Friday, July 4, 2008

Freedom Fest and the 4th of July

On a recent trip to Evansville our family attended the annual "Thunder on the Ohio"; which is a part of the Evansville Freedom Fest. Military families will want to travel the two hours to Evansville to participate in this fun and free event for veterans and their families. The festival is not crowded, offers lots to do, and is very inexpensive. People in Evansville are so friendly and nice it is worth the trip just for that reason!

Evansville is a city on the Ohio and is very similar to Louisville; which is also located on the Ohio River. There is something about rivers that people like, and the Ohio is one of this areas best and most important rivers.

Thunder on the Ohio is an air and boat show on the river-the Ohio River of course. Some really cool aircraft we were treated to were: F16s, the stealth bomber, an acrobatic airplane, and helicopters. The boats participating in the races were hydroplaning boats. I don't even know how the pilot of the boat fits in the boat because the profile looks like it is about two feet high. (See how low it is in the first picture?) If you are into car races, you might really like the boat races. Occasionally they even have crashes! None while we were there, but a barge did come through and absconded with all of the buoys marking the course. Needless to say, the races were delayed until the buoys could be secured and repositioned for the races. This was a major setback for the event, but a funny one that no one seemed to mind.

Evansville's riverfront is an awesome place to go and just hang out. There are multiple memorials to veterans of all wars. I know it sounds like this post should be more of a Memorial Day post, but the Hoosiers living in the Evansville area celebrate all veterans, both living and deceased, by celebrating freedom in honor of Independence Day. Hence, the Freedom Fest and Thunder of Ohio, sponsored by Vectren, the major electrical company in Indiana, and several other businesses in Indiana.

In addition to several veteran memorials, there is a memorial to the 50 states. I snapped this picture of Maine's marker, as I knew my family and friends reading in Maine would get a kick out of it. Each state has its own marker around the tall pillars you see in the background. The date represents the date the state officially became a state. Upon researching Maine's date, I found several dates annotated. March 15th is a good as any because all of the dates I found were in the month of March in 1820.

I am not going to post a picture of the stealth bomber due to my sensitivities of being in the military. I am not sure if it is authorized. I have a feeling it is, but to be on the safe side I will refrain. That picture was VERY hard to take. You had to lead the aircraft (and boats) and hope you caught it just right. Not fun pictures to take at all. I like photographing flowers much better (not on windy days though). I will end with a picture of the Vietnam Veteran Memorial. My father and uncle are Vietnam veterans, so this picture is in honor of them.

Jimmy had a super great time at the festival. There was a motion rider he rode, the bull shown in the video above, and a bungee trampoline jump. He loved the bungee trampoline the best and could easily have stayed on it the whole day. You can find further information about the Evansville Freedom Fest and Thunder on the Ohio here.

in the garden....enjoying freedom on the Ohio River.


  1. Sounds like you all had a great time!

  2. Hi Tina, We have been to Evansville for a soccer game of Brokenbeat's and stayed overnight at a hotel near the river. We checked out the area and did think they had done a great job for tourists interested in the history there. So glad Jimmy had a good time and it sounds like you all did too. Many thanks to all our veterans on this Independence Day, THANKS.

  3. Happy 4th! Nice tour of Evansville and what could be better than enjoying a day near the water with family.

  4. Hi all!
    Dawn and Layanee, It was pretty nice to be together at this fest. Very interesting for sure.

    Frances, Glad you liked E'ville too. The people are SO nice and that riverfront is quite awesome. Lots of money went in there. Too bad your kids don't do as much traveling as you might make it here to visit Gail and I sometime-that would be very nice!

  5. Frances, Forgot to say-I know where all the good nurseries are in E'ville. None are so good here.

  6. Happy Fourth and thank you Tina for serving in the Armed forces....and please thank your husband.

    Evansville looks like a nice community with supportive and friendly people, parades and such on holidays and a thriving riverfront.


  7. Gail, Thanks and I will tell Mr. Fix-it. People amaze me because complete strangers come up to him and thank him everyday and thank him. ttyl

  8. Hi Tina --thank you for your flower advice today:) They are planning on taking the good ones and mixing them up to make a few good flower arrangements. The arrangements were really very pretty and it was a shame most of them died:( Gorgeous white roses with beautiful blue hydrangea (sp). The wedding will be outside --(garden) and Sidekick is excited to be carrying the rings. Happy 4th of July!!! I am worried about tonight --this nice city seems to love fireworks:) I like them in moderation but not typically flying all over the place --it makes me nervous.
    I do have a question -why are two of my mums looking dead? The one in the front yard is still as pretty as ever but the two in the back look like they are about to croak. Do you think I wasn't giving them enough water? I'm sure they will come back but right now they look pretty darn scary.

    I want to get the kiddos out for a bike ride before dark. See you later --and THANK YOU so much Tina for the flower advice --Dan and I knew you would have some ideas for us. I did mention the cut flowers at Wallyworld if all else fails:0)

  9. We have something similiar here on the Coast. the "Blessing of the FLeet" is all about blessing the shrimp boats when they go out on the first day of June when the season opens. All the boats get all dressed and decorated up and parade around, before the blessing. It is quite a site.

  10. Sounds like a fun day on the river! I'll have to tell sis about it, she lives in Ohio.

  11. Sounds like a great event to attend and good for Evansville for caring so much for our wonderful veterans!!

    I suspose I knew at one time that Maine became a state in 1820 but am just amazed at that fact as there were settlers in Maine in 1604, so it took 216 years to become a state.

  12. I have recently found your blog and have been enjoying your posts. I live in the shadow of the largest naval base in the world and in a city whose history is intricately intwined with the military. Not to blow my own horn, but you may be interested in a memorial here that I wrote a post on on May.


  13. This sounds like a great time! I've passed through Evansville many times on my way to somewhere else, I'm afraid; next time I'll have to stop and take some time to see the sights.
    By the way, I really enjoyed reading your profile. You have my admiration and appreciation for your sacrifices in serving our country.

  14. Anonymous, You are welcomed and anytime. I am with you on the fireworks. Too many flying around.

    Cinj, Your sister probably has lots going on if she lives by the Ohio. Rivers and big cities are fun.

    Mom, Evansville is a nice city. Wasn't Maine a part of Massachusetts before getting its statehood?

    Les, Zone 8a. I will come to your blog asap, but it is late tonight. I am guessing you live in Cali and maybe by San Diego? My hometown has a Navy airbase in it and my son lived in San Diego for a while. I will check you out soon!

    Rose, Evansville is a great area. If you are ever on your way to Tennessee, let me know. I am two short hours from E'ville. Thanks for visiting. I see you are a retired school teacher? Thank you! That cannot ever be an easy job, though I am sure a rewarding one.

  15. Tina, only part of Maine was at one time a part of MA.