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Ivor to celebrate 4th in big way

This is town’s first observance since 1998

BY MERLE MONAHAN/CONTRIBUTING WRITER

merlemonah@aol.com

IVOR

It has been more than 20 years since Ivor has hosted a 4th of July celebration, and this year the tiny town aims to make up for lost time. Dozens of events have been planned for the day at the Ivor Municipal Center, starting at noon and lasting until past 10 p.m., when fireworks will brighten the sky designating the community’s reverence and respect for Independence Day.

“It will be a day to remember,” said Ivor Mayor Tara Kea with a smile. “The entire town, including the fire department, rescue squad, all the churches, and businesses will be participating.

“In fact, we also will be commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Ivor Volunteer Rescue Squad. So the day will have even more significance.”

The event will open from the main stage with a rendition of the “National Anthem,” sung by former resident Tamara Wellons. This will be followed by a color guard by a local Boy Scout troop.

A patriotic concert composed of choir members from six area churches will be performed at 1 p.m., after which more music will be performed by noted bluegrass musician George Atkins and friends.

Dances by the Side by Side dance troupe of Wakefield directed by Alexander Scott will start at 2 p.m., while two other music groups will prepare to perform. Rusty Lowe and the Newsome family will be on stage at 4 p.m. and Silver Street will take its turn at 6:30 p.m.

There will be an all-day car/tractor display at the triangle end of the grounds, while during the afternoon on the ball field, there will be demonstrations by the Southampton County Sheriff’s Department’s K9 Unit and the Ivor Volunteer Fire Department. There also will be activities surrounding a hot air balloon — people may board it — and the Nightingale air ambulance, where personnel will explain its mission.

One activity already getting much attention is the dunking tank. Tickets will be sold to see who may be the lucky one to dunk the mayor.

Always a good sport, Kea seemed a little apprehensive, however, when she was heard to mumble “I can’t believe I let myself be talked into this.”

An abundance of activities have been planned for the children around the municipal center grounds, including face painting, a kickball game, bounce houses, crafts, watermelon eating contests and a petting zoo.

There will be no shortage of food. Starting at 12 o’clock, hot dogs, fries and drinks will be sold at the ball field concession stand. Then at 6:30 p.m. a barbeque/chicken dinner will be served by Captain Bob’s Catering at a station on the grounds. There will be a charge for food, however, sno-cones and popcorn furnished by Ivor Baptist Church will be free.

All proceeds from activities and the sale of food will go to benefit various organizations in town. Money from Captain Bob’s Catering, for instance, is targeted for the Ivor Volunteer Rescue Squad, and that from the sale of snacks and drinks will go to the Ivor Athletic Association.

Kea said the town is excited to be hosting the 4th activities this year.

“It’s a way to bring the entire town together, visitors too,” she said. “We welcome our neighbors and friends. So bring a lawn chair and enjoy the day and the fireworks.”

Fireworks will start at 9 p.m.