LAUREL – For years the 4th of July parade in Laurel has provided smiles and candy to Montanans from across the state, and Thursday’s parade was no different.
“Everyone should come to the fourth of July in Laurel,” said Laurel resident Jennifer Draper. “It’s really unbelievable because people come just to Laurel, just for the fourth. Once they’ve been here they’ve got to come back.”
The little ones got the party started. The kiddie’s parade featured decked out bicycles, festive power wheels, and even a few alpacas.
Even after they got done walking their route it seems like all the kids have one thing on their mind… the pyrotechnics.
“My favorite part about them is when they go up in the air and go, BOOM!” said Rory, a very enthusiastic Laurel resident.
Following the Kiddie’s parade was the main event: The Grand Parade.
This year’s theme was the Parade of Stars. Thousands lined the streets of Laurel to get a glimpse of the festive floats. People with homes on the parade route have the best seats you can get.
“It’s actually been a lot of fun,” said Jennifer Draper. “I’ve really enjoyed living here. We moved into this house when my daughters were 16 months old. I have a set of twins. We moved in on the 3rd of July. The morning of the 4th with the parade going by, they thought that the parade was for them.”
Draper added that the 4th is a poignant holiday for her. She said nearly every branch of her family has someone who served in the military.
The party doesn’t stop when the parade ends. Once it gets dark, heads in Laurel will turn skyward to watch the largest fireworks display in Montana.