Kailua-Kona’s Fourth of July celebration will kick off this year with a new event for children.
The Lava Kids Liberty Fun Run, for keiki ages 5 to 16, will lead the festivities beginning at 5:50 p.m. Registration starts at 5 p.m.
The event is broken up into 1-mile and 0.5-mile runs, with the longest route starting at Big Island Honda. The shorter version begins at the north lawn of Hulihee Palace. Both end at the Coconut Grove Marketplace volleyball court.
Prizes will be given to the most patriotically dressed, but each finisher will receive a flag.
Cliff Kopp, Kailua-Kona Community Parade Association chairman, said the organization previously tried to start a fun run but it never happened.
“This time, (sponsors) actually came to us,” Kopp said.
The entry fee is two cans of food for the Food Basket.
The annual parade, organized by the association, will begin at 6 p.m.
Kopp said he is expecting 60 to 65 entries.
The main event, of course, is the fireworks show in Kailua Bay.
That begins at 8 p.m., and Donald Pascual, pyrotechnician for Hawaii Explosives and Pyrotechnics, is promising “10 minutes of spectacular pyrotechnics.”
“You are going to get a real classy show,” he said.
The group needs to raise $34,500 for the show, according to its website. It has raised $29,250.
Kopp said he doesn’t expect funding to be a problem.
“That’s nothing considerable,” he said. “We have two weeks to go.”
Kopp said the Hawaii Fire Department is providing about $13,500. That money comes from revenue from the sale of individual fireworks permits. Fire Department Capt. Bobby Perreira said the department splits revenue between East and West Hawaii.
This year, the show in Hilo Bay is receiving about $17,000, organizers said.
But the fireworks show in Waikoloa also gets part of West Hawaii’s share.
For more information, visit paradesinkona.com.
Email Tom Callis at email@example.com.