Friday, Jul 1, 2016
It takes many hours of planning, strategizing and hard work to put on the best Fourth of July event in Northwest Georgia. For five years, Harbin Clinic has worked in close partnership with Parker Systems and Rome-Floyd Parks and Recreation Department (RFPRD) to bring citizens a wonderful community event capped with several great, big bangs. This year, the celebration involves equal parts water park, yummy food, fun family games, fabulous music and of course the brightest smiles in the county as viewers, “ooh and ahh” over spectacular lights dancing in the sky.
During the Harbin Clinic Patriotic Party in the Park and Harbin Clinic Fireworks Show, more than 2,000 firework shells will be shot into the air, all so Rome and Floyd County can celebrate Independence Day.
“Five years ago, Harbin Clinic wanted to get involved with the Fourth of July celebrations as a way to show the community how much we appreciate being able to care completely for their health and wellness throughout the year,” says Harbin Clinic CEO Kenna Stock. “Fireworks are magic for all ages, and we hope they provide a wonderful cap to everyone’s July Fourth fun.”
Big, Bold, Beautiful Fireworks At the Push of One Button
“What young kid doesn’t dream of big explosions of light and color?” says David Parker, Owner/Manager of Parker Fibernet. “I became interested in fireworks at a young age, and eventually decided to go all in and do the study and hard work it takes to be licensed by the ATF in order to be able to put on a huge fireworks display. I’m now licensed by the ATF to store, move and shoot the largest fireworks displays (10-inch shells) possible in the United States. It is amazing to build the entire show on a programmable logic controller (PLC) and then synchronize it with music down to the finale.”
The fireworks display features 18, 10-inch shells, 34, eight-inch shells and a grand finale of 500 various sized shells. All told, park goers will see at least 2000 shells and more than 5000 explosions. It takes more than 75 man-hours to prepare the display, including setting up more than 120,000 feet of wire.
“On Monday night, all the planning we’ve done will allow us to push one button on the CPL, and the entire show will shoot off perfectly,” Parker says.
Get Ready for a Waterpark, Food Festival, Family Games and a Rocking Concert
“We basically begin planning for the next July Fourth celebration as soon as the fireworks are finished, everyone has gone home and the park is cleaned up,” says Kevin Cowling, Director of RFPRD. “I’m new to Floyd County, but when I came at the end of last August, the team here had already started working with Harbin and Parker to plan the 2016 event.”
Dozens of people and volunteers are involved to help the event happen each year. Along with the manpower, there will be more than a dozen watermelons and at least 12 Hula Hoops. And the Splash Bash will utilize more than 1,400 feet of water hoses to keep participants cooled off.
The Rundown for the 2016 Harbin Clinic Patriotic Party in the Park & Harbin Clinic Fireworks:
“The Farmer’s Almanac told us how hot it was going to be on July Fourth this year,” says Stock. “So our planning focused on what we could do to beat the heat. This year, there will be a mini waterpark, dubbed the Harbin Clinic Splash Bash, created inside Ridge Ferry Park with fun water inflatables for all ages. For just $5, each person can slide, slip and get sprayed with water from 3 to 8 p.m.”
All proceeds from the Splash Bash go to benefit the Coosa River Basin Initiative and their efforts to help keep Northwest Georgia’s rivers clean.
The park will open at 3 p.m. with the Splash Bash, food trucks, and an MC with music, and the fun continues late into the night. At 5:30, the Harbin Clinic Family Games begin with the traditional Hula Hoop contest, three-legged races and watermelon eating contests. Nashville-based musician Jacob Davis will perform on the main stage from 8 until 9:30 p.m., and the Harbin Clinic Fireworks show begins at approximately 9:45. At 10 p.m., Jacob Davis will play another short set.
A True Partnership With the City and County
Although Harbin, Parker and RFPRD are the main partners in putting on the event, it would not be possible without a slew of support staff to keep the community safe.
“We rely on so many different people and entities to make this event happen,” says Cowling. “The Rome Police, Fire Department, Emergency Management Services, Floyd Hospital’s emergency technicians, and the city and county government are each involved to ensure a safe and enjoyable event for all.”