Community

136 year old patriotic tradition forced to take the year off

Reems Creek – The oldest continual community Fourth of July celebration in the state has been canceled. What would have been the 136th year of the event at the Beech community has been canceled, according to Cindy Wilson, one of the organizers.

Wilson told the Tribune that the parade, field events and picnic have been canceled and that only a small patriotic celebration will be held at 11 am at the Beech Community Center on Saturday, July 4th. 

“We felt it important to keep the tradition alive,” said Wilson about holding the small patriotic event, which will be in accordance with the governor’s guideline and on a first-come basis.

The event is usually kicked off about 10 am with a community parade that features people, cars, bicyclist, four-wheelers, horses and fire engines from the community. The parade starts at Roberts Cove Road and then proceeds down Reems Creek Road about half a mile to the Community center on Sugar Cove Road.

There the parade ends and the picnic begins. Even the Mission Air Mobile Ambulance (MAMA), if not on a call, will show up in the ballfield. Food, games and the patriotic ceremony is usually held throughout the day.

“It’s funny the parade makes the paper, but it’s really the ceremony that has continued. There have been years that there was no parade,” said Wilson