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Fireworks and a July 4 Celebration Are Happening in Oriental
It's Spirit Of Independence, July 3 & 4
June 8, 2020

hile the 2020 Croaker Festival was cancelled due to COVID-19 concerns, a smaller event is going to happen. Oriental’s Spirit Of Independence is set for July 3 & 4, 2020.

Spirit Of Independence was created by Pamlico County Commissioners Missy Baskervill and Candy Bohmert. Baskervill told TownDock.net “I just want people to have fun, to come to Oriental for the weekend and have a great time.”

Baskervill teamed up with Bohmert to make the fireworks happen. Bohmert agreed to work on the fireworks if Baskervill would be in charge of fundraising. The county commissioners agreed and got started.

Because of her past involvement with the Croaker Festival, Bohmert was able to reach out to the same pro fireworks crew that usually does the Croaker Festival: East Coast Pyrotechnics. They were not available July 4, but they agreed to Friday night July 3.

Commissioner Bohmert went before the Oriental Town Board to announce the pending plans and formally ask for the town’s assistance on Friday night. That help includes contacting NC DOT (the town does not own the bridge and cannot grant permission) to close the Oriental Bridge for the event.

Tom Cochran notified the Coast Guard.

Fireworks over Oriental (TownDock file photo)

The show is pricey – $10,000 (this is the same price it has been for the last several years for Croaker Festival). Most of that has already been raised – but there is still $2,000 needed. If you’d like to contribute, here’s how:

Donations can be made by dropping off a check at First Citizens Bank in Oriental, made out to “Spirit Of Independence”. Monies raised over the $10k will be donated to the Croaker Festival for next year’s event. Any questions, call Missy Baskervill at 252-670-9757.

On July 4 there will be a small festival in the village (this is dependent on North Carolina entering Phase Three later this month). There will be booths at both the Oriental Marina Inn grounds (next to the Tiki Bar) and on the lot where the “Ol Store” was at the corner of New and South Water Streets. Missy has persuaded Sam Myers (of Rotary boat and car show fame) to handle the booths. Booths are free, but limited to artists or businesses that are based in Pamlico County. Contact Sam at 252-249-0228 or salmonboone@embarqmail.com.

Spirit Of Independence booths
Artists and local business booths can get free booth space, located at the “Ol Store” lot (blue) and the Oriental Marina Inn grounds (red).

There might even be a parade. No parade. But you can buy a t-shirt for the event right here.


Come July 4 weekend, Oriental will not be missing some fireworks.

Fireworks over Oriental – a drone’s eye view (TownDock file photo)

Posted Monday June 8, 2020 by Keith N. Smith

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