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Ely’s 4th of July celebration 2nd to none

Lead Summary

With the world finally returning to normal it was good to see the town fill up for the annual July 4 celebration. Kudos to all who stepped up to make it happen, it was a great success.
The day started off early with a new event, the raising of the flag at the Veterans Memorial. For a 7 a.m. start there was a decent turnout with a short program on what Independence Day is all about. We hope this new tradition continues.
The Janet Gensler Memorial Four on the Fourth race filled the Trezona Trail with runners and walkers. This year the entire route was on blacktop, a first on the Fourth. Plenty of Ely and former Ely residents participated along with a large group of visitors. The event is a fundraiser for the Ely high school track teams.
Whiteside Park started hopping soon after that as YoungLife again put together games, food and fun for all everyone.
At just past noon we had a military flyover, just one jet this year since the other one had to return to the air base in Duluth. We didn’t care, one jet carving through the air spells freedom just as well as two.
The parade was next and with 68 entries post-Covid it was a crowd pleaser. Some spots along the parade route were six deep with sidewalks overflowing with families. Zup’s again had people smiling with everything from potato chips to underwear being tossed from floats.
Whiteside was the place to be afterwards along with Ely’s watering holes. There was also music in Semers Park. The fireworks had to be delayed due to a passing storm that dumped enough rain to keep any fires from popping up.
St. Louis County administrator Kevin Gray came to Ely this year for the Fourth of July. He wanted to see if what Commissioner Paul McDonald told him lived up to the hype.
Gray was spotted after the parade and said everything McDonald told him was true. Heck, we can even make politicians tell the truth.
That’s how we do the 4th in Ely, Minnesota.

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