FREEDOMFEST: Fireworks Finale

Fireworks light up the sky over Alcoa at the 40th annual FreedomFest celebration. The event returns to the Alcoa Duck Pond on Saturday.

Alcoa is making final preparations for FreedomFest 2019, the city announced in a press release Thursday.

Its 41st edition of the tremendously popular Independence Day celebration is set from 6-11 p.m. on Saturday, June 29, at the Alcoa Duck Pond.

The world renowned Pyro Shows Inc., a fireworks production company headquartered in LaFollette, once again will provide the event’s patriotic firepower.

The fireworks show will be choreographed to popular music for all ages, ranging from patriotic to pop hits. The night’s show will include more than 9,000 fireworks.

To enhance their beauty and drama, individual fireworks are synchronized to specific elements in the music, creating dramatic scenes as music is broadcast from speakers bordering the Duck Pond.

In addition to the display of pyrotechnics, Glenn Morton will emcee the event at the entertainment stage located in the Duck Pond parking lot. “Nuthin’ Fancy” will kick off the entertainment on stage starting at 6 p.m. and lasting until 7:30 p.m.

Headlining the entertainment will be local favorite Smooth Groove. Led by Leonard Ervin, the band takes the stage at 8 p.m. and will break for the 20-minute fireworks spectacle at approximately 9:40 p.m. Entertainers will return when fireworks are over to treat event-goers to music and “dancing in the street.”

An area between the Duck Pond and Springbrook Pool will include activities for kids, including a Knox Rocks Climbing Wall, a bounce house, an inflatable slide, obstacle courses, a sandbox and tattoos and face painting by Faces Gone Wild and Making Faces.

A wide variety of food will be available from Artistic Pops, B&D Concessions (Mother Shuckers), Blazing Flames Hot Dogs, Chadwick’s Creamery, Chef Mo’s Café and Catering, Chuck’s Concessions, DaddyO’s Filipino, Fire Truck Homemade Ice Cream, Geno’s Curbside Diner, Greek Gyros, Huff Farm Sweet Corn, KWR Concessions, Parrott’s Concessions, Quick Fix Coffee, Rainbo Ice & Funnel Cakes, REO Cheesewagon, Smoky Mountain Kettle Korn, Smoky Mountain Snow, Tic Toc Ice Cream and West Marketing Italian Ice. Vendors will begin serving at 6 p.m. and will break only during the fireworks display.

The city will set up an information booth at the intersection of Springbrook Road and Lodge Street to serve as a lost-and-found and emergency medical assistance hub.

Bicycles, skateboards, hover boards, roller blades, skates, alcohol, pets and other animals are prohibited in the event area.

Those bicycling the greenway are asked not to enter the event area due to the congestion and heavy pedestrian traffic. Attendees should not bring any pet or animal onto the event site other than assistance animals. Dogs and other animals can be sensitive to the noise of fireworks and can disturb other event attendees, the city said.

Attendees also should be aware that all fireworks are banned from the event area except those handled by event officials.

All entrances to Alcoa Elementary School will be barricaded and closed for event preparation. These areas will be closed to both motorized and pedestrian traffic. Anyone traveling in or around the Alcoa Little League park and elementary school should remain on the greenway trail outside the safety zones.

Beginning at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, June 28, the Alcoa Duck Pond parking lot will be closed along with Springbrook Road between Faraday and Edison streets. They will remain closed until no later than 8 a.m., Sunday, June 30.

Limited handicapped parking overlooking the Duck Pond will be located at the end of the Alcoa Intermediate School parking lot. Drivers can reach this area by the Lodge Street entrance to Alcoa High School.

Access to the handicapped area is on a first-come, first-served basis.

Attendees again can park in ALCOA Inc.’s pasture located at the corner of Springbrook Road and East Edison Street. It has been prepared by the Alcoa Public Works and Engineering Department and should provide parking for 200 to 300 vehicles.

The entrance gate for pasture parking is located along Springbrook Road across from the former fire hall. The AHS parking lots off Lodge Street will be open with access from Faraday Street.

Following the event, officers will direct traffic out of the ALCOA pasture southbound onto Springbrook Road, which will be one way to East Lincoln Road.

For safety reasons, the public is asked not to park along Springbrook Road between Edison Street and East Lincoln Road.

“We are very grateful to our friends at the aluminum company for continuing to work with us to improve the parking and traffic flow for the community. We appreciate their community involvement by allowing us to use their property. This should help tremendously with the ever present parking crunch and post event traffic,” City Manager Mark Johnson said.

Those leaving the AHS and AIS parking areas will exit onto Lodge Street, to Faraday Street, then onto Mills Street to Alcoa Highway/Hunt Road.

A faster exit will be available via Tesla Boulevard. Event-goers can take Faraday Street to Tesla Boulevard, turn left onto Tesla Boulevard, then right onto Associates Boulevard to the red light at Associates Boulevard and Hall Road.

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