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Despite steady rain, Mark Hetheriton and daughter Hunter take first place with their float, “Honor Their Sacrifice”.

The Monroe City Chamber of Commerce hosted a day of Fourth of July activities to celebrate the country’s independence. Despite the downpour of rain, the holiday brought several residents out to enjoy many events in the community.

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At 10 a.m. the parade started down Business Hwy. 24/36, as the parade participants traveled the route the rain continued to pour. Viewers stood along the street under umbrellas and watched from their vehicles. The wet weather didn’t seem to bother some children as they attempted to retrieve candy thrown their way in puddles of water.

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This year the parade was organized by MacKayla Painter. This was her first year taking on the task to provide Monroe City with their annual Fourth of July festivities as her mother, Connie Painter, stepped down last year. Connie had helped with the Chamber’s parades for the past 20 years. MacKayla stated, “When mom decided to retire I told her I would give it a try. I was very worried about everything, asking myself, “Will the community like me?”, “Will I even compare to my Mom?”.  All of those things ran through my mind, but I knew she would be there every step of the way. She has taught me so much, not just about the parades, but life in general; She is a strong, smart, good hearted person, I’m blessed to have her as a mother, friend and partner in this life journey. She cares for this community so much, as do I, we will do anything to help or better our community.” 

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The theme for the parade was Peace, Love and Liberty. MacKayla explained, “I couldn’t be any happier with the turn out, for raining the way it did, once again our amazing community pulled through and helped make this parade memorable.”

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The winners of the parade entries were awarded to Mark Hetheriton, first-place, with his float which displayed the words “Honor their Sacrifice”, showing recognition to fallen soldiers in the United States Military; Monroe City Christian Church, second place; and Kim Spalding, third place. The winners of the parade received chamber bucks.

Prior to the parade, the day was kicked off with the bicycle contest. The bicycles were decorated in the patriotic red, white and blue. Police Captain Zach James was the judge for the contest as he walked around speaking to the children and observing all their hard work done in decorating their bicycles. The first-place winner was awarded to McKinley Eckman, second-place winner was Camari Mayfield and third-place winner was Charlie Mudd. The winners all received BB Bucks for their prizes.

After the parade, the rain cleared allowing the community to gather at St. Jude’s Park for the day of planned festivities. There were several booths for people to visit offering clothes, crafts, face painting, snacks, food and much more. The vendors consisted of their own business’ and fundraising to support several local activities. Richard Hagan played his trombone along with the music prior to the start of the parade and afterwards. Due to weather conditions the annual Clifford Talton Jr. Legacy 3-on-3 tournament was relocated to the Middle School gym.

The baby show began at 11 a.m. in the gazebo. The young contestants filled the park in their patriotic attire in efforts to win. The pet show was held directly afterwards, with owners showing their pets in their patriotic attire as well. Alderman Melissa Hays organized the Pet Show. Hays stated, “We had 11 entries, two goats, one cat, and eight dogs. Doc Otto and Orschlens of Monroe City were very generous and we were able to give everyone a prize in all categories. They were biggest, smallest, best trick, and most Patriotic. We had toys, treats, and metals. The metals were donated from Christy Taylor. We hope to add the category of most unique pet next year.”

For more information concerning the baby show, see the article in today’s paper.

Later that evening the Monroe City Fire Department lit up the sky entertaining the community with a firework show.

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