Published on June 27, 2013

Celebrating America’s Birthday

Red, White & Boom! will bring explosive celebration July 3

This year’s Red, White & Boom! will give the Quad Cities a bi-state, riverfront celebration on the eve of Independence Day that features one of the largest fireworks displays from Omaha to Chicago.

The ninth annual Red, White & Boom! will deliver plenty of patriotic family fun, with a fireworks show that is choreographed to a music soundtrack, live music by Smooth Groove and the Spirit of the USO Band, and salutes to the Rock Island Arsenal. Both cities will have live music, activities for kids, thank you notes written for our troops, food and beer gardens.

Events will begin at 6 p.m. Wednesday, with a few adjustments made because of high Mississippi River levels. Activities in Davenport will move from LeClaire Park to 2nd Street, between Main and Ripley streets. Meanwhile, the celebration in Rock Island’s Schwiebert Park will not be affected. Also, the fireworks will be fired from land, instead of the Mississippi River, at 9:30 p.m.

The event is hosted by Riverboat Development Authority and Genesis Health System.

“We’re taking it up a notch this year, and we’ll be offering fireworks that are choreographed to music using state-of-the-art, computer-controlled firing systems,” explained Ken Croken, Red White & Boom committee chairman and Genesis Vice President of Corporate Communications & Marketing. “The music will be broadcast on B100 and the Cumulus family of stations for everyone to enjoy. Tune in, and see and hear more than 2,000 pounds of fireworks celebrating America’s birthday.”

A computer-controlled launching system will pair specific types and colors of fireworks to be fired during the musical broadcast. Fireworks will be launched at specific times to accentuate the musical dynamics throughout the rousing display.

Supporting the event is Genesis’ way of ensuring the community comes together to celebrate Fourth of July in the safest possible manner, Croken said. “The Independence Day holiday has become the occasion of many serious injuries resulting from people setting off fireworks at their homes. Instead, come to Red, White & Boom!, where the fireworks will be better and the environment will be safe and family-friendly.”

Both Davenport and Rock Island will have ceremonies highlighting the Rock Island Arsenal and those who are serving, or have served, in our nation’s military.

The Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce also presents “Hooah! Quad Cities,” a military appreciation and community goodwill campaign. The website www.hooahquadcities.com serves as a resource for military members, veterans and military families. Civilians are also encouraged to use the site to find out how they can support our soldiers.

Downtown cooperation

Red, White and Boom! highlights the cooperation between the cities of Davenport and Rock Island and the Mississippi River that unites rather than divides them, said Mary Ellen Chamberlin, President of the Riverboat Development Authority (RDA).

Red, White & Boom! was the original vision of Terry Lunardi, the long-time Davenport restaurateur and community service leader who helped found the event in 2004. He passed away in 2009. Lunardi also was a staunch supporter of RiverVision, a shared plan between Davenport and Rock Island to link their downtowns and Mississippi River shorelines through design, transportation systems and recreational amenities.

“In 2004, one of our board members, the late, great Terry Lunardi, came and said, ‘RDA needs to be involved. We need a great fireworks display for the kids in this community,’” Chamberlin said. “We took it to the Downtown Davenport Partnership, and they agreed to enter into a co-sponsorship with us. That was the first year RDA sponsored Red, White, & Boom! and we’ve continued to sponsor it up through 2013.”

Chamberlin added, “It’s really important we have these celebrations of our downtowns. Both Davenport and Rock Island have made such strides in redeveloping and restoring their urban centers. We encourage people to come in and see what we’re doing, and these celebrations allow that.”

For more details, please visit www.RedWhiteBoom.org

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