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Let Freedom Ring: Special events at Vicksburg National Military Park and Downtown mark July Fourth weekend

Cannons, camels and fireworks will be on display this weekend.

Warren County residents spending the July Fourth weekend in the area will find several attractions within a short drive from home to help them observe the holiday.

The Vicksburg National Military Parks cannon detachment will present daily artillery demonstrations at 10 and 11 a.m. and 1 and 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at Battery DeGolyer (tour stop 1).

Doug Baum and his camels of the Texas Camel Corps will be at the park Saturday from 8 to 11 a.m. and be available outside the park’s main visitor center.

The Texas Camel Corps honors Old Douglas, a camel that served with the 43rd Mississippi Volunteer Infantry during the siege of Vicksburg in 1863. Old Douglas carried the instruments for the regiment’s band and was killed by a Union sniper during the siege.

Sunday, there will be a 3 p.m. program at the Surrender Site on Pemberton Ave in the park. 

This weekend events mark the beginning of the Military Park’s living history programs for the summer, which begin the following week. The King of Battle cannon demonstrations and the Soldier’s Life musket demonstrations programs will be offered on a regular basis at the demonstration area next to the visitor center through Labor Day.

For further information, including demonstration dates and times, people can go to the park’s website.

All the programs are free and open to the public but may be canceled because of the weather. 

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the guidelines followed by the National Park Service, people visiting the park who are not fully vaccinated must continue to wear masks indoors and in crowded outdoor spaces.

The weekend’s events end Sunday with the city of Vicksburg’s Fireworks Extravaganza starting at 7 p.m. with music and a performance by Vicksburg’s The Chill and close with a fireworks display by Pyroman Fireworks 2 LLC, Natchitoches, La., at 9 p.m.

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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