Fun, fireworks planned to celebrate Independence Day

Children ride bikes their decorated in patriotic colors during last year’s Independence Day parade in Big Rapids. This year’s parade will begin at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4. (Pioneer file photos)

By Candy Allan and Meghan Gunther-Haas, Pioneer Staff Writers

MECOSTA COUNTY — Only a few more days remain before families and friends across the county, state and nation celebrate Independence Day.

For many people, Independence Day wouldn’t be complete without the soaring streaks of light and booming explosions of a fireworks show. For many who will be enjoying nighttime shows, the fun starts earlier in the day with a variety of games, cookouts and more.

Locally, there are many options for people to celebrate the holiday, such as:

In Idlewild, the annual Independence Day parade will begin at 12:30 p.m., Saturday, June 30, on the beach of Idlewild Lake.

Some of the first displays of the season will begin at dusk in Lake County. Fireworks show are planned for Sunday, July 30, at Big Star Lake in Baldwin, and to mark the end of the Luther Logging Days in Luther.

The Fourth of July in Evart begins early with the seventh annual 5K walk and run, which will start at 8:30 a.m. For more information on the 5K, contact Kevin Mills at (231) 408-8689, or visit evartjuly4th5krun.weebly.com. The walk and run will be followed by the annual parade at 11 a.m., beginning on Main Street just north of Jefferson Street and ending at Riverside Park. Party in the Park immediately follows the parade and lasts until 3 p.m., with fun family activities and concessions available for purchase. The fireworks display takes place the evening before, on July 3, at the airport and is free to the public. Viewers may select their spot in the public area that isn’t roped off.

Fireworks are set to light the night sky in a variety of local locations, including Big Rapids, Evart, Morley and more.

In Big Rapids, the celebration begins with the parade at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4, down Michigan Avenue. The fun then moves out to the Mecosta County fairgrounds, where parking is available for $5 per car. Between the parade and the beginning of the fireworks show at dusk, there will be activities and games at the fairgrounds, as well as food and novelty vendors. Some of the events at the fairgrounds will have a fee to participate. A rain date is set for Friday, July 6.

The Village of Mecosta will celebrate Independence Day with a parade at 11 a.m. on Wednesday, July 4. Line-up begins at 10 a.m. on Franklin Street. After the parade, there will be an ice cream social hosted by the village, as well as a scavenger hunt and geocaching for children. The Free Methodist Church in Mecosta will offer a dinner from 5 to 8 p.m. for a donation. At dusk, the fireworks display sponsored by the Veterans of Foreign Wars post will begin, with the fireworks shot off on the east end of town. The display should be visible from anywhere in downtown Mecosta.

Those with a watercraft can join in the Tri-Lakes Boat Parade on Wednesday, July 4. Boaters can choose any theme for the event, which will take place on Blue Lake. The parade will be from 4 to 7 p.m.

Following Independence Day, Canadian Lakes will have a fireworks display at 10:30 p.m. on Saturday, July 7, at Highland Haus.

Fireworks in Chippewa Lake will take place at dusk on Saturday, July 7. The fireworks are shot over the lake, and many people put their boats in the water at the public launch and enjoy the show aboard. The display is visible anywhere from the main lake. Earlier in the day, there will be a variety of races, including a 5K run, 1 Mile run/walk at 8:40 a.m. and Kids’ Fun Dash at 9:15 a.m. at Millett Park. A poker run is scheduled for 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday, at Millett Park.

In Morley, fireworks will be displayed across the sky near Sarns Resort. The show begins in the evening on Saturday, July 7.

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