Patriotism will be at the forefront as the Shoals Ruritan Club hosts the annual Fourth of July parade and community gathering Tuesday evening, with plenty of food, fellowship and fireworks on hand for all.
The event will kick off with a community parade, with all residents from Shoals and beyond invited to participate or to come out and watch. Line-up with instructions will begin at 5:30 p.m. at Fairview United Methodist Church. There is no fee for participation and advance registration is not required.
“We’re hoping to see our parade grow,” Shoals Ruritan representative Wallye Jones noted. “We’d like to see more floats and colors along with plenty of carts, scooters, bikes, four-wheelers and horses.”
Organizers emphasize that no air horns or sirens will be allowed in the parade.
A featured highlight of the parade will be the annual veterans’ float, with all veterans encouraged to ride on the float. A van designated for veterans will be available behind the Shoals Fire Station.
The parade will begin at 6 p.m., with participants waving to residents and distributing candy as the procession makes its way down Shoals Road to the Shoals Community Recreation Center.
Upon arrival at the center, parade participants will join those in attendance for a variety of activities. A patriotic ceremony will include the presentation of colors and the national anthem followed by the recognition of all veterans on hand. Special guest speaker for the ceremony will be veteran Don Isaacs of Pilot Mountain VFW Post 9436.
Later, club members will continue an Independence Day community tradition by offering hot dogs and cold drinks for purchase at .50 each.
In another Shoals tradition, the evening will end with a large fireworks display at dusk. Lawn chairs are recommended for comfortable viewing. The display will again be overseen by licensed fireworks technician Ricky Bowen.
“Ricky has put a lot of time into this,,” Jones noted, “and it should be a good one.”
“This is something that the entire community can get involved in,” Jones said. “We look at it as a way of giving back. It’s fulfilling for us and people love it.”
Rain date for the concessions and fireworks only will be Saturday, July 8, beginning at 7 p.m.