Teresa Poole, her daughter, Jeannie Bates, and 3-year-old granddaughter, Lillian Bates, ate ice cream and rested after the excitement of watching the floats and marching groups go by.
“She loved all the candy” said Poole about Lillian Bates, who had rows of colorful beaded necklaces, which were thrown along the parade route, around her neck.
The major reason the three generations of ladies came out to the birthday bash was for Lillian Bates to experience the joy her mother had watching the same parade as a young girl.
Powder Springs Day was discontinued in 2007, but was revived in 2010. Last year, an estimated 2,500 people attended.
Poole has lived in Powder Springs since 1996 and said she loves the town because it is small, but still close to everything.
Jeannie Bates said the excitement level has been building among residents of Powder Springs leading up to the big weekend.
“It is like a huge celebration,” Bates said.
Art in the park
Powder Springs Park, off Brownsville Road just west of downtown, offered arts and crafts booths, food vendors and a kids zone during the afternoon.
Daniel Baldwin, whose Home Blown Studios is in Acworth, gave residents a chance to start holiday shopping early by presenting his handblown glass tree ornaments.
“It is a good time to get out and get the shopping done early,” Baldwin said.
Some pieces were traditional with holly leaves and berries, but others offered contemporary designs that could be hung from a stand year round. For instance, a swirling pattern that Baldwin calls “wig wags.”
It was Baldwin’s first year displaying his work at the Powder Springs Day arts and crafts show. He just started selling his artwork this past year.
Baldwin said he started blowing glass five years ago and started with small jewelry.
Now that he has perfected some of the techniques, Baldwin said he was ready to enter into the market.
Before starting a piece, Baldwin said he has a plan in mind for how it will develop.
“If you can imagine it, there are the colors to be creative,” Baldwin said.
Dancing for the crowd
About 50 dancers from the Country Classic Cloggers, who train in Powder Springs, performed nearly a dozen routines, each between two to three minutes long on the metal stage in the center of the park.
A group of teenagers took to the stage first, stomping and clacking to the song “East Bound and Down.”
Jordan Michael, 19, has been clogging since she was 4 years old, and now her entire family is involved, including her sister, Mariah Michael, 16, t was who joined Jordan in Saturday’s performance.
Clogging takes stamina and motivation to continue to learn, said one 17-year-old student, Kristen Ledbetter.
“You don’t always get it the first time,” Ledbetter said.
Shanna Salcedo, 16, said the first technique dancers love to learn is the double-double, which is two slaps back and forth on one foot, before hopping on to the next foot for another move.
The evening culminated with a rock concert when the Atlanta-based Men in Blues took the stage.
They were followed by the night’s headliner, the Australian group Little River Band, whose chart-topping songs from 1976 to 1983 included the hit “Happy Anniversary.”
The party ended with a fireworks display that was delayed when this year’s Independence Day celebration got rained out.