Sunday, January 25, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Celebrating July 4th through the years, Solano style

Publication1

By
From page A2 | July 04, 2014 |

John Adams, a signer of the Declaration of Independence and second president of the United States wrote that the Fourth of July “. . . ought to be celebrated by pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires and illuminations from one end of this continent to the other.”

Solano County residents have done their best over the years to do him proud.

Here is a rewind of local Independence Day celebrations past:

100 years ago: The 1914 dedication of the new Solano County courthouse featured among other festivities a parade, fireworks and  a “Horribles” contest, where residents wore their most horrible costumes.

60 years ago: In 1954 in Suisun City, free stuff reigned. Free United States flags were distributed, children got a free lunch and from 1 to 2 p.m they could enjoy free cartoons at the Suisun Theatre. The only thing that had a price tag on it was a dance at the M & M Skateway (where Bab’s Delta Diner now stands), featuring the Phil King orchestra.

50 years ago: To help ensure that local residents would be able to attend their child-friendly Independence Day events, the City Council of Suisun City passed a formal resolution in 1964 that read in part: “IT IS HEREBY RESOLVED . . . that you, the people of our community, are most earnestly requested to stay off the state highways during the coming weekend and celebrate our chief national noliday at home.”

They literally had events for all ages:

King and queen of freckles for all ages.

Sack races for those 6 to 12.

Spoon and egg races for those 8 to 30.

Pie-eating tournament for those 4 to 13.

Milk-drinking contest for those 9 to 13.

Slow bicycle race for children up to 12 years old.

Twist contest for all ages.

40 years ago: More than 2,000 people attended the Independence Day celebration held at Allan Witt Park in 1974. It featured the Fireman’s Olympics, with a bucket brigade, water polo and a tug of war. Residents beat the heat for free at the Fairfield Plunge swimming pool.

30 years ago: The 1984 Suisun City Fourth of July celebration featured a recreation of a Revolutionary War naval battle. The theme of the Fairfield parade was “American sports in motion” and the fitting grand marshal was ex-Armijo football coach and local sports legend Ed Hopkins. A cultural touchstone of the times – break dancers – were featured in the parade. Fireworks were at Travis Air Force Base for the fifth year in a row.

Other local residents shared Fourth of July memories:

Judy Leetham: Back in the 1940s and ’50s, the Suisun City plaza was the grand destination for us kids! They had sack races, firecrackers, music and all kinds of events. My best memory:  It was a really hot July 4 and I saw the watermelon-eating contest. Ohhh, that cold watermelon looked so good! So I sat down, got a big piece, and slowly savored every bite . . . as all the other kids were cramming it down to win the race. People saw what I was doing and had some good laughs. It was a great time to be growing up in the small communities of Fairfield/Suisun.

Monica Lunceford Romero Sepulveda: The best time was when the celebration was held over at Allan Witt Park, which used to be West Texas Street Park. There were baseball games and everyone brought picnics. I was sad when they moved them.

Steve Murray: One year, we painted red and white stars and stripes on my blue VW and snuck into the parade.

Julie Huffenberger: The Fourth of July as a kid growing up in Fairfield is some of the best memories I have of my childhood. It always included backyard barbecues, fun in the sun and watching the downtown parade from my Uncle Lloyd’s and my mom’s tax business. Then at night getting on the roof of my house to watch the fireworks set off at J C. Penney’s parking lot before there was a mall.

Mark Smith: I recall they moved the fireworks from where the mall is now over to Dickson Hill, where the water storage reservoir is. This was before there were houses all around. There was a lot of dry grass on the hill and the finale lit most of the hill on fire. So after the fireworks were over, we got to watch the hill burn.

Reach Fairfield writer Tony Wade at toekneeweighed@gmail.com.

Tony Wade

Tony Wade

Tony Wade is the slightly older yet infinitely more handsome brother of long-time DR columnist Kelvin Wade
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Solano GOP welcomes address from King niece

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A1, 4 Comments | Gallery

 
Nursing students take next step in higher education

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: C1 | Gallery

Friend seeks justice for 1982 Vacaville homicide victim

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 11 Comments | Gallery

 
 
Biggest Little Car Show returns for 31st year

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Solano Safety Net Summit set in Fairfield downtown

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

 
Wine, chocolate pairing comes to downtown Benicia

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Local gas prices dip below $2 a gallon

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Crews respond to residential fire

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A4 | Gallery

 
Be heart smart all year long

By Gerald Bourne, MD | From Page: C4

 
Kindergarten Readiness Roundup enlightens parents

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4 | Gallery

Weather for Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B4

 
CHP seeks witnesses to I-80 crash

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
City seeks input on downtown plan

By Brian Miller and Karl Dumas | From Page: B7, 2 Comments

Privatized housing tenants to feel BAH pinch

By Tom Philpott | From Page: B10

 
Fairfield police log: Jan. 23, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

Airman with Fairfield tie completes training

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

 
Suisun City police log: Jan. 23, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

Suisun City police log: Jan. 22, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

 
.

US / World

Abe ‘speechless’ after video claims IS hostage dead

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
It’s a hoot hanging out with owls at this Tokyo cafe

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2 | Gallery

Avian flu confirmed in commercial turkey flock in California

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Boy, 13, arrested in fatal stabbing near Los Angeles school

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Abortion opponents express renewed hope at SF rally

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
School: Sea otter conceived in wild is 1st born in captivity

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Man searching by plane finds body of missing son off Mexico

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Kia recalling nearly 87,000 Fortes because of fire risk

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Elon Musk’s SpaceX drops lawsuit against Air Force

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
California’s public-worker payroll increased post-recession

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Company seeks rights to names of iconic Grand Canyon lodges

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

GOP presses state bills limiting gay rights before ruling

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
1st attempt to lift fuselage of crashed AirAsia plane fails

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Tens of thousands protest after president resigns in Yemen

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Thousands march against socialist president in Venezuela

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Expert says King Tut mask can be restored after epoxy used

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
Obama to cut short India trip to pay call on Saudi Arabia

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Rockets kill 30 in Ukrainian city as rebels launch offensive

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
.

Opinion

 
Plea for return of stolen statue

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
Not all police are bad

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 7 Comments

Editorial Cartoon: Jan. 25, 2015

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Sound off for Jan. 25, 2015

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8, 1 Comment

 
.

Living

Today in History: Jan. 25, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Jan. 25, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

The gift of a new beginning

By Dalia Adams | From Page: C3, 1 Comment

 
Mennonite group to build houses in tornado-damaged town

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

Yearbooks bring Jewish, Catholic groups together

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Horoscope Jan. 25, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

My dad can’t get over the bad first impression of my boyfriend

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

 
.

Entertainment

Mariel Hemingway working on memoir and young adult novel

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

 
Jonathan Franzen to appear at BookExpo America

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

.

Sports

25 years of trying to get it right

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B1, 3 Comments | Gallery

 
Sharapova, Bouchard into quarterfinals at Australian Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

2 Williams sisters, 2 Madisons into 4th round at Aussie Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Hall of Famer Ernie Banks mourned in sports world and beyond

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Thompson’s record 3rd quarter leads Warriors past Kings

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Belichick on deflated balls: ‘We try to do everything right’

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1, 4 Comments | Gallery

Shortstop Troy Tulowitzki’s surgically repaired hip on mend

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Buckeyes celebrate their title at Ohio Stadium

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Carroll, Belichick excelled after failing the first time

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Luck-led Team Carter vs. Romo-lead Team Irvin in Pro Bowl

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

AP Explains: The Pro Bowl, unlike any other All-Star game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Abdullah leads North to 34-13 win over South in Senior Bowl

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

As Brady, Gronk know, pre-Super Bowl injury talk always big

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
AP Interview: Selig says MLB could expand internationally

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Could Super Bowl be Lynch’s finale in Seattle?

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Sherman, Seahawks take the trash-talk lead over Patriots

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Ashley Wagner wins 3rd US title with record-setting scores

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
Weber’s 108.5-mph blast gives him hardest shot at NHL skills

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Jimenez, Mediate share lead in Champions Tour opener

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Grace wins Qatar Masters by 1 stroke

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Matt Kuchar stumbles in, gives away Humana Challenge lead

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
For streaking Atlanta Hawks, it’s all about the balance

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Upstart wins $400,000 Holy Bull at Gulfstream

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Mischief Clem wins California Cup Derby in photo finish

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

World Cup of Hockey tournament set for 2016

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Hometown report: Bowling

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B3

Sports on TV for Sunday, Jan. 25, 2015

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B5

 
This date in sports history for Jan. 25, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

.

Business

Anheuser-Busch to buy craft beer company

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Booking a trip to the ER on your smartphone? It’s a breeze

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

Higher standard deduction, other breaks for older taxpayers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Tiny Cokes: Less guilt means more money for makers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Recalls this week: cleaners, fitness machines

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
First Look: Apple’s HomeKit could help smarten up your home

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

.

Obituaries

Don Johnson

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4, 2 Comments

 
Thomas Clark

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Sheila Margery (Smith) Luxenberg

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics