APPLETON - Thursday is Independence Day. To celebrate our nation's birth, hundreds gathered in Appleton for the Festival Foods Fireworks Wednesday.
Steve Schommer comes to the Festival Foods Fireworks in Appleton every year and he picks this prime spot at the top of Memorial Park every year too.
"It's the greatest place. It's a great view. It's beautiful up here, except for the rain," said Schommer.
But like Schommer, many spectators came prepared with umbrellas, tarps and rain jackets.
"I always come prepared!" exclaimed Schommer.
And luckily the raindrops did stop.
"I think it's going to be nice for the rest of the night," said Schommer.
Sisters Autumn and Gracie Steede took advantage of the setting sunshine to have some fun.
"Seeing the fireworks. Going to the bouncy houses," said Autumn.
"I don't know…the fireworks! Explosions!" exclaimed Gracie.
Down by the bouncy houses families camped out with coolers. The Appleton Jaycees run the show and say carry-ins are not allowed in the band area here. Vice President of Finance Ron Tusler told us the group is trying to make a profit at the food and beverage stands.
"That goes to buying Christmas presents for kids through the Salvation Army. So we're hoping we can make some money to buy some presents," said Tusler.
According to Tusler, corporate sponsors pay for the fireworks, which makes that possible.
"Community companies that are sponsoring this. So taxpayers don't have to pay for these fireworks," said Tusler.
"That's great. That way everybody can enjoy it and you don't have to worry about anybody being stuck with the bill," said Schommer.
This is the 79 th year the Jaycees have organized this fireworks show. Tusler told us last year they raised about $10,000 for the Salvation Army.
After almost 80 years, a piece of naval history is on its way home. A model of the Japanese luxury liner Hikawa Maru is being packed up in Manitowoc and returned to Japan.
Visitors to Green Bay's Neville Public Museum will soon see hours slashed. The county-owned attraction is cutting access starting the first of the year.
An 11-foot-long model of the Japanese passenger liner Hikawa Maru is being sent back to Japan after 34 years at the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in Manitowoc.
Area volunteers are making a difference in the community this holiday season. At this time of the year, many people are looking for ways to help their neighbors. The Salvation Army is one of the many places where you can do just that.
For the second year in a row, St. Norbert College could house overflow of homeless people from the St. John the Evangelist shelter in Green Bay.
A memorial fund has been created for a Grand Chute firefighter killed in a weekend car crash.