WRIGHT-PATTERSON AIR FORCE BASE — After a storm cancelled it two years ago and budget constraints prevented it last year, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is bringing back their popular Freedom’s Call celebration this Friday.
“Freedom’s Call 2014 is a completely separate event this year because there will not be a tattoo,” said Brian Brackens, 88th Air Base Wing Public Affairs. “Due to budget constraints base officials decided not to do the flyovers this year.”
Designed to be a fun outdoor event for people of all ages, the free family-orientated celebration will have something for everyone with musical performances, a C-17 flyover, Kids Zone with various activities and local vendors selling food. Gates will open at 4 p.m. with events beginning at 5 p.m. and concluding with fireworks at 10 p.m.
“It will be a fun celebration of Wright-Patterson’s heritage with a fantastic 18-minute fireworks display,” Brackens said. “Many sponsors have contributed to fund the event. The money the base has spent has been for security and sanitation.”
Freedom’s Call will feature live music from St. Andrews Pipes & Drums, The Kate Hastings Band, This Side Up and the popular Air Force Band of Flight.
Event organizers will keep a close eye on the sky this year in the case inclement weather poses a problem similar to the storm in 2012.
“There will be firefighters and EMTs on-site, and we are prepared for any contingencies,” said Brackens. “The situation two years ago was pretty bad, so we certainly hope that doesn’t happen again. We understand that weather is supposed to be good Friday.”
The event is open to the general public. Admission and parking are free. Visitors are encouraged to bring lawn chairs, blankets and a camera.
Freedom’s Call can be accessed through the National Museum of the United States Air Force main entrance on Springfield Pike (Gate 28B), the Armory gate on Harshman Road and the gate at the intersection of Airway and Spinning Roads. Gate 22B will be open only for visitors with base identification.
For security reasons, coolers, backpacks, skateboards, in-line skates and glass bottles, knives and weapons of any kind, to include pepper spray, are not permitted. Pets are not permitted on the event grounds. Strollers, infant diaper bags, cameras and their cases, small purses and pocketbooks are permitted, but subject to inspection.
RTA buses ease traffic congestion
The Greater Dayton Regional Transit Authority and Wright State University have partnered with WPAFB to provide transportation to and from Freedom’s Call 2014. Interested spectators may park at the Nutter Center in Lot #20. RTA buses will run every 10 to 15 minutes from 4 to 11 p.m. Riders may bring lawn chairs and blankets on the buses. RTA provides handicap-accessible buses.
Motorcyclists are encouraged to use the hard-surface parking at the Nutter Center and ride the RTA shuttle to the event.
Recorded event information is available by calling 937-255-7207.