by Patty Sullivan
The Damboree Committee
Tradition, it’s what binds our community and strengthens our roots. The Boulder City 4th of July Damboree Celebration has a long history of bringing people together and creating community as well as family traditions. The community at large looks forward to this cherished event. The Damboree Committee asks that everyone use good boundaries and enjoy themselves, for each and every one of us looks forward to celebrating our country’s Independence Day with friends and family.
Recently, I spoke at a Boulder City Rotary Club meeting about the 4th of July Damboree Celebration. After the meeting, Arn McLean approached me and shared some very kind and reinforcing words with me about how much the 4th of July Damboree Celebration means to him and his family, and thanked me for the Committee’s efforts. When I was asked to write this article, I thought how great it would be to share comments about the Damboree celebration from Boulder City residents.
Arn and Sharry McLean
“We have been residents of Boulder City for 11 years and love the community for several reasons. One of these reasons, of course, is the 'small town feeling' of Boulder City. The July 4th Damboree Celebration is one of the many characteristics we like. We have a large family, who live in many different parts of the country, and it has become a tradition for many of them to come 'home' for the July 4th celebration. They typically arrive a day or two prior to July 4 and at 7:30 a.m. on the 4th, we all assemble at Bicentennial Park for the Rotary Pancake Breakfast, followed by watching with delight the parade down 'main street'. The grandchildren think it’s great to be right in front of the action.
The balance of the day is spent at Central Park eating and participating in the many park activities. A barbecue at home is followed by gathering at Veterans' Memorial Park to watch a wonderful fireworks display. The entire few days is great for us as we get to enjoy our children and grandchildren, relax and have fun. The entire atmosphere of Damboree is what I would expect of a 'typical' town celebrating the birthday of the greatest country in the world.”
"It has been a privilege to grow up in Boulder City and take part in the festivities of its annual 4th of July Damboree Celebration. I have always enjoyed the festivities, from participating in the parade, listening to great band concerts, joining in the kids’ competitive games, and just having all the fun of the booth fairway and later the ball games, and of course, the wonderful fireworks."
Laura “Godbey” Smith
“Having for many years been involved in the planning and work atmosphere of the annual 4th of July Damboree celebration, to the pleasure of just enjoying the day, this day in Boulder City has been important in my life. Many do not realize all the effort that is expended to provide our City with this wonderful 'old fashioned' Independence Day.
As a young adult and until the last few years, I was able to visit with half the town from the soda booth run by the Legion Auxiliary. I love it when the fairway is packed solid with booths from the many Boulder City organizations. I encourage our local civic organizations to be a part of the fairway booths as it adds tremendously to the day’s festive feeling. I enjoy the enthusiasm of elected officials from city to national offices who come to Boulder City for this special function to meet, visit and share ideas with the citizens of our community, together celebrating the birth of our nation.”
As they say, “out of the mouths of babes.” These are the comments from the youth of our community.
Shelly Thomas, age 12, of the Boulder City Youth Center said, “I love lighting the fireworks and frolicking in the park.” The Boulder Henderson Swim team kids like silly string, getting drenched in the parade and the great floats, confetti eggs, park activities and the fireworks. The Andrew and Rachelle Huxford children love the 4th of July. Bleu (age 13) and Briggs (age 6) love the fireworks and the parade. Braize (age 11) especially loves buying the confetti eggs and having a big egg fight. Bayden (age 7) enjoys walking in the parade with her Parks and Recreation gymnastics class. Little Boen (age 4) says that the green fireworks are the best. As for Andrew and Rachelle, they enjoy sitting at the park and chatting with good friends and family.
Having been asked to write this article is an honor as I have served on The Damboree Committee for over ten years. I know first hand the hard work and dedication the Committee members put into this event. Combined, the Committee has well over 100 years of event experience. My grandfather, Tom Godbey, served on The Damboree Committee many years ago. It is indeed a privilege and honor to continue this 4th of July Damboree family tradition.