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Orange County celebrates 4th with county-wide festivities

July 4, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Residents throughout Orange County celebrated the Fourth of July with parades, family and elaborate fireworks.

Huntington Beach residents were decked out in red, white and blue and celebrating the Fourth of July with a massive parade. The event is considered the largest parade west of the Mississippi River.

Residents began lining the parade route as early as Tuesday to get prime seating. Some even decorated their homes to match the festive mood. They say they don't mind the crowds on their lawns every year.

For the first time in 20 years, Huntington Beach has lifted its fireworks ban, allowing safe fireworks to be shot off from noon to 10 p.m. Wednesday. A large show including 1,300 rounds of fireworks is planned at 9 p.m. off the pier.

Others gathered for the 44th Annual Fourth of July Parade at Orange Park Acres in Orange -- a parade that never seems to lose its old-fashioned feel.

From the horses, representing the equestrian community, to the John Deere tractors, those marching in the parade are a reflection of life in the Orange County community. Crowds even celebrate with a traditional candy toss.

Finally, over 20,000 people were expected at the Joined Forces Training Base in Los Alamitos. Festivities there boasted a C-17 flyover at 6 p.m. and a 22-minute fireworks show, which is said to be one of the longest firework displays in Southern California. The show was slated for 9 p.m.


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