BY ANNE RITZ
Rochester and its surrounding communities tend to go all out when celebrating Independence Day. Just about every nearby town has special events and fireworks to recognize the anniversary of our nation’s birth. This year July 4 falls on a Wednesday, which makes for all kinds of interesting schedules (and a very weird workweek). Below is a list of major area July 4 events. If you think of something we missed post a comment to this article, at the bottom.
Saturday, June 30
Penfield: A parade begins at 10 a.m. at Penfield High School (25 High School Drive), and continues on Five Mile Line Road, Route 441, and Baird Road to the Penfield Community Center. After the parade, head to Harris Whalen Park (126 Penfield Road) at 6 p.m. for the remaining events, including activities for kids, food vendors, local musicians Bobby Henrie & The Goners (6 p.m.) and Dog House (8 p.m.), and fireworks at 10 p.m. For more information, visit penfield.org or call 340-8651.
Tuesday, July 3-Wednesday, July 4
Irondequoit: On Tuesday, an arts and crafts show and community fair will run 11 a.m.-11 p.m. From noon until 6 p.m. stop by for the Pioneer House Blacksmith Shop Open House. For ages 21 and up, there will be a beverage garden 2-10:30 p.m. that will feature performances from Jeff Elliot & Danny Blues at 3 p.m. and the Lakeside Hooligans at 6:30 p.m. A street dance will be held 7-11 p.m. with music by Ruby Shooz and youth performer showcases 8-8:30 p.m. 9:30-10 p.m. On Wednesday, start your day with the 2-mile fun run at 8 a.m. or the 10K race at 8:15 a.m. A parade starts at 11 a.m. on Titus Avenue and continues from Irondequoit Town Plaza to Town Hall. The beverage garden will be open 2-10:30 p.m. There will be several activities and food vendors throughout the day, closing the evening with fireworks at 9:30 p.m. Activities take place at Irondequoit Town Hall (1280 Titus Avenue). For more information, visit Irondequoit.org.
Wednesday, July 4
Brighton: The town will begin its festivities with a 5K race beginning at Twelve Corners Brighton High School (2643 Elmwood Ave) at 8 a.m. The rest of the day’s festivities will begin at 2 p.m. at Meridian Centre Park (located at 2025 Winton Road), and will include rides, food, entertainment by the Skycoasters, and a fireworks display. Admission is free. For more information, visit townofbrighton.org.
Brockport: Gather on the lawn of the Morgan-Manning House (151 Main St., Brockport) for a day of patriotic activities. At 10 a.m. a children’s parade will go from Remembrance Park to the Morgan Manning House along South Street; the parade will be accompanied by the music of the Excelsior Brigade Drum & Fife Corp. Followed by the parade, the new Brockport Community Concert Band will provide music on the Morgan Manning House lawn beginning at 11 a.m. and the Community Jazz band will follow. Other activities include old-fashioned games, face painting and chalk painting, and a traditional cakewalk. For more information, call 637-3645 or visit frontiernet.net/~morganmanninghouse/fourthofjuly.html.
Chili: This will be Chili’s 23rd annual Chili-E Festival. Come down to the Chili Senior Center (3235 Chili Ave.) starting at noon for food vendors and craft exhibits, a car show, live entertainment by Coup De Villes and Wooden Nickel, children’s activities, a 2 p.m. screening of James Cagney’s “Yankee Doodle,” and more. A parade will begin at 5 p.m. and continue from Bucky Drive to Chili Avenue. Fireworks cap off the event at 10 p.m. For more information and a full list of events visit townofchili.org or call 784-5250.
City of Rochester: Head to Main Street from the South Avenue exchange to see Steve Grills & the Roadmasters performing at 7:30 p.m. and patriotic pops by Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra at 9 p.m. After the performances, a massive fireworks display will begin at 10 p.m. You can park for free South Avenue Garage (39 Stone Street), Court Street Garage (194 Court Street), or Sister Cities Garage (28 N. Fitzhugh St.). Bring blankets or lawn chairs, unless you plan on standing. For more information, visit cityofrochester.gov/july4.
Fairport:/Perinton: The Firecracker 5-mile Race begins at 8 a.m. at Perinton Park (off of Fairport Road). A parade begins at 10 a.m., featuring floats of historic events, places, people, and eras. After the parade, take a tour of the historic Bethlehem Lutheran Church (48 Perrin St.); free hot dogs and lemonade will be available to tour goers. Relax the rest of the day at a picnic at Perinton Park, which will include activities and music starting at noon. For more information, visit perinton.org.
Greece: The First Bible Baptist Church will put on “Spirit of America” at the Grace & Truth Sports Center (373 North Greece Road). The festival is a tribute to all branches of the Armed Forces with a special presentation to honor fallen soldiers. Country-Western artist Josie Waverly will perform and fireworks will commence at 10 p.m. The festivities begin at 5 p.m. For more information, call 392-0777.
Henrietta: Henrietta holds its 4th of July Garage and Craft Sale at 595 Calkins Road 9 a.m.-2 p.m. After that, festivities begin at 4 p.m. at the Henrietta Senior Center (515 Calkins Road) with entertainment, children’s activities, and concessions. Kids won’t be bored with pony rides, inflatable amusements, and arts and crafts. The night concludes with a fireworks display beginning at 9:40 p.m. For more information, call 359-2540 or visit henrietta.org.
Mumford: Genesee Country Village & Museum (1410 Flint Hill Road, Mumford) will celebrate Independence Day on July 4, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., with traditional activities such as parade, concerts, a pie-eating contest, egg toss, sack races, pea-shooter contest, and town ball match. At 11 a.m. a naturalization ceremony will occur on the steps of the village Town Hall, where new citizens take the oath of allegiance. A Civil War-era replica balloon will be on display surrounded by a Civil War encampment (balloon rides are available for an extra fee starting at 10 a.m.). Two ceremonies will honor the nation’s birth, one set in 1826 and the other in 1876, along with the recreation of a duel using flintlock pistols handmade by the museum’s gunsmith. Admission costs $10.50-$16.50; children under 3 admitted free. For more information call 538-6822 or visit gcv.org.