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Spreckels Fourth of July Celebration

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Today my mom and I took in the old-fashioned Fourth of July Celebration in the small town of Spreckels, population 749. The day starts with a footrace and that was just finishing up when we arrived. Tanimura & Antle gave out big bags of fresh produce to the runners. Kids munched on stalks of celery from their curbside perches waiting for the parade to start, a sight celebrated by good food advocates.

Community groups set up in the center of Spreckels Memorial Park to raise funds by selling food and drink. Ribs, hamburgers, chili dogs, tri-tip, lumpia, cotton candy, snow cones, ice cream sandwiches, nachos, chicken burritos, carne asada tacos, Swiss sausage sandwiches, popcorn, and soft drinks were among the things I spotted.

I indulged in a tri-tip sandwich, $7, custom-sliced for me because I wanted medium-rare. I’d watched the cooks and they seemed to know what they were doing, mopping the tri-tip roasts on the grill and cooking over red oak harvested to the south in San Ardo. Served on a French roll and offered with a choice of condiments: tomato salsa, hot barbecue sauce, and pickled chilis, a good example of this Central Coast specialty. Here’s what it looked like,

Spring 4-H, the club I had belonged to as a kid, was selling snow cones, $3, and I felt a need to support them too. Several flavors of syrup were available, but I only had eyes for blueberry and cherry. Here’s the patriotic red, white and blue result,

The parade started at noon and was done in about an hour. A really lovely small town experience, here are more photos of the day.

Happy Independence Day!

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  1. Great report. Takes me back to the "old days". Of course, back then, we didn't go to Spreckels, but it's nice to see that some traditions live on.

    1 Reply
    1. re: araknd

      Right, we went to Watsonville for the parade & auntie's home-grown veggies.