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Operation Save Fourth of July underway at Ft. Bragg

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Sequestration strikes again. Ft. Bragg Army base has decided to cancel its Fourth of July celebration.

Ft Bragg Fourth of July
Photo credit: James Robinson, Fayetteville Observer

Fort Bragg spokesman Benjamin Abel said it was a tough decision, but would stave off threats of furloughs for their civilian workforce.

“This is disappointing for everybody,” Abel told Military.com. “The Fourth of July is one of those bedrock events that we look forward to here. There really isn’t another regional event of this size and caliber on the Fourth, and we didn’t want to have to make that decision.”

According to Abel, the event has been held for more than 30 years, with about 50,000 people attending for the musical performances and a fireworks display.

Fort Bragg officials say they have made several changes in order to save money, as listed on Military.com.

  • Canceled controlled-burn operations by forestry management;
  • Closed unprofitable facilities including a post restaurant and bowling alley;
  • Reduced lighting at athletic fields, except during early morning physical training;
  • Canceled mowing and landscaping contracts, except to preserve safe airfield operations;
  • Canceled cable TV in base fitness centers;
  • Stopped running a shuttle between main post and an Army-owned housing subdivision in neighboring Harnett County.

Not everyone has taken the decision lightly. A social media campaign has begun to get the event back on the schedule, or create a replacement. A Facebook page has been set up under the name, Operation Save Fourth of July.

Operation Save Fourth of July was started by Jessica Jalo, Ursula Bell, Brandy Lucas, and Missy Powell. Due to budget cuts Fort Bragg will be canceling their Fourth of July celebration. HELP US SAVE IT!!!! We will be doing fundraising and taking donations to help put on some kind of celebration. Our soldiers deserve a day JUST FOR THEM and the freedom they have brought us. They fight for our freedom, let’s give them their day!

“It’s unique to be on a military installation for the Fourth of July to begin with. The setting itself is pretty impressive,” Abel said.

Report from Military.com here.

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