Hope you all had a WONDERFUL 4th! I used to not care much about plans for the 4th. However, the past few years I've had such an excellent holiday that it's becoming a favorite. Three years ago Brad and I went to Jefferson's home, Monticello, while I was singing in VA for the summer, and watched the Naturalization Ceremony. Seeing all of the new citizens taking their oaths after all their hard work, and then listening to their excited comments was extremely humbling. Then, last year, we celebrated on the deck of the USS Midway with Bob and Bonnie while living in San Diego. (There's an archived post about that, I believe!) It was pretty amazing celebrating on the deck of a famous battleship.
This year we were invited to Symphony on the Prairie by our good friends, Jason and Lauren Brown. Bill and Abby Hoskins and John Hough came, as well. Jason and Lauren even had the forsight to rent a table towards the front. It was SUCH a fun night. The Symphony had planned a wonderful program, "Abe Lincoln" read the Gettysburg Address over music from The Patriot and there were even Howitzer's going off during the 1812 Overture, all followed by amazing fireworks right overhead. If you live in the Indy area I highly suggest a visit to any of the Symphony on the Prairie concerts this summer.
Perhaps the best moment was when they played a medley of the Armed Forces' songs. If you served in any of the five you were invited to stand during that theme. (See Jason standing below.) When they played the Army's song, the family of a very, very elderly woman at the next table helped her to stand. She was so proud and clapped along very enthusiastically. Yeah, I cried.
Thanks, Lauren and Jason for thinking of this great idea! We might have a new tradition on our hands!
Getting settled at our table.
Period-dressed soldiers paraded the flags as the symphony played. There was such a wonderful, patriotic atmosphere. Everyone immediately stood every time the flag came into view. At different points in the concert people joined in the singing of the National Anthem and also God Bless America. I kept getting teary! (Well, I do cry at just about EVERYTHING, but it really was very touching.)
Jason standing during the Air Force's song.
We've been over to Jason and Lauren's a couple times now and I want to steal their dog, Reggie. Unfortunately, one of our dogs would want to eat him (Cal - not so good with the little dogs), so I'm leaving Reggie with Jason and Lauren for safe-keeping. It's so funny - he clings to your shoulder and won't let go!