“Patriotism runs through our blood 365 days a year. Today we let it spill out on the streets,” Seth Pontecorvo said of Key West’s Fourth of July celebration.

And it was true. The island was filled with flags and American pride after COVID canceled last year’s fireworks display and evening picnic. Even the “Bubba markers,” homemade navigational aids on the water, were adorned with an American flag over the holiday weekend.

The smell of barbecue, burgers and hot dogs wafted across town as the Rotary Club of Key West kept the crowds at the foot of White Street fed while raising money for its scholarship fund.

The club has presented the town’s fireworks show since 1976, and the city of Key West in recent years has contributed funds to help pay for the pyrotechnic display.

One participant recalled the lyrics to a lesser-known Jimmy Buffett song, about the night he was invited to take part in a fireworks launch: Independence Day and all I remember /

Was a midnight rainbow that fell from the sky …/

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