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Parade, fireworks highlight local celebrations

Matt DeYoung • Jul 1, 2017 at 11:00 AM

Each year, our nation’s independence is celebrated across the country on July 4 with parades, fireworks and other shows of patriotism. 

There will be plenty of opportunities to celebrate the day in the Tri-Cities this year. 

The City of Ferrysburg will host its annual Fourth of July parade, beginning at 10:30 a.m. 

The parade is preceded by a community breakfast, hosted by Mayor Dan Ruiter, from 8-10 a.m. at the Ferrysburg City Hall, 17290 Roosevelt Road. The free breakfast is sponsored by the Ferrysburg City Council. 

Participants for the breakfast are asked to park in the Walden Green Montessori School lot. Children must be accompanied by an adult. 

Those participating in the parade will begin lining up at 10 a.m. at City Hall. The parade proceeds east along Ridge Avenue to Pine Street, then heads south on Pine to Fourth Street. Once the parade reaches Fourth Street, the progression will move onto the sidewalk and continue to William Ferry Park. There, a flag-raising ceremony will take place. Other post-parade activities include food, games and prizes. 

Deb Everett, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force, will serve as the grand marshal for this year’s parade. 

Antique cars make up a significant part of the parade, and all are welcome to join in. People may also walk, ride bikes, pull wagons or ride non-motorized scooters. The Harbor Trolley will be available for those who would like a ride from the parade. 

Ridge Avenue from 174th Avenue to Pine Street and Pine to Third Street will be closed to traffic during the parade. 

Fireworks show

Later that evening, Grand Haven will celebrate Independence Day with its annual fireworks show. First is the Musical Fountain performance beginning at 9:45 p.m., followed by fireworks shot off from the base of Dewey Hill. An estimated 50,000 people descend on downtown Grand Haven for the annual show each year. 

Blanket policy

People are allowed to begin marking their spots for the fireworks show at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, July 4, in Bicentennial Park, Chinook Park, Escanaba Park and along the entire waterfront. According to the Grand Haven Department of Public Safety, the placement of spot-marking materials prior to 12:01 a.m. is prohibited.

Items that may be used to mark a spot include blankets, sheets, golf tees and caution tape. No tents, sand bags, plastic tarps, duct tape, rocks, stakes or spray paint are allowed. Plastic tarps suffocate and kill the grass. Rocks and stakes present a tripping hazard. All plastic tarps, duct tape, rocks or stakes placed in any public park or on public property at any time will be removed and disposed of by the City of Grand Haven.

The Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office marine patrol will clear the seawall of all boat traffic at noon Tuesday. No mooring will be allowed along the seawall after that time. Boats may moor on the seawall again after 1 a.m. Wednesday.

Traffic routes

In order to ease the flow of traffic following the fireworks show, several special traffic rules will be put into effect. 

Franklin, Washington and Columbus avenues will all be one-way streets out of downtown. 

For those who want to go north toward Muskegon or Spring Lake, use Jackson, Columbus or Washington. 

Those heading to the east side of Grand Haven should use Washington or Grant, while those heading south toward Holland should exit downtown using Franklin or Taylor. 

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