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July 5, 2014

Events on Park Street, SportsPark for Fourth of July

GREENVILLE — For the first time in 18 years, local residents only had one Independence Day parade to attend.

Fortunately, Friday’s 18th Annual Park Street July 4 Parade was likely the biggest and best yet.

The smaller and one-year older Buena Vista/Chapman Neighborhood Parade was not held this year, but Park Street more than took up the slack.

 Hundreds of local residents lined both sides of Park Street and watched dozens of entries pass by in a 30-minute spectacle. It probably helped that the weather was perfect, with partly cloudy skies and temperatures in the 70s at start time.

This year’s parade featured Anita McClain, Park Street’s longest resident, as Grand Marshal, who helped lead off the parade as a passenger in David Gish’s classic Cadillac. More antique and classic cars, the Greenville High School Lion Pride Band, motorcycles, bicycles, tricycles, jeeps, honor guards, marching groups and equestrian entries were included in the parade. The Greenville Fire-Rescue Department also hoisted a giant American flag to greet the participants near the end of the parade route.

Following the parade, many of the spectators filled Kavanaugh United Methodist Church for the annual Patriotic Program, which featured Tom McAllister and Dee Hilton as special guests, as well as President George Washington as portrayed by Chief Justice Josh Morriss, Sixth District Court of Appeals in Texarkana. Free watermelon was served following the program.

Friday’s July 4 events in Greenville also included the Firecracker 5K race and a Kids 1K fun run, a free pancake breakfast at Park Street Baptist Church and the Patriotic Picnic at the Greenville SportsPark, which featured live music and a fireworks grand finale.

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