Published in the April 25 – May 8, 2018 issue of Morgan Hill Life

A child rides a Radio Flyer in the 2015 Fourth of July Parade. Photo by Marty Cheek

South Valley is proud of the American spirit. Residents from not only Morgan Hill but also Gilroy and San Martin come together to celebrate the Fourth of July at the annual Freedom Fest series of events put on by the nonprofit organization Independence Day Celebration, Inc.

Freedom Fest isn’t free. It takes more than $100,000 and at least 500 volunteers working many hours to put together the South Valley’s birthday bash for the United States. They love being on a team devoted to creating a family-friendly affair that’s free and fun for everyone.

These volunteers prepare Freedom Fest’s six events. July 3 is when children come to the Downtown Morgan Hill Amphitheater to share songs of American pride at the popular Patriotic Sing. Immediately following it is the Downtown Family Street Dance. The Fourth of July morning starts with the Freedom Run and a Car Cruise of classy chassis. The Independence Day Parade through downtown is the official Fourth of July Parade for Santa Clara County. That event’s pomp and pageantry as well as the fireworks and entertainment at the Outdoor Sports Center bring in tens of thousands of visitors to Morgan Hill to celebrate life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness as an American family.

It’s only two months to Independence Day and Freedom Fest truly needs the community’s support to make it happen this year. The organizers have asked us to get the word out that they need a lot of help in financial donations and volunteers to put on their various events.

IDC President Jeff Dixon told us, “The challenge has grown the past several years to locate and recruit volunteers in leadership positions from within existing teams and the local South Valley community. The current need is to locate new leaders to enable a transition period of existing to future teams. We invite new residents to join Freedom Fest and find your niche.”

If you’re not be able to share a few hours a week helping the Freedom Fest organizers, please consider sharing some of your dollars and donate to the cause. Freedom Fest is entirely funded by donations. It receives no money from any government agency. So that means it relies on people who love the American spirit to send checks or give money through their PayPal account (found on their website).

“Freedom Fest is fortunate to have a dedicated team of long-standing volunteers and receives tremendous financial support from the community,” Dixon told us.

If you are dedicated to the cause of freedom and the values we celebrate, please consider providing support either through time or treasure. We especially encourage families to get involved to teach youngsters an appreciation for the many sacrifices made by those in the military.

Freedom isn’t free. And neither is Freedom Fest. Please support IDC in whatever way you can.

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