Fourth of July, Then and Now

The Gazette turns back the page in this week’s edition as it revisits the Harris Poll, a first-of-its-kind scientific public opinion survey the results of which were published by this newspaper twenty-five years ago. What follows is an editorial from July 4, 1987, the year the Harris Poll survey was taken.

July 4th Kids Parade

Aquinnah celebrates the Fourth of July with its 10th annual children’s parade. Floats, antique cars, face painting, music, buried treasure on the beach and town officials will all be part of the festivities.

The parade starts at 11 a.m. sharp at the top of Old South Road.

July Fourth Parade Salutes National Day; Festivities Draw Applause from Big Crowds

Even though the sun took the Fourth of July off, people across the Island found plenty of ways to celebrate Independence Day.

The sharp breezes and daunting sky kept folks off the beach. A survey of Norton Point Beach at midday showed only a handful of people, most of whom traded sunblock for sweaters. In fact, more state police than vacationers braved that territory.

The weather and slow morning nudged people toward their favorite restaurants for a leisurely breakfast.

Vineyard Turns to Celebrate a Nation; July Fourth Parade and Fireworks Are Set

It's time to pull out the red, white and blue and join with other Islanders for Independence Day festivities. Edgartown plays host tomorrow to a Fourth of July parade and fireworks display. If you want to join the holiday fun, read along for details about the day.

Island Parade Honors September Heroes

This Fourth of July parade was clearly the biggest. Last night's fireworks were vivid and colorful. And those words can also be used to describe a parade that was so large that it took nearly two hours to run its course.

Edgartown fire chief Tony Bettencourt said: "It was absolutely the largest. It was incredible."

Across the Vineyard, Stories of the Fourth

On the day that America celebrated its independence, and that Edgartown held the big parade, another kind of parade streamed through the tiny avenues of the Camp Ground in Oak Bluffs; a tetherball tournament entertained employees of the Vineyard Yacht Club; and, by night, post-fireworks revelers flocked to Circuit avenue, sidestepping the blobs of melted ice cream left behind by toddlers before their bedtime.

It was a warm and sunny weekend, until rains came Monday afternoon; and the Vineyard took full advantage.

Independence Day 2010

Islanders take the ferry to that other place, America. We even voted in Nineteen-Seventy-Seven to leave the state, and maybe the nation, too — when Beacon Hill moved to remove the Island’s seat in the statehouse, thereby leaving us with less representation for the taxation states always impose. So what if our ragtag secessionist revolution failed politically; the spirit of separation remains strong. Few remember the proposed Vineyard anthem, but a few more still have the flags of our one nation, and more than a few have good stories from those heady days when freedom was on every Islander’s mind again. In our hearts we remain a place apart.

Independence Day 2010

Small Town, Small Parade, All for Kids in Aquinnah

As police lights flashed and sirens wailed through the heavy fog that settled in over Moshup Trail, 100 children, clad head to toe in their red-white-and-blue finery, paraded down Old South Road in Aquinnah.

What started nine years ago as a group of eight children strolling on Philbin Beach has transformed into a neighborhood event every year on the Fourth of July.

With Fireworks, Flare and Tradition, Island Celebrates Independence Day

At 5 p.m. sharp on Wednesday, crowds in Norwich, England, gathered to see the Olympic torch arrive at the Queen’s summer estate. Crowds in front of New England televisions watched the Red Sox play in Oakland. And in Edgartown, a downtown crowd waited anxiously for the first notes of the annual Fourth of July parade.