Parades, running events and fireworks will help local residents celebrate Independence Day.
Several events are on tap for local communities, including some new offerings to take advantage of the day.
In Mars, the borough's annual celebration will kick off at 10 a.m. July 4 with a new twist. According to Mayor Gregg Hartung, the borough is partnering with Wolf Creek Race Management to host the Mars Independence Day 4K and 1K Run/Walk.
The inaugural event kicks off at 9 a.m. with the 4K race, followed by the 1K at 9:45 a.m. Both races start and finish at the flying saucer on the corner of Grand Avenue. Both are out-and-back courses.
The top male and female finishers in both the 4K and 1K races as well as a randomly selected finisher will receive an apple pie on race day. Medals will be given to the top three overall male and female finishers and top three master male and female finishers in the 4K. Awards will also be given to the top three in eight separate age groups.
Awards will be given to the top five overall male and female finishers in the 1K event.
According to Hartung, the race supports MHY Family Services.
The celebration continues at 3:30 p.m. with a picnic-style meal in downtown Mars. Children's activities and live music will be offered.
The annual parade begins at 5 p.m. Hartung said more than 65 vehicles and floats are entered. The Mars High School Marching Band will also participate. The parade will last about an hour as it travels from Beaver Street to Pittsburgh Street to Grand Avenue.
The evening will cap off with fireworks at dusk.
A daylong celebration will also be held in Zelienople, with the 5th annual Kampas Orthodontics Firecracker 5K kicking things off.
Registration for the event begins at 7 a.m. July 4, with the 5K and 1-mile races beginning at 8 a.m. The race course winds from Zelienople Community Park through Zelienople and Harmony. A post-race breakfast and awards ceremony is scheduled for 9:15 a.m.
The annual Independence Day parade, put on by the Zelienople Rotary Club, begins at 11 a.m. and runs down Main Street and finishes in Community Park.
According to Joan Wolfe, park manager, the Community Days celebration begins at 1 p.m. and will feature food trucks, a roaming magician, two bounce houses and a dunk tank. There also will be live music throughout the day. The concession stand at the park will also be open.
The pool will be open until 6 p.m. and offer free admission. Fireworks in the park are scheduled to be set off at dusk.
The borough will celebrate Independence Day on Thursday with a concert by the Allegheny Brass Band in the borough square.
Music begins at 8 p.m., with fireworks concluding the evening.
The city of Butler is planning a fireworks display at dusk July 4.
The annual fireworks display at the Big Butler Fair is scheduled for dusk July 4 at the fairgrounds in Franklin Township. It's one of the highlights of the annual event, which runs this year from June 28 until July 6.