Knoxville (WVLT) - The possibility of Mother Nature lighting up the sky delayed Knoxville's fireworks.
The city of Knoxville estimates more than 60,000 came out to World's Fair Park for downtown's Festival on the Fourth.
Volunteer TV's Mike McCarthy was part of the fun.
The city estimates attendance was down 20 percent compared to last year. The city blames the gray skies that rolled through earlier Friday night. Fireworks were set to go off at 9:35, but they went off around 10:20. They were a welcome and patriotic sight for those in attendance.
"We're very excited," Alex and Alyssa said.
Alex and Alyssa Spears love fireworks.
"Big blow up in the sky. Boom!" Alex and Alyssa said.
These young firework fanatics joined thousands of others for the show in Knoxville's Worlds Fair Park.
"This is family tradition. My kids have been bugging us all year for when we can come and see it," festival goer Jason Ryan said.
You could call Jason Ryan and his family picky patriots. They were among the first at the park at 2:00 because on the Fourth of July, not just any spot will do.
"It's pretty hard to pick a spot. We were looking about 15 to 20- minutes before we decided on this one," Ryan said.
Emory Cantrell celebrates the Fourth of July in style.
"We have juice, water, cheese, crackers and pillows to sit on," Cantrell said.
He drove nine hours from Florida for the fireworks of a new relationship.
"That smile and that sparkle in the eyes you can't see behind the sunglasses," Cantrell said.
But after an afternoon of music, mostly on stage, the fireworks show was almost extinguished. Just about an hour before the fireworks were set to go off, a threatening sky and possibly light show from mother nature delayed the show.
"I'm sure we'll still see fireworks. It rains every Fourth of July. Fireworks are just part of it," one festival goer said.
And with no rain, only clouds, Alexis and Alyssa got the fireworks show they've waited for all year.
Crews are expected to be here until 12:30 am cleaning up. Those in attendance also heard the world premier performance of the sore from the movie "Kit Kittredge: An American Girl." The conductor of the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra helped conduct the score for that movie.