Nevada County will be celebrating USA’s birthday this 4th of July, with the theme of the 2018 Parade & Fireworks Celebration, “Sweet Home Nevada County.” The 2018 Independence Day parade will be in Nevada City this year, beginning at 11:00 a.m and post-parade entertainment, craft vendors, treat street and family fun will be featured at the county fairgrounds on McCourtney Road from 3:00 p.m. until the spectacular fireworks finale at 9:30.
Continuing a tradition that began 116 years ago, Nevada City will be hosting this year’s July Fourth parade. It was in 1902 that an agreement was struck between Nevada City and Grass Valley to alternate the parade between the two communities. Since then, Grass Valley has hosted the celebration on odd-numbered years and Nevada City on even-numbered years.
“What happens here on July Fourth is the epitome of a small town celebration,” says Robin Davies, Executive Director of the Grass Valley Chamber of Commerce. “Whether the parade is in Grass Valley or Nevada City, the focus is on three important elements of American life: families, communities and patriotism.”
Helping make it a patriotic event to remember, the Nevada County Concert Band will be performing on Broad Street prior to and during the parade. Nevada County Concert Band begins their pre-parade concert at 10am in front of the Alpha Building on Broad Street. It is recommended that parade goers arrive early with lawn chairs in hand, to find a good vantage point. Following the parade, the always-popular Ophir Prison Band will be giving a lively performance on Lower Broad Street at the conclusion of the parade.
Emily Fitzpatrick, a student at Nevada Union High School will kick off the parade with The National Anthem followed by a traditional flyover. More than 70 entries, including a fantastic mix floats, horsebacks, cars, marchers & dancers all displaying red, white and blue and waving American flags, will begin the march through historic Nevada City at 11am. It is recommended that parade goers arrive early with lawn chairs in hand, to find a good vantage point along the parade route, and stay to enjoy a lively forty-five-minute performance on Broad Street after the parade by the always-popular Ophir Prison Band.
The celebration continues at the Nevada County Fairgrounds on McCourtney Road in Grass Valley with a family-oriented celebration, the gates open at 3pm. The fireworks won’t blast off until 9:30pm, but there are plenty of fun festivities to keep you entertained all afternoon.
Arrive early to spread out your blankets and chairs on the green of the fairgrounds for fireworks viewing and keep the entire family entertained with musical performances starting at 4pm at the Pine Tree Stage until the fireworks blast off when night falls. Or you can dance on over to the Dance Pad Stage where the Entertainment will be from 5 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Dance Pad entertainment includes: The Stamp Mill Stompers, Tommyknocker Cloggers, Vicki Fortini Singing Patriotic Songs and the always popular Peter Wilson. Entertainment will also include Cousin Cricket Fly the first band Followed by Revolution, Sue Legate’s Janis Joplin Tribute band. The grounds will also host a craft fair, bounce house, face painters and balloons to keep the little ones celebrating all day long!
Treat Street will be open with local organizations serving food including baked potatoes, hamburgers, corn dogs, chicken, french fries, ice cream and frozen yogurt. and the Grass Valley & Nevada City Chambers of Commerce will be operating a beer & wine booth.
Tickets are $10 in advance & $15 at the gate, so we encourage you to purchase in advance at the Grass Valley or Nevada City Chambers of Commerce or online at www.grassvalleychamber.com. Tickets will be available at the discounted rate until 2 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4 at the Nevada City and Grass Valley Chambers and at Gate 1 at the Fairgrounds on July 3rd & 4th. Active & retired military and spouses with Military ID’s and kids under 12 are free. The Nevada County Fairgrounds charges $6 for parking at the Fairgrounds and parking is limited. No alcohol, glass, pets, barbecues or personal fireworks are permitted at the fairgrounds.
Content submitted by Marni Marshall