The 16th Annual Red, White and Blue festival in Bullard celebrating veterans is "a go" for now as organizers continue planning around weekend weather.

Patriotic attractions include a parade, the traveling Vietnam War Memorial and a fireworks display.

Jay Abercrombie, the incoming city manager and Chamber of Commerce board chairman, said organizers would evaluate the overnight rain before making a final decision.

"It's a go for now," he said. "The ground is already soft, so we'll evaluate the rainfall overnight. We may have to cancel an event here and there but right now we're going ahead as planned."

The festival is sponsored by the Bullard Chamber of Commerce.

The schedule of events includes, an opening ceremony featuring reveille and a presentation of colors at The Brook Hill School's American Freedom Museum followed by a breakfast for military personnel, veterans and their families from 7:30-9 a.m. at Bullard Southern Baptist Church.

A classic car show featuring pre-1972 is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. in downtown Bullard. More than 140 cars pre-registered for the event.

The annual patriotic parade begins at 10 a.m. and will travel from Panther Crossing along School House Road and Farm-to-Market 344 past City Hall on Phillips Street and ends on Tyler Street.

The parade will feature various local businesses, elected officials, organizations and civic clubs.

Organizer Tracy Barnes said U.S. flags and red, white and blue pinwheels will be passed out to attendees before the parade.

"I want to see Bullard splashed in red, white and blue," she said.

Volunteers have been hanging flags along the parade route in preparation.

A flyover by three military planes is planned, weather permitting.

State Rep. Bryan Hughes, R-Mineola, and Iraq War veteran Major James Johnson, are scheduled to speak.

Ms. Barnes said an 8-foot tall, 360-foot long travelling replica of the Vietnam War Memorial would be at the event for public viewing. The travelling wall is 80 percent the size of the memorial wall in Washington D.C. but has a complete list of names of soldiers killed in action during the war.

A fireworks display is also scheduled at 6 p.m.

Bullard will also be recognized as a Purple Heart Trail City by the Military Order of the Purple Heart. The designation recognizes the city's honor and respect for military personnel and veterans wounded in battle, Ms. Barnes said.

Ms. Barnes said she is working to make the Red, White and Blue Festival the biggest and best military appreciation festival in Texas.

There are more than 16,000 veterans in Smith County and more than 37,000 veterans in the six county region supported by Tyler veteran service facilities.

"We want people to come out and support our active duty troops and veterans," Ms. Barnes said. "It's a way to say ‘Thank you.'"





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