Thank you for a spectacular 4th | Guest column

On behalf of the San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce, I would like to thank all who helped to make this such a great day of celebrating the 4th of July!

The 2024 Parade theme was Rock-et to the Red, White and Blue and we had 55 outstanding entries, many decorated to match the theme; the parade route was packed, the red, white and blue bunting was hung and there was an unbelievable effort made by the community of our island and the businesses to pull off another patriotic 4th of July. After the amazing flyover by San Juan Airlines, we heard the beautiful singing of the Star-Spangled Banner by Chelsea Parrott; we had so much music, so many floats, politicians, dogs, sheep, chickens, horses and kids. We were proud to honor our Grand Marshals, Steve McMurtrie, driven by Julie Strang and a silent honor for Don Galt Sr who passed away before the event. The Sam R Buck Community Award Winner Jerry Alhadeff was driven by Anthony and Susan Mazzarella. Thank you to Julie and the Mozzarellas for driving our dignitaries! And we can’t forget our great announcers, Alan Budwill and John Nance. They make it seem effortless!

The parade, the Kiwanis Pig War Picnic at the Fairgrounds, music at the Brewery, the Tractor Show, the Pancake Breakfast, the Firecracker Run and Rock the Dock at the Port made for a fun-filled day for all. And wow, how about those fireworks! It was a fabulous show to top off a great holiday in Friday Harbor!

We have so many to thank! We could not have accomplished any of this without the support of Justin Nibler and the Town of Friday Harbor street crew, Sheriff Eric Peter and the deputies, the Aikens and their ferry crew, the Alhadeff’s for letting us announce from their deck, Tami and the crew of the Port, our judges, Jason Douglas and San Juan Airlines, the Presbyterian Church for setting up the seating area in their driveway. Then there is more – our general parade staging manager Parin Columna and his crew of volunteers, Wendy at M&W for loaning us a smart car for me to zip around, a car for one of our award winners and always Benj Ross for making it so we could hear the announcers and for making the trophies for the parade winners.

Finally, the San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce would like to thank Kings Market and the San Juan Island Brewing Company for the matching grant for the fireworks, the Town of Friday Harbor Lodging Tax and the generous donations from David and Nancy Honeywell, Robert and Rebecca Pohlad, the Chamber members who sent in checks, the donation jars at Kings and Marketplace and the Chamber! We are still accepting donations so please check out our donation link! Thank you to all those who helped make the 4th of July a very big success.

Becki Day

San Juan Island Chamber of Commerce