Area residents looking to celebrate the Fourth of July will have ample opportunity in the Cape Thursday with a wealth of festivities all day long.
Independence Day celebrants can get an early start at a pair of events.
The Great American Picnic, dubbed "a traditional Cape Coral birthday salute to the nation, will run from noon to 3:30 p.m., at the Marina at Cape Harbour.
It will kick off with a Cape Coral VFW Post 8463 Color Guard presentation, followed by the national anthem and with a medley of patriotic songs "to get everyone in the spirit."
Returning again this year will be the ever-popular "Best Patriotic Pet Contest" with medals and prizes. Registration for the free event will begin at 11:30 a.m. with the costume contest to start at 1 p.m.
For those who want to remember our troops still deployed, members of the Adopt-A-Troop Foundation will be raising money to support the military. Attendees can write a personalized message on the large banner that will be sent to military members overseas.
Admission and parking are free.
Also early in the day, the Cape Coral Mayor's Office and the Invest in America's Veterans Foundation will present a Fourth of July Celebration featuring a free concert.
The Dixie Dirt Band and singers from Cultural Park Theatre will provide the entertainment and hometown picnic fare - burgers, dogs, potato salad, beans and the like - and dessert and beverages will be available. Food tickets are $5.
The event will be held from 10 a.m to 1 p.m. at 4820 Leonard St., in Cape Coral.
For those who are looking for fireworks, Southwest Florida's biggest display will once again be held in the South Cape.
Red, White & Boom, a street party featuring live entertainment with headliner Rachel Farley, lots of food and fireworks, will begin at 4 p.m. and last until around 10 p.m. at the foot of the Cape Coral Bridge. The fireworks show will start at 9:30 p.m.
The event - one of the largest in not only the city but the region - is organized by the Cape Coral Chamber of Commerce and title sponsored by RE/MAX Realty Team and the City of Cape Coral.
We thank the innumerable volunteers who make these events possible.
It takes a lot of effort and a lot of hard work with the effort for the larger events literally beginning not too long after the last of the glow sticks and holiday favors have been swept from the grounds.
We also thank the multitude of sponsors as it takes more than hard work, it takes money and lots of it, to keep admission to community events like these free.
In addition to RE/MAX Realty Team, which has stepped into the title sponsor role for Red White & Boom multiple times, there are more than three dozen other business sponsors who are quietly contributing this year, They include:
FOS Furniture, Kiwanis Club of Cape Coral, Entech Computer Services, Suncoast Beverage, Caloosa Tent & Rental, WINK TV, The News-Press, Cat Country, The Breeze Newspapers, Lamar Advertising, Capecoral.com, CenturyLink, Waste Pro, Vapin' in the Cape, Community Redevelopment Agency, Palm RV, Dixie Road House, The Smart Companies, StoutenCramer, SeaTow, Brent's Music, Dorado's Dockside Restaurant, Paradise Deli & Market, Palmetto Pine Country Club, Hooters, Miz Catherine's, A Dessert Caf, Not In My City, On Track Doors, Smargasy Inc, Zoomers Amusement Park, Walgreens #15136, Animal ER of Southwest Florida, Realty Title Solutions, Touch Salon & Spa, Vandyke Mortgage, J.R. & Associates, Key West Express, Wendy's, Bubba's Roadside Grill, EdVantage & Costco.
We are humbly proud to be part of that supporting cast.
And we are deeply grateful to be part of a community that steps forward to make the Cape a great place to live and work.
Have a safe and happy holiday weekend.
- Breeze editorial