MORAVIA — On even the most generous of years, the Moravia Fourth of July fireworks show doesn’t come close to breaking even.
Put on annual by the Moravia Fire Department for the community and surrounding areas, it has been among the shows in Appanoose County and the area yearly for the Fourth of July holiday. Yet, yearly less than half the costs of the roughly $5,000 show are recouped. It’s the firefighter’s organization on the hook for the difference.
“We just eat the cost every year,” said the department’s treasurer and volunteer Jessi Nicoletto. “We’re a small enough department we just can’t keep doing that.”
Firefighters are attempting to change that and keep the fireworks alive with a new event this year: Saturday’s Moravia Fireman’s Bash.
Support at the all-day event would support the fireworks show but also an expanded annual event if it’s successful. In addition, multiple local non-profit organizations could benefit as well through their help at the event.
With a host of generous sponsors, the event was able to get off the ground. Headlining is Nashville county music artist Allie Colleen, who will perform on the Moravia square Saturday night.
Colleen is getting started in her country music career, after finishing college. The latter was a promise to her father, Garth Brooks — specifically the country singer who is the only musician to have seven albums achieve diamond status.
Opening for Colleen will be Moravia native Cayleigh Whitlow at 4:30 p.m. Colleen is scheduled to start at 5 p.m. Lawn chairs are recommended for both shows, as seating is not provided. There is an admission charge for the concerts.
Interestingly, Colleen’s about page doesn’t make mention of her father. A common theme in news stories about her is her desire to build her career using her own name. Her debut single is expected to be released July 10.
Opening for Colleen will be Moravia native at 4:30 p.m. Colleen is scheduled to start at 5 p.m. Lawn chairs are recommended for both shows, as seating is not provided. There is an admission charge for the concerts.
Saturday’s schedule for the Moravia Fireman’s Bash is packed beyond the live music, starting with a pancake breakfast at 7 a.m.
Other features events include the car and bike show that begins at 8 a.m., a color run/walk at 9 a.m., a three-on-three basketball tournament at 11 a.m. and hot dog eating contest at noon.
From 9 a.m.-4 p.m. there will be a Junior Fire Fighter Challenge, a scavenger hunt at 10 a.m., the Bill Riley Talent Show at 10 a.m., water fights at 1 p.m., BINGO at 3 p.m., and a bags tournament at 4 p.m. At noon, an air helicopter will also land in town for a demonstration and tour of the helicopter.
The entire day’s action will take place on the Moravia square. Fireworks, previously held on July 4, will end the day on Saturday, June 29 instead. They will be fired at dusk from the Moravia High School.