Independence Day 1929 to 2011
Friday, July 1, 2011 at 11:23AM
Anne Ylvisaker in Independence Day, The Luck of the Buttons, Writing Process

A fun Luck of the Buttons review appeared online today, written by a twelve-year-old reader who retells a bit of Tugs’s Independence Day 1929. Thanks, Faith McPhee!

It’s hard to believe that it is already mid-summer and Independence Day 2011 is upon us. The Fourth of July is one of my favorite days of summer because all over the country, communities are gathering in celebrations similar to ones I participate in as well as the fictional celebration in Goodhue eighty-two years ago.

The image I had in my head when I first sat down to write a scene of what would become The Luck of the Buttons was of the community Fourth of July event that takes place in the neighborhood where I lived for many years, St. Anthony Park in St. Paul, Minnesota.

There is a parade down Como Avenue. Convertibles carry various local dignitaries and veterans march with flags. When I was a kid, my Grandpa marched with the World War I vets. A vintage fire engine rolls down the avenue followed by a lawn mower brigade, a group that choreographs steps with lawn chairs, clowns of course, school groups, musicians, and more. When all the paraders have passed, children join in on decorated bikes and trikes, then all the spectators follow the parade down the hill to Langford Park. Families claim spots with blankets. Kids wander. Everyone eats. Patriotic essays are read. There are races for all ages, and ribbons.

I dropped Tugs and the Buttons into a Fourth of July like the ones I’ve known and felt immediately at home in Goodhue. Check out the chapters Independence Day, Ribbons, and Click to read about Tugs’s Independence Day.

Enjoy your community celebrations this Fourth of July and may you have many lazy hours for reading this month! 

Just a note: I will be away from the internet until late July, but will respond to your comments and emails when I return. 

Article originally appeared on Anne Ylvisaker (
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