Kanab - Stay Parked Here - Your Vacation Hub

Kanab is Small Town America at its Finest

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By Neal Brown

The 4th of July represents what is truly great about America, and that’s never truer than spending the holiday in small town America, like Kanab, Utah. It’s fun to see the streets lined with friends and family, tourists and transients. Whether you recognize someone or not, it feels like they are connected to you, and after sharing an Independence Day in Kanab, you are connected. There’s a bond shared through the celebration of freedom and the safety that we all enjoy walking the streets during the parade, getting candy thrown at us, getting water sprayed on you, and smiling through it all in the dry desert heat. While the parade may seem short compared to big city parades, the after-parade activities abound. Jacob Hamblin Park, just a few blocks north of Main Street, shines bright as one of the best parks in southern Utah. Tucked under the rising red plateaus, it provides the perfect backdrop for a fireworks show like nothing you’ve ever experienced before. It’s no wonder the grassy park fills up right before dusk as the residents claim their spot for the fantastic fireworks show. Visitors from all over the world come to Jacob Hamblin Park to take a load off, unwind and hit refresh, whether it’s for a quick picnic lunch, or a day of getting rejuvenated before they’re off on their next adventure. I have talked to many such people, who are astounded at the beauty and the activities that the park has to offer. One woman from Sweden told me they didn’t have anything like this where she lived. She couldn’t believe the playground structure, the splash pad feature, and the enticing outdoor swimming pool right next door to the park. The new skate park stays full all day as kids take in the last bit of sunlight before the sun goes down and the 4th of July show begins. It’s not uncommon to have kids from all over southern Utah, including Cedar City, St. George and Mesquite, Nevada, travel to spend the day skating the unique pump track around the skate park. It feels different, and that’s because it is. It’s hard to put your finger on exactly why Kanab has that different feel to it. When you start engaging with the locals, you’ll start to understand what makes Kanab the unique place it is. It’s the people that make Kanab what it is, and the diversity among the community is ever present. Whether it’s talking to Barry Glazier at Glazier’s Market, Victor Cooper at Rocking V Cafe, Chef Shon at Sego Restaurant, or Rosa at Escobar’s Mexican Restaurant, the love for Kanab radiates off all of them. As you feel that love, and build connections with one another, you’ll get hooked on what makes Kanab so great; the people. It’s refreshing to feel it, and it’s addicting, which is why most people you see at the 4th of July parade in Kanab are repeat offenders, and we hope you’ll become one, too.

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Fireworks in Kanab is a highlight of the 4th of July. Photo by Raven Chavez.

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