The Heritage of San Clemente Foundation on July 4 will put on an event for active-duty Marines and the Navy to celebrate America’s independence and their service to the nation. Military personnel are encouraged to join, bring a potluck dish and watch the fireworks.
The private military event will be held at 5 p.m. at Park Semper Fi, a park at the San Clemente Pier Bowl dedicated to the service of all Marines and sailors, and it will conclude after the fireworks.
The foundation has hosted the event for 17 years, and it comes at no charge to the military personnel who attend. Former San Clemente mayor and the foundation’s executive director, Wayne Eggleston, started the event to create opportunities for active-duty military stationed at Camp Pendleton to celebrate the holiday in an enjoyable environment.
With priority given to active-duty servicemembers and on a first-come, first-served basis, 125 tickets are available for the event. Reservations can be made by sending an email to Eggleston at email@example.com.
The foundation does not request any specific food and drinks for the potluck, only that attendees bring what they can. According to Eggleston, community members usually drop by the event to bring their own contributions, from chicken dishes to ribs, and the event consistently has an abundance of food.
Marines are encouraged to bring their families, and children are welcome at the alcohol-free event.
With a scenic view of the ocean, Park Semper Fi overlooks the San Clemente Pier, which is the site of the annual fireworks show. The park was built in 2005 as an area for remembrance and reflection, honoring those who serve in the United States Marine Corps, a fitting location for the holiday being celebrated.
In years past, there has been an overwhelming response and support for the event from active-duty military, according to Eggleston, with some military families continuing to come every year.
In a way that gives back to the military community close to San Clemente, the foundation event helps celebrate those who serve the country and provides them with a fun occasion for the holiday.