By Linda Kor
Area residents and visitors have plenty of activities to chose from as they celebrate Independence Day this weekend.
The 4th of July Freedom Festival opens with a 5K color run starting at 7:30 a.m. on Friday. Participants are asked to arrive at First Street and Kinsley Avenue beginning at 7 a.m. for a group photo on the Route 66 shield. The race will end at Vargas Field.
The entry fee is $25 for adults and $15 for kids 12 and under, with the price to include a T-shirt. All proceeds will go to support the annual Freedom Festival event. To register, visit www.active.com.
The color run will be followed by a kid’s parade and small festival at Vargas Field that will include carnival games, a dunk tank, bounce houses, a water play area and a barbecue. Kid’s are encouraged to decorate their bikes, wagons and strollers for the parade, which will go around the block. Prizes will be given for most patriotic bike, person and group.
For more information, contact Laura Carrell at (520) 603-5698 or the Winslow Chamber of Commerce at 289-2434.
The fireworks show will begin at dusk at Vargas Stadium.
The annual Joseph City Fourth of July celebration opens early this year with a baseball tournament at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 3,
at the Joseph City High School softball field. Contact Rachelle Roberson Hansen for more information at (928) 587-7940.
Friday begins with a color run from 6 to 7 a.m. Contact Tonya Crosby at (928) 386-0373.
At 8 a.m. the patriotic parade heads down Main Street beginning at McLaws Avenue and ending at Tanner Park. Contact Julie Clifford for more information at 587-2750.
At 8:45 a.m., a flag raising ceremony will take place at Tanner Park, followed by a horseshoe tournament, obstacle course, games and vendors beginning at 9 a.m. A volleyball tournament will be held from 10 a.m. to 12 noon, also at the park. Contact Jay Miller for more information at (480) 299-6152.
It wouldn’t be the Fourth of July without watermelon and barbecue, and visitors will get their fill of both starting with a watermelon eating contest at 10:30 a.m. for a $2 entry fee, and burgers and hot dogs at the park from 11 a.m. until 12 noon at a cost of $5 and $4, respectively.
A basketball tournament will take place from 2 to 4 p.m. at the high school. Contact Alan or Vicky Palmer for more information at 587-2502.
The annual celebration is hosted by the Joseph City Chamber of Commerce.
To become a vendor at the festivities or for other information, contact Rachelle Hansen at 587-7940.
The annual Fourth of July Bike Parade will be held at 9 a.m. on Friday at Hunt Park in Holbrook. Kids are encouraged to decorate their bikes, trikes or wagons and join in the fun. Following the parade there will be games at the park, including potato sack races, beanbag toss, a barrel train ride and lots of other fun activities.
The Holbrook Swimming Pool will be open from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Friday.
The annual Holbrook Volunteer Firemen’s Barbecue will be served beginning at 12 noon on Friday, July 4, at Station No. 3 on the mesa. The all you can eat meal of slow roasted beef, beans, coleslaw and ice cold lemonade will be served for $10 for adults and $5 for children.
The firemen will also present a fireworks show at dusk at the county complex in south Holbrook.
Taylor will host its 60th annual Independence Day celebration this weekend.
The annual Cowboy Poetry and Country Music will be held at 7 p.m. at Rodeo Park on Friday. Local cowboy poets and musicians will perform.
The firing of the first anvil at 5 a.m. on Saturday at Taylor Ball Field will signal the beginning of Saturday’s celebration. Accompanied by patriotic music by the Jennings Band, the anvil will then travel to Freeman Park, the LDS Stake Center and end up at the ball field on East Center to start the Fun Run at 6 a.m.
The Celebration Run features a 10K run, or a two-mile run or walk, and is open to all ages. Registration will be taken until the race starts. A fee of $15 will be charged to all participants who register for the run and a shirt. Please bring the correct change if you are registering at the run. A fee of $10 will be charged to participants who register for the run alone. Registration forms are available online at ci.snowflake.az.us (go to Recreation and Parks Department, then Sports Programs).
There will be a Patriotic Program at 10 a.m. at the Taylor Stake Center, 309 W. Willow, where the inductees to the Taylor Hall of Fame will be announced and the Jennings Band will entertain. This year’s keynote speaker will be Jeff Ellsworth.
The barbecue begins at 12 noon and at 5 p.m.
The Taylor-Shumway Heritage Foundation will open the Taylor Museum for tours from 12 noon to 4 p.m. and all other historic home sites will be open from 1 to 3 p.m. on Saturday. The museum offers several Taylor books and souvenirs for sale.
Taylor’s 60th annual Night Rodeo begins at 7 p.m. Tickets are $10 for adults, $5 for ages 6 to 12 and $30 for a family.
The fireworks show will begin at 9 p.m., and a dance will be held on the pavilion from 9:30 p.m. to midnight.
On Monday, July 7, the Taylor-Shumway Heritage Foundation will hold its Hayride Jamboree at 5:30 p.m. at the Margaret McCleve Hancock Log Cabin located at Main Street and Willow. There is no cost, but donations are accepted. There will be a horsedrawn wagon ride giving a tour of historic Taylor, followed by a pioneer dinner and entertainment.