All the farmers in the area put on the Johnson Fourth of July parade. It goes down that one street, but the route is only about four blocks long, so when the parade reaches the end, they turn around and come back the way they came. Each half of the parade is going in both directions! It’s a lot of fun. A few thousand folks from Pullman and Moscow travel down to Johnson just for those few minutes to see the parade.

There are a lot of great things about Independence Day, from the food to the fireworks. To me, one of the best and most underrated traditions are the Fourth of July parades.

Anyone who says parades aren’t fun just aren’t going to the right parades. A good parade will include people throwing candy and/or popsicles for the kids. Ideally, the parade will end with a fire truck

going by, spraying everyone with the hose. Parade watching is best done with friends or family members that you have a good time with. You’re basically standing there watching cars, trucks, and grandmas on horses go by. It’s an objectively silly activity, so be with people who will embrace the strangeness. All these oddities are what make parades so American. There are plenty of ways to celebrate the Fourth of July — barbecues, camping, and boating are popular choices — but if your Fourth of July starts off with a parade, then you’re certain to have a pretty good day.

– Dr. Jevon Clark

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