Celebratin' the Red, White and Blue

PIONEER PHOTO/Virginia Giorgis

Bridger Valley celebrated Independence Day in muted manner

BRIDGER VALLEY — People turned out in droves for the July 4 parade in Fort Bridger last Saturday, July 3, and lined the street early for their choice spot to watch the parade.

Early that morning the constant drum of the tom toms coming from the Fort Bridger State Site could be heard for over a mile away. As the crowd gathered, the noise along the street became more pronounced with laughing, talking and children playing on the sidelines.

The sun beat down and some tried to hide under umbrellas, others just stood and basked in the sun. A clear, blue sky was overhead with white, puffy clouds to the west of town.

The PA system in the middle of town was too soft and most people wouldn’t hear what was being said at the ends of the thoroughfare. As the strains of the Star Spangled banner started to drift across the area, it brought a hush to the crowd and they turned to face the flag hanging in the middle of town, provided by the Valley section of the Uinta County Fire Department. When the song finished, it brought forth yells, claps and whistles from the crowd.

Members of Uinta County’s Mounted Sheriff’s Posse was first on tap and presented the colors as they paraded down the main thoroughfare through Fort Bridger.

The children were ready, bags in hand to scoop up the candy thrown from the floats, many decked out in red, whit and blue. The float by the Fort Bridger Historic Site, was a tribute to those who serve in the U. S. Military and Veterans. It had a flag- draped coffin with two 1800 cavalry soldiers standing at attention with their rifles and the lettering on the back said, “Freedom isn’t Free.” A trend that speaks through the ages. Veterans rode through the parade on ATVs.

The State Site hosted their annual Kid’s Extreme Day and Rounders (old fashioned) baseball games.

The nights of July 3 and July 4 were basically black and devoid of the color from fireworks as the county had initiated Stage One fire restrictions. Some shot a few, others shot some that stayed on the ground. But the first restriction, (Discharge of fireworks and all outdoor fires are prohibited in unimproved areas) left many unsure if they could or could not shoot as they said, if shooting at their homes in the county, it was definitely an improved area.

One man, after purchasing his fireworks and had shot them near Fort Bridger last year, said he was going to Evanston as he had called the Sheriff’s Office and had been told people could shoot fireworks in Evanston. Also Sweetwater County allowed residents to shoot fireworks on private property.

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