No question about it, but Steilacoom’s traditional afternoon on the Fourth was a big success—“even though it was smaller than usual,” commented Veva Maddox, parade coordinator.
“Because the holiday was on Friday, we were down from the usual 100 or more units to only 68 this year,” she said.
No matter. There was plenty to do that day, beginning with the early morning Fun Run, to meandering through the colorful street fair, snacking on sweet Indian fry bread from the Steilacoom Tribal Cultural Center and Museum’s booth, to sipping a frosty beverage in the shady Tennis Court Beer Garden, followed by a stop at the Steilacoom Historical Museum’s Ice Cream Social. The day concluded with another spectacular, citizen-funded fireworks display over the Sound.
The parade got underway at 1 p.m., with Emcee Larry Beck announcing the entries. The 42nd MP Brigade’s Color Guard, led the parade, and was followed by the quick-stepping members of the 56th Army Band, with its snappy drum major wielding his long, silver baton.
Grand Marshal Col. Bruce Bowers, commander of the 446th Airlift Wing Command, and his wife, Kim, were next. They were followed by Col. David Chase and Sgt. Major M. Devos of the 42nd MP Brigade. The men represented the Town’s JBLM Community Connector Group.
Steilacoom’s mayor Ron Lucas, was honored by the Chamber of Commerce and Kiwanis of Steilacoom as this year’s “Citizen,” along with Lucas family members who’d piled into one of Mr. LeMay’s classic cars.
Bruce Folmer, Steilacoom High School band director, led the school’s marching band, along with the towering, eclectic array of papier mache puppets. The wail of the siren from Steilacoom’s fire truck signaled the parade’s conclusion.
After that folks dispersed for picnics at private homes, returning later to dance on Lafayette Street, and then to watch Fireworks. Happy Birthday, America!
Note: Shirts are still available at the full price though August at the Marine and Spirits location. Shirts will also be available at the Open House at the newly completed Steilacoom Historical School District Administration Building, previously known as Pioneer Middle School , AKA “The old Steilacoom School”.
Coming up on July 10: The “grand opening” of Steilacoom’s “Old” Pioneer School, which now is the District Office for Steilacoom Historical School District No. 1, from 4-6 p.m. (The Fireworks T-shirt stand vendors did a brisk business on the Fourth, selling this year’s collectible shirt that features the Old School on the Hill.)
Circle July 27 on your calendar—that’s the date for the annual Steilacoom Historical Museum Association Salmon Bake at Sunnyside Beach. The Bake begins at noon.