Burke Street July 4th Americana: Parade and Food

Burke Street Parade organizer Margaret Humphrey in the white, participates in a parade in years past. Submitted photo.

The community of Fort Scott is once again invited to the Burke Street Parade on July 4, to commemorate Independence Day in the U.S.

The parade is organized by people who live along the street on the city’s west side.

“We invite everyone,” Margaret Humphrey, one of the event’s organizers said. “This was started 37 years ago by myself, Susan Foster and Jill Gorman. Then Theresa Bahr helped with organizing after it became a bigger event. It was small and fun and we just continued every year. The crowd size varies depending on what day the 4th is on. We have walked in rain with small crowds–but if it is lightening we cancel.”

“It is always on the 4th of July at 10 a.m. unless it falls on a Sunday,” she said

“The little kids that were in the parade initially, have their children in it,” Humphrey said. “Phil Hammons and Jill Gorman lead with patriotic songs. We started singing after the  (Twin Towers during the terrorist strike in New York) fell–to promote patriotism.”

Frank Halsey is the traffic controller.

“This year Nate and Bailey Lyons will host the refreshments,” she said. “After the parade, we meet for cookies and drinks. We ask everyone to donate cookies.”

In 2018, Deb and Frank Halsey hosted the cookies and drinks under a tent on their lawn.
Burke Street residents offer food following the parade.

Humphrey finds someone to host with refreshments at their home each year and makes the informational fliers.

“Barb Albright now helps with distributing information,” Humphrey said.

“The best part of the event is seeing the children who have so much fun going up and down the street in their bikes, wagons, lawn mowers, with animals,” she said.

“People have asked about trucks, etc.(being in the parade) but our parade route is short and once the parade starts,  in seconds children are everywhere. It is a disorganized, organized parade.”

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