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VFW post fires it up for July Fourth

What would Independence Day be without fireworks?

That is exactly how members of Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 9236 felt several years ago when they decided to hold their annual July 4 celebration.

With the cancellation of the county's celebration at the fairgrounds after 1992, the Hernando Beach festivities now provide the only Fourth of July fireworks in Hernando.

The 45-minute display will begin at nightfall Tuesday at the post at 3435 Shoal Line Blvd. Members of the Hernando Beach Volunteer Fire Department will set off the blasts.

There will be an old-fashioned picnic at 2 p.m.

"We will have a full day of entertainment," said Ron Bennett of the post. "There will be music, food and games for the children."

Live bands will perform old-time dance music, Bennett said.

The event is free. Food, including hot dogs, hamburgers, beer and soda, will be available. Most items will cost less than under $1.

"There's no need to bring your own food," Bennett said. But he does recommend bringing chairs and blankets.

Contests will be held, including a Crazy T-shirt Contest for women. Prizes will be given out for contests and children's games.

Past events have drawn large crowds, and Bennett suggests arriving before 6 p.m.

"After six, you won't be able to drive your car along Shoal Line Boulevard," he said. "The streets will be lined with cars."

Bennett said the event is "strictly for entertainment." The post will not make a profit, and the food is priced only to cover costs.

"There's no other place in Hernando County where you can watch a fireworks display on July Fourth," Bennett said. "That's what we want to bring to the public."