Arts & Entertainment

Montclair Township Gearing Up for 67th Annual Independence Day Celebration

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MONTCLAIR, NJ - Montclair Township officials are preparing for the 67th annual 4th of July parade.

Hosted by Montclair Celebrates, a community-based organization formed to preserve the Township’s Independence Day celebrations, the annual July 4th parade is promising spectacular performances and entertainment on Tuesday, July 4.

With the parade beginning at 11:00 a.m., marchers will travel along a 1.6-mile route traveling west on Bloomfield Avenue to Midland Avenue, continuing to Watchung Avenue, west to Valley Road and ending at Edgemont Park, where the annual Family Picnic will be held.

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Then later that evening, the annual Montclair July 4th Fireworks display will take place at Yogi Berra Stadium on Montclair State University campus. The stadium admission fee is $3 per person or $10 for a family (family = up to 6 people; $2 per person beyond 6), free for kids ages 5 and under. Gates open at 6:30 p.m. Free parking will be available at the Carparc Diem deck, adjacent to Floyd Hall Arena and at the Red Hawk parking deck. Overflow vehicles will be directed to other parking areas. (Please note: concessions will be available; no outside food, water or other drinks may be brought into the stadium.)

PARADE HIGHLIGHTS

Joining us again in this year's parade lineup will be the Fralinger String Band of Philadelphia Mummersfame. In 2015, the band won First Prize in the Philadelphia New Year’s Day parade with the theme “The Machine.” This year the band's "Spellbinding" theme will see a sorcerer’s spells take the audience through a wondrous and wizardly world. When the Sorcerer sees himself in his crystal ball, illusion shatters into reality and a spellbinding performance unfolds. See an amazing performance with talented musicians in fabulous costumes.

The band that the Gothamist called “the ever-entertaining Lesbian & Gay Big Apple Corps will once again perform in Montclair's July 4th parade. Since its formation in 1979, this band of brothers and sisters has been making music and art for audiences across the United States and Canada. The recipient of dozens of awards from NYC Heritage of Pride’s coveted Best in March Award to Rochester’s little-known but equally appreciated Ruby Slipper Award, the Lesbian & Gay Big Apple Corps Marching Band has been seen by millions in such diverse appearances as a parade to commemorate the bicentennial of George Washington’s Inauguration, a performance in a church basement in Brooklyn, concerts at Carnegie Hall and Lincoln Center’s Alice Tully Hall, and the New York City Veteran’s Day Parade.

Raiders Drum and Bugle Corps – The world class Raiders are a 15-time Drum Corps International Championship Finalist and won best percussion and best general effect in 2005 in the divisional and world championships. The Raiders Drum and Bugle Corps, founded in 1990, is a nationally competitive drum corps based in Burlington, NJ. It is a non-profit 501c(3) organization, founded with one primary goal -- to afford any young adult the opportunity to march in a drum corps while providing a world class experience.

Caporales San Simon - This Bolivian dance group was first formed in November of 1978 in the city of Cochabamba. Historically the Caporales were foremen of the black slaves of the Bolivian hot zones of the Yungas in La Paz, Bolivia. The group made its first appearance in the Carnival of Oruro. Caporales dance is based on the rhythms of the saya, a form of Bolivian processional dance, but has been transformed with the addition of different kinds of foreign musical elements. The dancers wear costumes decorated with lots of color and sequins, reminiscent of the conquistadors.

St. Columcille United Gaelic Band - The band draws its name from an Irish prince, warrior and scholar who became a priest to bring early Christianity to the Western Isles of Ireland and Scotland. St. Columcille remains a lasting symbol of the unity of the early Celtic peoples, particularly the Scots and the Irish. This award winning organization, whose stated mission is to "forward the music of the Gael," have performed at Montclair's Fourth of July parade for many years.

Local favorites will also be in the 2017 line-up such as the Montclair Community Band, community groups and organizations who will have floats and marchers, fire engines, antique cars, and much, much more in store, including everyone's favorite -- Elvis.

GRAND MARSHAL 2017

Montclair Community Pre-K 
The members of the Montclair Celebrates 4th of July Committee designated the Montclair Community Pre-K (MCPK) as the Grand Marshal of the 2017 parade. The community’s nationally recognized Pre-K program, whose mission is to offer all three- to five-year-olds in Montclair a high-quality preschool education regardless of the family’s ability to pay, enters its 20th school year this fall.

“Just like Montclair's 4th of July parade, the Montclair Community Pre-K is one of our Township's greatest institutions. It has touched the lives of countless families during the past two decades and it is truly interwoven into the fabric of Montclair," said Paul Brubaker, Chairman of the Montclair Celebrates 4th of July Committee. "We are thrilled that the Montclair Community Pre-K will be leading the parade when nearly everyone in town joins together for the event of the summer season."

FAMILY PICNIC

After the parade, join us for the township family picnic at Edgemont Park. Enjoy barbecue and ice cream from Applegate Farm. Come see who will be this year's winner of the hotdog eating contest! Plus there will be music and great entertainment for the kids.

FIREWORKS

Where: Yogi Berra Stadium, home of the New Jersey Jackals, on MSU campus.

Time: Gates open 6:30 p.m. Fireworks display begins around 9:00 p.m.

Fee: Admission to the stadium is $3 per person or $10 for a family (family = 6 people; $2 per person over 6 people); kids 5 and under free.

Button sales for the fireworks are provided at the following locations:

- Montclair Recreation, 205 Claremont Ave., Mon-Fri, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
- Investors Bank, 536 Bloomfield Ave.
- Kings Supermarket, 650 Valley Rd.
- Yogi Berra Stadium the night of the event starting at 7:00 p.m.

RAIN CANCELLATION INFORMATION:

In the event of rain, the parade will go on, the picnic in Edgemont Park and fireworks at Yogi Berra Stadium will be canceled.

Rain cancellation/postponement announcements will be posted on the Montclair Township website and on TV34. A rain information phone number will be available: 973-509-4914; alerts will be sent out to Montclair Events and Township Services (METS) alert system subscribers (mets.montclairnjusa.org/Subscribe.aspx).

The Township’s 2017 Independence Day celebrations are made possible with the tremendous efforts of the Montclair Celebrates Committee and the generosity of the local community.

For more information, visit www.montclairnjusa.org/july4th or contact Montclair Recreation & Cultural Affairs at 973-509-4915.

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