4th of July Festivities Return to Veterans Stadium

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The perfect Fourth of July event involves spectacular fireworks and patriotic music. It has been a tradition all across our country for decades. This year, Long Beach residents will be able to bring their families to enjoy a special evening with the Long Beach Municipal Band performing with the dramatic backdrop of fireworks at Veterans Stadium at Clark and Conant, announced Fifth District Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske today.

“It will be a great evening with our treasured Long Beach Municipal Band,” commented Schipske. “I’m thrilled that we are able to restore a long-cherished tradition of having fireworks at Vets Stadium.”

The program includes a tribute to the 16 Long Beach Hometown Heroes who gave their lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, a concert by Rock for Vets, and the national anthem sung by former American Idol contest, Clint Gamboa. The Long Beach Municipal Band will perform a concert of patriotic songs with fireworks by Pyro Spectacular, Inc.

For more than three decades fireworks shows were held at Veterans Stadium adjacent to Long Beach City College, but when the fireworks show moved two years ago, it left the eastside dark on the Fourth of July. Fifth District Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske sought to change that, obtained funding from several businesses and others to restore the beloved tradition and to offer a holiday venue for the Long Beach Municipal Band.

“Patriotic music performed live by our Municipal Band along with spectacular fireworks are the perfect combination for the 4th of July. This year you can experience both at Veterans Stadium. What better way to honor the birth of our country and those who gave of themselves for the freedoms we enjoy,” commented Long Beach Municipal Band conductor Larry Curtis.

The event is hosted by Councilwoman Gerrie Schipske whose district includes Vets Stadium, Jet Blue, Lamar Advertising, Partners of Parks, Long Beach Parks, Recreation, and Marine, and the Long Beach Firefighters Association.

Gates will open at 4:30. The program will begin at 5:00 pm. Parking is $10 per vehicle. Absolutely no coolers, alcohol, personal fireworks (including sparklers), food, beverages, or weapons will be allowed in the stadium. No RVs or tailgating parties will be allowed in the parking lot. Security will be on hand to search bags before entering the stadium.

Veterans Stadium, at 4901 E. Conant in Long Beach, is adjacent to Rosie the Riveter Park, which contains a military memorial and banners displaying the names of 16 Long Beach men who died in service in Afghanistan or Iraq.

Donations are welcome and being accepted to cover costs of the costs for the Municipal Band and the Fireworks Spectacular. You can help out by donating through http://www.partnersofparks.org/, or call Partners of Parks at 562-570-3209.

If you would like to volunteer to help with this event, or for more information, please contact the Office of Councilwoman Schipske 562 570-6932 or district5@longbeach.gov. Schipske who will end her two terms on the City Council on July 8th, expressed her hope that the return of the fireworks show will continue to be a local tradition for many years to come.

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