Sunday, April 20, 2014

Covering Dallas, Monmouth, Independence, Falls City and surrounding areas since 1868

7/10 MI Town: Patty Taylor Dutcher

July 09, 2013

All of the flags, bunting and other red, white and blue decorations have been carefully packed away for another year. We're knee deep in summer activities, as well as responsibilities of home and family.

There are lawns to be mowed, weeds to be pulled and vacations to be planned in this wonderful time of summer sunshine and long perfect twilight evenings where you just wish time could be suspended indefinitely.

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Everyone in MI Town enjoyed yet another outstanding Fourth of July celebration, and there were special and wonderful activities available to everyone fortunate enough to be able to participate in them.

This is the time of year when we can show friends and family from near and far away all of the goodness and blessings of life in a small town -- where we are all neighbors looking to care for one another.

MI Town opens its arms and its heart to all who enter the community and we all gather at the band concert, the parade and the fireworks to say Happy Birthday, USA.

Monmouth-Independence Community Arts Association transformed the park into a village marketplace of booths and festive shops.

The concert in the park was the best we've seen. Richard Sorenson and his talented musicians from both the Willamette Valley Concert Band and the Reconstituted Monmouth-Independence Town Band were simply outstanding. Sorensen's pending retirement as the conductor after all these years made this concert a somewhat bittersweet one. We're hoping that somebody in the community will step up and keep this wonderful tradition going for many years to come.

Our Fourth of July began early with breakfast at the fire station in Independence. Firefighters and their families kept the line moving smoothly and cheerfully served many of our friends and neighbors as we lined up in the early morning sunshine. Local scouts circulated among the tables, offering help at every turn, picked up plates and kept the tables neat and tidy for other diners. We met nice folks from Dallas who said they are looking forward to coming to breakfast again next year. Parents and grandparents enjoyed taking pictures of children standing beside fire engines, and it was great to share in the enthusiasm.

This year's parade was one of pure happiness and celebration. Waving to friends riding on floats or in cars and having the opportunity to honor our military heroes and veterans is a wonderful way to celebrate our nation's birthday. We all enjoyed the very best MI Town can be -- and to be able to spend a couple of days showing friends, family and neighbors what truly constitutes the good life.

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