The Hippo


Mar 20, 2018








Residents of Merrimack celebrate the holiday with chalk art at last year’s Fourth of July festival. Courtesy photo.

Nation celebration
Something for everyone this Fourth of July


 Here are some of the events that are happening all around the state this Fourth of July weekend, with everything from a beer-sponsored beach day to decorated children’s bike parades. Most events are happening on the Fourth, but there are activities in the days before and after as well.

Check out the festivities at Souhegan High School (412 Boston Post Road, Amherst), happening on Thursday, July 3, and Friday, July 4. Events on Friday evening will include fireworks, hot air balloon rides, face painting, music by the Dustin Newhouse Band and more. Rally into the morning with a parade marching through downtown featuring floats, antique cars, clowns, Revolutionary and Civil War reenactor regiments and more.
The event will also include the Children’s Bicycle Parade on Main Street in Amherst. Children can decorate their bicycles for a chance to win cash prizes. There will be five categories, four based on age group, and judging will focus on originality, creativity and effort on the part of the child. The parade starts at 10 a.m. and judging will take place at 9:45 a.m.
Why depart from a long-standing tradition? Come to Memorial Field (70 S. Fruit St., Concord) at dusk on Friday, July 4, to watch the fireworks with the whole family. The Nevers band will be playing as people come in and find a good viewing spot.
Spend the afternoon with the kids at the Family Fun Day at Houston Park on Friday, July 4. Show your competitive spirit in the pie-eating contest or a hula hoop contest, or kick back and enjoy live music over a hot dog and an ice cream sundae.
While you’re there, check out the parade, which will begin at Public Works Road in Contoocook and run down a new route along Maple Street over to the park. The parade will start at noon, and those wanting to march will have to line up at 11:30 a.m.
Want to do something sweet this weekend? Taste your baking skills at the Tooky Cookie Bake-Off on Friday, July 4, from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. Anyone interested in showing off their treats can find an entry form on the town website. Tastings and judging will happen during the towns family fun day event..
Have a drink in honor of a true patriot this holiday. The Naswa Resort (1086 Weirs Blvd., Laconia, 366-4341) is hosting a Freedom Celebration sponsored by Sam Adams Brewery all day on Friday, July 4. Soak up some sun on the beach and join the Resort for giveaways from Boston Brewing Co., as well as other games and contests. Stay for the evening and catch live music and the Weirs Beach fireworks from the docks.
Those with sea legs can enjoy the fireworks aboard the Mount Washington with its party cruise on Lake Winnipesaukee, starting at the Weirs Beach docks (Lakeside Ave., Laconia), on Friday, July 4. Hop aboard for a buffet-style dinner and dancing to the music of Annie and the Orphans, while the boat sails around the lake looking for fireworks. The cruise departs at 7 p.m. and returns at 10 p.m. Tickets cost $53.
It’s back for another year — don’t miss the Independence Day Celebration at Arms Park in downtown Manchester on Thursday, July 3. Bring the whole family down to see the 39th Army Band and stay for the variety of food and drink vendors, beginning around 7:30 p.m. The fireworks will begin at dusk. For more information, call 624-6444.
Celebrate Independence Day with America’s pastime. The NH Fisher Cats will be hosting the Trenton Thunder at Northeast Delta Dental Stadium (1 Line Drive, Manchester, 641-2005,, on Friday, July 4. The game kicks off at 7:05 p.m. — and make sure you stick around after the game for the Fourth of July Atlas Fireworks.
Looking for something more adult-oriented? Stop by the annual Potluck and Fireworks Dance Party at the Queen City Ballroom Studio (21 Dow St., 2nd floor, Manchester, 622-1500, and dance to a mix of recorded ballroom, Latin and swing music. From 7 p.m. until a half hour after the end of the fireworks display, the studio will be open to allow singles and couples of all skill levels to come and move their feet. Tickets are $10 per person at the door.
Start off the country’s birthday with a family-friendly fest at the Rotary Club of Merrimack’s Annual Pancake Breakfast at Merrimack High School (38 McElwain St., Merrimack), on Friday, July 4, from 8 to 11 a.m. All the crucial breakfast foods will be served, like eggs, sausages, juice and hot coffee. Tickets are $8 for adults, $5 for seniors, $4 for children under 12 and free for children under 4.
Work off the breakfast feast at the annual Sparkler 5k Race/Walk at the Merrimack YMCA (6 Henry Clay Drive, Merrimack). The race starts at 8 a.m. Profits benefit the Merrimack High and Middle School Track and Cross-Country programs. Register onsite on Thursday, July 3, between 4 and 7 p.m. or Friday, July 4, between 6 and 7:15 a.m. For more information, visit
Cool off at the annual 4th of July Parade starting at Tractor Supply Company Parking lot (515 Daniel Webster Hwy., Merrimack) on Friday, July 4, at 1 p.m. Children of all ages can decorate their bikes, wagons and strollers and participate in the parade. Bands, militia units, clowns and members of local businesses will all be marching down the street.
There will also be plenty of activities throughout the afternoon the Merrimack Rotary Family Day at Mastricola Middle School (7 School, St., Merrimack), on Friday, July 4, from noon to 8 p.m. Enjoy a wide variety of vendors, chalk art, live music and a Merrimack Police dunk tank. Cap off the night at the high school for the fireworks display. Visit
Canobie Lake Park (85 N. Policy St., Salem) is putting on its own fireworks display each night from Thursday, July 3, through Saturday, July 5, starting at 9:30 p.m., weather permitting. 
As seen in the July 3, 2014 issue of the Hippo.

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