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City Of Vista’s Independence Day Celebration


  • WHEN Saturday, July 4, 2015 at 7 a.m.
  • WHERE Brengle Terrace Park, 1200 Vale Terrace Drive, Vista, CA 92084
  • AGES All ages
  • COST Free - $60

For more than 45 years, the City of Vista’s Independence Day celebration has illuminated the night-time skies over Vista with one of the most spectacular fireworks displays.

This year will be no exception when the annual event on July Fourth returns to the Moonlight Amphitheatre in Brengle Terrace Park. As part of the celebration, the City will honor three local heroes with military service.

This year’s honorees are: Pete Peterson (United States Marine Corps), Natalie Marchetti (United States Army), and Jay (Huel) Oldham (United States Air Force).

The Independence Day Celebration schedule at the Moonlight Amphitheatre includes the military salute at 7:15 p.m., the Mar Dels performing at 7:35 p.m., and the fireworks display at 9 p.m.

The Amphitheatre opens at 5 p.m. Admission to the Amphitheatre is $5 per person. Admission for children five and under, active and retired military members and their family is free.

Parking in the park is $15 per car and $30 per recreational vehicle.

The City’s “Light Up the Night Dinner” features a Patriotic BBQ Buffet hosted at the Moonlight Amphitheatre’s Artisan Café starting at 6:30 p.m.

The dinner raises funds to support the City of Vista’s July Fourth events. Guests enjoy a delicious buffet menu consisting of smoked pulled beef brisket, pulled pork, BBQ chicken, baked beans, potato salad and other patriotic fare.

The dinner includes reserved parking and reserved seats offering the best views of the fireworks. Admission to the dinner is $60 for adults and $40 for children ten and under. A table of eight may be purchased for $450. Reservations may be made by calling 760.643.5265 by June 26.

Joining the City in presenting Vista’s Independence Day Celebration are lead sponsors Datron World Communications, Inc., TriCity Medical Center and Watkins Manufacturing.

Food and non-alcoholic beverages may be brought into the park. Alcohol cannot be brought into the Moonlight Amphitheatre but is for sale at the Artisan Café.

The City reminds park visitors to keep household pets at home and secured during the event.

Schedule of Events:
7 am: Park Opens
5 pm: Moonlight Amphitheatre Opens
7:15 pm: Honorary Ceremony on the Moonlight Amphitheatre Stage
7:35 pm: The Mar Dels perform on the Moonlight Amphitheatre Stage
9 pm: Fireworks


Pete Peterson
Master Sergeant Pete Peterson was commissioned to the United States Marine Corps in 1958. As Platoon Commander, he fought in the Vietnam War and was wounded twice during his deployment. He received the Bronze Star with Combat V along with a Navy Achievement Medal. While he spent much of his service time in the infantry, he also served as a Drill Instructor, Game Warden, and Inspector/Instructor for the Reserves. After his service in West Virginia he was stationed at Camp Pendleton. Sergeant Peterson retired from the Marine Corps in 1985. He is married to his wife of 36 years, Rita, and has two daughters from a previous marriage. Currently, he volunteers at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot Museum as a Docent where he enjoys sharing the history of the Marine Corps.

Natalie Marchetti
A 1995 graduate of University of Southern California, Ms. Marchetti was commissioned to serve as an Army Officer. An honorable discharge in 2004 led Ms. Marchetti to work with America’s largest recruiting firm, Orion International. In 2007, Ms. Marchetti received a personal request from her former Battalion Commander to return to active duty and serve in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. This found Ms. Marchetti headed to the European Headquarters in Heidelberg, Germany in 2007. During the time from 2007 through 2011, Ms. Marchetti served on three overseas tours. Ms. Marchetti has a long line of military service in her family. Her husband, Gino, a Navy veteran; her father, Jerry, a Navy veteran after 21 years of service as a Top Gun Pilot; both of her grandfathers were retired Navy veterans; and two of her uncles Navy veterans as well. Currently, Ms. Marchetti serves the military in the capacity as a Readjustment Counseling Therapist at the San Marcos Veterans Center, helping military retirees and active duty members with adjustments in lifestyle that often occur after returning from combat service.

Jay (Huel) Oldham
Graduate of Oceanside-Carlsbad Union High School and from San Diego State University. Commissioned to serve in the United States Air Force after graduation in 1959. Mr. Oldham moved on to Pilot training and in 1961 flew B-47’s. He later finished officer’s school and began flying B-52’s in 205 combat missions! Mr. Oldham received the Distinguished Flying Cross medal for his Vietnam Combat Mission. In addition, Mr. Oldham received the Air Medal with 6 Oak leaf clusters (for the nonmilitary this represents 20 combat missions for each leaf cluster). Mr. Oldham met his wife, Pat, at San Diego State University and has been married since 1960. They have 3 children, 6 grandchildren and 1 great grandson. Jay retired from the Air Force in 1987 and moved to Vista and been a Vista resident ever since. Jay began his new career as a Park Ranger for 10 years at the Wild Animal Park in Escondido and currently works hard on the golf course.

Since 1982 this popular seven-piece group has been performing dynamic renditions of the best music from the 50's - 70's. The band has now expanded its repertoire to include select hits from the 80's and 90's as well as swing standards from the 40's. Great music, top notch entertainment, The Mar Dels are legendary not only for this, but also for their ability to whip a crowd up into a dancing frenzy playing the hits of Elvis Presley, Aretha Franklin, Jerry Lee Lewis, Sam and Dave, Buddy Holly, Van Morrison, Whitney Houston, Patsy Cline, Steppenwolf, Frank Sinatra, Glen Miller, The Doors, The Ventures, The Platters, The Stones, The Stray Cats, The B-52's, and The Village People.

The City of Vista recognizes and appreciates its other sponsors of this year’s event, including: Atomic Investments, Inc., Erickson-Hall Construction, Dudek, Denso Wireless Systems America, Hyatt Place, EDCO Waste and Recycling, Hanna Plumbing & Supply Inc., DDH Enterprise, Inc., Easy Turf, Catspaw Construction, Affirmed Housing Group, Independent Energy Solutions and STC Traffic, Inc.

Independence Day Celebration Date: July 4, 2015

Location: Brengle Terrace Park and the Moonlight Amphitheatre 1200 Vale Terrace Drive Vista, CA 92084

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Dates and times of events are subject to change without notice. Always check the event organizer's website for the most updated schedule before attending. Check local COVID-19 restrictions and updates.

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