It began with a small core of people — families under sunshades or under picnic pavilions.
In the dry, 90-degree heat, people kept walking their dogs, their friends and their children around the track that circles Oxford Lake.
As the day progressed, more and more spots filled with people eating food from the booths or snacking on what they'd brought with them. As night fell, the park filled up and the party spread outwards. It spread into the parking lot of the Quintard Mall and the Academy PX store nearby.
Right at the peak of the fireworks display, cars paused on the shoulder of Interstate 20, hazard lights competing with the exuberance of the fireworks display.
After the final flash and boom the streets filled again, drivers prodded smartly along by Oxford police, who also guided them around a traffic mishap on the Leon Smith Parkway.
And like an abandoned shaved ice, the only thing left behind were wrappers.