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‘Freedom’ could join ‘Rumble’ next year

DEMOPOLIS-After a less then stellar turnout to the “Freedom on the River” celebration over the Fourth of July weekend, the FOTR Committee met Tuesday to critique the event and offer some suggestions for improvements.

Director of the Demopolis Chamber of Commerce Jay Shows and FOTR Chairman Stephen Gutshall talked about some of the topics that were discussed during the lunch meeting as well as a few new ideas.

They both talked about the firework celebration being way too short and maybe next year making it last about 25-30 minutes, instead of 15 minutes like this year. But with only $4,000 to work with that will be a work in progress, Shows said.

“The fireworks bring a natural crowd, so we are thinking of doing away with the name of Freedom on the River and just having a Patriotic Parade and a Children’s Parade and then having the fireworks,” Shows said.

Another topic that was discussed including moving the hamburger cook-off and the music acts to the same weekend as the River City Rumble. This would be a good marriage because the boat race will also bring a natural crowd as well, Shows said.

“We are also thinking about just having local musical acts and saving the time and money involved in lining that up,” Gutshall said.

This idea of moving the hamburger cook-off to the same weekend as the River City Rumble will help also in terms of sponsorships because two major events in two weekends hurts both events in the long run, Gutshall said.