Longtime Northfielders Brian and Kristy Kruse have been bringing their family to the annual Fourth of July fireworks display for as long as they can remember.
Now their kids have kids and they find themselves sitting in the Rock Fields parking lot, waiting for yet another show to begin. Only this time, they are entertained by the newest member of the family, Owen, who was watching the show on Friday night for the second time in his young life. He was only 2 months old when the Kruse family brought him out in 2013.
“We brought our kids and now we’re bringing our kids’ kids,” said Kristy. We’ve been doing this for 27 years. We try to come to Rock Fields because it is the best spot.
You’ll get no argument from a throng of others who crowded the parking lot and the sidewalk lining Jefferson Parkway to watch the show. With the fireworks being launched from the kickball diamond of the Northfield Middle School (just south of town on Division Street/Highway 246), people even had to crane their necks they were so close to the action.
Eight-year-old Sofi Mogren, who was having fun waving sparklers around while waiting for the fireworks show to start, pronounced that the Fourth of July is now her favorite holiday.
“I really like the fireworks,” she said. “It’s really fun. It’s my new favorite holiday.”
The community has the Northfield Historical Society to thank for making the 2014 Fourth of July fireworks show happen. Executive Director Hayes Scriven said the NHS finished what longtime Northfield ambassador Dan Freeman started last year and raised enough money for the 2014 fireworks a year in advance. The money in the reserve fund ensured that he and others didn’t have to do a big fundraiser this year to make sure a fireworks display would be a part of the Independence Day celebration.
For years, Freeman made it his mission to raise enough money to put on the annual fireworks celebration, which costs about $10,000 annually. Freeman died on May 6, 2013, but thanks to Scriven, the NHS and a group of his friends who called themselves DanNation, the show went on in his honor.
“The Fourth of July fireworks show − among other things − is Dan’s legacy,” said DanNation committee member Brett Reese in 2013. “We want to continue this in his honor.”
Reach Managing Editor Jerry Smith at 645-1136, or follow him on Twitter.com @NewsNorthfield