Rincon is preparing its new festival area for the city’s annual Fourth of July celebration.
The 2013 “Freedom Rings in Rincon” event will be held Friday night from 6-10 at Freedom Park, located behind Fuller Chevrolet and adjacent to Lowe’s. Along with a pie-eating contest and a watermelon-eating contest, approximately 40 vendors will be on hand, said city planning and zoning director LaMeisha Kelly.
“They’ll have everything from food to wrought-iron crafts,” she said.
The event will be held, rain or shine, Kelly added, and a large tent will be erected to keep people out of the rain or the sun, whatever the conditions merit.
“If it’s really hot, they can sit under the tent and cool off. If it rains, they can wait out the rain. There’s no need to leave the site,” she said.
Parking also will be ample at Freedom Park, which is 20 acres.
What is new to this year’s event is a laser light show, which will begin around 9:15 p.m. The show will be set to music, and event sponsors will have their logos in lights.
“That’s going to be a 30-minute show,” Kelly explained.
Though the laser light show is new to Rincon, it’s an event that has been a couple of years in the making, Kelly said.
“I had the idea about two years ago,” she said. “Last year, we looked around, and we could not find anyone in this area.”
After enlisting the help of Effingham Chamber of Commerce executive director Rick Lott, who has an extensive background in staging festivals, the city finally procured a show.
“He did some research for us on different laser light shows,” Kelly said, “and this is the one that rose to the top.”
A California company is producing the laser show, and Kelly said the city wanted to do something different.
“Springfield has had fireworks, so we didn’t want to do fireworks,” she said. “And it’s not just people from Effingham, we want people to come in from throughout the entire region.”
The annual parade begins Saturday at 10 a.m. from Macomber Park and it will include a 3rd Infantry Division color guard and the 3rd ID Band. Color guards from the Marine Corps and the Air National Guard’s 165th Airlift Wing also will take part.
Among the parade participants are veterans groups and the Corvette Club, along with various Shriners units.
“We have about 50 or so entries for the parade,” Kelly said. “So we’re excited.”
The parade route is about two miles and will go down Wisenbaker Road this year.
Kelly added the city hopes those who come to the parade will continue to spend time — and dollars — in Rincon.
“It’s a great thing for the area,” she said. “That’s why we’re committing to bring people in to the city of Rincon and Effingham County.”