Annual patriotic display event has a twist this year when the Brazoria Lions Club takes it over. When: 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday Features: Vendors, music and fireworks Info: Call Lions Club President Gary Kersh at 979-236-0499

BRAZORIA

For more than two decades, residents have collectively left their homes to get out and enjoy a night of patriotic fireworks in the summer sky, and Brazoria Lions Club members couldn’t see that type of tradition fade away.

Pastor Dale Frankum and the Brazoria First Assembly of God hosted Celebrate America since the event’s inauguration 25 years ago. The annual event provides a fun and overarching look at what it means to be an American, mixing patriotism with faith while offering food, music and, as expected, fireworks to commemorate the America’s birthday, Brazoria Lions Club board member Ken Corley said.

After Frankum’s death in 2017, he was concerned the annual event would disappear, Brazoria Mayor Roger Shugart said.

“Thankfully the Lions Club picked this up,” he said. “I think it’s great. It is almost like a new start.”

Corley suggested the club to take over Celebrate America because he was close with Frankum and attended Brazoria First Assembly of God regularly, Corley said.

“When I found out the church was not going to continue Celebrate America, I was heartbroken and I couldn’t let that happen,” he said.

The free event is 5 to 9 p.m. Saturday at the Barrow Elementary Schoool grounds, 112 Gaines St., Brazoria. Festivities include vendors, food, rides and a large fireworks display.

It’s necessary to continue this event because it’s such an attraction for visitors to come to the city, Corley said.

“This event brings more people to the city of Brazoria than any event there is,” he said. “I couldn’t be any happier to be able to continue this event.”

One of the differences this weekend is nonprofit organizations will sell items such as water, soda and popcorn instead of the church, Corley said.

Celebrate America takes a lot of work to put on, but the Lions Club can handle it, with costs racking up to be about $20,000, Club President Gary Kersh said.

“It’s been going really good,” he said. “We received quite a few donations.”

He is anxious to kick off the event’s new start and feels blessed the city trusts the Lions Club, Kersh said.

“Everything is ready to go,” he said “It’s kind of like an honor to me. It’s a honor that we can do that.”

With hundreds of people anticipated to show up, he is confident Celebrate America can bring in some interest for Brazoria, Shugart said.

“It’s a big deal for Brazoria,” he said. “We have a lot of activities, but this is probably the biggest. I am expecting to see a lot of folks I know there.”

He is hoping visitors buy food and gas while in town, which in turn helps the city, Shugart said.

“Hopefully, it will produce some sales tax money for us,” he

With about 10 vendors, the Lions Club will take what they have learned this year and improve in coming years, Kersh said.

“Make it bigger and better is what we hope,” he said. “We hope to get more people involved.”

Visitors and residents alike will take a stronger feeling of patriotism with them, Corley said.

“I want them to walk away with a sense of pride,” he said.

Connor Behrens is a reporter at The Facts. You can contact him at 979-237-0150.

Features Writer/Reporter for The Facts in Clute, Texas. I'm a communications graduate from the University of Houston. I have written for publications such as the Washington Post and the Galveston County Daily News.

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