BY SHERI TRUSTY
Locals can have a firecracker of a time celebrating the Fourth of July at a number of events this week. Oak Harbor’s Independence Day Celebration will traditionally get an early start, blasting off after dark with a fireworks show on Monday, July 3. Most fireworks shows, such as Port Clinton’s Red, White & Vroom celebration, will take place on Tuesday, July 4.
The Oak Harbor Chamber of Commerce has planned a full evening of activities on Monday. Mill Street Riverfront Activities include Journey’s Giant Inflatables from 5 p.m.-9 p.m. Food concessions and the Chamber Tent featuring beer and pop will be open from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. Class A Dance will perform at 5:30 p.m., and Harbor Lites will perform at 6:30 p.m.
DJ Tony will provide music from 7 p.m.-10 p.m., and the Royalty Duck Race will begin at 8 p.m. Duck race proceeds benefit the Oak Harbor Apple Festival Royalty Court. Oak Harbor festivities will culminate with fireworks at dusk.
Port Clinton’s Red, White & Vroom celebration will kick off with the Star Spangled Squirt Gun Run/Walk 5K sponsored by Port Clinton Women’s Club at the Jefferson Street Pavilion. Registration begins at 8 a.m., and the race begins at 9 a.m. Registration information can be found at www.facebook.com/events/203717689160278.
The Firecracker Cutie Contest holds the distinction of being the only pageant in Ohio open to all ages, all genders and all locations, according to contest chair Heather Schenek. New titles to the pageant this year are Prince, Junior Queen, and Elite Supreme.
The contest will be held at Trinity United Methodist Church (UMC) at the corner of 2nd and Adams Streets Registration begins at 11 a.m., and the contest begins at noon. Applications are available at local shops and at www.facebook.com/PortClintonArea4thOfJulyCelebration.
A Food Truck Feast will be held in the parking lot of Trinity UMC at the corner of 2nd and Adams Streets from 2 p.m.-6 p.m., and a Classic Car, Truck & Cycle Show sponsored by Croghan Colonial Bank will be held in the 100 and 200 blocks of Adams Street from 2 p.m.-6 p.m. Ottawa County Senior Resources and Crosser-Priesman Funeral Homes will sponsor an Ice Cream Social inside Trinity UMC from 2 p.m.-7p.m.
For about ten years, D. Gregory Fox has been directing the Voices of Freedom Community Choir Concert on the Fourth of July. This year’s concert will be held at Trinity UMC at 7 p.m. Fox organized the first concert about a decade ago when a scheduled band canceled just six weeks prior to Independence Day.
“I thought, if I had a dozen singers and one accompaniment, I’d be ok,” Fox said. “Forty people showed up, and Trinity United Methodist let us use their church. We’ve been having it there ever since.”
“I am just so humbled that so many people participate. We have six practices prior to the concert, and we even have one man who travels from Fort Wayne, Ind., to practice with us,” Fox said.
A Family Dance Party hosted by Port Clinton Radio and featuring DJ Von and the Port Clinton Lions Club Food Wagon will take place at Waterworks Park from 8 p.m.-10 p.m., and the Incredible Rubber Duck Race benefitting United Way in Ottawa County will begin at 8:30 p.m. at Derby Pond in Waterworks Park.
The evening will end with fireworks at 10 p.m., which can be viewed at Waterworks Park and City Beach.
Three days of fireworks, fun around the county
Ottawa County and the surrounding area offer several opportunities to view fireworks this year.
Sunday, July 2
- Catawba: The Catawba Island Club will host fireworks on the golf course at dusk.
Monday, July 3
- Oak Harbor: The Oak Harbor Chamber of Commerce will host fireworks at dusk along the Portage River off Mill St., which will be blocked off for the festivities.
Tuesday, July 4
- Port Clinton: The city’s Red, White & Vroom festivities will culminate with fireworks at 10 p.m., which can be viewed at Waterworks Park and the City Beach.
- Put-in-Bay: Fireworks will be launched from a barge on Lake Erie at dusk. Best viewing locations are on the lawn of Perry’s Monument or along the seawall.
- Cedar Point: The Light Up the Point fireworks show will begin at 10 p.m. at Cedar Point Beach. VIP Beach Experience passes for reserved seating and a buffet are available.