The city of Gardner’s annual Fourth of July event at Celebration Park drew approximately 8,000 attendees, a record crowd. This was 1,000 more people than the previous year.
The celebration featured two concert performances, food vendors, bounce houses and tailgating — all leading up to a fireworks show to close out the night.
“The city’s goal with this event is to provide a quality show year in and year out for our residents and visitors, and this year was no exception,” city recreation superintendent Matt McClure said. “Everything was executed exceptionally well, from all standpoints, and we couldn’t be happier to have seen so many people come out and enjoy this special holiday celebration with us.”
This year’s promotional efforts, including a boot and guitar giveaway and the booking of popular local musical acts, had a big impact on the increased attendance. The nice weather and the Fourth of July landing on a Saturday also factored into the turnout.
Visitors from other cities and states came to join in the fun, and Kansas City-area band Big Time Grain Company and The Rankin Twins of Austin, Texas, kept attendees entertained well into the evening.
“We received many calls from the public telling us how great the event was. Getting that kind of response makes us proud we can offer such an event to our community,” parks and recreation director Jeff Stewart said.
Planning is already underway for next year’s celebration.