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Fireworks show wows Port O'Connor crowd (Video)

Camille Doty

By Camille Doty
July 7, 2012 at 2:07 a.m.
Updated July 8, 2012 at 2:08 a.m.


PORT O' CONNOR - The fireworks show began with dramatic pauses between the flickers of light.

The booming sound triggered car alarms and made dogs holler. The sky sparklers picked up tempo towards the conclusion.

Kids screamed with excitement seeing the blinding burst of light. Some of the youngest spectators began to applaud before the fireworks concluded.

"That was really cool," one said in the crowd.

Earlier in the day, thousands passed the time waiting for the beloved firework show. Some took refuge in lawn chairs on the shore, while others played in the sand.

Families clad in red, white and blue played ping pong in the shade on the corner of Madison and Washington streets. Even the toughest heart would catch the patriotic spirit on the heels of Independence Day.

Bailey Billings, 10, of Pollock, La., constructed a sand-filled pool for the crabs with her friends. The children gathered pails of saltwater to perfect the crab castle and even gave names to the crustaceans.

"We call him Big Poppa. He's the biggest one," Bailey said. Her younger sister didn't lose sight of their ultimate goal.

"We're staying just for the fireworks," said Kennedy Billings, 8.

Droves of cars lined the streets with little SnoCone stands nestled between them. A group of budding entrepreneurs attempted to enter the tough, slushy market.

"We've got lemonade and cupcakes for sale," Caroline Sutherland, 7, belted out with a smile.

Her friend and business partner Carly Rosenboom, 10, was a veteran vendor who knew the odds. "We've been competing against the SnoCones all day. They're our biggest competition," she said.

The close-knit group had a slumber party to prepare for their market day. They made posters, baked cupcakes and squeezed lemons. With youthful enthusiasm, they tried to attract a crowd.

Emery Kane, 7, used existing relationships to leverage sales. "Daddy, you have to buy one from us," she pleaded with a sweet voice. "I will once I find a place to park, honey," Branon Kane responded.

Although the elementary students wanted to turn a profit on their 50-cent lemonade, they had a soft spot for first responders.

"Police and sheriffs get lemonade free," said Emery, of Austin.

Even with the kind gesture, the officers waved and kept driving in the golf carts.

"I guess they had a sweet already," said Emery's perplexed younger brother, Weston Kane.

Like any business, the quartet experienced highs and lows.

Some beach-goers declined their offers, others gave them tips.

"This is the best lemonade I ever tasted," said Juan Garcia. He was a repeat customer throughout the evening.

The students even used a little competitive tactic.

"Come buy some lemonade, we're healthier," said Caroline.

Even Emery had to admit the flavored ice was tempting. "I kinda want one, but it's bad for business. Maybe tomorrow," she said.

At first, the group daydreamed about buying tokens with the profits, "I'm going to add up my money and buy something nice in Austin," said Weston, 5. But he and the others had a change of heart.

"We're going to buy fire hoses for the firemen, they really need them," Emery said.

Although the upcoming second-grader Emery and her friends enjoyed making sales, they gushed about the fireworks show.

Fans of all ages looked up at the sky in wonder when the sun set. The booming sound and bright lights interrupted the sky in an array of colors.

"We get a great view from my grandmother's house," Emery said.

The budding businesswoman Emery was amazed at the fireworks beauty.

"They're so colorful and big in the sky, especially at night," she said.

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