With June almost over, Independence Day is right around the corner. Many local Indiana communities are preparing for their own fireworks shows and Fourth of July celebrations. The community of Greenwood does things a little differently, however, getting a jump on Independence Day and celebrating on the last Saturday in June. The biggest event of the year in the community, the Freedom Festival draws a whopping 50,000 people each year. The 2017 iteration of Freedom Festival will be held at Craig Park on June 24th.
Most Midwestern festivals have a small collection of vendors present, but Freedom Festival takes it to another level. At least 200 booths are expected to fill the festival grounds on the 24th. A full list of vendors is available on the Greenwood Government website, but visitors can expect to find booths for local businesses like Greenwood Family Chiropractic and Tom O’Brien. While the vendor area provides great opportunities to meet local businesses, the food selection probably attracts more interest. After grabbing some kettle corn or a snow cone, consider perusing through some of the arts and crafts selections available nearby.
The annual Freedom Festival Parade is the official start to all of the festival activities. Kids are welcome to join the parade with a decorated bicycle, tricycle or wagon. A signup form is available on the Greenwood Government website. All kids that enter the parade must be accompanied by an adult, and each entry receives a free pass to Freedom Springs.
The parade begins around noon at Greenwood Middle School, which is across Meridian Street from Craig Park. After leaving the middle school, the parade heads north along Meridian Street and then takes a turn to the west at the Broadway Street intersection. From here, it heads west until it hits Madison Avenue, where it takes another left. The parade then heads all the way down Madison Avenue until it reaches Greenwood Middle School once again.
In the end, the parade makes a one-mile loop with a start and finish near Greenwood Middle School. The route is conveniently located right along most of Freedom Festival’s main events. After the parade, take a stroll right across Meridian Street to Craig Park to enjoy the rest of the day’s festivities.
The Kid Zone
Families with young children will love the Kid Zone, located at the northwest part of Craig Park. Here, face painters and a couple of bounce houses will be open between 1:00 pm and 9:00 pm. The kids will be amazed as Travis Easterling, a magician, performs in the Kids Zone between 2:00 pm and 3:00 pm and again from 6:00 pm to 7:00 pm. Immediately after each of Travis’ performances, join DJ Mama Mia for dance parties from 3:00 pm to 5:45 pm and from 7:30 pm to 9:00 pm. Travis Easterling and DJ Mama Mia will perform on the Family Stage which is located right behind Our Lady of Greenwood.
Live Music Schedule
The Freedom Festival has two main stages. Both will have musical acts beginning in the afternoon and going well into the evening.
The music starts first at the Amphitheater Main Stage. The Amphitheater Main Stage is located northwest of Craig Park near the Greenwood Community Center. The Amphitheater Main Stage has a full lineup planned for Freedom Festival:
- 2:00 pm: Freedom Jam Lineup: Come and see some of the best bands from Greenwood and the surrounding area compete for the Freedom Jam crown.
- 3:00 pm: Tastes Like Chicken: This band has a style that is a unique combination of rock, pop, R&B and disco. They are extremely talented, and they were a 2016 A-List winner for “Best Wedding Music.” SOURCE: http://tasteslikechickenrocks.com/
- 3:45 pm: Carl Storie Band: One of the longer performances of the day, Carl Storie, former lead singer of Indiana favorite Faith Band, will be on the stage for an hour and a half. SOURCE: https://www.carlstorieband.com/home
- 5:15 pm: Savannah Lynne: One of the youngest country singers out there, Savannah Lynne has been on the scene since she was 13 years old. She has been inspired by legends like Johhny Cash, Reba and Loretta Lynn. SOURCE: https://www.savannahlynne.com/
- 6:00 pm: First Time Callers: This Indianapolis-based five-member cover band performs pieces by bands across the rock and pop genres. Come to this performance to hear covers of songs originally performed by Led Zeppelin, Marvin Gaye and Smashmouth.
- 8:00 pm: Cornfield Mafia: Arguably the band with the most interesting name at the Main Stage, Cornfield Mafia is a country, grassroots and Americana band from Danville.
Music starts at the KORN Country Stage at 5:45 pm. Located at the southern end of Craig Park, just off the row of booths, the KORN Country Stage has a great selection of musical acts and performances:
- 5:45 pm: KORN Country Music special performance takes the stage for a quick 15 minutes.
- 6:00 pm: The Freedom Jam Winner will be announced.
- 6:10 pm: Savannah Lynne: Savannah will immediately hit the KORN Country Stage after her 5:15 pm show at the Amphitheater Main Stage ends.
- 7:00 pm: Honor our Heroes performance will take place.
- 8:30 pm: Alan Kaye and the Toons: This three-person ensemble is a unique mixture of rock and roll and comedy. During his show, Alan Kaye sings, does impressions and is all about having fun. SOURCE:
- 10:05 pm: The Greenwood High School Band performs the National Anthem.
- 10:10 pm: GPD Honor Guard will perform Taps and do a Flag Salute.
- KORN Country Music will coordinate with a fireworks show.
There is a small microbrew and wine area located north of the park near the police station and the community center. If you are at least 21 years of age, consider checking out this area for a quick break. In total, there will be six different beverage representatives in this area: Mallow Run Winery offering wine; Planetary Brewing Company, Oaken Barrel and MashCraft Brewing providing microbrews; and Johnny Carino’s selling sangria. If you want to try something a little more familiar, Miller Lite, Coors Light and Blue Moon will be offered by VFW.
To take your Freedom Festival experience to the next level, purchase a VIP pass for $40 through the Greenwood Government website. VIP members are granted special access to an exclusive tent and private bathrooms near the Craig Park tennis courts. In the tent VIPs can enjoy three free craft beers from Oaken Barrel Brewing Company. They will be provided dinner, which will consist of ribs, shrimp, mac and cheese, watermelon and baked beans. For the fireworks show, VIPs are granted exclusive access to the Craig Park tennis courts, which are raised compared to the rest of the park grounds. VIP Parking is also available in limited quantities.
Since they are expecting 50,000 attendees, the Freedom Festival needs volunteers, but you should act quickly if you want to get in on the action. The festival is just days away, and the opportunity to volunteer is closing fast. If you do want to volunteer, head over to the Greenwood Government website and fill out their form. Volunteers receive a free t-shirt and a one-day pass to Freedom Springs.