Avenue Flashes

Lions Park on the Fourth of July never gets old

Column by John Akal
Posted 6/19/18

I like to tell my friends that every morning when I wake up I feel like I’m 20 years old …Then I get out of bed. I’m not quite sure when it happened but I have reached the point where I can’t …

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Avenue Flashes

Lions Park on the Fourth of July never gets old

Posted

I like to tell my friends that every morning when I wake up I feel like I’m 20 years old …Then I get out of bed. I’m not quite sure when it happened but I have reached the point where I can’t move without making some kind of noise. Either my joints are creaking or some kind of involuntary moan comes out of my mouth. That’s the disadvantage of getting older, I guess.

But pushing 60 has its advantages too. Like having been around long enough to know what an ongoing tradition actually means and being able to tell people about it without looking it up on your smart phone.

When it comes to the Independence Day in Golden, there is one event that is king and it has been going on for as long as I can remember. It’s the annual July 4th Lions Park Celebration.

Now, for those of you who may not have experienced this event, let me start by telling you that it’s pretty simple to remember the important details. It starts at noon on the Fourth of July and goes on until about 10 p.m.

The very name of the location, Lions Park, should give you a good idea about who sponsors this event. It’s put together and run by the Golden Lions Club with additional sponsorship from the City of Golden, Mountain Lux Candles, El Dorado Restaurant, 1st Bank as well as the Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs of Golden.

It’s one of the best organized family events you will ever see. They have been doing this for decades so they really have a handle on how to run this kind of event.

Lions Park is located on the west end of 10th Street here in Golden. They will have a slew of activities going on all day including free rides for the kids, face painting and a concert stage featuring live music from three bands throughout the day. This year’s line up includes Union Grey, a Rockin’ Country band playing from 12:15-3 p.m., Kerry Pastine and the Crime Scene playing Rockabilly from 3:30-6 p.m. with Something Underground rocking the stage from 6:30-9 p.m.

They will also be selling food and drinks there and the Lions Club beer tent has become a legend. This year they will also be bringing back wine and Sangria from our local Bonacquisti Winery. Of course you can also just bring along a picnic basket filled with your own goodies. There are plenty of tables and benches there.

Of course, the highlight of the day is the massive professional fireworks display that lights up the sky at about 9:30 p.m. You can see it from almost anywhere in town but the best view is from Lions Park as they usually play some patriotic music to go along with the show. You can also get a good view from the neighboring ball fields.

As I mentioned, the Golden Lions Club runs this event, and they pay for the rides and entertainment as a gift to the community. But, nothing comes free, they have to generate the money for this as well as for the other charitable civic actions they sponsor. One of the ways they do this is by selling raffle tickets all over town for the weeks prior to this event, as well as at the event itself. You will be seeing guys in gold vests outside our local grocery stores, at the Golden Farmer’s Market and around other local businesses selling these raffle tickets.

They sell them for $5 each or five tickets for $20 and you get a chance to win one of about 100-plus prizes ranging from overnight stays at mountain casinos to the grand prize of $1000 donated by the Lions Club. Also, the tickets are printed with coupons that can be used for discounts with local merchants. You don’t have to be present to win. Winners are announced throughout the day with the grand-prize winner identified just before the fireworks. Most of the raffle prizes are donated by local merchants and businesses as their way of supporting the event and the community.

For more information you can visit the Lions Club website at www.goldenlionsclub.org.

John Akal is a well-known jazz artist/drummer and leader of the 20-piece Ultraphonic Jazz Orchestra. He also is president of John Akal Imaging, professional commercial photography and multi-media production. He can be reached at jaimaging@aol.com

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