4th of July goes out with a bang; crowds enjoy park festivities, fireworks

Collaborative effort revives daylong event at park with vendors, music

The lights of Moab and a burst of fireworks are captured from a high-elevation vantage point during the July 4 fireworks show lit from Dump Hill. Photo by Ruben J. Escano

Moab’s Fourth of July celebration – Red Rock & Blues – began at Swanny Park at 10 a.m. with vendor booths consisting primarily of Chamber of Commerce members. Each booth featured an activity for families.

The weather was fine for the first Independence Day community celebration in the past several years. Even the mosquitoes were almost absent, a cause for elation for organizers and attendees alike. The daylong event – including live music and a fireworks display – was sponsored by the Chamber of Commerce, City of Moab, Grand County, the Grand County Recreation Special Service District and the Moab Folk Festival.

The Moab Area Travel Council engaged residents and handed out swag as part of its “Do it like a Moab Local” campaign. Forty residents completed a four-question survey at a booth manned by the Grand County Change of Form of Government Study Committee in advance of Friday’s 5 p.m. deadline.

Ryan Shupe and the RubberBand brought their unique sound – a lively mix of bluegrass, rock and country to Grand County. A large audience was present, girls danced, boys wrestled. The band did “The Devil Went Down to Georgia” and the crowd went wild.

The night sky erupted for 30 minutes over the Sand Flats Recreation Area during the official fireworks show – and plenty of others were detonated at unofficial shows all over town.