Havre de Grace’s mayor issued a “gentle … but a very firm reminder” ahead of the city’s Independence Day celebration Saturday, that people cannot reserve a spot along Union Avenue to watch the parade until 8 a.m. that day, no earlier.
“Please be lawful and mindful that the spots you can grab start at 8 o’clock,” Mayor William T. Martin said.
The parade, which kicks off an afternoon’s worth of Independence Day events Saturday, will be held along Union Avenue, stepping off at 2 p.m. Saturday. This year's parade theme is "Havre de Grace Honors First Responders."
Festivities will continue with a pair of concerts at 7 p.m. The Amish Outlaws will perform at Hutchins Park, 100 Congress Ave., while the Maryland Military Band will play patriotic music at Concord Point Park, 352 Commerce St.
Tickets for the Amish Outlaws are $10 in advance and $15 at the gate. The Maryland Military Band concert is free.
Fireworks will start at 9:30 p.m. at Concord Point Park and can be seen all along the city’s shoreline.
Havre de Grace leaders recognized the upcoming celebration during a City Council meeting Monday, when Police Chief Teresa Walter showed a video featuring a rendition of “America the Beautiful” by the Hillsdale College Choir and images of iconic American locations, scenic splendor, members of the U.S. military and American citizens enjoying their lives.
Walter wished the community a happy Independence Day. Mayor Martin thanked her for showing the video, which he called “very inspirational.” The mayor said he hopes the weather is cooler this year compared to last year’s celebration, when more than 20 parade entrants canceled “just from the sheer heat.”
The Independence Day Commission has reported that more than 100 entrants are slated to participate in this year’s parade, Martin said.
He urged people to “drink lots of water” and support the Amish Outlaws concert, noting the funds raised from the concert will support next year’s festivities.
“Please support that if you’re looking for something fun to do in between the parade and the fireworks,” Martin said.
Councilwoman Carolyn Zinner, the council’s liaison to the commission, thanked the members for their work in putting on the festivities and community events earlier in the year to raise money for the Independence Day celebration. She singled out parade chair Taryn Martin — the mayor’s wife — for her many roles, including keeping the commission website up to date and coordinating a “plethora of volunteers” to work Saturday.
“It’s an outstanding job, and it’s been my pleasure to work with that group this past year,” Zinner said.
Councilman Jason Robertson wished a “happy birthday” to the nation, noting there have been some “rough times” and “some really great times” over the country’s 243-year history.
“I just want everyone to remember that we are all bound by the same ethos,” he said. “The same banner that I’m under, you’re under.
“Whether you agree or disagree on all of the things that really don’t matter in this life, just remember that we’re here together and I’m glad to be here with you, so keep it classy and have a good time,” Robertson added.