Fireworks will blanket the Van Alstyne sky on July 4 in a local celebration of Independence Day. Fire Chief Ryan Dockery and the Fire Department are organizing the display and will be monitoring the occasion that night.


The free event will happen behind the Van Alstyne High School, with everyone using the parking lot and surrounding area and with the fireworks display being set off above the grassy field to the school’s north.


Tradition has been that some families arrive early and set up lawn chairs and quilts on the grassy area just north of the paved parking lot for their dinners on the ground, while others open up their tailgates and also enjoy a picnic dinner; and some just arrive in cars, set up lawn chairs and take full advantage of the evening. Some families let their children bring frisbees, jump ropes, skateboards, scooters and roller skates, and even chalk for hopscotch layouts. Of course, in those instances, the safety of everyone in attendance is a priority of organizers, so ice chests are welcomed, but because the event is on school property, alcoholic beverages are not allowed.


For the first time in a long time, a band will provide a bit of music during the late daylight hours. That band is Gold Saw, made up of Van Alstyne High School musicians who practice their unique rock music regularly as a garage band. Then, local musician Larry Martin will sing the National Anthem.


The Kona Ice truck will also be on hand with its frosty creations.


An exact schedule isn’t available but sunset on July 4 is expected to be at 8:40 p.m., with darkness setting in just before 9 p.m. Gold Saw will start between 7:45-8 p.m.; about 8:40 p.m. the flag presentation will happen with Martin singing “The Star Spangled Banner;” and about 9 p.m. — or as soon as it’s totally dark — fireworks will light up the sky.