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Community overcomes obstacles to bring back Edmonds Fourth of July celebration

Since its return was announced, "An Edmonds Kind of 4th" has faced massive logistical challenges and a lack of participation from community groups.

EDMONDS, Wash. — After weeks of daunting obstacles and lack of participation, the Fourth of July celebration in Edmonds is officially back on, the city’s chamber of commerce announced Monday.

The news earlier this month that “An Edmonds Kind of 4th” was returning after the COVID-19 pandemic had forced its cancellation last year was a sign for many that things were beginning to return to normal.

Even though the chamber announced it would bring back the parade, 5K race and firework show, various hurdles almost immediately threatened its plans.

At first, the chamber faced the logistical challenge of completing roughly five months’ worth of planning in about six weeks.

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Then, because of the fallout from the pandemic, the typically long list of nonprofits and organizations that usually sign on to help and participate in the festivities virtually vanished as many of those groups struggled to pull people together on short notice.

The continuous struggles made it more and more likely that the celebration would have to be canceled a second year in a row. 

The dire situation prompted Edmonds Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Greg Urban to call on the community to help save the event.

"Right now we're facing the reality of we need more parade entries. We're only at about 16 entries for the parade when we normally have 80-100," Urban said on June 11.

Apparently, his call for help worked.

In a release sent out Monday, the chamber of commerce wrote it now had the number of volunteers, vendors and parade entries it needs to move forward with the Fourth of July celebration.

“We cannot thank the community enough. The outpouring of attention from local media and interest from the community has made this possible,” Urban said in the release.

Not only is the event officially moving forward, but the chamber also said that it is expanding its firework show to nearly double its usual size.

In light of the cancellation last year and new rules banning personal fireworks throughout Snohomish County, the chamber said that its professional firework show will feature more than 900 bursting overhead shells rather than the 500 or so in past years.

The city is still urging those who have not already registered to sign up, volunteer and show support for the “An Edmonds Kind of 4th” celebration.

“We aren’t done yet though. There is still plenty of room for people to run in the Beat Brackett 5K race and march in the parade, so sign up and make the day’s events even better,” Urban said in the release.

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