By Doug Brooks
Jasper Lions Club
Since 1949 the Jasper Lions Club has developed and sponsored an Independence Day Celebration for the citizens of Pickens County. Lion Danny Fink is president of the club and 1st Vice President Darlene Handy is chairing the 2013 Celebration Committee and the theme this year is Star Spangled Spectacular.
Looking back at history a bit, we know that we also call it the Fourth of July since that was the date in 1776 the U.S. Declaration of Independence was adopted by the Second Continental Congress. That document announced the separation of 13 North American British colonies from Britain. Celebrating the day as a holiday became common only after the War of 1812:
The annual parade will be Thursday, July 4, on Main Street starting at 10 a.m. (line-up at 8:30 a.m. in the field behind the Jasper United Methodist Church). The parade will begin at the intersection of South Main Street and West Spring Street, continue north on Main Street; turn left on College Street, turn left on Mark Whitfield Street, turn right on Stegall Drive and end at Lee Newton Park. Jasper Lion Patton Childers will be the MC of the parade.
The parade will include decorated floats and autos, antique cars, fire engines, heavy trucks, riders on horseback and much, much more. The Grand Marshal of the parade this year will be Brian Rittenberry from Jasper. More on him later.
The annual parade is always a great start to the celebration and groups wanting to be in it should send an application right away. They can be obtained at the Chamber of Commerce, Moore Furniture Company on Main Street, the County Administration Building, City Hall, Miller and Associates office on Main Street and the Bank of North Georgia on Main Street.
Entry fee for the parade is $15 for applications received on or before June 15 and $25 for those received after June 15. Cash prizes will be $50 for 1st place float and $25 for 2nd place float. Prizes will be awarded at the bandstand during the opening ceremonies schedule to begin around 11:30. All winners must claim their prizes at that time. No certificates or prizes will be mailed. Parade applications and entry fees should be sent to: Jasper Lions Club, 4th of July Parade Committee, P.O. Box 1088, Jasper, Ga. 30143Following the Parade
The opening ceremonies will be at 11:30 at the pavilion stage and will include flag ceremonies and singing of the National Anthem.
Bingo will be opened at the Chamber of Commerce patio at noon.
Vendors will be at the Carnival area to provide a wide variety of food and products Wednesday through Saturday.
The Peachtree Rides Midway will be open from Wednesday, July 3, through Saturday, July 6. Special coupon days will be Wednesday and Friday from 5 to 10 p.m. and Saturday from 1 to 6. The Midway rides will not be operating on Sunday. They have a new ride, the Ring of Fire, a great teenage ride. Coupons are available around town for a reduction of $5 from the regular price of $20. Entertainment
Thelma Cagle and Leslie Miller have lined up an outstanding group of entertainers who will be performing from 7-10 p.m. on the main stage of the pavilion at Lee Newton Park. A list of the entertainment will be in next week’s article.
10 p.m. Gigantic fireworks display by Pyro Works, Inc. from Lafayette, Tn.
A great feature of the celebration this year will be announcing the winner of the 2nd Annual Jasper’s Most Talented contest to be held at the bandstand at Lee Newton Park. Participants may be individuals or groups and may present any kind of family-oriented performance - singing, dancing, dramatic, poetry readings or even pet tricks! There is no entrance fee.
Performances will be limited to 3 minutes each for the preliminary round on Wednesday, July 3, at 7, and 5 minutes each for the final round on Friday, July 5, from 7-8. A panel of judges will choose which contestants advance to the final round but the audience will pick the ultimate winner. The winning act will perform Saturday night, July 6, during the band’s break, after which the $500 prize will be awarded. Sound system will be available at the park. Entrants must provide accompaniment on CD no later than 6 p.m. Deadline for application is Friday, June 28.
The Jasper Lions Club is sponsoring a raffle in which the winner will receive a $1,000 pre-paid card. Tickets are a donation of $1 each and you do not have to be present at the park July 4 when the winning ticket will be picked. Lions have tickets.