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Five things to know about this year's Freedom Fest

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Catherine W. Idzerda
Thursday, June 28, 2012
— Big music, free rides and affordable food return to the New Life Assembly of God Church on Saturday for this year's Freedom Fest.

Here are five things you need to know about the event.

1. More rides, less waiting, still free. This year, the event will feature seven mechanical rides including a Ferris wheel, Tilt-A-Whirl, child-size roller coaster and the Sizzler.

Bounce houses and other inflatables will be available for smaller children.

The church increased the number of mechanical rides to reduce waiting times, said Stacy Maybee, church business manager.

As usual, the rides will be free. There is no admission to get onto the grounds.

2. Heath care and dental check-ups, still free. Between 11 a.m. and 3 p.m., Mercy Health System and a variety of volunteers from local dental offices will be doing basic check-ups. If an individual needs follow-up care, they will be given a voucher for Mercy Clinic South, Janesville.
3. The logistics of fun. Motorists should enter the grounds from the south end. Handicapped parking also is available.

Food and drink will be for sale on the grounds. The church requires vendors to keep food and drinks—especially bottled water—moderately priced.

Several local food vendors will be on the grounds. Fare includes burgers, hot dogs, pizza, wings, ice cream and cream puffs.

Food vendors include Famous Dave's, Rollin' Pin, Sonrise Cafe, Pizza Hut, UBake, Culver's, and a variety of traditional fair food including hot dogs, hamburgers and ice cream.

4. Big and local names in music. The headliner this year is Aaron Shust, a four-time Gospel Music Association Dove Award winner. His song, "My Hope is In You," has been on the

Billboard Christan Songs chart for 52 weeks and peaked at No. 1.

Mark Alan Schoolmeesters, the worship leader at Emmanuel Christian Center in Minneapolis, will open for Shust. In 2003, Schoolmeesters won the United Kingdom's

international songwriting competition for best gospel song.

Starting the evening will be In This Room, a local group.

The children's stage will feature a variety of local Christian groups including the popular Koinonia Singers from Rock Valley Youth for Christ.

5. From rhythm to booms. Grounds open at 11 a.m.

Entertainment includes:

-- 5 p.m.: In This Room

-- 6:30 p.m.: Mark Alan

-- 8 p.m.: Aaron Shust

Children's stage entertainment includes:

-- 2 p.m.: Koinonia Singers

-- 4 p.m.: Power House Team

-- 5:15 p.m.: FX Worship Band

-- 6 p.m.: Noodle Team

The pastor's address is scheduled for 9:15 p.m.

Fireworks are set to start at 9:30 p.m.

Last updated: 8:42 pm Thursday, December 13, 2012

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