Fourth of July event roundup

sokamoto@ledger-enquirer.comJune 27, 2013 

The Phenix City Parks and Recreation Department still hopes to hold its fireworks display Thursday evening, according to Rebecca Harris, a department coordinator. But if the weather is too bad, they will move it to July 14 after the Dance in the Amp event.

The National Infantry Museum's planned celebration will be held rain or shine, according to Cyndy Cerbin, the museum’s director of communications, but some of the activities will be moved inside.

Visitors can hear performances by the Maneuver Center of Excellence Band 11 a.m.-1 p.m. and Tim Maggart and the Neal Lucas Band at 2 p.m.

There will be Civil War re-enactors and cannons along with bounce houses, face painting and balloon animals for the kids.

The IMAX theater will be open showing a patriotic music video Maggart shot at the Infantry Museum along with vintage World War II newsreels and cartoons.

Vendors will set up under the portico and will be selling ice cream, barbecue plates, chicken sandwiches, hot dogs and drinks. Inside, the Fife and Drum restaurant and IMAX concessions will be open.

At Callaway Gardens, July 4th activities, including the Swingin' Medallions and the fireworks show, have been postponed until Saturday.

In Talbot County, the Thunder on the Lake celebration has been postponed until Saturday, organizers said.

Here's a roundup:

Thursday, July 4: Infantry Museum

It's "A Patriotic Fourth" on Thursday and this marks the first time the National Infantry Museum and Soldier Center will host an event on July 4.

The Maneuver Center of Excellence Band will perform from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in front of the museum. The band will break up into smaller groups to play rock, Latin and ceremonial music.

Country singer/songwriter Tim Maggart and the Neal Lucas Band will take over the stage at 2:30 p.m. Lady Jayne and Cedar Creek will end the afternoon's music.

The new, though temporary, Civil War exhibit can be seen that day. Re-enactors will fire two cannons on the hour and will interact with guests.

World War II Company Street and the Memorial Walk of Honor will be open for self-guided tours.

Inside, in the IMAX Theatre, you can watch Maggart's new music video, vintage World War II cartoons and newsreels.

Birthday cake will be available in the lobby. Guests can buy ice cream, barbecue plates, chicken sandwiches, hot dogs and drinks from various vendors outside. The Fife and Drum restaurant will also be open.

The celebration will end at 5 p.m. It's free. Call 706-685-5800.

Thursday, July 4: Phenix City

Instead of the annual God and Country show, which used to be part of Thunder on the Hooch, the Phenix City Amphitheater will feature the Christian group Jonathan and Lisa Moore Band at 7:30 p.m. The Moores are a national recording group based in Columbus.

Fireworks, paid for by the city of Phenix City and the Russell County Convention & Visitors Bureau, will begin at dark. The fireworks will be shot from the Chattahoochee RiverWalk, near Columbus State University's Woodruff Park across the river from the Amphitheater. It's free. Call 334-291-4719.

Thursday, July 4: Westville

At Westville, the 1850s village in Stewart County just south of Columbus, it's like stepping back in time.

The village is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and activities include sack races, bobbing for apples, watermelon-eating contests, greased pole climbs and a tug of war.

There will be bluegrass music and demonstrators, including a blacksmith. Barbecue will be for sale.

Admission is $10; $8 for seniors, college students and military personnel. It's free for children in pre-K and younger. Call 888-733-1850.

Thursday, July 4: Florence Marina

If you just want to relax, try hanging out at Florence Marina in Stewart County, west of Lumpkin.

You can learn to make ice cream and play games.

It's open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., with activities starting around 10 a.m. Admission is free, but you must pay for a $5 parking pass. Call 229-838-4706.

Saturday July 6: Callaway Gardens

The celebration begins early and lasts well into the night at the annual July Fourth Star Spangled Beach Party at Robin Lake Beach. The Beach opens from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m., with the Gardens' attractions open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

The Florida State University Flying High Circus performs at 3:30 p.m. and 6 p.m. on Robin Lake Beach.

Highlights include beach activities, live music -- headlined by the Swingin' Medallions at 7:30 p.m. -- and the annual Fireworks Extravaganza, which begins around 9:30 p.m.

The popular TreeTop Adventures, featuring "challenges" through the tree canopies and ziplines, is an additional $35. The new lake course is $15. Tickets are $25; $12.50 for children 6-12; free for children 5 and younger. Call 800-225-5292.

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