Saturday started out like any other first full day of a seemingly ordinary weekend — sunshine, a bit cool for April, with a mild breeze blowing off the big lake in Green Valley Park.
But change was in the air. One could sense a different day was dawning and many lives would be altered, for some, in ways they could never imagine.
Usual chores were done with the regular pace, the feeling in the air wasn’t hurried, but an indefinable sense that history was being re-made.
And scores of people were heading for Green Valley Park. Some, mostly the young ones, arrived with a sense of playful abandon.
Many picked their observation points with care, not knowing that armies of men didn’t fire at each other according to a game of sport, with neatly lined rows of spectators in chairs watching the action.
No. Battles of war are fought according to the whims of generals and the circumstance of terrain. So, those expecting a front-row seat were soon charged with a change of plan and a need to be mobile.
Of course the folly of war and conflict brings those vendors who see a buck to be made at every opportunity and this venue was no different in that regard.
Food, flags, and accoutrements of every kind were on hand for those who could afford the monetary exchange for a keepsake of this historic skirmish.
The first-time event was an accurate portrayal of this period in our nation’s history and how Americans lived, fought for and died for their beliefs.
With such a great turnout for the Saturday re-enactment of a Civil War conflict, there may be more of the same in Payson’s future.