Friday, July 2, 2010

Memories of Summertime...the Pleasure Beach Carousel

Summer...a time to reminisce...I have fond memories of special times, places, events & just a time for having fun...& since 4th of July is here, I remember a couple of family traditions...then some of the towns & cities along Long Island Sound set off fireworks on the 4th & we all gathered at the family's cottage & from the beach watched those bursts of color in the night sky, with lots of ohs & ahs. (While I am writing this, there are fireworks going off in Trumbull, just a couple of miles from here). My family's cottage was on Pleasure Beach & during the summer we often went to the amusement park & rode on the Carousel....

Pleasure Beach is a small island in Long Island Sound in the harbor between Bridgeport & Stratford, CT...On the Stratford side along a dirt/sandy one lane road there were about 50 cottages built by people (my family included) on land they leased from the town of Stratford...cottage owners could not live there year round since water was piped across the Bpt. harbor & turned off every October...
The only way to get on the island was either by boat or by car crossing a really old narrow wooden swing bridge on the Bridgeport side of the island...I can still hear the click, clack, click, clack of the wooden slats when the car drove over that bridge & if you looked out of the car window, you could see the water underneath through the wooden slats...

The amusement park opened in 1892 and for a time was called Steeplechase Park, then Pleasure Beach...we spent many a summer day there while growing up, but sadly the amusement park closed in the late 1950s, early 1960s, when the rides were auctioned off & the Carousel Pavilion was boarded up...The end of the cottages came after 1996, when that rickety old wooden bridge caught fire & the city of Bridgeport refused to repair it...

Today there is no access to Pleasure Beach other than by water & the island is deserted...after the bridge fire, the town of Stratford decided not to renew the cottage leases or sell the property to the cottage owners & after a long court fight, the cottage owners were evicted & what remains today is an abandoned island, with partially destroyed cottages in the sand dunes now being taken over by Mother Nature (the town never completed its plan to tear down & remove the cottages)....& the Carousel shell no longer remains, since the city of Bridgeport had a contractor flatten what was left of the amusement park structures several years ago...









But now back to the story of the Pleasure Beach Carousel that had been boarded up for so long...years after the park closed, it was discovered that the magnificent carousel horses that had been removed & stored elsewhere off the island had mysteriously vanished & only after some
years did the city of Bridgeport locate & recover many of the horses...all in deplorable condition...

Which takes the story to my recent visit to the Beardsley Park Zoo in Bridgeport, where as a result of major efforts by many people, those wonderful horses were painstakingly restored to their former glory and are now stabled in the Carousel Museum at the zoo....


While they are no longer part of a working carousel, they are on display in the museum along with a working Merry-Go-Round, purchased by the city of Bridgeport, so that today visitors can see the original Pleasure Beach Carousel horses, take a ride on a Carousel....and well....remember some great summertime memories....that just make you smile.

Happy fourth of July....Happy Birthday U.S.A.....Happy Independence Day everyone....

















































































61 comments:

Coreen said...

Growing up we had a great little place at the family's cottage on Pleasure Beach...The island
was like a mini-Cape Cod, but with no stores,
nothing but the cottages, the amusement park...

The bridge was an adventure, when boats needed
to go from the couple of boat clubs in Lewis
Gut which was behind the island, the bridge was swung out sideways so the boats could get in & out...& if you were either trying to get on the island or off...you just sat in the car
for quite a few minutes...& anyone walking across the bridge also had to just stand & wait
til it slowly swung back into place....

It is all gone now, from neglect & greed, since
it is a valuable little piece of land there has
always been talk of 'developing' it from casinos to resorts, but w/o land access the cost to build a bridge today has made any talk
just talk....so now it is just an abandoned island owned by the 2 towns....

Coreen said...

And since it is summer, here is Billboard's
list of 30 Top Summer songs of all time...

Top 30 Summer Songs

Coreen said...

In addition to some of the top summer songs,
this song always reminds me of summer....

See you in September

jan said...

Coreen, great pictures and post. How sad that the place you spent such happy times is in such a state.

jan said...

beautiful peacock.

jan said...

Coreen, Is that someone you know on the carousel?

Carol, are you feeling like you are "butting your head against a stone wall" with your SF?

Chloe said...

What a beautiful post Coreen. Makes one yearn for the uncomplicated happiness of a place and time we inhabited from way back when.

That Carousel is beautiful. We have one very similar that Emma rode for the first time last weekend at our mall that we frequent with her. She is too young to ride the ones that go up and down, but road on the stationary lion, and seemed to love it. We got a few pictures on one of our phones - I'll have to track them down, or make sure I take them on my regular camera next time.

You seem to have had a wonderful childhood - and this was the perfect post for our Fourth of July weekend Coreen. Thanks!

Most of our planned activities yesterday were rained out, and so our day had to be cut short. Work also has a way of interfering with our days off too, and the cell phones never stopped ringing. We're going to reschedule another day when the continuous on and off rain is off for a while.

Hope everyone is enjoying the holiday weekend - I'm hoping we hear less fireworks here than we're used to hearing in years past. They go on way to late into the night, and usually continue into the next night too. More noise than I like.

Carol said...

Wonderful pics and wonderful story Coreen. Love those memories. Yes, it is a perfect post for the 4th of July weekend. I plan on having some fun this weekend.

Jan, I'm almost 100% certain that the lady riding the carousel tiger is Coreen.

Chloe said...

Here's a pic of the carousel Emma rod last weekend
Here's a pic of the carousel Emma rod last weekend

... and some pics around the Woodlands Mall area. The pics enlarge, and the one in front of the Cheese Cake Factory is right next door to where we often eat when we're there - which is PF Changs, one of my favorite restaurants. http://www.thewoodlandstx.com/photos/view_by_member.php?view_member_id=4303

The reason we spend so much time in the Woodlands is because it is so beautiful, and it's all around a nice lake and many parks, etc. that wind all through the area. They've also managed to save the natural beauty of the forest that it was previously, even though it's heavily populated now.

Chloe said...

.. whoa Carol, didn't see you sneak in. I think I missed you while I was hunting down the pics.

I'm going to see if I can catch a few more z's.

Carol said...

I just had an amusing experience. Well it wasn't so amusing until it was over. I woke up very early this morning. Don't mind doing that when I'm off. I hate to waste my time off sleeping. I can always take a nap if I get sleepy later.

I stepped out on my back deck to check out the river, the early morning air and my spider. I do that alot. Spider still had her web out and had quite a few packages she had collected over night.

I went to come back in and the door was locked. I'm standing outside in my t-shirt and panties, in the dark and locked out. Worse yet, I have to use the bathroom.

I have windows all across that deck but none were unlocked. I have a table out there with stuff and a few tools on it but nothing I could use to jimmy the door open.

There were a pair of needle nose pliers and I tried those but that wouldn't work. The door is one with all those little glass panes in it. I thought I was just going to have to break thru the door somehow. There was a rubber mallet on the table and I got that, fixing to try and break thru one of the little glass panes and suddenly it popped open. I promise it was locked tighter than a tick.

No explanation for how it just popped open but I'm very grateful it did.

Carol said...

Coreen, I enjoyed going thru those summer songs you linked. Brought back memories.

Carol said...

That's a nice mall Chloe. Do I pass that mall when I go the back way to Bush airport?

Carol said...

I just checked out our weather for the weekend and it looks like the chance of rain has gone down with the temps only the low 90s. Not too bad for spending some time outside.

Coreen said...

Hi guys,

The door popped open, Caol....someone/thing is surely watching over you!....what a way to start theday...& am I correct in thinking that while you were out half-dressed, locked out, it was still sort of dark outside?....

Coreen said...

Wanted to share some good memories this weekend...I guess as time goes by & one gets
older, while it may not be true, it seems
that the past times were somehow simpler, easier, than what we are surrounded with currently...

Coreen said...

Has the rainy weather left...I have to say
that we have had three in a row, just spectacular summer days....which means NO
humidity, sunny, pleasant temps, a summer breeze....but today they say that is coming to an end & we will start getting more
humid & hotter through next week....with temps
well into the 90s & humid....no rain in sight
here, actually there is a deficit & they try
to warn people to be careful to not start fires & since its 4th of July, not to set off
fireworks (fat chance)....

In CT all fireworks are illegal...they do allow
what they call 'sparklers', certain fireworks
that do not soar....

I used to love to hold sparklers even though
while you were twirling them, the sparks
seemed to sting....at the cottages you would
push them into sand after they stopped sparkling, to cool them off fast....

Hope we all have a lazy, relaxing holiday weekend...

And Carol, you are 100% correct...Who could
resist taking a ride on a Carousel...& the white tiger was one that did go up & down...it was fun!....

Coreen said...

And a little more about that Carousel...those
horses were made of wood, the tails were made of some type of hair, hand-painted, carved & it was pretty big, I think at least 6 horses across & there was a thing to try & grab a brass ring as you sped by....Today's carousel animals (now they have all kinds, not just horses) pretty sure are made of fibreglass type
material...& not nearly as large as the old-time carousels...

We had another amusement park in West Haven, called Savin Rock, (about 20 miles, 1/2 hour from Bpt) which like Pleasure Beach
is only a memory...lost to development, since
the land along Long Island Sound was always
valuable...

Savin Rock's roller coaster was right alongside the water's edge which made it even
more heart pounding...& they had a great Carousel pavilion, complete with a Penny arcade
where they had games & machines that had little
metal claws inside them that you paid to try to get some little toy out of....

Chloe said...

Morning again.

Carol, The Woodlands is less than a half hour north of the International Airport (which is what it was called, before they added Bush to the name, and I avoid his name whenever possible), off I 45.

It's a different world, once you get up north a little bit. Not long after that mall area (if you keep going north), you hit Lake Conroe - and then a few minutes further up you're in the Sam Houston National Forest and then Lake Livingston. I just make sure I don't keep going too far north, or I'd end up in Dallas - never even been there.

Carol said...

Morning folkes again. Yep Coreen, it was still dark outside and a good thing it was.

I woke up this morning to Sanjay's show on CNN. He had on that guy who exposed old Bernie. He was saying that healthcare fraud was worse than anything on Wallstreet. He said they can steal your money, your love one's life and your life. Boy did that sound familiar to me right now. A little synchronicity.

I threatened an investigation of the hospital my SF's in the other day. It didn't seem to phase them at all. They are so used to dealing with people who are helpless that they think we all are. I left the hospital the other day in tears and I very rarely ever cry. I couldn't even go back up there yesterday but I will be back today. I will keep my mouth shut today. I sure wish I had a tape of what I have experienced so far.

I do plan on scouring my SF's bill with a fine tooth comb. I'll check with my boss to make sure that they can't do anything to threaten my job. My informal investigation of SF's doc revealed that no one likes him and he has already been canned from some previous facilities in outlying areas. Someone even told me that he can't touch patients and won't let them touch him.

OK, now I'll let it go for the holidays but stay tuned.

thornwil said...

Coreen,
Love your post and the pictures. I knew that was you on the tiger and I think I actually see a smile on your face. Nice picture.

Hope everyone has a wonderful and fun 4th.

Ivy Green said...

If it's little or any consolation, there is a glut of unanswered e-mails in my in-box, not to mention a pile of unopened mail in a basket in the hall. It's SUMMER! We might not be able to get out of town, but that doesn't mean we have to work or even pay attention to stuff...lol

Ivy Green said...

Mary,
Wasn't the 4th the original due date of little Lauren?

It will be Happy Fourth of July Birthday to Miss College Graduate! I have never been stuck for a party theme for her birthdays...

As Jan was asking last week about collections, I forgot to mention that "Americana" is also one of my collectible themes because of her birthday. I have lots of flag stuff and Uncle Sam items.

Ivy Green said...

Carol,
I am so sorry for all the hardship you are enduring. I am at a loss to understand how they can be by-passing your authority as the health conservator for SF.

When all is said and done, try to be grateful that SF has a roof over his head and food to eat, and someone is watching over him. I say that with the assumption they are not physically abusing him in the hospital.

During this time, difficult as it is, those are at least a few things you don't have to worry about this minute, or all day and night. It will be soon enough that you have those duties are returned to you. Every minute seems like torture now, but rest assured, this too shall pass.

Ivy Green said...

Wasp Spray?? I thought I had invented that 20-plus years ago. I used to carry a can of Raid with the 12-foot jet in the basket of my bicycle. There was a nasty dog that used to chase after me every time I passed his house. It was dangerous because sometimes he startled me into the path of traffic on the very busy street where he and I both lived. I thought up the idea of the wasp spray because I thought it would be more effective than pepper spray (I was comforted by the idea of the 12-foot range). Honestly, it only took one time and I swear the dog never got even close to getting sprayed. He tucked tail and ran at the first sight of the can. After that, whenever I passed his driveway, he would stand up to make the charge, see it was me, and lay back down. He never bothered me again. I went from thinking he was mean to "what a nice dog." lol

Ivy Green said...

Jan,
Abigail's picture may be the most joyful baby face I've ever seen! And no, we don't get tired of seeing baby pictures. I think they inspire in us a memory of that once-upon-a-time innocence and trust in the world we each once experienced.

Abigail was born the same day as Jace, my brother's grand-baby. I saw him when he was three weeks old, and won't see him again until August. Your photo gives me an idea of how much he will have grown.

"God make me receptive and aware; restore to me my capacity for wonder."

Ivy Green said...

Coreen,
Thank you! Your post puts me in mind of my childhood summers in Ocean City. Not that I was all that comfortable with the Carousel horses. They were so "high up."

I recently discovered we have a Carousel Carving School in Birmingham, one of only two in the U.S (their claim). I can say for certain when you pass the place at night, the exquisite works are lit-up in huge picture windows on the second floor above the street. You can't help but gaze up at them in starry-eyed wonder.

Carousel Carving School

Carol said...

While we're on horses and memories, here's a few for you Jan....

Jan and the boys

Ivy Green said...

Jan,
Here are some bird and nature photos from Marie Winn's blog...

Marie Winn's Bird Page

I am keeping an eye on the second nesting of my bluebirds. There are three eggs this time. I was unsure whether or not to clean out the old nest after the one chick flew. Finally, I did, including tossing the unhatched egg. The parents began rebuilding the very next day. Talk about spoiled birds...were waiting for housekeeping services before they could make a move! lol

Ivy Green said...

Carol,
Thank you for those old photos. Where were they taken?

Ivy Green said...

Chloe,
Every time you mention The Woodlands, I recall a co-worker friend who lived there and drove everyday to-and-from work at the mall in Sharpstown. Even then, the traffic in Houston was horrendous. Can't imagine how she did that. I loved that lady - few people have made me laugh as hard or as much every day for two years.

I don't know if that mall is still there, but I used to "live there."

Carol said...

Ivy, those pics were taken out at my SF's farm. I was just thinking about how many of my friends he saddled up horses for over the years. Made me a little sad that he is laying up there, trapped in that hospital.

I went up to the hospital earlier and SF was just about to take a nap. I told him that he would have to trust me, that I would break him out of there as soon as I could.

jan said...

Carol, thanks for the pics of the boys and me. Wow! that has been a long time ago. I remember the day very well. They boys talked about the visit on your SF 's farm for years.

jan said...

Ivy, I LOL at your story of the dog you encountered and your wasp spray. It is good to see you back again.

Mary so good to see you commenting again also.

John and I were entertained by the birds as we sat on our front porch this morning. They must be mating - it was so funny - sometimes 2 were going at it and then there were 3 or 4 just jumping all over the place and just tweeting to beat the storm. We also had a little woodpecker just pecking away at our big tree. A couple of hummers came up close just like they were saying hello. I thought of all of you. I didn't have a camera and did not want to waste the moment to get the camera. It was the most active I have seen the birds.There was one dove who was cooing - and when he/she cooed he/she would fluff his feathers. I think it must have been a mating call. I don't know if it was male or female.

jan said...

John and I are off to a movie - to see Knight and Day. I will check in when we get back.

Carol said...

I forgot to get my wasp, pest away, spray today but I did remember to get a couple of new camp keys made, one to hide outside in case I get locked out again. I had that happen last week, when sis was here but at that time we were hiding the key under the mat because I only had one. Should have been a warning then.

jan said...

Carol, glad you got back into your house ok. I have been locked out several times. One time when I was living in Texas, I was house-sitting for a couple I had recently met. The first night I was housesitting, I locked myself in the back yard. The wooden fence was about 10 ft high and I did not know where the gate was and It was pitch black outside and about 11 at night. I finally found a place to climb the fence. I didn't have my shoes on. I had to walk to one of the houses and use the phone- I had never met any of their neighbors. My car keys were in the house. Fortunately the neighbors I went to believed me, allowed me to use the phone to call a locksmith. I did finally get in the house. I also got attacked by hornets on their upstairs deck. It was not a good experience.

jan said...

Chloe, I remember you said you were going to see the movie Knight & Day. Did you see it? It was very entertaining. I was interested after hearing that Tom Cruise did all his own stunts. I have not been a fan of his for a few years, but I do like Cameron Diaz.

jan said...

Ivy, how interesting that your brother's grandchild was born the same day as Abigail. Abigail is small for her age. She was full term but did not weigh quite 6 lbs at birth. Her 1st cousin, Landon, is only 18 days older but looks much larger than Abigail. They are both about the same in terms of other development.

jan said...

Ivy, thanks for the link to Marie Winn's bird page. I will go back and look at some more of her site. It is great.

Carol said...

Jan, that was a far worse "locked out" experience than mine. At least I was in familiar surroundings and it was my door and I was ready to do it in if I had to. That door knew I meant business when I came at it with my rubber mallet. Can anyone here beat Jan's story? I seem to remember a story that Solar told us one day where he had to crawl into a window upstairs. It could have been someone else's "locked out" story. It was a really good story, very funny but I can't remember all of it. Ya'll remember that?

Carol said...

I haven't seen Mr. or Ms Mallard in a while now. Last visit was a couple of days after sis got here. I wonder if those ducks went north for the summer. Don't ducks migrate north? I tell ya I would if I were a duck and could fly.

The only problem is that Mr. had that bum wing. He couldn't even get far down the river without landing to rest and swim. I don't think there would be enough places to do that along the trip up north. Well, if he didn't make it, I already did that memorial service for him.

Sis did get to see the youngun ducks. They like to play in the road, in a puddle that collects after a rain. They have the entire river and they want to play in a puddle on the road where they can be run over by a passing car. Isn't that typical of kids?

And speaking of bum wings, how's your bum wing doing Ivy? Is it better? Are you still getting physical therapy?

Carol said...

I just saw my beautiful sunrise. Ya know, the pink one that only lasts a few minutes and you have to be in the right place at the right time to see it. I've put up pics here of it. I told sis about it and she wanted to be up one morning to see it but she never made it. She is used to a much later time zone. She did well getting up as early as she did.

Carol said...

Ivy, I love that Americana stuff also but don't have a very big collection of it. I love putting out my flag stuff. Every year I do get a few more things at Walmart. I can't afford to get many more things because I don't have any room to store anything else.

And tell MCG happy birthday for us.

Carol said...

Roomies are settling in at the house. It still looks like a place someone is moving into but it is getting there. I still have stuff I have to move.

This experience has been a tad stressful also. I'm having to deal with that trust issue. It's one of my issues. I want to be trustful but I have been burned so many times over the years that it is difficult. I do feel good about these people and big sis did also.

I'm having roomies over today to cook some burgers. No big cooking deal this time because I'm not up for that. I'm barely up for burgers and I hope my stomach is better today.

I ate some tamales yesterday for a late lunch and got the worst indigestion. All I ate were 6 lousy tamales and I couldn't eat for the rest of the day. I hit the antacid and Pepcid last night and so far, this morning, I have been able to drink some coffee without any problems.

Carol said...

I know what Ivy is doing but what are the rest of you guys doing to celebrate the 4th?

There were a lot of fireworks going off last night. Maggie could hear them even when I couldn't. I had to turn the TV up fairly loud to drown out the noise.

jan said...

Hi Carol, You are up early. I slept late this morning - until 6 am. Lately, I have had times I wake up at 2 or 3 or 4 and can't get back to sleep. I try to take a good nap on those days. I have read that as we age we don't secrete as much melanin and that is what causes us to not sleep as well. Now that I am not having to get up to go to work, It does not bother me if I wake up at those times cause I know I can nap sometime during the day.

jan said...

We are not that patriotic. We don't have a flag.We don't go out to watch fireworks unless we have some grandkids with us. I have always liked watching the Boston Pops. We will probably do that or sit on our front porch. We are about 5 miles from the baseball field here and they usually have a bunch of fireworks about 10 pm. We have a minor league team here called the Isotopes and when they win, they shoot off fireworks.

jan said...

We can usually see the fireworks from our house.

jan said...

Carol, sorry to hear about your indigesion from the tamales. I don't know if you like yoghurt or not but it is pretty good after you have had indigestion. I eat it every day. I have John eating it daily now since he has developed GERD. He takes Prilosec daily too but he feels better since starting to eat yoghurt.

jan said...

I see some hot air balloons over in the west. Right now I see 5 of them. They look pretty small from here and can't make out their color just yet. This area is big on balloons.

Carol said...

Well, I just finished weedwacking the back yard here. That only cost a few contusions, an abrasion and a couple of ant bites. Trying to get the wackers out of it's stall, I knocked over a wheel barrel full of stuff onto my leg. Managed to slip by with that abrasion and a contusion. The shin bone is still intact, as far as I can tell. If I fall over later, I'll know that wasn't the case.

I washed off my table and chairs outside, blew off the cement, washed my golf cart and then bathed the Magster in the kitchen sink. That was a first. Maggie is almost too big for the sink and with all her leg thrashing it wasn't easy. I'm got as wet as she did but I still have to take my shower.

jan said...

Carol, OMG you are really busy. No wonder you stay in such good shape. I am a slug in comparison.

jan said...

John has recovered well from his cataract surgery. So we are off on another trip to OK tomorrow for a few days. A neighbor has agreed to water our tomato plants. I have kept them on our front porch where we have some other plants. He walks his dog by our house every morning. It takes only a few minutes to water them. He has an older little chihuauah (? spelling) mix who has only one eye named Willie. A sweetie.

jan said...

Ivy, I had to take a bunch of pictures to get Abigail to smile like that. There is a slight delay from when I push the button for the picture and when the camera actually takes the picture. That is the wonder of the digital camera is that you can take a bunch of pics and erase those you don't want. I have to admit that I erase very few of those I take of Abigail.

jan said...

Carol, that house I was locked out of was in Ft. Worth, TX where there are rattlesnakes. Fortunately, I did not think of that when I was running around their yard barefoot, trying to find a way out of the fence. The house was in a small development sort of in the country where there were frequent reports of rattlers.

Coreen said...

Slow starting this a.m. Carol, up & out & doing stuff already, but hope you do get a chance to relax a bit later....

And Jan, you guys are just road warriors...Give
you credit for driving such long distances so
often...I find little pleasure in long-distance driving...probably since the roads here are always full of cars....Hope you have
a great trip...maybe sometime you will show
us the sights you see along these trips....I'm sure there are lots of interesting 'Americana'
along the highways you travel....

Will be going to my friend's for her annual
family picnic/barbq...she is like a sister, since yours truly is an only child...we have known each other since high school, more than
1/2 our lives....

Most area towns have had their fireworks already...& Trumbull actually had none this year...suspect because of costs...we all used
to go there, but over time so many people came
from other areas that the traffic became
pretty bad....

Tonite will probably just sit down & do not
much...around here we get to watch on TV the
Macy's fireworks from NYC, which is actually
a pretty big event...never went myself, the
crowds are enormous, but did know 2 people
who went just once to say they went & both
said it was impressive, though much too crowded
& difficult to get around the city....You lose
something watching on TV, the noise & the smell
& the smoke from the rockets, but the display
is quite impressive...Don't know if that is
televised beyond the local NYC area though...

They set off the fireworks on several barges
in the East River near the Statue of Liberty
& apparently it is visible from lots of places
in NYC....

Saw this Mitch Album commentary on celebrating the 4th & it reminded me of growing up & how we
sometimes see things as we grow up...similar to
my reminiscing about Pleasure Beach...

Watching the Sparks Fly

Coreen said...

Found this about the Macy's fireworks in NYC...
its now in the Hudson River, used to be the East River....& looks like it will be on
NBC tv nationally....

Beyond the musical prelude of 'stars' this year
someone named Justin Beiber? (have no idea who
he is), once the broadcast gets to the fireworks...pretty good
Macy's fireworks NYC

jan said...

Coreen, Justin Beiber is a young man - sort of a kid that all the teen girls are in love with. He has been on Ellen's show a couple of times lately.

Coreen said...

I put up a new post....

jan said...

Coreen, interesting article on fireworks by Mitch A. I too have had a ho-hum attitude about fireworks in my adult years. When I was a kid, like the author, we only had and saw fireworks on July 4th. which made them special. Like I said earlier whenever the local minor league team wins, we have fireworks. Sparklers were also my favorite. I never liked the noise of firecrackers. My brother, Buddy, was the big kid in our family. He bought a pick up truck load of fireworks on July 4. I think it was his favorite holiday. He was killed in a car accident in 1989. I don't know if any of his kids carry out that tradition.