News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Sisters launches 4th of July tradition

It appears Sisters has a new annual Independence Day tradition. Sisters 4th Fest attracted an estimated 1,000-plus people to Village Green Park, adding a ton of heart to the heart of town.

"It was wonderful seeing the community come together to eat, celebrate, dance, pay tribute to our veterans, and just have a good time," said Kellen Klein, executive director of Citizens4Community (C4C), which put on the festivities with Rotary Club of Sisters. "The event wholly exceeded our expectations, and we've been blown away by the positive feedback we've received."

Rotary cooked a pancake breakfast and served hot dogs as the party continued into lunch time.

Run Sisters Run's "Red, White & Blue 5K Fun Run" sold out, with over 200 runners, Klein said.

More than 100 children participated in the kids mini-parade, with Smokey Bear greeting them at the finish line with popsicles.

"I loved the small-town feeling of the gathering. The involvement of our fire department was a very special touch," commented Lori Wokal on C4C's Facebook page. "I loved seeing the young and old gathering. The band, the music and dancing definitely added a great connection to folks at the festivities."

A definite highlight, Klein said, was watching Carol Ast lead nearly 75 people in jubilant line dancing to the tunes of Dry Canyon Stampede.

"I just have to say how impressed I was with the level of participation from the community," added Kurt Silva, the band's lead singer. "All the planning and hard work paid off. Great job!"

While the organizers sold at least 450 pancake breakfasts, "one of the things that made this event so special - and successful - is how many different organizations, businesses, and individuals pitched in to make it happen," Klein said.

Fika Coffee, Coco Loco, and High Desert Chocolate sold refreshments; the fire district rolled out their trucks and handed out popcorn; and SFF Presents offered their water station. Additionally, Sisters Parks & Recreation District and Circle of Friends lent lawn games; veterans groups hosted booths and face painting; Mayor Michael Preedin made an inspiring speech; and Three Sisters Yoga led a pre-run stretch.

A classic car show brought enthusiasts from miles around, and dozens of volunteers set up before and cleaned up after the celebration.

"It was exactly the locally-oriented, homegrown Fourth of July we were hoping for," Klein summed up. "Signs definitely point toward a return next year!"


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