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Forecast calls for heat, fun
Fourth festivities begin on Tuesday
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Forsyth County News

Dave Horton is grateful to have never had to cancel a Fourth of July fireworks display due to rain.

“I don’t know that we’ve ever actually not been able to shoot off the fireworks,” said Horton, the director of the Cumming Fairgrounds. “We’ve had a time or two where we’ve maybe had to delay or whatever just a short period.

“I’m always happy to hear it’s a low chance of showers. It can wait till July 5 to rain.”

According to the National Weather Service office in Peachtree City, this year’s Fourth of July festivities, which begin Tuesday at the fairgrounds, shouldn’t be hindered by bad weather. But it will be hot.

Mike Leary, a forecaster with the office, said every day this week likely will be partly sunny with highs in the mid-90s and a 20 percent chance of afternoon showers or thunderstorms.

“Pretty much all of north Georgia will have the same forecast [this] week,” he said. “Just your typical summer pattern.”

After the scorching, triple-digit temperatures this weekend, that may seem like a relief.

“It’s always hot [around the Fourth],” Horton said. “People come out and they’re wearing their hats and putting sunscreen on. I mean, it’s just that time of year.”

He noted that Tuesday’s activities — which include vendors and live music beginning at 6 p.m., fireworks at 9:30 p.m. and a dance contest at 10 p.m. — aren’t impacted too much by the heat.

However, those attending the 55th Annual Thomas-Mashburn Steam Engine Parade at 10 a.m. Wednesday need to come prepared.

“Of course, [on Tuesday] we have a couple of hours there of the last sunlight that [folks] definitely need to prepare for and wear sunscreen and hats … but on parade day, because it’s starting in the morning and mid-afternoon and most of them are sitting on pavement, they definitely have to [prepare],” he said.

“If it’s 98 degrees or 100 degrees that day and you’re sitting on an asphalt road, then you know the heat index is going to be probably 110.”

Horton recommended dressing coolly, bringing umbrellas for shade and drinking plenty of water before and during the parade to stay hydrated.

While there’s just a slight chance of showers in the forecast, he advised people to be prepared for anything when they come out Tuesday and Wednesday.

“Of course, if we get some pop-up showers, you got to be prepared to get in a building or find some cover in your car or whatever,” he said.

“Because usually if it’s been that kind of heat and a storm comes up, it’s going to have some electricity with it, so you always have to prepare for what the weather can be.”

Whatever the week’s weather brings, Horton said he and his staff are ready.

“That’s just part of being an outdoor venue,” he said. “You got to take the weather as it comes. You just take what’s given to you and try to work with it.”