Sponsors announce details of Fourth of July celebration at Freedom Hall

David Floyd • Updated May 29, 2019 at 5:30 PM

Fireworks, live music and the chance to win a year’s supply of groceries valued at $10,000.

Representatives from the city of Johnson City, Pepsico Beverages North America of Johnson City and Food City announced the details of the 34th Annual Pepsi Independence Day Celebration on Wednesday morning. The event will occur on the grounds of the Freedom Hall Civic Center Thursday, July 4. The event will begin at 5 p.m. with food service, craft booths and children’s games.

The grand prize will be a year’s supply of groceries valued at $10,000, first prize will be a year’s supply of gas valued at $1,500 and second prize will be a year’s supply of Pepsi valued at $520.

Organizers will also be giving away four annual tickets to Anakeesta, a theme park in Gatlinburg, and a Pigeon Forge super pack, which includes a two-night stay at Hearthside Cabins, four dinner passes to Bennett’s BBQ, four passes to Wonderworks and four passes to Ober Gatlinburg.

Registration details will be posted on the WXBQ website in the coming days. On-site registration will be available the day of the event.

Free bus service by Johnson City Transit will begin at 5 p.m. from the parking lots of Winged Deer Park and East Tennessee State University at the corner of West State of Franklin Road and University Parkway. The last buses will depart from the parking lots to Freedom Hall at 8:15 p.m. Johnson City Transit will begin free rides back to the parking lots at ETSU and Winged Deer Park at 10:20 p.m. after the fireworks display.

Organizers ask that attendees leave pets at home and bring a clear bag. All other bags will be subject to search. Alcohol, incendiary devices like charcoal grills and fireworks are prohibited.

Roger Davis, a fire prevention officer with the Johnson City Fire Department, said possessing and using fireworks is prohibited in the city. He asked residents to be aware of this rule as they prepare for the upcoming celebrations.

“Every year there’s about 9,000 fires caused by fireworks, about 400 injuries, so just keep in mind that everything you do out there counts and helps out,” he said.

The event does not have an alternate rain date. In the event of inclement weather, attendees could be temporarily moved inside the Freedom Hall arena and the fireworks display could be delayed.

Full schedule:

  • 5 p.m.: Food service, craft booths, children’s games begin
  • 5:30-6 p.m.: Music from WXBQ DJs
  • 5-7 p.m.: On-site registration for chance to win prizes
  • 6-6:40 p.m.: Music by Jimbo Whaley and Greenbriar
  • 6:45-6:50 p.m.: Tribute to Gold Star families and disabled veterans
  • 7-7:45 p.m.: Music by Southern Rebellion
  • 8-8:10 p.m.: Color Guard with national anthem and Pledge of Allegiance
  • 8:15-9:15 p.m.: Music by Adam Craig
  • 9:20-9:35 p.m.: Prize drawings on stage
  • 9:50 p.m.: Welcome by a Johnson City commissioner and WXBQ musical introduction for fireworks
  • 9:55-10:15 p.m.: Fireworks by Pyro Shows of Lafollette
  • 10:20-11 p.m.: Entertainment resumes on stage with Southern Rebellion


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