Fourth of July includes community events across Lee County
Lee County residents will have plenty of opportunities to show off their red, white and blue colors this Fourth of July with community events next week.
The City of Opelika’s Parks and Recreation Department will kick off the Independence Day holiday July 3 with the 62nd annual Freedom Celebration at the Opelika High School track. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. The event is free and features music by Route 66, along with food vendors and, for a small fee, a children’s area with inflatables and games. Kids will also put their names on plates for the annual plate drop, with the hope that a skydiver will land on their plate.
“We always do a plate drop,” said Laura Leigh Chesser, public relations coordinator for Opelika’s Parks and Recreation Department. “Whatever plate the skydiver lands on, the kid gets a prize. …They come down and land right in front of the crowd.”
Fireworks, sponsored in part by Opelika’s Kiwanis Club, are set to begin at 9 p.m. Thursday.
“It’s one of the largest fireworks displays in the area,” Chesser said. “They’re really big fireworks.”
Chesser added the family-friendly event draws big crowds each year.
“People come out at 6:30 (p.m.) and they stay out until the end of the night,” she said.
Patriotic fun continues July 4 at Auburn High School’s Duck Samford Stadium.
“In this community, you have two opportunities to see fireworks,” said Alison Hall, Auburn Parks and Recreation community and special programs director.
Gates for the City of Auburn’s Annual Fourth of July Celebration, sponsored by Briggs and Stratton Corporation, open at 6 p.m.
“We have always been lucky to have a good turnout,” Hall said. “I think it’s one of those times of year when friends and family want to get together.”
The community is invited to set up chairs in anticipation of the 9 p.m. fireworks show and grab food from vendors like Kona Ice and Country’s Barbecue. Beginning at 7 p.m., The Park Band will provide live entertainment and play cover songs from the ’80s and ’90s. Briggs and Stratton will also sponsor patriotic giveaways.
“It’s like a big tailgate,” Hall said. “Very friendly, very relaxed.”
The event is free. For parking information, visit www.auburnalabama.org/parks .
Also on Friday, Phenix City will host its annual July Fourth event at the Phenix City Amphitheater on Dillingham Street. The event is free to the public, and gates open at 7 p.m. EST. Fireworks are set to begin at 9:15 p.m. EST, with live patriotic and contemporary praise and worship music beforehand.
Valley’s Shawmut Airport, on 30 th Street, will host fireworks on July 4. The public is invited to park their cars and watch the fireworks, beginning at 9:30 EST.
The Lake Martin area boasts a day full of Independence Day events. The July Fourth Boat Parade kicks off the holiday at 10 a.m. The parade begins at Kowaliga Marina and follows a route to Children’s Harbor and back. Boats will compete for prizes like largest flag, most patriotic and most creative.
Fun continues on the lake with the 10th annual Blue Creek Fourth of July Parade from 11 a.m. to noon. The parade begins at Ponder Camp Road and ends at Niffer’s on Alabama 49 and features candy and trinkets. Those interested in participating in the parade can bring golf carts, motorcycles, bikes, trucks and law mowers to decorate at 10 a.m. at the top of the hill on Olona Drive in Dadeville.
Lake Martin will finish the holiday with the Fourth Of July Blast Concert and Fireworks at the Lake Martin Amphitheater. Gates open at 5:30 p.m. and the show, headlined by Nationwide Coverage, will start at 6:30. Fireworks begin at 9 p.m. and music continues until 10:30 p.m. Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online atwww.lmat.org/tickets.”
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