WEIRTON - An open-air concert, summer festival, parade and fireworks display will highlight the community's extended Fourth of July celebration.
Activities will kick off from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. on July 5 with an open-air concert by the Wheeling Symphony followed by fireworks at the Weirton Events Center. Doors open at 6 p.m. so concert-goers can claim their space on the lawn. No coolers, alcohol or pets are allowed.
Entries are being accepted for the parade, set to begin at 11:30 p.m. on July 6. This year's theme is "A Mountaineer Homecoming - 150 Years Strong." Deadline to enter is June 28. Forms may be obtained online at mcc-weir.tripod.com.
"We've extended invitations to all of our area groups," said Kevin Elias, program director for the city's parks and recreation. "Our chambers of commerce, fire departments, churches, schools and youth organizations - anyone can participate. It's open to everyone, and it's not just a Weirton thing. The parade is the kickoff for the Summer Festival."
The Summer Festival, sponsored by the Weirton Renaissance Committee, will get under way immediately after the parade at the Weirton Events Center.
The festival lineup includes kid activities by Kurt James from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.; demonstrations by the Wild World of Animals, 1:15 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.; Extreme Illusions & Escapes by Josh Knotts, 3:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.; and musical entertainment by Spinning Jenny, 5 p.m. to 6:15 p.m.; the Donohues, 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.; and Legends, 7:45 p.m. The fireworks will follow at 9:45 p.m.
"It's a great opportunity to showcase what we have, not only here in Weirton but throughout the Upper Ohio Valley," Elias said. "This parade is a wonderful marketing tool and promotional tool for businesses, organizations and people to show what they do, what they have to offer."
Elias said they typically have 85-90 entries, though this year they're hoping for more.
"It's the state's 150th anniversary, so we'd like to get more people, more dignitaries involved," he said. "It's for everyone, it's not just a Weirton thing."
For questions about the parade, contact Elias at (304) 797-5721 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org.