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Region to mark 4th with music, games, fireworks

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Residents and visitors gather at the Elizabeth City waterfront to watch as fireworks light up the sky during last year’s Fourth of July celebration. Crowds will be gathering this Thursday for the spectacular show.

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From staff reports

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Music. Food. Cornhole. Bounce houses. Parades. A reading of the Declaration of Independence. And, of course, fireworks.

All are part of the annual Fourth of July celebrations across the region. And all are scheduled again for this year’s celebration of the nation’s birthday, most of which will be held on Thursday. Elizabeth City, Currituck and Edenton plan to hold their Fourth of July observances that day. Perquimans County’s observance will be held on Saturday.

Elizabeth City

In Elizabeth City, events get underway at Waterfront Park at 6 p.m. Activities will include music by DJ Taz, dancing and kids activities including face painting, bounce houses, activity inflatables, miniature golf, a splash pad, a kiddie carousel and a trackless train. There also will be cornhole games and a photo booth. Food vendors will include Bob-B-Que, Blasters Hot Dogs, the Cotton Candy Man and the Waffle Waffle Truck.

Darris Sawyer, recreation specialist for the Elizabeth City-Pasquotank Parks and Recreation Department, said this year’s fireworks show will begin between 9 p.m. and 9:15 p.m. and conclude about 9:45 p.m. Zambelli Fireworks, which has overseen past fireworks shows in the city, will again manage this year’s.

Because of construction underway at Coast Guard Park, this year’s fireworks will be launched from a barge moored in the Pasquotank River, Sawyer said. The cost of this year’s fireworks show, paid for with both public funds and private donations, is $20,000, Sawyer said. That’s less than last year’s $25,000 cost. Sawyer said the difference is that this year’s show will feature fewer fireworks — a restriction set because of the size of the barge the city is using.

“It will still be a great show; there will just be fewer fireworks,” Sawyer said.

Last year’s Independence Day celebration drew between 2,500 and 3,500 visitors, he said.

The rain date for the fireworks show is Friday at 9 p.m. For more information, call the Elizabeth City-Pasquotank Parks and Recreation Department at 335-1424.

Currituck County

In Currituck, the Currituck Historical Society will sponsor a Fourth of July-themed kids bike parade at the Currituck County Courthouse at 10 a.m. Prizes will be awarded to the best decorated bike. For more information, contact Barbara Snowden at 619-6991.

The county’s Travel and Tourism Office will then host the 26th annual Independence Day celebration at Historic Corolla Park in Corolla. The event gets underway at 3 p.m. with activities that will include a cornhole tournament, a watermelon-eating contest and children’s games. The celebration also will feature food vendors and music.

The event’s fireworks show begins at dusk.

Although parking at the park at 1100 Club Road is free, no on-street parking is allowed. Also prohibited are coolers and alcoholic beverages. The Historic Corolla Park boat ramp also will be closed to boaters.

For information about Currituck’s Fourth of July event, call 435-2947 or visit www.VisitCurrituck.com/Events. Visitors can also sign up to receive text messages and alerts about the celebration, including whether it’s been canceled, by texting “FOR18” to 888-777.

Edenton

Edenton’s annual Fourth of July celebration traditionally is held in two parts: one centered around a local signer of the Declaration of Independence in the morning; the second including youth activities and a fireworks show in the late afternoon and evening.

For the past 20 years, the Edenton Tea Party chapter of the National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution has hosted a ceremony honoring Joseph Hewes, an Edenton resident and one of three North Carolinians — William Hooper and John Penn were the others — who signed the Declaration of Independence in July 1776. This year’s ceremony will again be held at the Joseph Hewes Monument on the 1767 Courthouse Green starting at 10 a.m.

The event will feature participation by a number of local organizations, including the Edward G. Bond Post 40 of the American Legion, Boy Scout Troop 164 and the Edenton Tea Party chapter of the NSDAR. Hood Ellis, an attorney with the firm Hornthal, Riley, Ellis and Maland, will read a biographical sketch of Hewes. Edenton Mayor Roland Vaughan will then read aloud the Declaration of Independence.

Edenton’s Fourth of July celebration continues at 4 p.m. at the town’s Colonial Park. The Chowan Edenton Optimist Club will host, as it has for 40 years, an afternoon of events and activities culminating with a fireworks show after dusk.

The event will include music by DJ Cowboy Adam Evans, craft vendors, children’s games and the Optimist train. A new vendor this year will be selling homemade ice cream.

Because the Optimist Club pays for the fireworks show through donations, it continues to seek help with fundraising. Contributions can be mailed to Chowan Edenton Optimist Club, 108 Meadow Lark Drive, Edenton, NC 27932.

Perquimans County

Perquimans will host the region’s last Independence Day celebration. Events will begin Saturday with a parade starting from Hertford Grammar School at 6 p.m.; continue with entertainment, food trucks and games at Missing Mill Park in Hertford at 7 p.m.; and a fireworks show over the Perquimans River at 9 p.m.

Lineup for the parade will begin at the school at 4:30 p.m. Entries are still being accepted and may include decorated bicycles, tricycles, wagons, cars, trucks, buses, vans, boats, trailers, lawn mowers, golf-carts, and pets. For more information, call Vanora Brothers at 426-5956 or Sharon Smith at 426-5657.

Hertford’s fireworks show can be viewed on both sides of the Perquimans River — at Missing Mill Park in Hertford and Winfall Landing Park in Winfall. Organizers are still seeking donations to help pay for the fireworks. Contributions can be sent to PQ Fireworks, 104 Carolina St., Hertford, NC 27944.

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