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Preparations begin for Salute to Independence

June 26, 2013|By CALEB CALHOUN | caleb.calhoun@herald-mail.com
  • Luciano Ches, left, and Chuck Atwell, along with other employees of Jericho Stage Inc. out of Baltimore, Md., were busy Wednesday building the stage for the annual Salute to Independence celebration, scheduled for July 6.
By Joe Crocetta/Staff Photographer

The 28th annual Salute to Independence celebration at Antietam National Battlefield is more than a week away, but preparations for it have already begun.

The stage for the popular celebration arrived in pieces Wednesday morning, and workers began putting it together.

“Over the course of the next few days, the workers will construct the stage, our maintenance crew will come out and place trash cans, stripe the lawn back here and cut the grass, as well, and rope off areas,” Antietam National Battlefield Park Ranger Brian Baracz said. “By early next week, the concert and stage area will be set up and ready to go.”

Baracz said that the stage should be completed by the end of this week.

He said that 15,000 to 20,000 people are expected to attend the salute on Saturday, July 6, but more than usual could turn out because many visitors are already in the area for the Battle of Gettysburg 150th anniversary activities in Pennsylvania.

“With the other traffic in the area, I would say we probably expect to see a few more people this year,” Baracz said.

The Maryland Symphony Orchestra will be performing on the stage during the celebration.

The stage, which will also have a sun cover and lifts for speakers, is owned by Jericho Stage Inc. in Baltimore, which was hired to put it together, according to Megan DuBois, operations manager for the MSO.

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