Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Alfred Port films the procession of antique cars in Kenai's Fourth of July Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Alfred Port films the procession of antique cars in Kenai's Fourth of July Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

The 4th of July in Kenai

  • By Kelly Sullivan
  • Monday, July 4, 2016 8:48pm
  • News

Some came to honor those who have served and are serving in the U.S. Armed Forces, some came to show off their sewing skills and some simply came to find some fun.

Whatever their reasons, hundreds attended Kenai’s Independence Day parade and festivities Monday, flooding Main Street Loop’s sidewalks and packing the city’s Green Strip park.

Doug Field said he came to demonstrate the difficulties of riding a Penny Farthing bicycle.

Throughout the parade he hopped on and off the towering seat, which his father bought in San Francisco 40 years ago, anticipating the usual questions that arise including, “How do you get on it? How do you get off it? Is it hard to ride?”

“It’s not an easy ride,” Field said after a pause. “It’s work.”

Field rode among a procession of antique cars and motorcycles, which made the day for festivities first-timer Caleb Litke. He and his family watched the show from the very end of the route, and it met his expectations.

“It is fun, and you get free candy,” he said.

It was the first time John and Marlene Dick and their son and daughter-in-law, Mike and Wendy Whitten, attended the parade as well.

“The turnout is great,” said Mike Whitten. “It’s great to see so many people.”

Sisters Isabella and Addison stayed to tour the game and food booths, said their father Anthony Harrilla, who was watching the girls with his wife, Brion Harrilla, while their daughters danced on a small stage with music provided by a DJ.

“We went to the parade to celebrate Independence Day, and show respect for the people who served and died for our country,” Harrilla said. “And the girls came for the candy.”

Colter Thomas also spent some time taking advantage of the free tunes. He said he busted out his signature steps the “Whip/Nae Nae,” a move made popular by artist Silento. He said he recently learned to do the dance so he could perform it for his school and it won him the position of class president.

“I just dance for fun,” Thomas said.

At 2 p.m. the stage was cleared for the Kenai Performers Cosplay costume contest, which winner Glynn Smith said he wasn’t expecting to enter that day when he showed up to help out at the Frozen Coast Live Action Role Play group’s booth, let alone take the title. He wore a full suit of armor, the chest plate of which alone cost $1,600.

His fellow Frozen Coast members Victor “Rosedoth” Hunter and Garrett “Lucion” Eady were practicing live-action role playing, where players use padded swords to learn to fight recreationally. The two were demonstrating what it is like to be a part of the group, which has now been active for four years and has grown from five to 45 members, Eady said. Setting up at local events help increase membership slowly but surely, he said.

For long-time attendees Chevelle and Shelby Gourley and their dad Chazz, the events this year were standard but fun and fulfilling as usual. Chazz Gourley said they had been coming since his oldest daughter Chevelle was a baby and that it has yet to disappoint.

 

Reach Kelly Sullivan at kelly.sullivan@peninsulaclarion.com.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Samuel Strouss happily takes a mini rubber duck from a Kenai Elk's Club volunteer during Kenai's July 4th Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Samuel Strouss happily takes a mini rubber duck from a Kenai Elk’s Club volunteer during Kenai’s July 4th Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Kristin Freed and Addyon Carr rush to grab a handful of candy during Kenai's July 4th Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Kristin Freed and Addyon Carr rush to grab a handful of candy during Kenai’s July 4th Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion A group of onlookers watch the start of Kenai's July 4th Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion A group of onlookers watch the start of Kenai’s July 4th Parade on Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Doug Field hopped on and off his Penny Farthing during Kenai's July 4th Parade to demonstrate how to ride the tall bicycle Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Doug Field hopped on and off his Penny Farthing during Kenai’s July 4th Parade to demonstrate how to ride the tall bicycle Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Some walked, some drove through Kenai's July 4th parade Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Some walked, some drove through Kenai’s July 4th parade Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion A colorful crowd watches the Kenai Performers Cosplay costume contest during the Kenai's July 4th festivities Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion A colorful crowd watches the Kenai Performers Cosplay costume contest during the Kenai’s July 4th festivities Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Glynn Smith did not expect to enter the Kenai Performers Cosplay costume contest, let alone be chosen as the winner during Kenai's July 4th festivities Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Glynn Smith did not expect to enter the Kenai Performers Cosplay costume contest, let alone be chosen as the winner during Kenai’s July 4th festivities Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Shelby and Chevelle Gourley snack on snowcones during Kenai's July 4th festivities Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

Photo by Kelly Sullivan/ Peninsula Clarion Shelby and Chevelle Gourley snack on snowcones during Kenai’s July 4th festivities Monday, July 4, 2016 in Kenai, Alaska.

More in News

Members of the community attend the first part of the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska’s Food Security and Sustainability Series in August 2022. (Photo courtesy Challenger Learning Center of Alaska)
Challenger Learning Center workshop focuses on food sustainability

Gathering, growing and preserving food in the form of plants, fish and other animals will be discussed

Examples of contemporary books that have been banned or challenged in recent years are displayed on Saturday, Sept. 24, 2022, at the Soldotna Public Library in Soldotna, Alaska. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Soldotna library hosts Banned Book Club

Books have been challenged or banned for their content nationwide.

Nikiski Middle/High School Principal Shane Bostic stands near a track and field long jump sand pit on Monday, Sept. 19, 2022, in Nikiski, Alaska. The track is one of several projects in a bond package Kenai Peninsula voters will consider during the Oct. 4 municipal election next month. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
‘Critical needs’: Nikiski athletes await upgrade

Funding for long-delayed school projects on Oct. 4 ballot

Lars Arneson runs to victory and a new event record in the Kenai River Marathon on Sunday, Sept. 25, 2022, in Kenai, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
A speech, a smartphone and a bike

Circumstances lead Arneson to Kenai River Marathon record

Trees with fall colors populate the Shqui Tsatnu Creek gully as seen from Fourth Avenue on Friday, Sept. 23, 2022, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai to use $770k in grants to remove hazard trees along Shqui Tsatnu Creek

The money will be used to mitigate hazards caused by dead and dying spruce trees over more than 100 acres of city land

Alaska state Rep. David Eastman, a Wasilla Republican, is shown seated on the House floor on April 29, 2022, in Juneau, Alaska. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer, File)
Alaska judge keeps Oath Keepers lawmaker on November ballot

Judge Jack McKenna on Thursday ordered elections officials to delay certifying the result of that particular race

An image purportedly from the computer screen of a digital media specialist for Gov. Mike Dunleavy shows numerous files and folders of campaign advertising. A complaint filed against the governor, plus other individuals and organizations, claims administrative staff is illegally doing paid campaign work on behalf of the governor. (Screenshot from complaint filed with the Alaska Public Offices Commission)
Dunleavy faces more accusations in campaign complaint

Governor calls it “specious and unfounded.”

A recent photo of Anesha "Duffy" Murnane, missing since Oct. 17, 2019, in Homer, Alaska. (Photo provided, Homer Police Department)
A 2019 photo of Anesha “Duffy” Murnane, who went missing since Oct. 17, 2019, in Homer. (Photo provided, Homer Police Department)
Calderwood indicted for murder

Indictment charges man accused of killing Anesha “Duffy” Murnane with first-degree murder, kidnapping and sexual assault.

Triumvirate Theatre is seen on Monday, Feb. 22, 2021, in Nikiski, Alaska. The building burned in a fire on Feb. 20 of that year. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai council gives Triumvirate more time to build theater

The Kenai City Council voted last summer to conditionally donate a 2-acre parcel of city land near Daubenspeck Park and the Kenai Walmart

Most Read