An Open Letter to the Community

Greetings Community Residents, Friends and Neighbors!

On behalf of the Board of Red, White & Tahoe Blue (RWTB), I would like to thank our residents, friends and neighbors here in Incline Village/Crystal Bay for 10 years of selfless financial and volunteer support to our wonderful community celebration! Your dedication to helping RWTB in celebrating our nation’s independence has been tremendous and we are sincerely grateful. 

By our conservative estimates, over the past decade, our army of volunteers and donors have provided over 30,000 hours in tireless efforts  and over $1.5 million in needed donations to help us showcase nationally recognized fireworks, concerts, parades, veterans’ tributes and community festivities. Concurrently, RWTB has been able to gift back over $100,000 of financial assistance to roughly two dozen non-profit collaborators since its inception. It certainly has taken a village coming together to celebrate our country’s independence, respectfully honor our veterans’ sacrifices for our freedoms and proffer festive venues for our residents, their guests and the multitude of visitors we are fortunate to host over our 4th of July holidays.

With that being said, your current RWTB Board has taken these past several months to reassess our organization’s dedicatory mission as envisaged by founder Tom Bruno and his initial crew of selfless volunteers and visionaries. Having known Tom personally these past 30+ years, it speaks volumes about his ability to ‘rally the troops’ by enlisting Alan Ferris, Tom Masterson, Bill Horn, Greg MacKay, the Bonanza and their like-minded patriots to form the nucleus of what has grown to become one of the most successful Independence Day celebrations in the country. 

We are encouraged by the initial community feedback and suggestions regarding our upcoming 10th anniversary celebration and we are excited with the prospect of providing a higher quality experience at each of our signature events!

Back by popular demand are both the Beer & Brats and the Village Green Community Fair events. Also, all Veterans’ events return to the main stage, where they belong, to properly acknowledge the countless sacrifices made for our country’s freedom. We have contracted with the Air National Guard Band of the West for not only the 4th of July Fireworks Extravaganza but they will also provide a full dress marching band for the Hometown Parade and a Dixieland and rock band for top-flight musical enjoyment. Additionally, both the MarchFourth! Band and the McQueen Marching Band will enliven the parade which will also include a lively contingent of Hispanic equestrian, dancing and mariachi participants along with the Kid’s Bike Parade, floats and general good-hearted family fun! Tahoe’s own Toccata Tahoe Symphony Orchestra & Chorus will provide glorious music Sunday evening after our signature Wine & Cheese event at Aspen Grove.

Also returning will be the flag raisings and retirement memorials, Pancake Breakfasts, Veterans’ recognitions and para-rescue demonstrations and the ever popular ice cream eating contest, chalk drawing exhibition and sporting events.

We are pleased to announce that the Village Green will be ‘fence free’ this year, and we are encouraging folks to bring low-backed chairs and picnic coolers to enjoy the weekend at our community’s ‘front lawn’. Or for those who want a little more variety, there will be food trucks and libations available at competitive pricing.

Finally, we would like to make special note that all of our activities, except our signature fundraisers Beer & Brats, Wine & Cheese and the Veterans’ Pancake Breakfast, will be free of charge and open to the general public.

It is the intent of your current RWTB Board to provide a truly family friendly, community oriented 4th of July weekend that encourages our friends and neighbors to come out and enjoy our nation’s independence, help celebrate our veterans and military servicemen and women and the opportunity to showcase the tremendous musical talents of both locally and nationally recognized artists.

We realize that we have a rather formidable road ahead of us. The challenges of presenting our 10thAnniversary Red, White & Tahoe Blue 4th of July Celebration will require a tremendous amount of volunteer manpower coupled with generous financial sponsors and committed community collaborators. Most folks may not realize that it takes over $200,000 to sponsor our yearly RWTB events. The fireworks alone require roughly half the budget when you factor in the barges, permits, etc. With this being our 10th Anniversary, we will be planning an extra special fireworks show that our pyrotechnician, Ken Lantis, promises to be the best ever! Couple that with the main stage with sound and lights, musical groups, parade entrants and activities, the Village Green Community Fair, tents, tables, chairs, security, peripheral lighting, port-a-potties, sanitation, traffic engineering…well, you start to realize that to undertake a celebration on this scale and maintain a quality that our community has come to expect requires a substantial financial commitment.   

Again, from our RWTB Board, we thank the property owners, residents and their guests for your continued support and encouragement. We have listened to your concerns and have made the necessary changes that better represent the founding principles stated 10 years ago.

We look forward to providing a more thorough schedule of events and all logistical information in the upcoming weeks. It is our goal to work closely with our community businesses, service organizations, local/county/state law enforcement and safety officers and our good friends at IVGID to ensure that each and every resident of Incline Village/Crystal Bay feels welcome and encouraged to enjoy the festivities offered over this 4th of July weekend.

Here’s to a grand and glorious Red, White & Tahoe Blue 4th of July Celebration!!



Tim Callicrate

Chairman, Red, White and Tahoe Blue Board