Happy (almost) 4th of July! There is never a shortage of activity during the week of the 4th and this column is going to serve as a rundown of the 4th of July activities taking place in the west end. Join us!
Tuesday through Friday will be the Ishpeming and Westwood Alumni Softball Tournaments.
Swing by the Ishpeming High School gymnasium on Thursday for an Alumni Open House for Ishpeming football coach Jeff Olson from 9 a.m. to noon, and a coaches reception from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Festival of Treasures is also taking place Thursday in downtown Ishpeming from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. This event is put on by the Ishpeming Business Association and features music, food, sidewalk sales, vendors, artists and kids' activities. There's something for everyone.
Don't cook dinner on July 3, because VFW Post 4573 at 310 Bank St., in Ishpeming is having a spaghetti dinner from 4-8 p.m.; enjoy a plate of spaghetti, garlic bread, and a salad with your family. The dinner is $6 for adults, $3 for children 3-10 years old and free for those under 3 years old.
After dinner, head downtown to Old Ishpeming to watch the Blue Notes concert at 7:30 p.m.
If you want to celebrate the 4th one day early, head to Michigamme Township Park the at 5 p.m. July 3 for the Spurr 4th of July Celebration.
Concession stands, music by the Slamtones, and fireworks at dusk are all a part of the occasion. ?On the morning of July 4, VFW Post 4573 is hosting a pre-parade breakfast from 7-10 a.m. The breakfast is $6 for adults, $3 for children 3-10 years old and free for those under 3 years old.
Other Ishpeming 4th of July activities include: the Firecracker 5K at Al Quaal in Ishpeming. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. and the race starts at 8:45 a.m.; a flag raising and 21-gun salute will take place at 9:30 a.m. at Memorial Park by the Ishpeming Post Office; the children's bike parade will head down Main Street and Bank Street in downtown Ishpeming at 10 a.m.; the Ishpeming 4th of July parade starts at 10:30 a.m.; the 4th of July Community Picnic gets started at noon at the Al Quaal Recreation Area and features bingo, live music, vendors, a kickball tournament and fireworks at dusk; the party in the park west will take place during the community picnic and will be hosted by the Greater Ishpeming-Negaunee Area Chamber of Commerce from 2-8 p.m. The party will feature bounce houses for kids and wristbands and tickets for the party will be available during the picnic.
The 4th of July Jubilation will also take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Van Riper State Park in Champion. There will be bike decorating, a bike parade, popsicles and minnow races.
A new event is coming July 5: The Teal Lake Paddle. This is a high-action event with something for everyone, including kayakers, canoers and paddle boarders. Come together, spend time with friends, and support this vital West End community. To learn more, visit .
On Saturday evening, put on your dancing shoes for a street dance, hosted by VFW Post 4573 in downtown Ishpeming. The dance will run from 9 p.m. to midnight and will take place in the VFW parking lot.
Also kicking off Saturday is Pioneer Days in Negaunee. Pioneer Days will be July 5-12. Some of the events will include: class reunions, the Pioneer Princess pageant, flea market, Big Brothers Big Sisters Go BIG for Kids 10K run and 2-mile run/walk, Pioneer Day parade, community picnic and fireworks.
We hope everyone has a safe and Happy 4th of July. Enjoy time with your family and friends and don't forget to wave your red, white, and blue.
Editor's note: Ashley Geist is the Marketing and Communications manager of the Greater Ishpeming-Negaunee Area Chamber of Commerce.