Havre Daily News
Three years ago a group of Havre residents decided the city needed more fun during July Fourth. This year, the third annual Fourth of July Parade and Picnic will continue to do that.
"Each year it just seems like we have more people involved," said organizer Allen "Woody" Woodwick. Woodwick, a Havre City Council member, said he and some community members started the event because Havre did not have any activities for the holiday.
A parade and picnic were just the thing, they decided.
Judging from the crowd the annual event draws, people seem to agree. Woodwick said that as many as 1,000 people came to Pepin Park last year, where the picnic is held.
The event begins with a parade on Fifth Avenue at 10:30 a.m., starting at Fifth Avenue Christian Church and continuing to Second Street.
Participants are invited to Pepin Park afterward to listen to music and lounge around with their neighbors, friends and family members, co-organizer Rick Linie said. People should bring a picnic lunch.
"We wanted to let people know there will be diverse music all day long," Linie said. That's where Woodwick said he expects to see a real crowd.
"It just seemed like the whole park just exploded with people" last year, he said.
Musical performers include local pianist Mary Stevens, who will play ragtime. Local band Blind Luck and a few other area bands also will perform. Woodwick said anyone who would like to join the performance can reach him at his home to let him know.
"We can mix and match and probably build some new bands in the process," Woodwick said.
Organizers of the event have come together in an ad hoc manner, rather than forming a committee, Linie said.
"Dozens and dozens of people have volunteered and donated things and helped out," said Woodwick. As participation has grown, so has the number of people who want to help, he added.
People who would like to perform can reach Woodwick at 265-1533.
Linie had one other message. He asks that people who participate in the parade don't throw candy into the crowd, but carry it to the spectators.
"We don't want children running between cars," Linie said.
The picnic will continue until about 8 p.m. so people have time to get to the Hill County Fairgrounds to see the Jaycees fireworks display.
Jaycee Jason Murri said Havre can expect one of the biggest displays yet. Proceeds from the Jaycees' fireworks booth help pay for the display.