I’m writing you from the town coffee shop here in Rigby. Its a small coffee shop – just 1 table! This is not surprising as the town is 80% LDS (Mormon) and many don’t believe in drinking coffee. Regardless, I like it, and frankly at the moment, I’m drinking iced tea, though I’m also a fan of iced lattes. But you’re not reading this to learn about my favorite beverages!
One thing that is clearly evident in this part of the nation, “Mormon country” is the strong sense of Patriotism. It is around the Independence Day holiday that it really is on display. This year, it started on Saturday July 1st when sleepy, quiet Jefferson Lake in Rigby Idaho became a temporary home to THOUSANDS of visitors. Why? Mostly the lake front fireworks! Of course the numerous food vendors, carnival atmosphere, and a 12 acre lake, great for boating, kayaking and swimming didn’t hurt either.
The fireworks were choreographed to music and you could hear cheers around the lake after the 30+ minute display completed. The video clip in my previous post was not the grand finale – which actually exceeded what you saw.
July 4th – Independence Day
On the 4th, there were a few choices of events to attend across East Idaho. I was tempted to go see the fireworks in Idaho Falls, however I was warned that over 250,000 people crowd into “IF” for that event. This is about 5x the normal population of the town!
Menan, Idaho – the ideal small town Independence Day celebration
I opted to visit a town of 500 – Menan, Idaho. This small town, close enough to Rigby to bike to holds several community oriented events including a town fundraiser breakfast (for the soccer team), a parade (featuring LOTS of candy for the kiddos attending), a classic car show (really cool!), food vendors, and much more. Local residents, and those not so local enjoyed the events of the day. I truly appreciated the moderate temperature as well that never reached 80F!
Rigby gets into the act on July 8th
July 8th for me was a busy day. I started the day by driving down to a high school in Dayton, Idaho where Glenn Beck was presenting his “traveling museum” of artifacts he has personally collected and shares freely with those interested. His collection, as he has said on the air was purchased to preserve our nations history as we head deeper into troubled and turbulent times. Among the artifacts on display was a first draft of the Declaration of Independence – complete with editing remarks and the name of the founders who made suggested changes. It was all part of the process in forming our nation – amazing stuff!
My visit to Glenn’s museum included a purchase of a signed copy of his latest book – Dark Future. After a couple of inspiring hours, I hit the road to run back up I-15 to get back to Rigby and the rural insanity taking place!
Classic Cars – Drag Racing – and even a Rodeo
I drove back to the campground, dropped the car and took my trike out. I still LOVE this ICE trike. My trike turned out to be the ideal way to get around town with everything going on. The big park in town was filled with nearly 100 classic cars dating back to about 1920. One local street had even been closed off for drag racing, and they even raised funds by blowing the motor in a VW Bug!
There was (of course) a row of vendors, and lots of shade to enjoy looking at the cars. I talked with some of the vehicle owners to learn their back story and their cars back story. Just a few blocks away there was even a rodeo going on at the fairgrounds.
The event closed with a classic car cruise through town which is where and when I took many of the photos in this post.
Why share this stuff?
I believe that its events like this that truly represent our nation in its finest light. People gathering to relax on a Saturday afternoon, neighbors enjoying each others company. While we are clearly facing turbulent times as a nation, I believe we have a strong backbone and many of those whom I meet support and are ready to defend the Declaration and Constitution
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