NEW ALBANY — The crowd at the New Albany Amphitheater was a sea of red, white and blue Wednesday evening as community members came together to celebrate Independence Day and to have a good time.
The City of New Albany's annual Riverfront Independence Day Celebration took place the day before Fourth of July at the Riverfront Amphitheater. Many attendees wore patriotic attire as they listened to live music, enjoyed food and drinks from local vendors and watched fireworks. The Louisville Crashers were the headliners of the free concert.
Georgetown resident Scott Ormsby attended the celebration with his 16-year-old son, Nathan, and his neighbors to enjoy the holiday. He spent 30 years in the Air Force, so he is "fairly patriotic guy to start with," he said. For him, enjoying the live music, nice weather and fireworks were some ways to celebrate freedom this Fourth of July week.
"I enjoy celebrating the birth of the nation," he said. "I still consider myself very lucky to live in this country, and I appreciate the men and women who are still serving in the military to protect everything that we have here."
For New Albany residents and cousins Teresa Smith and Sharon Smith, the Louisville Crashers were the highlights of the Independence Day celebration. Teresa loves the band, she said, and she was excited for the opportunity to just have some fun.
"They'll make you move," she said. "I think it's the best thing ever for people to come together and enjoy themselves."
Jeffersonville resident Brittney Barnett said she came to the event for the Louisville Crashers and the fireworks. She is friends and neighbors with band members from the Crashers, and she likes to support them whenever she can, she said.
She came with a big group of family members and friends, including her parents, her husband's parents and her kids.
"It's a family event — everyone can enjoy it together, young and old," Barnett said. "We enjoy it with our family and friends, which is one of my favorite things to do all year."
Jeffersonville resident Donna Reed attended the event with her children, Sophie, 6, and Jackson, 7. They come to the event every year, she said, and she enjoys that it is a family event with music and bouncy houses. She and her kids wore red, white and blue attire at the event, including festive hats and sunglasses, as well as shirts featuring the words "Future Prez."
She is from a military family — her sister served as military police officer for three terms in Iraq and Afghanistan, and her dad served in Korea. For her, the Fourth of July is a time for celebrating her family's service.
"It's about family and togetherness," Reed said. "It's about really celebrating the sacrifices that our family made."
Reed likes the inclusivity of the New Albany Independence Day celebration, saying she appreciates how it brings people together within the community.
"Everyone can come together to celebrate this no matter what is going on in the country or in the city," she said. "Everyone feels safe to celebrate together."