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Bringing Lake Gaston families together

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Posted: Wednesday, July 11, 2018 12:00 pm

Sandy Trace’s 20th Annual 4th of July Celebration was a patriotic, educational parade that was fun for grandparents and grandbabies alike. At least nine golf carts decorated with patriotic flags, garlands, bunting, bows, and whirligigs participated. A Honda Goldwing Trike (three-wheel motorcycle), toy 4-wheelers, wagons, bicycles, and kick scooters were also in the parade. At least 50 spectators were there.

Stephen VanEssende led the opening ceremonies. Before the official start of the parade, VanEssende asked for a show of hands of all of those who had served their country and asked everyone to applaud to show their appreciation. He also explained why we celebrate the 4th of July. Lucy Stelmot, granddaughter of Pam and Bill Stelmot, then led the group in the Pledge of Allegiance. Next, the National Anthem was played while participants sang along. VanEssende closed the opening ceremonies by reading an excerpt from former President Ronald Reagan’s July 4, 1986, speech.

VanEssende started off the parade by announcing … “Ladies and gentlemen, start your engines.” Participants headed down the hill about a quarter-mile then circled back. The parade concluded in a grassy area, where grandparents and parents took lots of photographs. Short, sweet and incredibly patriotic!