Monday, July 4, 2022

Making It Happen


The Boy Scouts clean up your trash. 

This post is for them, and for everyone who is volunteering or has to work today. At some point I learned that, after everyone goes home from the fireworks festivities at the Lakefront, local Boy Scouts move in and clean it all up. Did you know that?

Holy mackerel. Who wants to do that late on the Fourth, possibly in lingering heat and humidity?

I never really thought about what happened after everyone went home. Perhaps I thought everyone thoughtfully cleaned up after themselves?

Yeah, I know. Wishful thinking.

While many of us will be enjoying a day off by heading to the Chrysalis for all-day music offerings and/or the Lakefront for food, fun, and fireworks, there will be folks whose day and night will be all about making those things happen.

Police will direct traffic. There will very likely be a health tent for heat issues and emergencies, staffed with health professionals. Firefighters on standby because of the fireworks? Probably.

Musicians will be there to entertain. Food vendors to provide snacks and drinks. Pyrotechnics professionals to run the fireworks display.

Ooh, I just remembered. Someone probably has to deliver and then pick up all the extra portapotties. 

The staff at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods will be on duty to ensure a safe and enjoyable festival/concert experience. At the Lakefront employees of Howard County Rec and Parks will be at work doing the same as co-sponsors of the Independence Day event.

Volunteers from Bike HoCo will be staffing a Bike Corral so community members can ride their bikes to the festivities and leave them safely until their return.

Of course the good folks at Howard County General Hospital are at work every day, 24/7. They’ll be hoping to be spared any injury cases from reckless backyard fireworks displays. But they’ll be ready, nonetheless.

How many of these people do we notice on a day like today? Often they are invisible to us, but, this day in Columbia/HoCo wouldn’t happen without them. Spare them a smile, offer your thanks. Stop for a moment to treat them like real human beings. All the fun, the food, the music, the sparkles in the sky, the oohs and ahhs…are because of them.

And, when you finally get home, through the crazy post-fireworks traffic, spare a kind thought for the Boy Scouts, who are picking up your trash.

If there’s anyone I’ve missed, let me know.

UPDATE: reader Debbie Nix pointed out the hard work of the Columbia Association Open Space Crew.

Columbia Association open space team members!! They get the lakefront ready,  empty the trash bins, and do cleanup afterwards as well. Our CA assessment dollars at work!

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