50 Years of Patriotic Fun
Spirit of America Festival celebrates golden anniversary in 2016 and has been named a Top 10 event for the state.
Decatur, Ala. (June 20, 2016) – An incredible lineup of performers, a new kickoff theme party, patriotic awards, carnival rides and a spectacular firework show are on the agenda for this year’s Spirit of America Festival. Now in its fiftieth year, the annual celebration honors the contributions of those Americans, both past and present, which have dedicated their lives to the preservation of our freedoms both at home and abroad. Celebrating its golden anniversary this year, the event has been named a Top 10 event for the state of Alabama. The star-spangled fun begins on June 29, 2016, and culminates with a spectacular fireworks show on the night of July 4. Headlining this year’s event is Craig Wayne Boyd, an American country singer and songwriter best known for winning season seven of NBC’s The Voice competition.
The Independence Day celebration kicks off with the 50th Anniversary Black and White Theme Kick Off Party (black and white attire is recommended but not required) on Friday evening, July 1 from 6 to 10 p.m. under the Old Ice Rink Pavilion. There will be burgers and beverages available to purchase and admission is free. The Carnival, Knocker Ball and other amusement activities geared towards teens and younger adults will be available on the Spirit of America field.
On Saturday, July 2, live music fills Point Mallard Park beginning at 5 p.m. with the Spirit of America Voice Talent Competition followed by two free concerts featuring Rodeo Gypsy at 7:30 p.m. and headliner Craig Wayne Boyd takes the stage at 8:30 p.m. Food vendors and a beer and wine garden area will be on site.
There is plenty to do on Sunday, July 3 beginning with a Celebrate America patriotic program at Southside Baptist Church at 10:30 a.m. At 1 p.m., $5 lunch boxes are available for a picnic along with family-friendly games led by a cruise director on the Spirit of America Stage and at the TC Almon Recreation Center. Additional free entertainment gets underway on the Spirit of America Stage at 5 p.m. with Nashville gospel-country artist Rena White followed by Replay the Band at 6 p.m. Additional entertainment lined up for the evening on the Spirit of America Stage includes a repeat performance of Celebrate America by the Southside Baptist Church and Choir with special guest, Wes Hampton of the Gaither Vocal Band at 7 p.m. followed by a special showing of the movie “Captain America: The First Avenger” at 9 p.m.
On July 4, the festivities begin at 10 a.m. with a children’s bike parade featuring patriotic decorated bikes, tricycles, wagons, and strollers. Throughout the day, there will be family and group games and live music begins at 5 p.m. on the Spirit of America Stage with Altar Ego, an 80s tribute rock band, followed by rock band Ahead of the Wake at 6 p.m. and Muscle Shoals country-rock band McTazz at 7 p.m. The Spirit of America Award Ceremony, a presentation of awards recognizing outstanding service and sacrifice for country and fellow man, begins at 8 p.m. and includes a Veterans Honor Walk. The big anticipation of the night is the spectacular fireworks show, which is set to light up the sky beginning at 9:45 p.m. The four-day celebration culminates with a free concert by CMT star Kassie Miller immediately following the fireworks show.
For children and teens, carnival rides will be available beginning June 29 directly in front of the Aquatic Center’s wave pool entrance. Admission is free and tickets for rides are $1 each or 50 tickets for $40. Family nights are June 29 and June 30 and a family package of 50 tickets will be available to purchase for $35.
Carnival hours are as follows:
June 29 3 – 10 p.m.
June 30-July 1 4 – 11 p.m.
July 2 2 – 11 p.m.
July 3 1 – 11 p.m.
July 4 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.
For more information you may also visit our Facebook page
or get the new Spirit of America app for your smartphone!