EDWARDSVILLE - The City of Edwardsville and American Legion Post #199 are teaming up for a “fireworks spectacular” on Saturday, July 1.

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The fireworks display will kick off at dusk, between 8:30–9 p.m., but the festivities last all evening. American Legion Post #199 will start welcoming people at 4 p.m. at the On the Hill Golf Course & Lounge. They invite the community to enjoy music, vendors and food trucks.

“I like to think of it as a bridge between the city government and the veterans,” Commander Wes Sterling of American Legion Post #199 said.

Sterling said they will be launching $13,500 of fireworks. The City of Edwardsville contributed $10,000, with an additional $1,000 donation from the Edwardsville Township. Post #199 thanks the other people who have donated to make the fireworks display possible.

But before the big show, acoustic duo Lanny & Julie will take the stage from 4–6:30 p.m., followed by the Edwardsville Municipal Band at 7 p.m. The event will offer three food trucks and three food tents. City Scoops Ice Cream and Pretzel Pretzel are a few local favorites expected to be there, as well as barbecue, hotdogs, tacos and other food options.

The American Legion also sponsors the Global Force Kartsport (GFK), a local veteran-owned kart racing team. Matt Zigaitis, who races with the GFK at the World Wide Technology Raceway in Madison, Illinois, will be present with his #74 kart.

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Sterling is especially looking forward to the “strategically placed” remote bars scattered across the golf course’s 60 acres. He teases a frozen margarita machine and a bar with “at least 52 different whiskeys.”

If the event is as popular as last year’s, they expect to see nearly 4,500 attendees. While much of this event has been organized by the American Legion, Sterling notes that the community is a big help.

“On Saturday, the Boy Scouts are going to come out and help me put flags up the road and move tables and chairs. We got a lot of volunteers,” Sterling said.

Post #199 asks attendees not to bring coolers or pets. Free public parking is available at Lincoln Middle School, and shuttles will take people from the school across the street to Post #199. Beer and soda tents will greet people who walk across from the middle school parking lot.

“As soon as you cross onto our property, get a soda, water or beer,” Sterling said. He added that this is his first year serving as commander, and joked about the planning process.

“This is the first year I’ve done it, and there was no book, no notes on how to do anything or what to do,” Sterling said. “So I say we had to start early, and then we started making up stuff.”

No worries, Commander Sterling — it sounds like the event will go off with a bang. You can find more information at the American Legion Post #199 website.

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