God and Country Festival says goodbye

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MARION COUNTY, Fla. (WCJB) -- This could be the 50th and final year for the Ocala God and County Fourth of July festival.

Due to a lack of money and volunteer help, the Jaycees say they can't pull off another God and Country Day.

Their Facebook post indicated the event was finished.

According to State Vice president of the group, Eric Eining, it takes three to four months to put together the festival.

He has been involved in organizing the event since he was 6-years-old, and after 30 years, finds it's time to hand it off to someone new.

He said the group is keeping an open mind and looking at different options to potentially keep the festival open.

"If this continues to go the way it has in the past, then we won't have one, but we would like to try to see if we can't find some more help or someone to take it over for sure,” Eining said.

The group initially made the announcement on its Facebook page, writing, "The project has outgrown our small chapter - both in manpower hours and through the increased financial burden."

The Ocala Jaycees also holds other community events including a haunted house and a Christmas shopping event.