The Fourth of July is being celebrated this Saturday. In Iron County, the nation’s birthday will be celebrated with special festivities in Iron River, Alpha and Amasa.
Iron River
The Fourth of July parade steps off at 10 a.m. from the West Iron County High School parking lot, featuring a flyover by World War II airplanes.
Registration starts at the high school at 8 a.m. The route is north on Washington Avenue to Genesee Street, then west on Genesee to Seventh Avenue, where it will disband.
World War II, Korean and Vietnam veterans are asked to report to the staging area by 9:30 to ride on their designated floats.
Categories are as follows: adult organizations, non-profit organizations, municipalities (fire departments, towns, chambers), commercial-industrial, youth organizations, horses (individuals and groups), non-motorized decorated bikes (boys, girls and adults), farm tractors and classic/antique vehicles.
Prizes will be awarded after the parade, with $50, $30 and $20 for each category except the bikes, which have prizes of $10, $8 and $6. The reviewing stand will be along Genesee Street.
The West Side Veterans Council, which organizes the events, thanks all individuals and businesses for their continued support of its community programs.
After the parade, the West Iron County Fire Department will host children’s races outside the fire hall on Ninth Avenue, a few blocks north of U.S. 2. The firemen will also give out ice cream bars.
As daylight fades away, crowds will gather for the annual fireworks display, which starts at about 10 p.m. The West Iron County firemen launch the fireworks from the north end of Stambaugh Airport, and there are plenty of great places to enjoy the show.
The West Side Veterans Council pays for the fireworks show. Because of rising costs for fireworks and insurance, the council needs donations from the public to keep the tradition going.
At 9 a.m., a flag-raising ceremony at the Village Hall starts the Fourth of July program. The Alpha-Mastodon Fire Department, Crystal Falls VFW Post and the Forest Park High School Marching Band will all be taking part.
The parade starts at 9:30, and all children taking part will win a cash prize. Top prizes go to the best trimmed bikes and best costumes. After the parade, free ice cream cones and Crackerjack are available to everyone, and concessions will be available at the big yellow tent. Brats, hot dogs, soda and beer will all be available.
Events will be taking place near the Village Hall all day. A coin scramble is scheduled at 11 a.m., followed by kids races at 1 p.m. (wheelbarrow, sack, three-legged and egg races), and an egg toss for those 12 and over at 3:30. Cash prizes go to the winners. Musical entertainment is also part of the day’s fun.
At the Alpha Community-Senior Center, a pasty sale, pie social and red, white and blue shortcake will all be taking place starting at 9 a.m. The Alpha Museum holds an open house from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
It’s always a busy Fourth of July in Alpha, and the celebration ends with a spectacular fireworks display at dusk, staged by the Alpha-Mastodon Fire Department.
In Amasa, Fourth of July events start at 9 a.m. with an ecumenical hymn sing at Grace United Methodist Church. Coffee and rolls will be available during a community welcome at the fire station and township hall just after the service.
A flag-raising ceremony at 10 a.m. starts the program at Hemlock River Park, just south of the downtown area on Old 141. That is followed by kids games, a kiddie parade and a duck race.
Lunch, including ice cream and Crackerjack, takes place at 11 a.m. at the fire hall, sponsored by the “125th committee” and the Amasa-Hematite Township firefighters.
The Amasa Historical Society’s museum will be open, and winners of the annual raffle will be selected at 1 p.m. The annual community softball game takes place at 2 p.m. at the field near old school yard. All are welcome to take part.