By Sam Montgomery
Look to the skies July 4 during CarmelFest to witness military jets roaring through the air above the parade and fireworks lighting up the festival night.
Volunteer pilots with the 122nd Fighter Wing from Ft. Wayne will fly A-10 “Warthogs” from east to west, entering over Carmel Drive.
Bec Hunter, RE/MAX Legends Realtor and media/public relations director, organizes the grand finale of the parade on behalf of her office to pay tribute to past, present and newly enlisted military members.
“The main reason they do the flyover is because of all of the military personnel we invite to participate in the grand finale,” Hunter said. “(CarmelFest) has allowed us to honor our military for so many years, and officers at both the Pentagon and the Air National Guard appreciate what CarmelFest does for our military. All are welcome to participate regardless of where they call home. If they haven’t pre-registered, they are still welcome to join us.”
Fireworks will launch at 9:45 p.m. with a synchronized soundtrack broadcast on 91.3 FM WHJE, the Carmel High School radio station. City Council member and CarmelFest committee member Jeff Worrell has directed the fireworks display since 1994, enhancing it every year by selling spark buttons.
“Buying a spark button is a way for individuals to spend $5 and take ownership of this very public practice that has been a tradition of CarmelFest since it started,” Worrell said.
Buying spark buttons improves the quality of the fireworks, as the volume, size and complexity of the shells have increased by almost 20 percent this year. Spark buttons are available for purchase at the Carmel Farmers Market, the All Things Carmel store on Main Street, the Wednesday night gazebo concerts, from Carmel Rotarians and at CarmelFest.
“I really like seeing the families that get together at CarmelFest and gather to turn on the radio to hear that soundtrack,” Worrell said. “CarmelFest is all about family time together, but also really seeing a spectacular show that you don’t have to leave Carmel to see.”