LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Thousands turned out for the first day of the Fifth Third Bank Waterfront Independence Festival despite near record-breaking high temperatures on Tuesday.
"It is really hot out," Jolie Gitchel laughed.
But despite that, many seemed determine to push on as the sun beat down on Kentuckiana.
"I like the band that's going to be playing and I need to work on my tan," Gitchel said.
The evening included several musical performances. Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer also joined the crowd for the event.
EMS workers peddled their way through the crowds to keep an eye out for heat illnesses or other medical issues.
Whether they were soaking up the sun or trying to avoid it in the shade, people did their best to enjoy themselves despite the heat.
"I'm just drinking lots of water and am trying to sit in the shade," one festival attendee said.
The Louisville Water Company offered a Pure Tap and Go option, giving the crowd a chance to stay hydrated for free.
"It's not too bad to come out for a free event that's fun for the family and it's free," Sherry Watson said.
For others, the extreme heat called for extreme measures.
Despite the signs that swimming in the waterways near the festival is prohibited, many still went in the water to cool down.
"When we came over and saw everybody in here it was like let's go, let's just do it," Patricia Chontos said.
Firework lit up the night sky to end the night's festivities.
The event runs all day Wednesday, July 4. For more information on events, click here
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