Florala mayor: use caution sidewalk project still in progress

Published 12:00 am Saturday, June 19, 2010

Florala city officials are expecting the crowd to swell between 15,000 to 20,000 next week as the 140th annual 24th of June Masonic Celebration gets under way Monday.

And with large crowd numbers, Mayor Robert Williamson is urging event participants to use a bit of caution when navigating the city’s new and under construction sidewalks.

“We’re expecting all the work to be completed on the north side by Saturday,” Williamson said of the project will is laying new sidewalk and curbing along portions of Fifth Avenue. “The only part that’s going to be ‘off-limits’ will be the southern side of the block.”

Participants should also be cautious when navigating around the under-construction “square” and veteran’s memorial on Fifth Street, in front of Bean’s Diner, he said.

It’s dedication ceremony is set for Saturday at 10 a.m.; however, the official “Masonic week” will begin today with the 5K Alligator Trot at Lake Jackson. On Monday, the children’s Anything Goes parade will begin at 6 p.m., with registration at 5:30 p.m. in front of the Mastar building. A children’s water battle will begin immediately following the parade.

Monday will also mark the return of the carnival at the annual event.

Various events are also scheduled throughout the remainder of the week such as a Wednesday night gospel singing at 7 p.m. at Florala City Middle School and Doo-Wop Sock Hop Friday at 7 p.m. at the high school.

“But this event, which is the oldest, consecutive Masonic celebration in the nation, culminates on Sat., June 26,” Williamson said. “That Saturday, there’ll be a parade, water battles, arts and crafts, car show, street dance, fireworks and more. It’s bound to be a great time.

“In addition, we can’t wait to see the sunbathers, picnickers and water sports enthusiasts line the sandy, white beaches of Lake Jackson and enjoy this pristine body of water,” he said.

Crews are still working on the sidewalk project in Florala. Masonic Celebration attendees are encouraged to use caution near construction work. | Stephanie Nelson/Star-News