REPUBLIC, Mo. — Thousands of people packed into Republic on Friday, June 25, to be with family and friends and celebrate Republic’s 150th birthday.
The town’s “Have a Blast” has become the area’s largest fireworks festival.
“I like fireworks. And now the live music is real fun too,” said Brian McGill, a festival attendant. “And of course, the food is good. You can tell I like the food part.”
This was the festival’s 25th year and, according to Parks and Recreation director Jared Keeling, is the biggest one yet.
“It is an exciting time,” said Keeling. “More than anything, though, we are a community. And we are known for being a community. And this event tonight shows our tightness as a community.”
People are thankful this year because “Have a Blast” was taken away by COVID-19 in 2020.
“It’s about time, I think,” said McGill. “I think we should have been doing this a little sooner. It is nice to be able to get out and see your friends and see the people you want to see.”
All the small businesses and non-profits who had a slow down last year with festivals were glad to be having a good night at Have a Blast.