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Town puts best foot forward for annual Summer Jubilee

July 05, 2006|by KATE S. ALEXANDER

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - As the July sun burned in the sky, people staked claim to their piece of curb along Main Street. One glance down the street and it was clear - it was July 4.

With tents rising in the east and fire engines arriving in the west, Waynesboro welcomed thousands of people.

Dr. Joe Stewart, local family physician and organizer of Waynesboro Summer Jubilee, estimated that more than 4,000 people visited Waynesboro for the celebration of American independence.

Waynesboro Summer Jubilee hit the ground running, literally. As the heat and humidity was just beginning to settle on the valley, runners from across the region gathered to kick off the day with the Firecracker 5K Run.

For many, celebrating the birth of American freedom in Waynesboro was an inaugural experience.

Jesse Thomas, who lives at Fort Detrick in Frederick, Md., traveled to Waynesboro to run the Firecracker 5K. A member of the U.S. Army, Thomas had not run since high school.

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"This is my first 5K," he said. "It was a blast." Destined to not be his last, Thomas added that he would be back to run the race "in a heartbeat."

Standing in the crowd lining Main Street to watch Shriners in their little cars, antique steam traction engines and majorettes marching past, young Emma Chatterton of Greencastle, Pa., waited to experience her first parade.

Watching the street intently, she listened as her friend, Dave McNair of Greencastle, talked happily about candy, firetrucks and horses. According to her mother, Judy Chatterton, Emma had been talking about coming to the parade for weeks.

While the day held a first for some, this year marked the 30th annual Fourth of July Parade in Waynesboro. Sponsored by the Brothers of the Brush, a nonprofit brotherhood in Waynesboro, the parade featured clowns, classic cars and church groups on the long route from CV Avenue to the Kmart parking lot.

Stewart noted that Tuesday's Summer Jubilee was the 10th for Waynesboro. Having grown from what he called its "rinky-dink" past, the Jubilee featured a craft fair, children's games, face painting, helicopter rides, demonstrations by the Rainbow Riders Gymnastic Team, food vendors, live music and fireworks.

The daylong festival not only entertained the community of Waynesboro, but united it.

"I see families meeting down here," Stewart said, pointing to the parking lot full of food vendors just below the festivities. "They may not have seen each other all year, but they hug and make their way up the hill."

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