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Gatlinburg’s Fourth of July Midnight Parade is a sign of growth

CNN Newsource

GATLINBURG, Tenn. — Cities nationwide are launching dazzling firework displays at sundown, but in Gatlinburg they got a head start, kicking off their annual Fourth of July Midnight Parade at 12:01 a.m.

For 42 years, residents have lined the sidewalks to get a glimpse of the tradition.

“Just watching the people, enjoying the atmosphere,” said one parade goer.

“Let the kids see all the floats and all the lights.”

People from all over showed up to celebrate our nation’s independence.

It’s exactly what the city of Gatlinburg wants to see just a few short months after wildfires devastated the area.

To show their appreciation, they honored the more than 3,500 first responders who came to help as Grand Marshals of the parade.

The tourists who showed up are another sign of recovery for the city who is trying to move past the fires and continue traditions like the parade.