4th of July on Anna Maria Island
Like most places in the USA that enjoy the Independence of America with picnics, family, and fireworks Anna Maria Island is no exception. Islanders and visitors take this holiday pretty seriously, not sure if it is mostly due to the visitors who want to enhance their vacation or if it is how the beach itself is a great environment for fireworks. Either way the light show on Friday was amazing. Bombs were bursting in air! The day started off with the annual Anna Maria Island 4th of July Parade hosted by the Privateers. Cars, motorcycles, golf carts and pirate ships were decorated in patriotic red, white and blue throwing beads and treats. Many of the local businesses participated, some memorable displays were Island Real Estate, Island Scooter Rental and Beach Bum’s. Onlookers lined the parade route, cheering for candy, beads and refreshing sprays from water guns.
From the looks of it, the disposable income lacking in the past few years is back for Florida vacationing families. There was a lot of money being blown into the beautiful night sky over the Gulf of Mexico for as far as the eye could see, this was no average back yard light show. From St. Pete Beach to Lido Key the magnificent lights were abound and beautiful; it looked like a battle reenactment just as our national anthem reflects in its lyrics.
Although illegal to discharge in Florida and easily purchased in the same state, firework novices and self taught experts were setting light to some amazingly high and elaborate candles, mortars, and reports. It was truly amazing to see the quality and quantity of fireworks going off up and down Anna Maria Island. Sitting in the North end of Holmes Beach expecting to see the SandBar shooting off their annual display, which in its own right is usually quite awesome, it was amazing to see just how many spots along the beach were blowing rockets. At one point it was hard to discern which lights were coming from the SandBar and which were being blown off from either Bradenton Beach or the City of Anna Maria. The night before the BeachHouse restaurant (same owner as SandBar) put their display on, however thunderstorms seemed to deter others from doing the same. Not on Friday, it looked as it the ban on fireworks was lifted temporarily on Anna Maria Island. They were everywhere.
Needless to say it was truly a site to behold from the Chinese lanterns high in the sky to the kids with glows sticks zooming up and down the beach, to the finale at the SandBar. Anna Maria Island did not disappoint this 4th. Thanks to all of those willing to spend the money and time for the show and please, everyone clean up after yourself; other creatures use the beach as well.4th of July on Anna Maria Island,