It's a local tradition that gets bigger and better year after year. For the sixteen years, St. Charles Parish has sponsored a pre-4th of July celebration at the west bank bridge park in Luling.
This year the family oriented celebration will be held Monday, July 3rd from 6 PM to 9 PM. It will include great food sold by nonprofit groups throughout St. Charles Parish, live music and will culminate around 8:45 PM with a professional fireworks display that is sure to bring out the youth in all of us.
For many years before St. Charles Parish offered this celebration, my family and I faithfully traveled to the Kenner River Town Park, except for the time we went to the old State Capitol in Baton Rouge, where we sat on the levee and watch their publicly funded fireworks displays. The whole time asking myself, why can't St. Charles Parish do this?
Since Independence Day during the Gulf War, and every year since then, we've been doing just that. Now, instead of our residents traveling to the Kenner area to capture that Independence Day spirit, Kenner residents travel by the carload to St. Charles Parish to partake in our festivities.
In addition to the thousands of local residents who turn out at the park for the greatest free show in St. Charles Parish, ten times more situate themselves along the levees on both sides of the river.
Besides the obvious benefits of having such an event, there is one other benefit that few even think of, a lagniappe that makes our holiday a little safer.
Years ago, in an interest of public safety, the parish outlawed the discharge of fireworks. Laws that are next to impossible to enforce due to the sheer number of partygoers who grew up with fireworks being a major part of the 4th of July tradition. Laws that are hard to enforce since neighboring St. John and Lafourche Parishes have legalized the sale of fireworks.
By allowing professionals to provide a breathtaking pyrotechnic demonstration to a safe crowd, we may accommodate the needs of a growing number of residents who are becoming perfectly content in experiencing all that Independence Day is, and was, and doing so with a little more safety incorporated.
I think we will all agree that this is one of those special qualities of St. Charles Parish.
See ya on the 3rd at the bridge park!