Community Organizations, Led By Heartland Bank, Continue the Freedom Festival Tradition
GAHANNA, Ohio (May 24, 2012) –The Gahanna Welcome Home Freedom Festival committee announced today that Heartland Bank, headquartered in Gahanna, will once again be the presenting sponsor for the annual FREEDOM FESTIVAL. Their contribution, combined with the generous donations of numerous community organizations, means the annual FREEDOM FESTIVAL and fireworks show, paid for by the City of Gahanna, will go on.
The planning committee is currently seeking community involvement to make the event a true community effort. Local businesses and volunteer organizations are encouraged to get involved. Food vendors are especially encouraged to participate.
“We are looking for business, service organizations and private organizations,” said Vinnie Tremante, Event Co-Chair for the Freedom Festival.
“(We’re looking for) anyone who represents a sector of our community and has the desire to support Gahanna and our Fourth of July celebration.”
In 2011, the Gahanna Parks & Recreation Foundation took an instrumental role in leading the Gahanna community to “Save the Freedom Festival.” This year, the focus is on creating a sustainable model for the future of the event.
“Though the Parks and Recreation Foundation was able to raise funding to save the festival (last year), it was apparent that the festival is bigger than the Foundation,” Tremante said. “It made sense to look to the community to support the event.
“By having our local organizations and businesses both organize and participate in the festival, there is a greater sense of community ownership to the event.”
Community involvement does not go unrecognized.
“I am so proud of and grateful for the Gahanna Parks & Recreation Foundation’s efforts to support the Freedom Festival,” said Mayor Becky Stinchcomb. “I want to also thank the individuals and businesses who continue to offer their time and monetary support to keep this tradition alive. We are excited for this year’s event and hope to see everyone there.”
According to Scott McComb, President and CEO of Heartland Bank, supporting the community it at the heart of the being a community bank. “We made a commitment last year to aid in saving the Freedom Festival, we know that one year would not be enough time to allow the Parks Foundation to implement another plan to sustain the celebration”
McComb is looking forward to another fulfilling afternoon and evening with fellow “Gahannians”, celebrating freedom and honoring our country.
“We very much like supporting the USO,” he said. “As the only active duty non-profit mechanism for military families, the USO’s mission is paramount to the welfare of military families.”
Sponsorship packages are available for business, organizations, or private groups, although any level of sponsorship is welcomed. All donations are tax deductable and will be used to fund the cost of Freedom Festival events, excluding the fireworks. Should a group wish to be acknowledged (in media, signage, etc) for their contribution, the planning committee requests their commitment by May 30, 2012.
In addition to the traditional festivities, the committee is looking forward several new additions to this year’s festival. Plans include having the winning ‘Rising Stars contest’ band from the Creekside Blues and Jazz Festival play during the festival, having more games and activities geared toward teens, and prior to the fireworks, having the Gahanna VFW Post 4719 post colors with the singing of the national anthem by a student(s) from Gahanna Lincoln High School.