Armed Forces Day preparations 'lining up'

May 1—Final preparations continued for this week's McAlester's annual Armed Forces Day celebration.

"Everything's lining up," said Armed Forces Day Committee Chairman Jeff Wolf.

Activities over the two-day event include the AFD Luncheon on Friday, May 3, followed by the downtown parade, which is set to feature several flyovers, on Saturday, May 4.

Events kick-off with the Armed Forces Day Luncheon set for 11:30 a.m. on Friday, with doors opening at 11 a.m. It will be held at a different site this year, inside the Aldridge Ballroom at 200 E. Carl Albert Parkway.

U.S. Air Force Chief Master Sergeant Christopher B. Williams will deliver the featured presentation to a full house.

"The luncheon is sold out," Wolf said Tuesday.

Included in the luncheon plans is a salute to the Missing Man table by McAlester Mayor John Browne.

Plans call for the AFD Luncheon to be followed the next day by the Armed Forces Day Parade, set to begin at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 4, in downtown McAlester.

"Fight Fly Win" is the theme for this year's Armed Forces Day activities in McAlester, with the U.S. Air Force the branch of military service being honored.

In addition to a full parade, Wolf noted there will be several flyovers while it is underway. Aircraft involved include Warbirds and two F-16s, which are set for a flyover at approximately 10:30 a.m.

Also this year, local pilot David Verner will lead a post-parade flyover by several aircraft, Wolf said.

Those who haven't yet made a float or who would like to participate some other way still have time to do so.

Wolf said Tuesday they can simply show up and go to the end of the parade lineup, which will begin at S. A Street.

The parade will embark from A Street and head down Carl Albert Parkway to Fifth Street. It will then continue south for a block, then head west along Choctaw Avenue to S. Main Street.

This year the reviewing stand will be the new downtown pavilion/outdoor stage at the intersection of First Street and Choctaw Avenue.

No entry fees are required for those who want to participate in the parade, and there are no plans to select winners for best floats or parade entries.

Wolf said the idea is to let everyone come and enjoy participating in the event.