MIAMI COUNTY —Piqua’s annual 4th of July Fest, presented this year by Kettering Health Network, is just under a week away.
This year, a new tradition will be created by holding the festival only downtown, departing from the longtime custom of holding the celebration at Fountain Park.
Public Relations and Special Coordinator Brittany Van Horn with the city of Piqua explained earlier this year that, after conducting a survey after last year’s 4th of July Fest, 90 percent of the participants indicated that they would prefer the event to be in one place and in the downtown. Vendors also requested to have the event in one place to allow them to stay open longer.
The city also decided to open up the festival to for-profit groups and businesses as well as non-profit groups to help the festival grow and include everyone.
The Piqua 4th of July Fest presented by Kettering Health Network will be held from noon to 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday, with fireworks by the riverfront at 10 p.m. The fireworks will be provided by Pyrotecnico. Pyrotecnico has worked with over 10,000 different organizations in the past decade, including the fireworks and special effects for MTV’s halftime show for Super Bowl XXXVIII and the 2004 Democratic National Convention.
The festival will feature a number of activities, including around 10 jumbo game boards and two ninja obstacle courses, one for adults and one for kids. There will also be a pie-eating contest and a cornhole tournament, which will take place at 1 p.m. in downtown Piqua. The cost is $25 per team, and there are cash prizes for first and second place and more. Register at www.piquaoh.org.
The Piqua 4th of July Fest presented by Kettering Health Network will also feature concerts from the Piqua Civic Band, a ’90s music cover band called Buzz Bin, and Piqua country duo Reflektion. Reflektion also took part in the creation of the song “This Small Town Piqua,” the music video of which will be revealed for the first time to the public during the festival.
In the kid zone, there will be spin art, face-painters, characters on stilts making balloon animal art, and more. The Piqua Fire Department will also have a pop-up splash pad at 3 p.m. that day for kids to play in the water. There will also be three children’s magic shows.
The festival will also continue to hold the annual bike parade for kids, with the bike decorating beginning at 11:30 a.m. in front of the Mainstreet Piqua office on Main Street. Decorate your bike at home or there will be decorations available at the meeting place as well as helpers to assist. Prizes will be awarded at 1 p.m. on the main stage. All ages are welcome.
Kettering Health Network is the festival’s presenting sponsor, with additional sponsorships from Gonzo Radio, Mainstreet Piqua, the Miami Valley Centre Mall, the Piqua Daily Call, and others.
• June 29-July 4, Annual West Milton festival
The traditional West Milton Fourth of July festival kicks off on Friday, June 29, and ends with fireworks in the park at 10:30 p.m. on Wednesday, July 4.
The festival will include amusement rides, games and food.
The annual West Milton Independence Day Hometown Parade will begin at 11 a.m. July 4.
Pre-sale tickets for the festival are available at Clark’s Pizza, Miami Bowling Lanes, Owl Drugs, the farmers market and Wertz Variety. The price of pre-sale tickets is $6 for a sheet of five. Tickets at the park will be $2.50 each.
Other celebrations on July 4 include:
• Miami Valley Veterans Museum parade (Troy)
The parade begins at 9 a.m. at Hobart Arena, with the route being Staunton Road to Market Street to Main Street, ending at Monroe Street by the library. This year’s parade will pay tribute to women who served. Women from any military branch are invited participate, whether currently active or retired veterans.
• Free concert (Troy)
The McCartney Project, a Paul McCartney tribute band, will perform a free concert at 7:30 p.m. at Treasure Island Park in Troy. All ages are welcome.
• Troy fireworks
Troy’s fireworks will be held at 10 p.m. along the levee area.
• Sidney fireworks
Sidney’s fireworks will be held at 10 p.m. near the high school.
• Tipp City fireworks
Tipp City’s fireworks will begin at 10 p.m. in City Park. Visitors are asked to keep off the field in the stadium, but may still sit in the bleachers or parking lot.