Fireworks kick off Lakewood’s 40th year
LAKEWOOD – Not even driving rain and thunder could dampen the kick off Lakewood’s 40th anniversary celebration at Jeffco Stadium Friday.
Lakewood: 40 and Fireworks, Lakewood on Parade’s 2009 community event came together despite hour-long downpour.
When the rain ended, the community party resumed under clear skies, capping nine months of hard work for a parade committee working hard to bring the event together after a hiatus in 2009 in deference to the Democrat’s national convention in Denver.
“We didn’t have it last year and it was important to do an event this year and bring the community back together, especially to celebrate our 40th. And not only our 40th, but the country’s birthday, as well,” said City Councilman Adam Paul, who served on the parade committee.
“We got some feedback from the community that they were disappointed that there weren’t fireworks in Lakewood, so this was a good opportunity,” Paul said.
The patrons didn’t seem to miss the parade. After the sun returned, picnic baskets were flung open, flying discs and balls floated through the air, music played and campaigning hopefuls lobbied for votes in the November election for City Council.
Youngsters ran and played across the grass and others stood in line for a trip down the steep slopes of an inflatable mountain. Some tried their hand at pottery or jewelry making. Others twisted and turned to keep Hula Hoops in motion.
As the crowd swelled toward sundown, the words of the Declaration of Independence were solemnly read and four Lakewood mayors were on hand to launch the city’s birthday celebrations.
There were jugglers, barbecue, hot dogs, hamburgers, funnel cakes, cotton candy, a beer garden, two live bands, roving entertainers and speeches.
Then came the fireworks, put on by Western Enterprises, which does fireworks shows all along the Front Range.
The finale was a showstopper, 400 shells fired 10 at a time in bursts a second apart, the candles on Lakewood’s birthday cake,
Paul said Friday’s party gave residents a rare chance to mingle, visit and get to know each other in a way the parade didn’t accommodate.
“It seems a lot more personable and you’re not separated by a street, everybody’s together,” Paul said. You have your elected officials out mingling. It’s good to be out in the community. Maybe 20 years from now we’ll be famous for being Lakewood on Parade without the parade.”