EDMOND — Henry Arnett was 10 years old the first time he got his hands on a trumpet, and he hasn’t looked back since.
While he was at a parade as a boy, Arnett, now 83, saw trumpets go by in a marching band. Then and there, he decided he had to have one of his own, he said. The instrument’s appeal needs no explanation, he said.
“Who can beat ‘The Stars and Stripes Forever’ going down the street?” he said.
On Friday, Arnett rode the length of Edmond’s LibertyFest parade in an antique U.S. Army Jeep, playing a bugle all the way. Onlookers clapped and cheered as Arnett rode by, playing the Army, Navy, Air Force and Marine Corps’ official songs, along with John Philip Sousa’s march “The Stars and Stripes Forever.”
Arnett, a Korean War veteran, rode in Friday’s parade with several members of the Oklahoma chapter of the Korean War Veterans Association.
Arnett served as a bugler and radio operator with the 7th Infantry, 31st Field Artillery.
He also helped organize a bugle corps while he was stationed at Fort Lewis, near Tacoma, Wash.
Friday’s parade passed along Broadway through downtown Edmond before turning east, toward the University of Central Oklahoma.
Carl Eugene Benne, a key figure in getting an arena for the Edmond Round Up Club in 1966, was the parade’s grand marshal.
Scott Kincannon, a member of Edmond North High School’s JROTC program, was one of six students who marched the entire 1.5-mile parade route in Colonial dress.
Wearing coats, waistcoats and three-cornered hats, the six walked the path carrying rifles or bearing American flags.
Kincannon, 17, said he volunteered to march in the parade last year and enjoyed it enough that he decided to do it again.
Although the weather was cooler than usual for July, Kincannon admitted wearing several layers of clothes on an Oklahoma summer day can get uncomfortable.
“It’s really hot, but you get used to it,” he said.
Elsewhere in the Oklahoma City metro-area, Norman’s annual Norman Day celebration was scheduled to include live bands, food booths and a fireworks display.
In Mustang, where fireworks are legal through July 4, Wild Horse Park was the site of the city’s annual do-it-yourself fireworks show Friday evening.
Each year, residents line the outskirts of the park to light noisemakers and rockets.
Oklahoma City hosted the annual Bricktown 4th Fest, featuring live music from Oil Boom, Hosty Duo, Good Culture and a fireworks display.