By Ed Brock
Sue Markel is about to have several hundred guests on her front yard on Saturday.
They'll be eating barbecue, riding ponies, listening to music and, later that night, watching some Fourth of July fireworks.
It'll be the City of Morrow's "Summerfest on the Green," scheduled to be held from 6 p.m. to 11 p.m. rain or shine.
"I'm looking forward to it as long as everybody behaves themselves," Markel said with a laugh.
This isn't the first year for the city's pre-Independence Day Summerfest celebration, but Morrow Director of Tourism Lisa Sewell said it's the first time the event will be held on the 10-acre plot at 5907 Reynolds Road where Markel lives. The city owns the land and house, which once belonged to former Morrow City Councilman Virgil Kilby, and Markel leases the house.
"Hopefully one day it will be our golf course," Sewell said about the land.
But on Saturday evening it will be home to carnival games, face painting and more. Morrow police Maj. Charlie "Smoky Pig" Sewell will be cooking hamburgers and hot dogs and the police department will be running the beverage concession.
The money raised from the sale of drinks will go to benefit the department's "Living Legacy" project, an effort to buy a statue of a police officer and child to put in front of the city's police headquarters.
Atlanta Pyrotechics of Marietta will be putting on what Lisa Sewell called "metro Atlanta's best fireworks extravaganza" around 9 p.m. or as soon as darkness falls.
Sewell saw the display for the first time last year.
"My husband and I had always gone to Peachtree City but this one is much better," Sewell said.
The display will dovetail perfectly with Markel's plans to through a private birthday party for her future son-in-law on Saturday.
"That way I can tell him I put on that firework display for him," Markel said.
Other sponsors for Summerfest on the Green are Alan Vigil Ford, Brasfield & Gorrie construction and the Morrow Business and Tourism Association.