Fourth of July celebrations at Fort Leonard Wood set to be one of the largest in central Missouri

By Melissa Buckley, Fort Leonard Wood Public Affairs OfficeJune 28, 2023

Fort Leonard Wood is preparing to celebrate Independence Day with four days of patriotic fun − ending with the largest fireworks presentation in central Missouri.
Fort Leonard Wood is preparing to celebrate Independence Day with four days of patriotic fun − ending with the largest fireworks presentation in central Missouri. (Photo Credit: U.S. Army) VIEW ORIGINAL

FORT LEONARD WOOD, Mo. — Fort Leonard Wood is preparing to celebrate Independence Day with four days of patriotic fun — ending with the largest fireworks presentation in central Missouri.

The celebration starts Saturday, with the Red, White and Blue Golf Tournament at the Piney Valley Golf Course. The two-person teams are scheduled to tee off at 8 a.m.

The Rec Plex is offering half-priced pool admission from noon to 7 p.m. Saturday through Monday, and noon to 5 p.m. Tuesday.

Tuesday’s Independence Day celebration begins with the Fourth of July 5K Fun Run/Walk, starting at 9 a.m. at Davidson Fitness Center. This event is free and no registration is needed. Participants are encouraged to wear red, white and blue.

At 4 p.m., the celebration moves to Gammon Field, where cars, trucks and motorcycles will be on display as part of a car show. Enthusiasts can register their vehicles by Friday for $10 at the Auto Skills Center or online at this link. Registration will be $20, cash only, the day of the event. Trophies will be given for the best in show, best car, best truck and best motorcycle.

Also starting at 4 p.m. on Gammon Field, the Independence Day celebration will have bounce houses, food, live music from the 399th Army Band and a performance by a dance group.

The grand finale on Gammon Field will be the fireworks show, scheduled to begin at 9:30 p.m. No pets or personal coolers are allowed at the event.

“Since this is my second year celebrating the Fourth on Fort Leonard Wood, my favorite part of the celebration is seeing all the service members, families and civilians from Fort Leonard Wood and the surrounding communities come together in celebrating our great country and having fun,” said Col. Anthony Pollio, U.S. Army Garrison Fort Leonard Wood commander. “I think events like this strengthen the ties between the installation and the surrounding communities.”

The events at the Rec Plex, Piney Valley Golf Course and Gammon Field are open to the public.

From Saturday through Monday, individuals without regular access to Fort Leonard Wood must visit the Visitor Center at the main gate to obtain a recreational day pass to utilize the Rec Plex and Piney Valley Golf Course.

Fort Leonard Wood access control personnel are no longer authorized to accept state-issued identification that does not meet the Real ID Act of 2005 standards. Missouri’s Real ID compliant driver licenses and nondriver ID cards have a star in the upper, right-hand corner.

Persons not possessing a Department of Defense issued identification card must also undergo a criminal history background screening to be issued a pass, said Rick Vise, Security Operations chief.

For guests attending the celebration at Gammon Field July Fourth, starting at 3 p.m., visitors can bypass the Visitor Center and go straight to the gate. Adults 18 and older will need to present a federally compliant Real ID to the gate guards for access to the special event.

Drivers operating a vehicle are required to have in their possession a current driver’s license, proof of current vehicle insurance and current vehicle registration.

More information about access to the post is available on Fort Leonard Wood’s visitors access page, or by calling 573.596.0590.

More information about the festivities is available at Fort Leonard Wood’s Family and Morale, Welfare and Recreation website.