fireworksThe Hamtramck Fire Department is proud to announce that we have won Destination America and USA Weekend’s Red, White & You contest on behalf of the city of Hamtramck.   The contest will bring a spectacular 4th of July Celebration to Hamtramck during our 100th Anniversary.

Our entry in this contest was spearheaded by Fire Chief Paul Wilk and written by Motor Engineer John Dropchuk.  We were chosen as one of two grand prize winners from nearly 2,500 entries.  The contest asked us to describe why our city deserved a 4th of July Celebration.

“We’re very grateful to Destination America and USA Weekend for giving us the opportunity to give back to Hamtramck” said Chief Wilk, “this is a great way to celebrate the 4th of July with our residents – many of whom are new Americans.”

“Hamtramck is a small city, but it’s a goldmine of a city” added John Dropchuk.  “Most folks tend to forget we all came from some place – whether it’s you, your parents or their parents – the United States is the great melting pot.  There’s no better way to celebrate that than with a 4th of July party.”

The Hamtramck Fire Department is working with the staff of the Hamtramck Public Schools and other groups to make this a memorable event.  Along with an amazing fireworks display, we will have a kid’s area, dance groups, food vendors and fun activities for the entire family.

The Hamtramck Red, White & You 4th of July Celebration is scheduled for SATURDAY, July 5th at the Keyworth Stadium grounds.


From Destination America:

Destination America, a Discovery Communications network, and the only television network that celebrates the people, places, and stories of the U.S., and national weekly magazine USA WEEKEND announce the winners of their second annual RED, WHITE AND YOU contest, which awards two deserving communities a spectacular Fourth of July celebration. And the winners are… Prescott, AZ, a town still recovering from the devastating wildfires that tragically claimed the lives of 19 brave firefighters, and Hamtramck, MI, a city that has been hit by hard times, but in true American spirit is working to make a comeback – and will celebrate Fourth of July for the first time in over 30 years!  Launched in March, the contest asked folks across the country to put their pride on display to prove why their respective towns were most deserving of an over-the-top Independence Day party.

“We are honored to celebrate our nation’s birthday with these two very worthy communities,” said Marc Etkind, general manager for Destination America.  “Fourth of July is a balance of remembrance with celebration and we hope to encourage the spirit and tradition of the holiday in Hamtramck, MI, while commemorating the heroic firefighters of Prescott, AZ.”

“We are so excited to be working with Destination America to create a community-friendly celebration beyond any we have had in the past.  Prescott has always been a very patriotic town, and this award will allow us to unite that patriotism with our strong community spirit through a Fourth of July Celebration that will bring families together to relax, rejuvenate, and remember.” – Becky Karcie, special events manager for the City of Prescott.

“Hamtramck hasn’t had a proper Fourth of July celebration in a very long time,” said Fire Chief Paul Wilk. “The Hamtramck Fire Department is very proud to bring the community we serve the ‘Red, White & You’ contest during our 100th Anniversary and we’re thankful to Destination America and USA Weekend for this exciting opportunity. We are a very diverse city that’s fallen on hard times– we need a boost like this. We can’t wait to celebrate 4th of July within our town with so many new Americans and all of our friends and family.”

The RED, WHITE AND YOU contest received more than 2,500 entries from Americans nationwide sharing moving stories of why their towns deserve an all-American celebration. With many entries submitted on behalf of Prescott, AZ, a community approaching the one-year anniversary of the tragic loss of 19 firefighters, the one that earned the grand prize was from 23 year-old Hanna Axley, who is not native to Prescott, but felt the need to write in. As the town comes together to remember their loved ones, Destination America will offer a fitting tribute to help celebrate the lives lost and the families and friends who continue to heal.  The second grand prize winner comes from the fire department in Hamtramck, MI that entered the RED, WHITE AND YOU contest on behalf of their residents. The network awarded this city, which has persevered in a difficult economy, so that the community can officially commemorate their first Fourth of July in more than three decades. Below is a list of the actual submissions for the two grand prize winning towns  as well as a list of the five runners-up, which will all be awarded a dazzling fireworks display courtesy of Destination America.  Additionally, an online poll for People’s Choice winner, which took place at DestinationAmerica.com, resulted in three winners with Delmont, SD, Gloucester, MA and Hackleburg, AL coming out on top, each receiving $4000 toward their local Parks and Recreation Department.

Hamtramck, MI – John Dropchuk

Hamtramck, Michigan is a perfect example of the melting pot that is the United States.  We are a 2.1 square mile city surrounded by Detroit. Cultural diversity and a strong blue collar work ethic make up the backbone of our town. There is no better representation of the pursuit of the “American Dream” than Hamtramck. Of our 22,423 residents, many are immigrants that speak one of over 26 different languages. With over 25% of our residents live below the federal poverty line, a contest like “Red, White and You” could be the only fireworks many see this July 4th. The Hamtramck Fire Department is entering this contest on behalf of our residents, whom we feel deserve this celebration. 2014 marks our 100th Anniversary and we would love to celebrate with a community we feel is a true representation of America. Hamtramck truly is Destination: America.

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