PLANT CITY - Fireworks will be the grand finale at the city's July 4 celebration at Plant City Stadium. But that's only part of the festivities. The fireworks will be preceded by games, entertainment and more at the stadium at 1810 E. Park Road. "It's our biggest event of the year," said Deborah Haldane, program manager for the Plant City Recreation and Parks Department.
The parking lot opens at 5:45 p.m. and gates, concessions, games and entertainment start at 6 p.m. There will be a special salute to the military and the national anthem at 9 p.m., followed by the fireworks at about 9:15 p.m. Entertainment will include Double Barrel Band and Highway 41 South. Games and other on-field activities include a children's craft station, face painting, volleyball and inflatables. There is no admission charge although parking is $5 per vehicle. The Florida Strawberry Festival will be the title sponsor for the second year. The city, which didn't have a July 4th celebration for a few years, revived the festivities last year with the help of the festival and other business sponsors. The festival and other businesses also made this year's celebration a reality as the city couldn't afford to stage it on its own, particularly the $20,000 for fireworks, Haldane said. Festival General Manager Paul Davis said the festival was happy to help. "It's a great way for us to give back to a community that does so much for us," Davis said. Parking will only be available in the stadium parking lot. For pedestrian safety, no parking will be allowed near the complex along Park Road, Jim Johnson Road and Gordon Food Service Drive. Following the fireworks, event traffic will flow one-way as vehicles exit the parking lots onto Park Road and Gordon Food Service Drive. In the event of rain on July 4, the celebration will be moved to July 5. For information, call (813) 659-4255 or go to www.plantcitygov.com and follow the recreation and parks department link. email@example.com (813) 394-5103