Every Independence Day has to start (after sunrise of course)
with the 9am ceremony at the Revolutionary Soldiers cemetery in East Vincent Township. This ceremony has been going on for 11 years. It commemorates the Revolutionary War soldiers that died here while recuperating at the hospital in the nearby German Reformed Church (now the East Vincent United Church of Christ) while Washington's Army was at the famed Valley Forge Encampment.
It was dedicated November 19th, 1831 and rededicated July4th, 1997.
Funny story about the nearby churches...there are two churches nearby. One was the original German Reformed Church, where the pastor was big on preaching complete abstinence of alcohol. Often times his sermons seemed to be directed at certain members of the congregation that were fond of the local taverns as much, if not more than, as they were of the Sunday morning church obligations. These congregants became annoyed at being called out on their sins and consequently built their own church nearby.
Next we took a trip to Valley Forge park where there was an annual festival with live music and food and games for children. It was a hot, hot day, and it was nice to be able to visit the Valley Forge Museum in the air conditioning and learn a little bit about the infamous valley forge encampment during the Revolution.
Next stop on our 4th of July sojourn was a quick, refreshing stop at the Rose Tree Place Nursing Home where our good friend Carole Mallory was giving a presentation on her life of adventure and celebrities, and how to be happy with what you have been blessed with. She was accompanied by her faithful companion Herbert.
Finally, we made it to Philadelphia, where we parked west of the Art Museum and biked into the city. We biked through the city to Penn's Landing where we were seconds away from missing the ferry to Camden. We hopped on the ferry and took off for Camden where we had a great view of the Ben Franklin Bridge.
There was an awesome concert featuring the Spinners at the Camden Wiggin's Waterfront Park and food trucks, featuring philly cheese steaks, cheese steak fries and ice cream.
Along the waterfront is the Camden Greenway bike path. The weather was ominous, but refreshing. The humidity lay threatening, but so did a rainstorm just to the North of us. This meant that there was a thankfully refreshing breeze from the nearby storm that gave some relief to the humidity and heat. We biked over the Ben Franklin Bridge just as the storm clouds looked at their closest, which gave a great view from the bridge. It never did rain.
We made it to Philly and then the heat and humidity descended as the storm mysteriously dissipated and moved back southwest. It wasn't long before we needed cold water badly, instead of the warm water we had with us, and like a mirage from the desert there was a Dairy Queen. I never had a better ice cream cone. Hydrated with cold water and ice cream, we continued on our way past the fountains at Love Park and City Hall.
I love watching the kids gleefully run from side to side when the water rises.
We made it to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway where Pit Bull was playing his hits,"Timber"and "Give Me Everything". Finally, to end the night, the fireworks were spectacular.