Sequestration budget cuts cancelled the yearly Freedom’s Call Tattoo celebration this year, but a fireworks display will light up the night sky Friday at the National Museum of the U.S. Air Force, organizers say.
“We still wanted to celebrate the Fourth of July in the way that we have in years past,” said Wright-Patterson spokesman Daryl Mayer. “The thought was if we can do this without spending any money, if we can do this in a way that would be safe and fun, then we should do it. It’s our way of saying thanks to the Miami Valley for all the support they give us.”
The 18-minute grand finale-style show, free to the public, is set to begin around 10 p.m. K99.1 FM will simulcast music during the fireworks display.
“It’s going to be a big bang for your buck,” said David Egner, Wright-Patterson director of special operations.
This year, the $30,000 fireworks display will be paid for out of money gleaned from sales at base locations such as the commissary, Egner said.
Spectators should bring lawn chairs and blankets to set out near their vehicles. No food will be sold on site.
Gates to the free show open at 7 p.m. Attendees may enter through one of three gates:
* Springfield Pike in front of the Air Force museum.
* Spinning Road gate at the intersection of Spinning and Airway Road.
* Armory Gate, on Harshman Road between Springfield Pike and Airway Road.
People with base identification may enter through Gate 19B off National Road or Gate 22B off Colonel Glenn Highway.
Wright-Patterson says fireworks attendees may not bring: glass bottles of any kind; charcoal, gas or hibachi grills; pets or illegal substances. The Air Force has banned knives or weapons of any kind on the grounds, including pepper spray and guns. If someone has a permit to carry a concealed weapon, the weapon isn’t allowed on a federal installation, Mayer said.