Residents, gathered in what village trustee Suzanne LeBlanc called the largest crowd ever, cheered, waved, and danced in the streets as the organizations, politicians, fire departments, and others passed.
Small children covered their ears as the fire departments passed, horns and sirens blaring. Silly string and water gun battles randomly broke out throughout the morning, as Saugerties celebrated the nation’s 234th birthday.
The morning began with the firemen’s inspection at 8:30 a.m. Each of the Saugerties fire departments was welcomed by the mayor and fire commissioner, as was the village police department. Several firemen were recognized for 50 years of service, and Cody Rocco was named fireman of the year. A new award this year, fire policeman of the year, was shared by Jack Kolano and R. Burke Bartells.
As festivities at the C.A. Lynch firehouse wrapped up, residents began lining the streets with lawn chairs, umbrellas, coolers, and some set up small tables filled with icy mixed drinks to enjoy while watching the parade, which stepped off at 11 a.m., from the Saugerties High School parking lot.
Later, vendors enticed visitors to Cantine Field with delicious snacks, handmade crafts, and red, white, and blue trinkets. Bands faced off in the annual battle of the bands on the bandstand near the Babe Ruth field. As twilight drew near, children decked out in glow necklaces and light-up novelties gathered with their families on blankets to await the annual fireworks display. The sky was lit with bombs bursting in a full spectrum of colors, as spectators clapped, whistled, and voiced amazement at the display.