Despite overcast skies and occasional rain showers, Duke of Gloucester street bustled on the Fourth of July.
Rain didn't seem to deter crowds looking to celebrate the nation's 240th birthday in Colonial Williamsburg.
In fact, Tom Hartig found the weather to be pleasant.
During his family's visit to Colonial Williamsburg last summer, the 90-degree heat limited what they were able to do, Hartig said.
This year, they're back. And Hartig, along with his wife and three kids, arrived at the Historic Area when it opened in the morning, planning to stay until the fireworks at day's end.
"We love it here," Hartig said. "It's very authentic. Makes you feel like you're back in that period."
The Hartigs are road-tripping from their home in Georgia to Boston, Mass. But they stopped in Williamsburg for July 4. Hartig said spending the day at Colonial Williamsburg was a way to be more patriotic, to "feel a little closer to the history."
The prevalence of umbrellas and ponchos dotting Duke of Gloucester Street was only rivaled by the number of people wearing red, white and blue.
RJ Vazquez's shorts featured an American flag pattern, while his sister Bella wore a colonial gown. Their mom Nikki said the family travels to Colonial Williamsburg from Maryland each year.
"I like the history," said Bella, 11. "There's a lot of fun things to do that helps you learn."
Bella said they had a front-row view as Thomas Jefferson read the Declaration of Independence on the Courthouse steps earlier in the day.
Other activities included an auction held in Market Square and the "Colonial Faire" that attracted a crowd of children eager to play tug-of-war and other period games.
Some visitors staked out spots on Palace Green hours before fireworks were set to begin.
Hanson Nottingham said he tracked down some black trash bags, cutting them open and placing them on Palace Green for a dry place to sit.
The Nottingham family traveled from California to spend Independence Day in Colonial Williamsburg, as part of a longer vacation.
Hanson Nottingham, who grew up in Virginia Beach, said his parents used to take him to Williamsburg when he was little. This time, he returned not only with his parents and brother, but also with his own kids, both high-school age.
It's the last full summer before his daughter, who just finished her junior year, goes off to college, and Nottingham said he wanted her to experience Colonial Williamsburg before that happens.
"It's just the foundation that this country was based on," he said.
Nottingham said he wanted his kids to learn to fight for something they believe in.
"What better setting and piece of history...to drive that point home than Williamsburg," he said.
Bridges can be reached by phone at 757-345-2342.