The promoters of the annual July 4th celebration at the Vichy Community Park give up a relaxing day off to put together an event that brings people in communities throughout the area together to celebrate the nation’s birthday.
Event promoter and one of the many people who worked hard to put together the event, Phyllis Pruett, said it was a great day. She said they completely sold out of all the food they had and that alone indicates there were many people at the Vichy park on July 4. The park board members try to keep food prices low because they want families to come out, and for young families to bring their kids to the park to have fun and for everyone to eat. The park board received assistance from the community in donations as the Maries County Bank sponsored the fireworks, Maces in Belle donated a box of hot dogs, and JJ’s Cafe in Belle donated hamburger and hot dog buns.
The annual duck races had 154 duck contestants purchased by those hoping their duck would win and they would win some cash. They set up a runway and Donnie Chambers used a hose to spray the ducks as they travelled the runway. The first to make it through the gate was a duck purchased by Elizabeth Chambers. She won $116. Renee Kottwitz was the lucky gal whose duck came in second and Kottwitz won $58. Aaron Tiffany’s duck was third and he won $20.
Anna Franks won the large loop Henry rifle in the raffle. Other raffle winners were Virginia Carroll, Ryan Briggs, Stephanie Bell and Shane Shawl.
Paisley Pruett won the turtle race and Eza Sitzes won second place. A young girl from Mt. Vernon, IL, whose grandmother, Diane Fricke, always brings them to Vichy for the July 4th bash, won the frog race. She found her frog at the park and was teased about having the home town advantage in the race with the homegrown frog.
There was food, fun and games, and music throughout the day. At dark, a fireworks display was put on by Donnie Chambers and crew. The fireworks were a nice way to top off the day and they were much enjoyed by all.
The next item on the calendar of the Vichy Community Park is a tentatively scheduled car show on Sept. 21. Also, the annual Christmas light show will be held Dec. 14 and Dec. 15. The volunteers continue in their efforts to get the building done. Pruett said they need to finish the inside of the building, which includes getting a water line dug to the building from the pavilion area, and a septic system. Volunteers are encouraged and always welcome.