LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - The Fourth of July is the only time you’ll see a patriotic dog fashion show, a Family Feud showdown between firefighters and police officers, and singer-songwriter Uncle Kracker in a 12-hour span. Yeah, the City of Longview is going all out.
City crews began setting up Wednesday morning for the Fireworks and Freedom Celebration at the Maude Cobb Convention and Activity Complex. The all-day, family-friendly event will include several events throughout the day, including a carnival and musical acts leading up the fireworks finale.
“In years past, we had the fireworks, just the normal thing, and for a long time the City of Longview has had the biggest fireworks show in East Texas,” said Shawn Hara, spokesperson with the City of Longview. “We thought, let’s add to that, that’s get some activities to go around that.”
The activities begin at 11 a.m. Thursday with the library’s summer reading club, followed by a patriotic dog fashion, and the ever-popular wiener dog race. Later in the afternoon, Maude Cobb will become the set of Family Feud, where families from around Longview will compete against each other, as well as a special match between the Longview Fire Department and Longview Police Department.
Meanwhile, outside the complex, a carnival will be set up with bounce houses, rides, and plenty of food and drinks for everyone.
The evening will wind down with musical performances at 6:30 p.m. by local band Dagnabbit. Country and rock and roll singer-songwriter Uncle Kracker will take the stage around 8 p.m.
“Each yeah, we try to change things up when it comes to who will be performing and who’s going to be available,” Hara said. "We got Uncle Kracker coming in; a lot of people know his music.
“He’s had a lot of big hits over the years, so we’re really excited to have him coming to Longview,” Hara added.
Hara added what makes the freedom celebration so special was the fact that the city has covered nearly all of the expenses. The Maude Cobb activities, the carnival, concert, and fireworks show are free to attend. However, guests should come prepared to pay for food and drink, tickets for carnival activities, and other expenses.