Here we are almost a week after our wonderful 4th of July festivities. It was perfect weather this year which made for more spectators than I’ve seen in a long time. It almost seems like if it’s going to be super hot in Northwest Indiana, Independence Day always seems to be the hottest. With the numbers of pixie stix and flags that were given out along the parade route the numbers can be easily estimated that 5,000 kids and adults or more, made their way to Willowcreek Road to take in the sights and sounds of a nearly one and a half hour parade.
Thanks to all the members of the Pride in Portage Parade Committee who put this all together under the leadership of Lori Wilkie. Everything was in order and everyone seemed to be having a great time. Also, a special thanks to all our judges making the hard decisions on who should win the best of the best.
Last of all, thanks to all the businesses that contributed this year to help put on the best fireworks show in Northwest Indiana. Those businesses include: Gold sponsor; Meijer, Silver sponsors; Fronius, NIPSCO, CR England and Bronze sponsors; McColly Real Estate, Redieh’s Transit, Horizon Bank and Indiana American Water.
Now for the winners! Best Marching Entry went to the American Legion Post 502 Honor Guard; Best Commercial Float, Texas Roadhouse; Best Non-Commercial, Pitch Black Drumline; Best Youth Organization, Northwest Indiana Gymnastics Center; Best Service Organization, Portage VFW 776; Best Patriotic Theme Entry, Portage Christian School; Best Classic Car; Valpo Vettes and drum roll please … Judge’s Choice went to American Legion Post 502. Congratulations to all the entries, you did an awesome job.
Back in the day when I was young, Independence Day meant that summer was half over and I was on my way back to school in a few short weeks. I couldn’t wait for the 4th to come and once it got here, I didn’t want it to be over. Now I don’t have to think about the 4th like that; I think about all the great things that are still in store for the rest of our summer months.
Nativity of Our Savior’s 48th Annual Summer Festival is one of those events. I’m told that this is the oldest festival in Portage. The festival will run Thursday through Sunday at the parish ground at 2929 Willowcreek Road. The festival always includes amusement rides, kids games, local band talent- all four days, gaming tent, $10,000 raffle, bingo (air-conditioned hall), homemade dinners, corn roast and other foods such as homemade root beer floats. I have it on good authority there is 5,000 pounds of Italian beef and 1,100 pounds of taco meat just waiting for hungry patrons for those familiar time-tested tastes. Of course, there is a beer tent where you can catch up with all your neighbors and friends and sip on a few cold beverages.
To join in all the fun times, hours are to 6-11 p.m. on Thursday, 6-midnight on Friday and Saturday and 1 to 10 p.m. on Sunday.
This column solely represents the writer's opinion.