A short story recorded by Lisa Coleman at the 75th anniversary of the Westmorland Neighborhood 4th of July celebration.
4th of July story by Lisa Coleman
[START OF RECORDING]
Interviewer: Ok this is Marie Kazmarek and this is?
Narrator: Lisa Coleman.
Interviewer: Yeah so, what’s your fav--what do you like about the 4th of July event?
Narrator: I like seeing all my neighbors. [PAUSE] And my kids like to play all the games and I like that- it’s- it’s a lot like it was when I was a little kid here at Westmorland Park.
Interviewer: So not much has really changed since then?
Narrator: Not much has changed except for the… [PAUSE] Fireworks.
Interviewer: Yeah that’s what I keep hearing I never-- experienced the fireworks here as far as I can remember so.
Narrator: I love the fireworks; I love the fireworks here we, I grew up on Wakefield Street and we would walk down here and--the fireworks were so close the ashes would rain into your hair and they would set the woods on fire a little bit every year it was very exciting.
[INTERVIEWER AND NARRATOR LAUGH]
Interviewer: Surprised there’s still any woods there now [LAUGHTER]
Narrator: And I would--I would wear my dad’s um, earmuffs from shooting 'cause I didn’t like the sound. And my neighbor--my friend--would wear a sweater over her head cause’ she didn’t like to see em’ so we were like- “See no evil hear no evil” [LAUGHTER]
Interviewer: Do you have any favorite mem--memories from Westmorland in particular?
Narrator: Well I remember too, they would--sometimes they would have a Ferris Wheel here, which was pretty cool. And uh pony rides I remember. Yeah.
Interviewer: Yeah a lot of nice stuff back then. Where did they go? [PAUSE] So I see you’re part of the um Boy Scouts of Am-Merica how long have you been part of that?
Narrator: Well I’ve got two sons and so I’ve been helping out with their troop since they were 1st graders so probably five years now.
Interviewer: So have you been at the event every time with this group or...?
Narrator: No we marched in the parade with our Cub Scouts last year and this year so I think that’s the only uh… Or maybe-maybe uh three years now? So--but just in the last couple years.
Interviewer: You might have said this already but how long have you lived in Westmorland?
Narrator: Well let’s see: I grew up in Westmorland so I lived in Westmorland from…1973 until 1991. And then, y’know I moved out and I went to college and um, then…I moved back to Westmorland with my kids in uh 2000 and--let's see… What year was that? 2004. 2004. And then--since then we’ve been here.
Interviewer: Yeah that’s a long time [LAUGHTER]. Outside of the 4th of July event what are your favorite memories from Westmorland?
Narrator: Ohhhh [INTERVIEWER LAUGHS] Ummmm. Well, ice skating at the park. I always--when I was a kid growing up, my birthday’s in February so we would always have, I would always have an ice skating birthday party at the park.
Interviewer: Oh… That sounds like a lot of fun. Have you seen the, um, the neighborhood change over the years quite a bit?
Narrator: Ummm not a lot. I think uh it’s pretty similar to how it was, uhm. The only--y’know the only real changes are by the--y’know where the library was, and by the school there. But other than that, pretty similar. That’s kinda one of the things I like about it.
Interviewer: Oh, OK. Do you have any favorite family mem- um, family... [NOISE] Sorry. Um favorite family [PAUSE] memories [PAUSE] you experienced here?
Narrator: Oh lots of fun with our family at the park! We would come down here for the 4th of July and for ice skating and- sometimes they would have the Art Cart in the park, sometimes they would have like uh, stagecoach players uhm show, a play sometimes in the park so we would come to that in the summertime…um. And now my parents still live in the neighborhood and my brother and his family do as well. So, we still can meet with all the--meet with the nieces and nephews and uh grandparents and still go ice-skating once in a while too.
Interviewer: Very nice. Is there anything else you would like to add?
Narrator: No! Thanks for doing the interviews.
[END OF RECORDING]