Despite the 4th of July fireworks being delayed a day, hundred of families still came out to Memorial Park Tuesday night to enjoy the annual fireworks with friends and loved ones.
In some cases, attending the fireworks isn't the only tradition. There are a few families who showed up the day or night before the holiday and who have camped out the last six years straight.
This year was more special than most for one of those families. The Hawkins family spent the weekend celebrating for their son who passed away July 12, 2015.
"James was all about America and this was his favorite holiday. Last year, he was hit by a drunk driver on his motorcycle and killed. We're all just out here trying to celebrate something he loved for him this year," said Tammy Hawkins, James' mother.
Shawn Lauder, a close friend of the family, cooked dinner for everyone Monday night and said a prayer for James. The family was happy to be together with friends, celebrate James and continue their tradition.
Hawkins also said that since the family has started camping out, it seems that more people have caught on and taken to the idea.
"We started camping out here when James was about 14. Since then, it seems that more and more people are catching on and camping out," Hawkins said.
One of those people is Josh Fowler, who camps with friends and family. They all arrived at 6:30 p.m. Saturday to set up camp. For the last five years, they have had the spot right next to the Hawkins at the front of the park. The two families have even helped each other set their tents up over the years.
"It's like one big tailgate," Fowler said. "If it's real nice out, I'll sleep in a big recliner under the canopy at night."
For people who just come the day of the fireworks, there was still plenty of fun to be had. There was face painting, freshly popped kettle corn, homemade jewelry and even Americana knick-knacks. Kringe played in the W.G. Smith Building for people to listen to as they ate their strawberry shortcake and other food.
There was a lot of "ooing" and "awwing" from the crowd as the fireworks went off above their heads. As the show ended and people started to file out of the park, many were already talking about plans for next year.