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What you MUST know about the O’Fallon Heritage and Freedom Festival

In celebration of America’s birthday the city of O’Fallon again hosts the Heritage & Freedom Fest, its biggest festival of the year, on July 2-4.

The Ozzie Smith Sports Complex is transformed for the explosive event. Admission, parking and entertainment are free.

The three-day holiday weekend opens with Family Day on Saturday, July 2. During Family Day, unlimited ride wristbands are available for purchase at booths on the grounds for $20 each. In addition to carnival rides, guests can enjoy midway games and concessions. Plus, for just $5 per session, kids can be kids with KnockerBall and the Krazy Kidz Bungee Jump.

The pace picks up on July 3-4, with outstanding music on the main stage performed by nationally known country band Love and Theft and top-flight guitar player Chase Bryant on Sunday, July 3 and rock band KONGOS and Sister Hazel headlining on Monday, July 4.

Among the country’s hottest young acts, Love and Theft has been nominated for ACM, CMA and CMT awards for their No. 1 country hit and platinum single “Angel Eyes,” and the smash hit “Runaway.” With high-energy performances and emotionally forthright song craft, the duo is country at its best.

Chase Bryant is a head-turning songwriter and recording artist whose co-produced debut album, Chase Bryant, features the hits “Take It On Back” and “Little Bit of You.”  This guitar-shredding young artist puts on a vocally charged performance that screams “party” and gives fans a reason to have fun. The 23-year-old Texan has toured with country music greats Brantley Gilbert, Billy Currington and Tim McGraw.

KONGOS’ irresistible sound on their foot-stomping anthem, “Come with Me Now,” and hits “I’m Only Joking” and “I Want to Know,” brings fans to their feet. The multi-cultural, multi-faceted band of brothers’ new album, Egomaniac, features their latest single, “Take It from Me.”

From the opening notes of “Change Your Mind,” “All for You,” and “Champagne High,” Sister Hazel takes the crowd back to the days of radio-friendly acoustic rock.

Regional and local bands also take the main stage over the course of the event.

Celebrating America’s diverse musical cultures, the United States Air Force Band of Mid-America Roots in Blue Ensemble performs old and new American rock, blues, country and folk music with the musicians incorporating a variety of instruments including the Irish penny whistle, accordion, bodhran, upright bass, guitar, banjo and even bagpipes.

Trixie Delight, one of St. Louis’ top rock bands, performs favorite hits from the 70s through today.

 

So much to see and do

Festival guests also will be treated to the amazing old-time strong man stunts by John Beatty and

the gravity-defying pogo stick feats of the XPogo Stunt Team.

Children will have fun in the Kids’ Zone and everyone can enjoy the spectacular fireworks shows taking place at 10:15 p.m. on July 3 and at 9:30 p.m. on July 4.

On July 4, at 9:30 a.m., the “People, Parks – an American Tradition” parade steps off on North Main in downtown O’Fallon and travels approximately two miles to the festival grounds. Saluting the stars-and-stripes, spectators are encouraged to dress in red, white and blue and to arrive early to get a prime viewing spot. Cash prizes are awarded for the best entries in categories such as “Best Overall,” “Best Musical Float,” “Most Patriotic Float,” and the “Mayor’s Choice Award.”

 

Parking and accessibility

To access the festival from Interstate 70, visitors should take Exit 220 [Louisiana/Elsberry] to Hwy. 79. Continue north on Hwy. 79 to left on T.R. Hughes Boulevard and follow the signs to free parking. From Interstate 64, visitors should take the Hwy. K exit and turn north on Hwy. K, which becomes Main Street after passing under I-70. Turn right on Tom Ginnever Avenue and follow the signs.

Prime parking spots near the festival entrance for only $10, are available on a first-come, first-served basis at CarShield field ‘s [formerly T.R. Hughes Ballpark] west parking lot. Free parking and shuttles are available off Tom Ginnever Avenue at Fort Zumwalt North and Christian high schools. Air-conditioned buses drop patrons off near the festival entrance.

The city of O’Fallon works to make Heritage & Freedom Fest physically accessible for all its patrons, including providing an accessible parking lot and shuttle service.

Westhoff Park is the designated site for patrons with disabilities to park near the festival grounds. Vehicles must display an official disabled persons license plate or hang tag to enter the lot. No general parking is allowed on this lot and there is no disabled parking at any other locations.

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