The annual Santee Salutes July 4th celebration moves to a new home for 2012, but look for the same great family-friendly fun and marvelous fireworks. This year the event will take place at Town Center Community Park East, site of the weekly Summer Concert Series (which takes this week off for the Fourth). The fun officially begins at 3:30 p.m. and lasts until 9:30 p.m. following the evening’s fireworks show. Families looking for the best spot will probably want to arrive early to save the space.
This year a long-time favorite, 80z All Stars, will return to provide the musical entertainment. The 80z All Stars have performed at previous Santee Salutes celebrations, the Summer Concert Series and the Santee Street Fair. The day will also include carnival games and inflatables for the kids (and those young at heart) and traditional food booths. New this year will be a lineup of gourmet food trucks offering everything from old-fashioned barbecue to spicy Thai delicacies. For those who like to cool down during the day, the City of Santee Aquatics Center will offer free swimming from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
At 6:00 p.m. a patriotic ceremony will celebrate the true meaning of the Fourth of July. The ceremony will feature speakers and a color guard from the Heavy Helicopter Squadron 462 (the “Heavy Haulers”) from Marine Corps Air Station, Miramar. The fireworks show begins at 9:00 p.m.
This year, to help defray some of the costs of the free event, the city will be charging a $5 fee for parking in surrounding lots, with limited preferred parking in the closest lot for $15. Handicapped parking in the preferred lot will be $5. There will be free parking with a shuttle at the Costco parking lot, beginning at 3:00 p.m. and lasting until 10:00 p.m. RV parking is also available in the Costco lot.
Another new addition is the ability to reserve a 10×10 canopy in a prime location for $100. This will allow you to enjoy the day and not have to worry about carrying chairs, tables, coolers and what-have-you a long distance from the parking lot. The fee includes preferred parking and spaces can be reserved online at www.ci.santee.ca.us.
Several area streets will have traffic limited to residents during the evening hours because of the celebration and fireworks. Bilteer Drive, Bilteer Court, San Remo Court, San Remo Drive, Conejo Place, Magnolia Park Drive, Cottonwood Avenue, Verde Vista Lane, Day Creek trail and Leavesly Trail will be closed except to residents.
Santee Salutes is presented by the City of Santee, with sponsorship from Waste Management and Cannon Pacific and donations from Lakeside Equipment Sales Inc, Bob’s Crane Service, Cottonwood Electric Cart Service and Rice RV. For more information, visit www.ci.santee.ca.us or call the Special Event Hotline at 619-258-4100 ext. 201.