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Celebrate the 4th with Tweetsie’s Firework Extravaganza

June 26, 2012. Join Tweetsie Railroad in celebrating our nation’s independence during the annual July 4th Fireworks Extravaganza. Now in its 55th year, North Carolina’s first theme park will light up the High Country sky with spectacular bursts of pyrotechnics on Wednesday July 4, and guests can enjoy classic family fun and entertainment all day and evening long.

Visitors will experience additional live shows throughout the day with the park open until 9 p.m., as well as Tweetsie Railroad’s famed Wild West Train adventure into the early evening. At 9:30 p.m., more than 200 large-caliber pyrotechnic mortar shells will light up the Blue Ridge Mountains.

“Our 4th of July Extravaganza is a great way for the community to join together and celebrate our country’s independence,” said Cathy Robbins, Tweetsie Railroad marketing director. “The sky above the Blue Ridge Mountains bursts with brilliant colors, which brings families back to celebrate the 4th of July with Tweetsie year after year.”

Tweetsie Railroad opened on July 4, 1957. The park was a dream of Grover Robbins, Jr., who brought the former East Tennessee and Western North Carolina Engine Number 12 (known as “Tweetsie” to the local residents) back home to the mountains of North Carolina. The original run on that July 4th was a one-mile scenic trek that took guests to a picnic area and then backed up into the Tweetsie train station. Today, visitors are taken on a scenic and thrilling three-mile adventure through the mountains and into the days of the Old West.

Parking for July 4th is $5 per vehicle, but Tweetsie’s Golden Rail Season Pass holders park for free. In the event of severe inclement weather, Tweetsie Railroad will hold a rain date on July 5. Tweetsie also offers an optional buffet chicken and barbeque dinner served with all the trimmings, and a premium fireworks viewing area in the Hacienda. Adult tickets for the dinner are $14.95, $9.95 for children ages 3-12 and children 2 and under are free. Dinner tickets can be purchased at the park on July 4.

Tweetsie Railroad is open seven days a week through August 19. The park returns to the weekend schedule (open Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays) from August 24 through October 28, including Labor Day Monday. The 2012 season ends Sunday, October 28. The park’s regular hours are 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., but will be open until 9:00 p.m. on July 4 and July 7, 14, 21 and 28 for Cool Summer Nights. In addition, the park will be open at 8:00 a.m. both Saturdays (June 2 and 9) for the popular Day Out With Thomas™ event. The Ghost Train® Halloween Festival will take place Friday and Saturday nights September 28 through October 27 from 7:30 p.m. to 11:30 p.m., and price of admission is $28 for adults and children, with children 2 and under admitted free. Daily admission to Tweetsie Railroad is $35 for adults and $22 for children ages 3 through 12. Children 2 and under are admitted free. Print at home tickets and Golden Rail Season Passes are available at Tweetsie.com.

Tweetsie Railroad is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains on U.S. Highway 321 between Boone and Blowing Rock. For more information about the 2012 season at Tweetsie Railroad, visit Tweetsie.com or call 877-TWEETSIE (877-893-3874). Find Tweetsie on Facebook or follow Tweetsie on Twitter @TweetsieRR.