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The Leavenworth Times - Leavenworth, KS
  • Taste of FreedomFest

  • Prospective festival-goers will have to wait until November for the first-ever Kansas FreedomFest in Leavenworth, but they will be able to get a feel for what’s in store for that event this Saturday.
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  • Prospective festival-goers will have to wait until November for the first-ever Kansas FreedomFest in Leavenworth, but they will be able to get a feel for what’s in store for that event this Saturday.
    Organizers of the festival said Tuesday that from 4 to 10 p.m. Saturday at Leavenworth’s Haymarket Square, Seventh and Cherokee streets, they will host the kickoff rally for the upcoming FreedomFest, which aims to honor veterans and raise awareness for veterans’ programs. FreedomFest Co-director Keira Jones said the kickoff event is free and open to the public and will serve to whet appetites for Nov. 9 and 10, the Veterans Day weekend during which Kansas FreedomFest is scheduled.
    “This is kind of kicking it off and letting people have a small taste of what the larger event is going to be like,” she said.
    The kickoff will include what Jones said could be one of the draws of the upcoming FreedomFest — a musical performance, in this case at 4:30 p.m. from area band Last Chance Flight, who will also perform in November.
    Leavenworh’s High Noon Saloon will unveil its Kansas FreedomFest Centennial Ale made exclusively for the FreedomFest during the kickoff and organizers say Haymarket Square will host city’s first-ever food truck rally.
    “We’ve got one local truck and a few coming in from the Kansas City
    area,” Jones said.
    Non-profit groups and other vendors will be set up in the area as well along with children’s activities. But Jones said while the organizers “just want (the rally) to be a party,” they’re also working toward the next step, with sign-up sheets and information booths on site to answer questions and generate some interest help for the full two-day festival in November.
    “We’re going to need an army, pun intended, of volunteers for a festival this size,” she said.
    That includes volunteers in a number of positions, from concert security to parking to staffing booths at the events Friday night and the daylong carnival Saturday that will precede the benefit concert.
    The kickoff will also present an opportunity to sell tickets for the Nov. 10 benefit concert that will feature the Marshall Tucker Band and Aaron Tippin at 10th Avenue Park. A headlining act for the concert has yet to be announced.

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