In 2014, a pair of community pillars put on a 4th of July event and after a couple years of going without, I am happy to announce that a community has rallied around the idea of bringing back an Independence Day event for the community.

Two former Atascadero City Council members, Bob Kelley and Jerry Clay, put together a couple of great years of a 4th of July event, and I still treasure one of the photos of my son and I on the merry-go-round at the Atascadero Lake Park. I remember a conversation with a member of the Moose Lodge who had mentioned a campaign effort to bring back fireworks to the 4th of July, and got to see many friends there at the park. Whatever happens, I want to help make the opportunity for memorable moments available for future families.

Fireworks may not be on the horizon, but I remember driving by the empty Lake Park in 2015 when there was no Independence Day event taking place in Atascadero. At that moment, I dedicated to bringing a 4th of July event back to Atascadero and through relationships and conversations with a strong community, I decided if we cannot have fireworks, then we should have some great music.

Out of a conversation with Dianne Greenaway, I was inspired to organize a fundraiser for the Colony Days & Tent City and bring bluegrass music into the schedule of events. Not only can this event be a great experience for residents and visitors of Atascadero, but it can also be a fundraiser for some desperate needs. Colony Days takes a large budget to put on the annual parade, and Tent City needs a trailer to store a terrific amount of materials and supplies for the re-creation of 1913 Colony life.

Another all-American event I really wanted to include is a 4th of July “Rockets vs. Bombs” championship baseball game. Through conversations with Babe Ruth Baseball, we are close to a deal to bring a great baseball experience to the event.

Add all that to family-fun, games, boating, bounce houses, zoo admission deals, a BBQ dinner, and more and you have the makings of a fantastic event, and moving forward the sky is the limit.

It was an honor to gain the sponsorship of Atascadero Colony Days Committee, and all net proceeds from the event will be retained by the Colony Days for the high cost of producing the parade and festival in October.

On Sunday, the Atascadero Printery Foundation volunteered to hold a raffle and host the Beer & Wine booth at the event to raise money and awareness for its mission to reclaim, restore, and repurpose the Printery Building.

We are all looking forward to this event, and the excitement from all of those involved promises that this event will be one to remember.

Please support us as we put this all together by joining our vendor fair, becoming a sponsor, liking our Facebook or Instagram page, or joining our mailing list.

Thank you for being a part of this wonderful community and we hope to see you on the 4th of July!

Sincerely,

Nic Mattson
Founder of the Atascadero 4th of July Bluegrass Freedom Festival