By Cyndi Sellers
July 4th celebrations at Holly and Rutherford Beaches were well attended and much appreciated by the crowds that came out. The storms of the day before gave way to clear skies and summer sun on Saturday.
Hundreds of families spent the day or the weekend at the beaches, enjoying the sand, surf, and fresh air. Parades, a concert, and lots of fireworks, all organized by volunteers, made it a very satisfying Independence Day celebration.
The good times were marred by four traffic accidents, 117 traffic stops, and four arrests, according to Sheriff Ron Johnson, who had assigned extra deputies to the beaches. Arrests included disturbing the peace by intoxication, domestic battery, battery on a police officer and aggravated battery.
In the latter case, a man on Holly Beach tried to attack several people with a machete and managed to hit one with the flat of the blade before begin subdued. He appeared to be intoxicated.
The Audubon Society reported that one of their posted beach nesting sites was vandalized, with a game camera and signs stolen and ropes cut. Sadly, many eggs and chicks were killed by drivers running over them. It was reported that the raking of east Rutherford Beach also scooped up and killed a number of Least Tern chicks.