The hugre event is designed to honor the men and women at Mountain Home Air Force Base and all others in the uniformed services of the United States.
The main events are set for Saturday, Sept. 8, and feature the state's largest parade and a free barbecue and entertainment in Carl Miller Park.
Events actually begin the Friday night before AFAD, with the annual corn shucking to prepare the corn for Saturday's free barbecue in the park. The public is invited to take part in the 6 p.m. event.
At the same time, the annual Commander's Social also is held in Carl Miller Park on Friday night, as well as the AFAD Fun Run/Walk. Anyone interested in taking part in the run/walk event can contact the Chamber of Commerce office at 587-4334 for more information.
Saturday, Sept. 8, opens with an A-10 flyover by the Idaho National Guard at 10:30 a.m., kicking off the parade, which winds its way from Paul's Market through downtown to Carl Miller Park. Linda Ramsey, a long-time volunteer at AFAD, will lead this year's parade as its grand marshal.
The AFAD parade this year will see approximately 125 entries with an estimated 2,000 patriotic citizens who walk, ride and march in the state's largest parade. Another 7,000 or more people will line the streets to watch the parade, many waving tiny American flags or dressed in red-white-and-blue outfits. More than 10,000 individuals typically show up to enjoy the free barbecue, entertainment and vendors booths in Carl Miller Park at the end of the parade route.
Among those who will appear in the parade is Whitney Wood, Miss Idaho 2012.
The deadline for entries in the parade has passed, although accommodations can be made for late entries.
AFAD Parade Chairman Sue Gross noted that "a parade is not 'First Come, First Serve,' it is an orchestrated event. We spread out floats, decorative displays, awesome equipment, etc., throughout the whole parade -- start to finish. Everyone wants to be in the front of the parade and has good reasons for their request. However, to be an entertaining parade, you have to place entries in a fashion that viewers see interesting entries coming towards them to the very end.
"The final entry is just as important as the first," she said. "When viewers start seeing the animal entries, another of the highlights of the parade, they are excited all over again -- and virtually everyone stays in place until the Famous Pooper Scoopers pass them."
As soon as the parade ends, activities move to Carl Miller Park where more than 135 vendors will set up booths, offering everything from food to arts and crafts to games.
A free beef barbecue begins as soon as the parade ends, roughly around noon.
AFAD organizers request that dogs and other pets not be brought to the park.
The Air Force Band of the Golden West ensemble "Mobility" will be the featured entertainment at this year's AFAD celebration.
Mobility, a group of musicians that features rock, jazz and blues favorites, will begin their afternoon performance at 1 p.m. at the stage in Carl Miller Park.
Mobility is a subdivision of the United States Air Force Band of the Golden West and consists of guitar, bass, drums, keyboard and vocals. It's performance will begin at 1 p.m., soon after the conclusion of the AFAD parade.
The city parks and rec cheerleaders will do short performances between band breaks.
Also featured as entertainment in the park will be the local Okinawa Karate Studio, which will perform by the fireplace in the afternoon. The exact time has not been announced.
During the afternoon events, the Chamber also begins raffling off a number of items donated by local businesses.
AFAD raffle tickets are $1 each or six for $5. They can be purchased in advance at the Mountain Home Chamber of Commerce, Paul's Market, La Mode Cleaners, Home Federal Bank, city hall, Pioneer Federal Credit Union, DeMeyer Furniture and Idaho Independent Bank.
The tickets also can be bought at the Chamber booth in the southwest corner of Carl Miller Park the day of AFAD.
Raffle prizes include a $1,500 shopping spree from DeMeyer Furniture, a $1,000 savings bond from Home Federal Savings and Loan, a four-piece cordless toolkit from Lowe's, a natural gas barbecue from Intermountain Gas, a set of luggage from Brenda's Travel Service, a 43-inch flat screen HDTV, two $250 cash prizes and a blue-ray player.
AFAD is an event that is almost legendary throughout the Air Force. From humble stop-and-start beginnings, it has grown to become the community's largest event.
Run by the Mountain Home Chamber of Commerce, it takes hundreds of volunteers to put it on, a coordinating committee that has to deal with thousands of tiny details to make it work, and the wholehearted support of businesses and individuals throughout the community.