Chipp Allard, stilter and juggler for the Bellingham Circus Guild, could be seen at the celebration standing nearly 10-feet high. // Photo by Emily Porter
by Emily Porter
It was an explosive Fourth of July at Zuanich Point Park in Bellingham as people near and far gathered for non-stop entertainment in celebration of Independence Day.
For approximately two decades, the Bellingham Regional Chamber of Commerce has partnered with Haggen Northwest Fresh and the Port of Bellingham for the annual Fourth of July celebration.
The celebration began at 2 p.m. with live music from the Bellingham Youth Jazz Band, Chris Eger Band, Baby Cakes and Whiskey Fever. The sounds of their instruments echoed across the bay, creating entertainment for all.
The Kid Zone was full of energetic children interacting with performers from the Bellingham Circus Guild and enjoying the games. With cotton candy smeared across their cheeks, face painted with red, white and blue flags, the children raced their way to freedom.
Reaching nearly 10-feet high was Chipp Allard, stilter and juggler for the Bellingham Circus Guild. In the distance Allard could not be missed, but close up one could barely see him. For the seven years he has stilted, he has strived to create happiness for adults and kids with his stilting.
“All the kids have been noticing me and want to figure out what [the stilts are] all about,” Allard said.
Aside from entertainment, going hungry was no option with multiple food venues available Jeckyl and Hyde barbecue, Jalapeños, and Scotty Browns, were just a few of the vendors.
“The garlic fries are my favorite so far,” said junior Hallie Escola.. “I am excited to see what else this night entails and love celebrating with all of my friends.”
Adding to the entertainment were two superhero characters: Wonder Woman and a Jedi Master. Enchanting Events provided entertainment for children to take photos with these two movie characters.
Katie Wallace, 20, a musical theatre major at Central Washington University, was dressed as Wonder Woman, while her co-worker Blake Goetsch, 20, a sociology major at Skagit Valley College, was a Jedi Knight.
Wallace encountered a little girl who continuously ran back and forth to talk to her throughout the day. She finally come back to Wallace with a full face of paint asking for another photo with Wonder Woman.
Goetsch said, “We are here to spread happiness and make their [the children’s] dreams come true.”
The night ended as fireworks filled the skyline, glistening across the glimmering bay while Whiskey Fever jammed the night away.