Following the celebrations of July 4th in Orange County, the events of the day are still fresh in people’s minds, from the parades to the numerous outdoor activities. To close out the night, of course, was the nationally-recognized fireworks display at Kenan Stadium.

Production Manager for the Chapel Hill Parks and Recreation Department, Wes Tilghman, says that this Fourth of July produced the biggest audience the event has ever had.

“We just enjoyed a great evening celebrating with our community,” says Tilghman. “It was a record turn-out with a wonderful show. We estimate that crowd to be around 35 to 38 thousand; that’s actually estimated based on the number of seats we make available at the stadium each year.”

He also says that the show ran without any problems, thanks to the help of the local professionals.

“Everything went very smoothly,” says Tilghman. “All the folks at Parks and Recreation, who helped coordinate the event worked very closely with the UNC officials and our Chapel Hill Fire Department to make a great event.”

In graditiude, Tilghman says he offers his thanks to everyone that made the July 4th celebration this year such a success.

“Just a big thank you to all of those that were involved, especially those sponsors that support the event each year,” says Tilghman.

Tilghman also expressed his gratitude and praise for one local celebrity in particular for keeping the show going, and making this Independence Day something to remember.

“Mr. Ron Stutts is just an amazing Master of Ceremonies each year,” says Tilghman. “He makes that stage sing, and we really appreciate everyone’s support and contributions.”