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Red, White and Blue

Amy Campbell

July 11, 2007

3 Min Read
Red, White and Blue

[A guest blog spot by ISS Managing Editor Drew Whitney.]

No matter your political affiliation or position on the war, its hard not to feel patriotic on the Fourth of July. In my small town, Independence Day is a huge all-out effort. Our humble gazebo on the main street is laden with ribbons and flags, and the green (town center, as its called in New Englandese) becomes a microcosm of activity.

Before the church bells dong 7 a.m., vendors are setting up booths for fry bread with maple sugar, maple sugar ice-cream, waffles with maple sugar and whipped cream, maple sugar candy formed into maple leaves, etc. Of course we have plenty of all-American hot dogs (sans maple sugar, thankfully) and lemonade sweetened ever-so-lightly with, well, you can probably guess.

Strolling randomly down the road is a gigantic water-squirting dragon; down the way is a juggler/fire-eater performing to an excitable crowd; across from there is an old-fashioned kids carnival in Town Hall.

At 12:45, approximately 50 kids adorn Uncle Sam masks and line up at Park Street for a quarter-mile road race that finishes with popsicles, minutes before the long-awaited parade begins. Its a simple affair, but by the reaction of the crowd, its every bit as good as Macys on Thanksgiving.

Every float (pick-up truck) is decked with red, white, and blue crepe and folks proudly wearing Uncle Sam top hats or looking something like a cross between Betsy Ross and Laura Ingalls. When the Veterans of Foreign Wars makes the trip, the crowd goes wild, as they do for the WWII vets and the National Guard.

And thats why I say, no matter how you vote or whether or not you support the war, its impossible not to feel like a proud American; our roots run deep. Several of my friends have admitted that while they dont support the war, they do support our troops. Maybe you can relate.

Weve run articles in ISS about how, as self-storage operators, we can market to military personnel and show appreciation for war-time efforts through discounts on units, a free-months rent, free truck-moving options, etc. But how about going the extra mile and sending all-American favorite snacks, hygiene products, DVDs, CDs and other treats to make their lives just a little bit more comfortable?

Check out this website: www.give2thetroops.org. Its an organization started by a mom out of her basement, after her husband left for Iraq; but its grown by leaps and bounds to become an incredible nationwide gifting effort for our sons, daughters, fathers, mothers serving overseas. The site has lists of favorite items longed for by servicepeople away from the country they love, and provides the means for you to get onboard and send them to a troop member, even if you dont know them personally. Just remember, whether or not you believe this is a righteous war, we all share that pride of ownership of being American.

About the Author(s)

Amy Campbell

Editor, Inside Self Storage

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