A weeklong, weather-challenged celebration of America’s birthday
Ozark County’s celebration of the Fourth of July holiday continued last week as crowds gathered in Rockbridge and Pontiac for elaborate fireworks displays and water-fun enthusiasts headed for lakes and streams.
Following a day of patriotic activities, a fundraiser pig roast and then a sky-blazing fireworks show in Theodosia on Saturday, June 29, the Theodosia Marina Resort was hit by a weather setback Wednesday evening, July 3. Resort owners Bret and Mel Cook posted a report on the resort’s Facebook page that said a wall of rain came up the lake about 5 p.m. Eight minutes of torrential rain were followed by “something really unbelievable,” they said, describing the “micro burst of wind around 60 to 70 mph” that hit the marina, moving it about 30 feet and tearing off all the walkways.
No one was hurt in the freak storm, but a lot of work was required to put things back together, the Cooks said, adding their thanks for the “wonderful friends” who “helped us out in our time of panic.”
By Thursday, July 4, the weather was perfect for the Independence Day celebration across the county at Rockbridge Rainbow Trout Ranch, where the West Plains Daily Quill reported that 1,500 people gathered for a wide array of family-focused activities followed by a fireworks show over Spring Creek.
The Pontiac celebrators weren’t quite so lucky, weather-wise. The fireworks display scheduled for Friday, July 5, had to be postponed a night, but the rescheduled show was another crowd-pleaser, with hundreds watching the colorful bombs bursting in the air over Bull Shoals Lake.