The Fourth of July has always been a very special day here in the Valley. Our eclectic Warren Parade draws thousands to our small historic village to see the various floats parade one mile down Main Street. The floats are traditional, creative, and political. And in an election year like this we normally get our fair share of politicians. A band plays from the deck of The Warren Store and WDEV broadcasts from the porch of the Pitcher Inn. There is often a flyover by the Vermont Air National Guard just before the cannon fires to begin the parade. Sugarbush always has a float and many of our teammates and their children march alongside it, throwing candy to the crowd and often dousing them with water. One year we actually won “best float” beating the perennial winner, Prickly Mountain. Following the parade, there are fun events up at the Warren School for families and the band at the Warren Store plays for a while as a sober street party continues into the afternoon. Up at the resort our summer activities are humming and our golf course is full. We cap off the fun with fireworks at Lincoln Peak beginning at dusk. It really is an amazing day and it “never rains on the parade” – just sometimes on the fireworks, which go on nevertheless.
Unfortunately, the Covid-19 virus has changed things for this year. There will be no parade or street party, and we will not have the normal mountain activities going on. However, our golf course is open as will be Hogan’s Pub for lunch, albeit with reservation only and online ordering. Seating will be limited to conform to the state’s Covid-19 protocols for restaurants.
But the best news is that we will still be having our fireworks that evening. However, it will be different than in past years to make sure that it is a safe environment for all. Online reservations will be required, and we will be able to park up to 500 cars. We will park everyone with adequate spacing between cars and will allow one chair per person to be set up in the designated area around each car. We are launching the fireworks from the top of Easy Rider so they will be easily visible from the Lincoln Peak parking Lots which will open at 7:30 PM to start parking cars. Take a look at our event listing online for full details and protocols on the event. You should be able to start reserving online soon.
We are suggesting a contribution of $20 per car, which will be given to the Mad River Valley Community Fund. Over the past few months, they have given over $140,000 to more than 200 families in the Valley who have been negatively impacted by the virus. My Family Foundation will match the aggregate contribution up to $10,000. We hope that all will not only enjoy the fireworks but also feel good about helping our neighbors during this challenging time.
There are still protocols for some who may be traveling to our Valley from other states and this continues to get updated frequently, so please stay up to date on the current regulations. Many counties in neighboring states are now exempt from the mandatory quarantining and those who have being self-quarantining in their own home may be exempt as well.
It will be a different Fourth, but it will still be a fun day!