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Murray Newsletter - July 13, 2016

2016 07 04 MFF fireworks 3


It takes at least a year's worth of planning to host a large event. Last fall, the Murray Freedom Festival Board and volunteers formed the nonprofit group dedicated to seeing that the decades-old 4th of July celebration in Murray thrives.

Something for everyone and a bit cooler temps added to the enjoyment of the Festival in Murray this year. MVFD served, what they believe to have been, a record number of hungry appetites. Eighty runners vied for first place in the 5K Run and soon after, twenty-nine oozeball teams were slipping and sliding for championship bragging rights.

The Freedom Festival's grand marshal, (unanimously chosen, by everyone in attendance at the last meeting), was the late Dale Nickels, a lifelong Murray resident. The announcement was made suring the car Show and Shine, by last year's grand marshal, Chris Spangler.  Dale's honor was represented by his entire family in the parade.

 Camille 'Cami' Larson received her 'Miss Murray' sash and a bouquet of flowers from last year's royalty, Ellen Rice.

Our first car show drew approximately 18 entries of classic cars, an old school bus and about 6 vintage tractors. A large group of Bingo participants found afternoon fun in the cool and comfort of Conestoga Elementary School and some lucky winners walked away with great prizes.

Murray Christian Church and Conestoga Booster Club served tasty treats throughout the day and evening. Candy, popsicles and other items were tossed from around 40+ parade entries to folks lining Young Street from Railroad Avenue all the way to Young Memorial Park.

People unfolded lawn chairs and spread blankets on the lawn, staying for an evening of live music provided by Lucas Minor, who was followed by Life Boy Scout, Zeke Rouse, with his Eagle Scout project, a patriotic flag retirement ceremony.

Thomas D Thomas Shows,( just last week), offered to set-up some of their carnival rides for the crowd's enjoyment, too. The carnival rides were a last-minute additon, which is why it wasn't noted on the schedule of events.  Many took their turn throughout the day at smashing an old car with a sledgehammer, then, when nothing was left except fireworks, the raffle ticket winner, Joyce Johnson, got to push the detonator plunger starting the huge, 20-minute, show provided by NightVisions.

Roger and Linda Behrns of Louisville delivered and picked up recycling containers that were generously supplied by Keep Cass County Beautiful. These bins helped to keep much of the litter out of our parks and streets and can be borrowed for any other local events.

Murray's Freedom Festival was an enormous success, only made possible by of the support and dedication of all who selflessly contribute their time, money, supplies and equipment to see it through. Both businesses and private individual contributions, from in and surrounding the Murray area, combined to make this an event to be proud of.

We want to improve our event for next year! We are interested in hearing your comments and suggestions, so send them to: MURRAY FREEDOM FESTIVAL, P.O. BOX 244, MURRAY, NE 68409.

The MURRAY FREEDOM FESTIVAL BOARD of TRUSTEES and FUNDRAISING COMMITTEE wishes to thank EVERYONE who helped to make this wonderful event one that you will look forward to enjoying for years to come! THANK YOU!!

A few highlights are below:


(1st place) Owen Sovereign (winner 6-18) time 21:09
(2nd place) Richard McKeever (guy winner 18-55) time 21:39
(3rd place) Andrea DeSimone (girl winner 18-55) time 22:02
(4th place) Josh Sovereign time 22:25
Jacqueline Parriott (girl winner 6-18) time 26:18
Ray Valek (guy winner 56 and older) time 29:00

2016 07 04 MFF 5K winners

(left) Ray Valek, Josh Sovereign, Andrea DeSimone, Jacqueline Parriott, Owen Sovereign, Richard McKeever

(5K photo above contributed by April Schmeckpeper;
all Festival photos below and fireworks at top, by Makael Weatherby.  
Thank you, Ladies!)

2016 07 04 MFF Platts fire truck

One of Plattsmouth's big rig firetrucks always thrills the kids!

2016 07 04 MFF Lucas Minor

Singer/songwriter,Lucas Minor, entertained the crowd after the parade.

2016 07 04 3 Star Gen ret Roger Lempke

3-Star General (Ret.) Roger Lempke delivered a speech on the history of the
American flag.

2016 07 04 MFF Brian Rouse Ricky King

Brian Rouse, Zeke's father, (left), and Ricky King
reverently dispose of one of the American flags.

2016 07 04 MFF fireworks

2016 07 04 MFF fireworks 1

Just a small sample of the terrific fireworks display!

Murray Freedom Festival was funded in part by Cass County Tourism     visitcasscounty.com


They'll be posted in the next week's Newsletter!

2016 07 13 Cass County Karaoke

2016 06 29 MFF meeting change