"We don't know if it really is," she said with a smile. "People can challenge us on it if they want, but we're saying it is."

Elsewhere on the Town Green, about 6,000 revelers danced to live music by Case of the Willys and The Poyntlyss Sistars, while barefoot children played in fountains.

"It's wonderful -- we have a great time every time we come," said Ruben Rios of Santa Rosa, taking a timeout from dancing to refill his beer cup.

Rios and about 12 friends and family members enjoyed a spread of picnic foods and beverages while kids picked at their hot dogs and listened to the band.

Despite an evening meal of a hot dog and cotton candy and some breathless fun in a jump house, 6-year-old Kate Lynn Tembrock of Santa Rosa said the best was yet to come.

"Fireworks!" she said when asked about her favorite part of the day.

Fireworks were to begin at 9 p.m. at Keiser Park, but organizers pushed the start time back because darkness didn't fall fast enough, according to event organizer Chris Messina.

Still, Kate Lynn's dad, Joey Tembrock, said the event was a perfect mix of fun for kids and adults.

"And I like it because I have to work the next day after the Fourth of July," he said, standing barefoot in a fountain. "So this is our Fourth."

You can reach Staff Writer Kerry Benefield at 526-8671 or kbenefield@pressdemocrat.com