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4th of July Festivities Across Kiowa County

By Raina Lucero

July 10, 2024

As the sun rose over the vast plains of Kiowa County, communities came alive with the spirit of Independence Day, celebrating traditions old and new. From Eads to Sheridan Lake and Haswell, residents gathered to commemorate this special day with a blend of festivities that highlighted unity and community pride.

In Eads, the day began with laughter and excitement as children paraded down Maine Street and to the park, adorned in red, white, and blue. The park buzzed with energy as families enjoyed a free hot dog barbeque, courtesy of local sponsors, and engaged in various water activities. Praise Community Church was there with a table serving free watermelon and selling tickets to the Crow Luther Cultural Events Center production of The Wizard of Oz.

A friendly cornhole tournament was held on the courthouse lawn for teams of all ages. Ultimately it was Cameron Crow and Cory Miller who emerged victorious in the spirited tournament, showcasing both skill and camaraderie.

Not even cooler temperatures could dampen the enthusiasm as the Eads Volunteer Firefighters delighted children by spraying water from their fire trucks, turning the park into a playground of joyous splashes and smiles. Approximately 90 children joined in the festivities, creating memories that will surely last a lifetime.

Those children were each given a gift bag filled with candies, and gift certificates good for one free swim at the Prairie Pines Assisted Living pool, free popcorn from Crow Luther Cultural Events Center, and a free Icee from Crow’s Stop and Shop.

Meanwhile, in Sheridan Lake, the day was marked by heartfelt tributes and patriotic fervor. The community gathered for a parade that proudly displayed the colors of the nation, followed by a solemn flag retirement ceremony led by Howard Votruba.

Mayor Jerry Weber took a moment to honor Sharon Arns, recognizing her decades of dedicated service to the town, Weber stated, “Sharon has worked for the Town of Sheridan Lake for 25 years as our accountant. Sharon is a very talented and super nice lady, with a perpetual smile, who was always very uplifting to work with throughout her 25 years of service to the Town of Sheridan Lake! Her smile and dedication to her work, will be missed by all.”

The evening brought the community together once more at the KA Hall, where the aroma of barbeque filled the air and anticipation built for the community fireworks display. Volunteer firefighters from Sheridan Lake ensured everyone’s safety, preparing the area by spraying water and standing ready to respond, underscoring their commitment to safeguarding their neighbors and surroundings.

In Haswell, tradition met warmth as over 30 people from various corners of Kiowa County gathered at the old Elementary School turned Community Center for a potluck dinner. Against the backdrop of spectacular fireworks, friendships were strengthened, and stories shared, reinforcing the bonds that make small-town celebrations so cherished.

With the dry conditions across the county fire danger was of top concern for Kiowa County residents, with Eads not having a community display and many people setting off fireworks that were potentially purchased out of state making them illegal in Colorado. Kiowa County Fire Protection District Chief and Kiowa County Emergency Services Director Russ Watson stated there were no fireworks incidents county wide over the long 4th of July weekend.

The 4th of July in Kiowa County is more than a date on the calendar; it’s a testament to the resilience of community spirit. It’s about coming together to honor shared values, create lasting memories, and embrace the joy of belonging. As the fireworks lit up the night sky, illuminating the faces of young and old alike, it was clear that in Kiowa County, the true meaning of independence is found in the unity of its people.

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