Girl Scouts to be honored for Red, White & Blue days

Country musician Jake Owen will be the headline act at Red, White & Blue Days July 3-4 in Morton Park.

Other acts featured this year will include Jason & The Haymakers and Bluemoon swamp, a Creedence Clearwater Revival and John Fogerty tribute band.

Betty Coffrin, a Red, White & Blue Days committee member, said the Girl Scouts organization will be recognized at this years celebration.

“It all started out as recognizing the returning veterans from Dessert Storm, 22 years ago, since that time we have done the fire departments, veterans groups, citizens groups and any number of organizations,” Coffrin said. “This year we are recognizing the Girl Scouts, since it is their 100th anniversary, this year.”

Red, White & Blue Days will begin on Tuesday with Jason & The Haymakers at 6 p.m. After Jason & The Haymakers, Jake Owen will perform at 8 p.m., with Farmer of the Year, Lil Miss Firecracker and Lil Mr. Firecracker being recognized in between concerts.

The Fourth of July festivities will begin with a parade at 1 p.m., the bell ringining ceremony and Bluemoon Swamp opening the rest of the afternoons activities at about 2:15-2:30 p.m.

Coffrin said the start of the afternoon events will depend on what time the parade ends.

Coffrin said they work with a talent agency, Variety Attractions, to book the main act, while Mike Ziebka, owner of Z’s Music & Sound, lines up the other performers.

She said the fundraising for Red, White & Blue Days is a year round effort and the money comes from t-shirt sales, ice cream, popcorn, donations and various other sources.

“We basically beg for money all the time,” she said.

Coffrin said she is partial to the bell ringing ceremony and it may be her favorite activity of Red, White & Blue Days.

“If I had to pick one thing it’s probably just the few minutes after the parade before the entertainment in the afternoon, and that’s at the bell ringing, you know, it’s just pretty special,” Coffrin said.

She said that is what the holiday is all about.

Habitat for Humanity will host Four on the Fourth at 6:30 a.m. Four on the Fourth is a four mile run/walk. The Coles County Arts Council will have the Great Chalk In from 9:30 a.m.-noon.

Other activities include $2 all you can eat ice cream, food vendors, inflatable games, foam pit and fire safety house.

Marcus Smith can be reached at 581-2812 or [email protected]