A picture-perfect Fourth | TheUnion.com

A picture-perfect Fourth

Smoke-free skies and cool breezes greeted about 10,000 people gathered in Nevada City Friday to watch a rather noisy and spirited Independence Day Parade.

American flags fluttered up and down Broad Street, where people sat in folding chairs on the edge of the sidewalks and lined the storefront walls to watch the annual small town procession.

Terry Moule sat relaxed and smiling with his children on Union Street near Calanan Park as the ebullient Ophir Prison Band marched by.

“I love small town events because it’s in my DNA,” Moule said. The youngest of 12 children, Moule is the son of William Moule Sr., who started Moule Paint and Glass in 1949.

Down the street, Kristi and Keith Nicholson waited in the shade for their daughter, Lily, to march past with her Girl Scout troop.

“She always wanted to be in a parade,” Kristi Nicholson said. The couple’s son Max, 3, sat quietly on his father’s lap.

Fire trucks blared sirens and sounded their horns, City Council members waved from their straw-bale seats and shaggy-haired Boy Scouts in uniform hollered, “Cold drinks for sale!”

Crowds cheered and applauded when they recognized neighbors passing by. School bands marched, a man from the Celtic society played bagpipes, the German Americans showed off their Bavarian beer bar, gymnasts flipped, rodeo queens waved, Harley Davidsons thundered and vintage cars cruised. Kids with painted faces and red, white and blue ribbons in their hair darted into the street for candy. A number of people held beers in their hands before noon.

“There’s a lot of enthusiasm here. I like it when people in the community are excited and get involved,” said Allan Sharka, of Winfield, Ill., who was visiting his sister and brother-in-law.

“I think too many people take this country for granted and don’t understand what it’s all about. Our country is about true freedom,” Sharka added.

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