Monday, July 13, 2009

Saturday in the park

We had a great time visiting family in Kenosha for the Fourth of July weekend. (I know this is a late post but life has been busy.)
The downtown marina was a perfect location for a holiday. We started the morning at the Farmer's Market. There were so many vendors and a lot of yummy stuff.
I wish the weather had been warmer. The marina has a beach area as well as a splash area for kids, which I had hoped to let the girls play in. But it was overcast and a little cool. Still, the girls had fun walking around and playing at one of the parks.
I am amazed at how much the marina has changed! Downtown Kenosha has spread out so much. What used to be a huge vacant field, the sight of a former car maker, I believe, is now thriving with apartments and new shops and restaurants. And there are wonderful open space areas, perfect for walking, gathering, and just enjoying.

From the look of the parking lot at the marina, lots of people from IL come to dock their boats. It was amazing to see all the IL license plates in the lot. Probably 90 percent were from IL.
While it was great to see all the new developments in the marina area, it was sad to see that parts of downtown are in such neglected condition. Such a shame because there are some buildings that have so much potential. Once department stores, then turned into antique stores, are not vacant. One time I drove through downtown to see a homeless person sleeping in the doorway of one of these former beauties. So sad to see. If those buildings were brought back to life, then downtown would be something to see!
Many families came out to the marina for the holiday, many camping out for the day. Seriously. There were quite the set-ups with tents and picnic tables and grills and more. Again, what a perfect place to spend the holiday
We staked out a place to watch the fireworks but did not spend the whole day there. After the farmer's market and walking around, we had lunch from the farmer's market and then went to the museum, where we saw the replica of a woolly mammoth, one of two found in Kenosha County in the early 90's.
After that we went back to my parents house for naps. Then we had dinner at my grandmother's apartment, which is right by the marina. Then we went to our spot and hung out waiting for the fireworks. There was still plenty of places for people to camp out. And indeed, many people came in closer to the fireworks time. It was neat to see all the people and feel the holiday atmosphere. M and I enjoyed some tunes by a local band. There were kites in the air. People were playing catch, volleyball and other games. It was so fun.
The fireworks were great too. One even looked like a fighter jet. Seriously. And there were a couple smiley faces too. The girls had a good time, although they were pretty wiped out in the end. They didn't get to bed until 11. But woke up at their regular time the next day. Ugh!
All in all, it was a fun weekend.

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