Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Hailey to ‘inspire the valley' on Fourth of July weekend

Rodeo, bike race, and arts and crafts top events

Express Staff Writer

Old cars and festive outfits are always a part of the Hailey Fourth of July Parade, scheduled for noon on Friday, July 4. Express file photo

    The Fourth of July weekend in Hailey has long been celebrated as a time when family members return to town for reunions. The noon parade is followed by picnics and barbecues. Antique fairs and the Sawtooth Rangers’ Days of the Old West Rodeo harken back to the frontier history of the area.
    In recent years, the Hailey criterium road bike race has helped put Hailey on the bike culture map. This year’s Fourth of July parade theme, “Wood River Valley inspires,” will ensure that there is something for everyone to enjoy in Hailey, before and after the fireworks.
     “It’s going to be spectacular,” said Hailey Chamber of Commerce spokeswoman Geegee Lowe. “It will be the Wood River Valley at its most inspirational.”
    The best way to start the day is at the Boy Scouts Pancake Breakfast at the Wood River Grange Hall, from 7:30-10:30 a.m. on Third Avenue. The Grange was established long ago to provide a dance hall and meeting place for farmers to discuss the latest agricultural innovations.
    At noon, Main Street will come alive for the Grand Parade, between Myrtle and Cedar streets. It would be wise to place chairs out well before the parade begins. Businesses, politicians, social organizations and nonprofits will make appearances, often riding vintage automobiles, including this year a 1958 Willys Jeep, a 1936 Ford Phaeton and a 1929 Ford Model A.    
    More than 60 entries, including cheerleaders, marching bands, equestrians and buggies carrying the Blaine County Historical Museum’s Heritage Court ladies will parade through town. The Sawtooth Rangers Riding Club and the 2014 Hailey rodeo queens and princesses will be joined by the McMillan family trick riders and the famous bucking car.
    The grand marshal of the parade this year is Dick Fosbury, 1968 high-jumping Olympian known as the inventor of the Fosbury Flop. (See story on Page S8).
    After the parade, the Blaine County Democrats will host an ice cream social at the Mint Promenade, on Main Street between the Mint Bar and Jane’s Artifacts store. The Hailey Fire Department will host a “waterworks extravaganza” at Hop Porter Park after the parade.
    At 1:30 p.m., the Fourth of July Criterium Bike Race begins, with a cordoned-off course that snakes through town.    
    Shopping for old treasures is a big part of Hailey’s big weekend. The Hailey Antique Market at Roberta McKercher Park at the south end of town (across from the airport) on state Highway 75 brings high-end antiques with a Western flair, as well as an assortment of other items and artwork. The fair is open on Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., and on Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
      At the north end of town, the Hailey Main Street Antique and Arts and Crafts Fair will present 40 vendors booths selling antiques, log furniture, linens and Western and country home décor, open Friday and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.
    Children are welcome to a safe playing environment from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Children’s Carnival on the Farmers Market lot (next to Bank of America) on Main Street, sponsored by Spirit N’ Motion Athletic School.
    Don’t forget to grab a good spot to see the fireworks at dusk, about 10 p.m., in the eastern sky. They will be easily visible from the rodeo arena.

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