CUCHARA, Colo. — There was emotion beyond patriotism at 4th of July celebrations this year in the small Colorado mountain town of Cuchara. “I’m really a little emotional today because of what happened last 4th,” said 86-year-old local, Diane Boce. The Spring fire was burning toward Cuchara last year forcing evacuation and the cancellation of 4th events.
The center piece of the day is the parade. “The biggest little parade in the world right here in Cuchara,” said Ann Chapman who has been coming to the parade for 40 years. A year ago as flame approached within a half mile, she feared the town and near-by cabins would be wiped-out. “If it would’ve gotten past this point I don’t know how long it would’ve been before we had another parade.” This year she says, “gratitude is immeasurable” for firefighters.
For decades the town’s 4th celebration has been a favorite tradition. Patriotism comes with added appreciation from surviving a close call with a fire. "It really makes it special, really makes you value what you have," said Cuchara’s Bruce Macgruder.