MCLB Albany celebrates Fourth of July with citizens

One of the highlights at the MCLB's Independence Day Celebration is the Albany Marine Band

Fourth of July is a time where American citizens honor those who served and currently serve our country, but the Marine Corps Logistics Base in Albany says they take Fourth of July to celebrate the local community with their Annual Independence Day Celebration.

"It's a very pro-military area, it's a very patriotic area, and we get no shortage of thanks and we want the public to know we don't take that for granted," says Lt. Kyle Thomas, Public Affairs Officer at the MCLB.

Those working on base say they appreciate the community coming out to celebrate the patriotic holiday with them.

"What better way to enjoy this nation's independence than to hang out and celebrate it with marines?" says Thomas.

"It actually means a lot to me because the community gets to see how the Marine Corps really is: We're not just a fighting organization we're actually a community organization and we have a great relationship with the community," says Gunnery Sgt. Larry Graham from the Marine Corps Systems Command.

It was Graham's first time attending the MCLB's Independence Day Celebration, bringing along his family to enjoy the festivities.

"I love it! There's a lot of food venues out here and a lot of stuff for the kids. It's great!" he says.

Special showcases include performances by the Albany Marine Band â" which had some people up and dancing â" as well as a demonstration by the K-9 unit on the base. The dogs displayed the skills and training they learn including, attack commands.

Fireworks and food also filled the celebration, and one food vendor has been attending since the first MCLB Independence Day Celebration 17 years ago.

"The crowd the first year was awesome, it was just awesome," says Gena Crews, owner of Gena's Funnel Cakes.

And the public event has kept growing.

"This is our biggest event. We never get tired of it. We've had 10 to 11 thousand people but we have no problem having more," says Thomas.

He says it's not only all of the fun activities that keeps people coming back: It's also the opportunity to celebrate Fourth of July with the people they're honoring.

"God, family, country -- that's the way I put it," says Crews.